Stovetop Popcorn

Make the perfect Stovetop Popcorn at home with this easy recipe! Recipe with step-by-step photos.

stovetop popcorn in large white serving bowl

Stovetop Popcorn Recipe

It might seem odd to give a recipe for Stovetop Popcorn when you can easily make a bag of microwave popcorn. But as we don’t own a microwave (a fact which has continually amazed our friends that we have survived raising kids thus far without one), I thought I would share how easy it is to make Stovetop Popcorn.

Cooking Popcorn on Stove

The advantages of making your own popcorn at home is that you can make it healthier. You can use healthier fats, and you can even leave out the salt entirely.

white bowl full of popcorn on wooden board

Homemade Popcorn

Homemade popcorn is a must whenever we have a movie night at home, or even when the kids invite their friends over for a play date.

If the kids are eating popcorn, I tend to omit the salt. Of course, they love their popcorn salted, but having seen them demolish a large bowl of plain popcorn without any complaints, they seem to enjoy unsalted popcorn just fine.

What I think makes a difference is serving the popcorn warm. Not only does a batch of freshly-made popcorn make your home smell of a movie theatre (for better or worse), eating warm popcorn which is unsalted is more appetising that eating it cold.

white serving bowl filled with popcorn

How to Make Stovetop Popcorn

Step 1

Melt the coconut oil into a large saucepan with a tight-fitting lid over medium heat.

Once the coconut oil has melted, add a few popcorn kernels and wait until they pop. This step is to make sure the coconut oil has warmed up to the right temperature.

coconut oil melted in pan with popcorn kernels

Step 2

When the first few popcorn kernels have popped, add the remaining kernels, and cover with a lid. I like to use a glass lid so I can see what is happening in the pan, and the kids definitely get a kick out of this too!

After a few minutes, the popcorn should start popping rapidly.

popcorn kernels in pan with coconut oil

Step 3

If the popcorn starts to reach the top of the pan (which you can see if you are using a glass lid), simply remove the popped popcorn to a large serving bowl. Return the lid to the pan to continue cooking.

Shake the pan from side-to-side a few times to allow any unpopped kernels to fall to the bottom of the pan.

Once the popping reduces to about one per second, this signals that most of the kernels have popped.

Sometimes some of the kernels will not pop, so you can discard these unpopped kernels.

Take the pan off the heat. Sprinkle the popcorn with salt (if using) and toss well before serving.

cooked popcorn in pan

More Party Recipes

If you are looking for more party recipes, you might also like:

Caramel Slice (Millionaire’s Shortbread)

Easy Chocolate Brownies

Pork & Sage Sausage Rolls


Stovetop Popcorn

5 from 2 reviews

  • Author: Thanh | Eat, Little Bird
  • Prep Time: 1 min
  • Cook Time: 10 mins
  • Total Time: 11 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 2-4
  • Category: Snack
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American

Make the perfect Stovetop Popcorn at home with this easy recipe! Recipe with step-by-step photos.



  1. Heat the coconut oil in a medium-sized pan which has a tight-fitting lid, over medium heat.
  2. Add 2-3 popcorn kernels.
  3. When the popcorn kernels start to pop, take the pan off the heat.
  4. Add the remaining popcorn kernels.
  5. Place a tight-fitting lid on the pan and return to the stove over medium heat.
  6. After a few minutes, the kernels will start to pop rapidly.
  7. Give the pan a shake from side-to-side a few times so that the unpopped kernels can settle on the bottom of the pan.
  8. If your pan starts to overflow with popcorn, simply remove the popcorn at the top of the pan to a large serving bowl. Then replace the lid and continue cooking until all of the kernels have popped.
  9. Once the popping has reduced to about one per second, you can take the pan off the heat.
  10. Sometimes, some of the kernels will simply not pop, so you can discard these.
  11. Season with fine salt to taste and toss well.
  12. Serve immediately, but the popcorn keeps well for a few hours.

Kitchen Notes

To convert from cups to grams, and vice-versa, please see this handy Conversion Chart for Basic Ingredients.

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  1. Dave 20 January 2021

    Simple and delicious! Nothing better than hot popcorn in your own home!

  2. Jane 23 March 2021

    We haven’t been the movies in the longest time and the kids have been asking for popcorn. Can’t believe I had to Google how to make popcorn and I’m so glad I found your recipe! Worked perfectly!