How to Make Perfect Popcorn

The secret is...

I was just rereading THIS article about Steph Curry’s popcorn rankings and realised that I never told you just how to make the perfect popcorn. There’s nothing quite so good as perfect, fresh popcorn, so let me share my secrets:

Pot Shape

After making many many many batches of popcorn with my husband over the last 9 years, we only recently switched from our dedicated flat-bottomed “popcorn pot” to a rounded bottom pot that we use for everything, daily. The rounded bottom pot works SO MUCH BETTER! We theorize that the curved sides allow unpopped kernels to slide to the bottom of the pot easier. We don’t get any unpopped kernels now. Plus, the shape means fewer popped kernels are resting on the bottom so there’s less burning.  However, if you only have a flat-bottomed pot, you can still make great popcorn. Just be sure to shake the pot more often while popping!


Use a plain vegetable or canola oil for popping. Pour in about 1 tablespoon or enough oil to cover the size of about 2 Toonies.


Listen- grocery store popping corn, even the generic brands, work fine. We once bough fancy gourmet kernels from Bulk Barn and it didn’t pop well. Keep them at room temperature.

For a regular size pot (I can’t think of the size of ours at the moment!) use 1/3 cup of kernels until you’ve done it a few times then you can up the amount to 1/2 cup. (At that amount, your pot lid will be pushed up by all the beautiful popcorn! You’ll want to film it for Instagram.)


I melt the butter or coconut oil in the bottom of the hot pot once I’ve wiped it out. Or you can microwave it. For a good butter flavour, use about 1 1/2 tbsp to 2 tbsp of butter.

The secret is…

powdered salt! You can make your own with a mortar and pestle (push down and roll the pestle along the side of the mortar until the salt is soft and powdery); or use a spice grinder (leave the lid on for a few minutes to let the dust settle so you’re not breathing in salt dust!)



In your pot, pour in 1 tbsp of oil and add 3 kernels of popping corn. Put on the lid and shake once.

Turn on heat to medium high and wait until the kernels pop before adding the rest of the popping corn.

This is key: make sure you hold the lid and shake the pot every 20 second or so.

Once the popping is fast and consistent, you can turn down the heat to medium. Keep shaking the pot.

When popping slows to one pop or so every second, turn off and take pot off the heat but, leave the lid on for about 30 seconds more.

This whole thing should take about 3 or 4 minutes.

Once you’ve put the popped corn into a bowl, carefully wipe out the pot and melt your butter or coconut oil in the pot (or just microwave it, whatever works for you).

As you are stirring the popcorn, drizzle on the butter/oil.

Take your powdered salt and sprinkle it, stir, sprinkle, stir etc. to taste.

If you want to make multiple batches, be sure to wash your pot so the residue oil doesn’t burn. Don’t put cold water on a hot pot or you can warp the metal.

Look, I know you can just microwave popcorn BUT with homemade popcorn, it’s not only cheaper and delicious but you don’t have that weird residue in your mouth like after a bag of microwaved stuff. It’s worth it!