Thursday, February 28, 2013

How to Make Microwave Popcorn in a Bowl

This is the easiest thing ever: Make popcorn right in the bowl you're going to serve it in. You don't need to do it in a paper bag, you don't need any chemical-laden, pre-measured packets from the store, and you don't need a space-hogging kitchen appliance just for popping corn.

blue popcorn kernels
Blue popcorn. This will work with any variety of popcorn!
Measure out 1/3 c of popcorn kernels into a large microwave-safe bowl. I just use a glass mixing bowl, probably with a 1 gallon capacity. You may want to vary the amount of corn you use depending on the size of your bowl or the size of your microwave.

blue popcorn in a bowl

If you just want to make a single serving, use 2 Tb corn in a large soup bowl. This has been great for when my kids want to snack on some popcorn. I can make exactly as much as we want with really no hassle.

We've always popped our popcorn on its own, and then added seasonings after popping, but based on reader suggestions (thanks, guys!) after publishing this article, I've started adding oil & salt before popping. I use about 2 Tb oil and several grinds of sea salt, stir it into the kernels, and then pop as normal. I think it gives the popcorn a great texture to pre-season it, but it works both ways.

Whatever size bowl you use, just make sure you have a microwave safe plate that fits over the top. The plate will keep the popcorn in while letting steam out.

make popcorn in a bowl

Microwave, covered with the plate, for about 3 to 4 1/2 minutes. Stay within earshot of the microwave during the last couple minutes, and pull it out as soon as the pops reduce in frequency to about 1 every 3 seconds. If you've ever made microwave popcorn before, it's the same thing here. If you let it go too long, it will burn, but you'll have a lot of unpopped kernels if you pull it out too soon. 

popcorn in a bowl
  
Our favorite way to dress popcorn is with melted butter or olive oil, nutritional yeast, and soy sauce or Bragg liquid aminos. Add whatever you like to your popcorn and enjoy!

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41 comments

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February 28, 2013 at 10:05 AM

Had to try it this morning! Worked fine, but in my micro, considerably longer than 3-1/3 minutes. May have been the microwave, or may have been lower moisture content in the corn. I'll be making it this way again. Thanks!

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February 28, 2013 at 10:37 AM

Thanks for letting me know, Annie! I'll update the post- you're right, microwaves really vary in how long they can take.

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February 28, 2013 at 6:09 PM

I like this! I have got to try this! Easy peasy! :) Making me hungry! :) Thanks for kicking off a great party this week! Thanks for linking up at our Gluten Free Fridays party! I have tweeted and pinned your entry to our Gluten Free Fridays board on Pinterest! :)

Thanks for linking back to the Gluten Free Fridays post!

We have a giveaway next week!!

Cindy from vegetarianmamma.com

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Anonymous
March 1, 2013 at 8:33 AM

Yikes! Why in the world would you want to nuke a perfectly good snack food????? Microwaves are so bad! This is so easy to do on the stove.

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March 1, 2013 at 11:30 AM

We don't use the microwave for much, but I think it works great for popcorn!

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March 1, 2013 at 11:37 PM

you just rocked my world. i hardly use my microwave either, but i agree, there is a time and a place! like a craving for popcorn at 11:36pm! thanks!

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March 2, 2013 at 5:29 AM

This my fave wAY TO MAKE POPCORN! aND WHY WOULDN'T YOU USE THE MICROWAVE? uSES MUCH LESS ENERGY THAN A STOVE BURNER.

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Anonymous
March 3, 2013 at 4:21 PM

Can you add oil and salt before popping?
Thanks,
Kimberly in NC

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March 3, 2013 at 10:35 PM

You are brilliant, Kimberly. I'll make popcorn tomorrow and give that a try!

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March 5, 2013 at 1:51 PM

We have a stovetop popper that we use almost every day. When my oldest son went away to college last fall popcorn was something he wanted but isn't allowed to have a hotplate in the dorms. So I found an older glass bowl and lid at a thrift store for him to take. He puts the oil and salt in before he pops the corn. We actually use a couple of chopsticks to prop up the lid for ventilation, http://www.schneiderpeeps.com/2012/08/preparing-for-college.html

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March 5, 2013 at 5:02 PM

That's great! I do notice steam builds up in under the plate/lid, but it's not super tight fitting so it still can breathe a bit while it's cooking. I'll definitely try adding oil and salt before cooking next time! Maybe right now... ;)

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March 6, 2013 at 1:48 PM

I'm a new follower. This is so cool! I'll have to try it sometime. Thank you for sharing.

Lynn

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March 9, 2013 at 9:13 AM

Popcorn is a weekly staple at our house, you are right, it is not complicated and serves as a healthy snack when its not cooked in bad oils. Thanks for sharing on Hearth & Soul Hop. :)

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March 11, 2013 at 9:26 PM

What a great idea! I am featuring it on the Hearth and Soul Hop this week.

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March 11, 2013 at 10:19 PM

Thanks for the feature, Alea!

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March 19, 2013 at 7:46 PM

I'm going to have to try this. I LOVE popcorn.

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March 25, 2013 at 9:11 PM

Awesome! I personally hate using the stove because it makes the fire alarms go off EVERY SINGLE TIME we turn it on. I would rather use the microwave, but I like the healthier popcorn instead of the kind you buy in bags.

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March 25, 2013 at 9:32 PM

Ha, yeah, that sounds like a good reason not to use the stove for popcorn! ;)

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April 17, 2013 at 2:50 PM

Wow, this is so easy! Why did I think it was more complicated than this? We will definitely be giving this a try soon! Thank you!

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May 2, 2013 at 3:05 AM

I think my jaw dropped when I saw this after searching for microwave popcorn... Delicious!

One comment is that my bowl gets really, really hot after microwaving for so long. Any thoughts on why? It's a ceramic bowl.

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May 15, 2013 at 10:35 PM

I've noticed some dishes just do that, I don't know why some get hot in the microwave and some don't. My glass bowl/ceramic plate combo also get really hot, enough that I need to use hotpads to get it out of the microwave, but it cools off quickly. I think it's just all that steam in there from the popping corn.

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June 20, 2013 at 11:15 AM

So glad I found your blog.Its exactly what I've been looking for and I will be back often!I'm going some of this popcorn right now!

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June 28, 2013 at 11:41 AM

I love this! We also have been making popped corn in the bowl we eat it in, but we've been using a large microwave bowl - I would MUCH rather use glass. Thanks so much for sharing. (visiting from What I Am Eating hop)

~Taylor-Made Ranch~
Wolfe City, Texas

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July 11, 2013 at 7:25 PM

Love it!! I've got to pin this, if that's OK with you!

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July 23, 2013 at 4:43 PM

I'm going to have to try this! I've used a paper bag before (carefully watching so it doesn't burst into flame!), this seems much easier! Thanks so much for sharing on the Home Acre Hop! Nancy - http://homefront.prudentliving.com

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July 24, 2013 at 1:08 PM

Mellow,
Wanted to let you know I will be featuring this post on the Home Acre Hop tomorrow! Stop by and pick up your featured button!
Nancy On The Home Front

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July 25, 2013 at 11:49 AM

Thank you Nancy, that's lovely!

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August 6, 2013 at 7:56 PM

I saw this tip on FB about a month ago and I don't feel like my life has been the same since! We eat SOOOO much popcorn now. Looks like we have the same bowl & plate! LOL!

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August 16, 2013 at 2:25 PM

Popcorn is one of my favorite snacks, this is a great tip. Thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
Have a great weekend!
Miz Helen

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September 9, 2013 at 8:35 PM

This is ingenious! What a great idea...I had no idea that making fresh popcorn could be so quick and easy! Thanks for sharing... :)

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October 28, 2013 at 5:29 PM

Great idea! We gave up our microwave a few years ago, but will pass this along to other folks who still have one. Thanks for sharing on Tuesday Greens!

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Anonymous
February 17, 2014 at 7:50 AM

Tried this in a glass bowl and the bowl cracked into two giant pieces. I suspect the oil got to hot for it. I know my microwave is not that powerful, so I don't think it was the wattage or the time. Quite disappointing...

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March 8, 2014 at 2:25 PM

I'm sorry about your bowl! It's been fine with our glass bowl- or I wouldn't have written the article. Some dishes do heat up more in the microwave than others, for some reason. I would think all glass is microwave safe though, so that surprises me.

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June 4, 2014 at 9:44 AM

What oil do you recommend? Olive? Grape seed? Is butter ok?

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June 22, 2014 at 9:39 AM

I think organic pastured butter is the tastiest, and second best is coconut oil. As far as health, I believe those two plus olive & grape seed, as you mentioned, are the best for you.

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michelle
July 22, 2014 at 8:04 PM

So glad I found this! My friend from Russia tells me there is no microwave popcorn in her part of the county. This will be a great novelty to share when she gets home!

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Anonymous
August 3, 2014 at 5:19 AM

Worked great for me.. I was a little afraid, because putting 2 tbsp of popcorn in the microwave is about as close as one can get to putting nothing in the microwave.. Everyone knows you don't run a microwave with nothing in it... All kernels popped except for 1,, and it was light and fluffy.... In my hot air popper 70 percent did not pop, of the Orville Red brand.. And stove-top made them too tough to eat........

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March 2, 2016 at 5:33 PM

My popcorn wouldn't pop all the way. Most kernels did but they were like 1/2 to 1/4 the size the should be. Then it also took 4 mins before 3 popped and then they mostly burned soon after that. Any reason why it wouldn't work for me? Maybe because I'm at a high altitude or the kernals could be old? Burnt popcorn is one of the most disgusting smells to me... Especially since I don't like popcorn that much in the first place lol

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March 4, 2016 at 1:00 PM

Weird! I do make popcorn this way all the time, and have very few unpopped kernels. I think yours must have gotten old, or spoiled in some way (moist, maybe?).
Burnt popcorn is horrid! And sadly a smell that's hard to get rid of. To avoid this next time (with fresh kernels) keep an eye on the bowl as it's microwaving, and listen hard for when the popping slows down. If they're not popping anymore, they're on their way to burning.

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