Old Fashioned Popcorn – Simplified & Perfected

Perfect Popcorn

When my husband and I were first married, I really didn’t know how to cook much of anything, but a good cookbook (given to me by my mother-in-law) and a great husband who was also a good cook, taught me much. So having my husband perfect old fashioned, stove top popcorn is of no surprise to me.

Two Christmas’ ago, one of our daughters – Cynthia – gave him this popcorn maker. At first, he looked at it as a gimick, but quickly learned its great potential. This type of unit is available at many stores, including amazon.com, etc. Simply do a search for  “Stovetop popcorn popper.” Cynthia bought it at Homesense.

Orville Popcorn

Stove-Top Popcorn Popper

It came with some pre-packaged, seasoned popping corn, which turned out really well, but were on the pricey side to continue buying, so my husband decided to try making some on his own. Through a few trials and a few errors, he truly perfected the recipe and procedure with obsolutely no burned kernels.

Important notes:

Powderized salt: Take regular table salt, or sea salt (preferred) and grind it in a spice grinder to a fine powder. Using salt right out of the box just doesn’t distribute properly on the popcorn. The salt gets put right in with the oil, so the kernels are perfectly coated.

Oil/Fat: This system really doesn’t work well with butter, as it burns easily, but grape seed oil gives a great taste and works better than Canola, as it has a higher heat tolerance so does not turn to trans-fats, and is not GMO like Canola.

Popping corn: We buy a big jug of Orville Rendenbackher at Costco, but any popping corn should work fine.

Orville Popcorn


1/2 tsp. Powderized salt
1/4 cup Oil
3/4 cup Popping corn


Approximately 1 gallon


1. Place popping corn, salt and oil in popper, and stir around to coat kernels evenly with salt and oil. Close lid.


2. Turn stove burner under popper on high, stir occasionaly every 10-15 seconds until popping starts.

3. Stir steadily until difficult to turn handle. This is due to pot now being filled with popped corn.

4. Tricky Part: Listen for the sound of popping to slow down to 1-2 per second, and turn off heat. If you leave on too long, you will have burnt kernels and corn at the bottom. If that happens, just remove unburned portion as it is fine to eat. If you remove from heat too soon, you will have many unpopped kernels.

Multiple Batches:

Two to three batches can be done in a row as long as no burning occured. After 3 pots, there are burnt particles regardless, so it’s best to stop, clean the popper and resume. It can simply be rinsed with hot water for more batches, but must be fully dry to resume popping. When done popping, wash thoroughly with hot soapy water, and scrub pad if needed, and dry thoroughly before storing for future use.



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