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Best Microwave Popcorn Popper

Popcorn is some of the best comfort food that you can get, and when it comes to the cost of said comfort food relative to how much you get, it’s also a heck of a bargain.  It’s something that is good for anytime, too.  It can be a great snack between meals (especially if you don’t salt and butter it).  It can be a tasty treat while you’re watching a film on the couch.  It can even be used as decoration around Christmastime (assuming that you don’t have any small animals or children that would be likely to try and eat it)! 

There’s a lot of debate, though, about whether it is better to get prepackaged and pre-buttered popcorn packets from the market, or to make your own with your own loose kernels. The big problem with the standpoint that loose kernels make for better popcorn is that to make that happen, you tended to have to have an air popper.

Best Microwave Popcorn Popper – Comparison Table

That’s no longer the case, thankfully.  Today, with the use of a microwave popcorn popper, you can pop loose kernels in your microwave (and without worrying that they’re going to fly everywhere)!  These devices make it possible for you to not only easily pop popcorn, but to enjoy it and get it much faster than you would with an air popper.

If you’re looking to pick up the best microwave popcorn popper, though, let us take a quick look at how they compare to each other. Without further ado, here are the best microwave popcorn poppers of 2018.

NameMaterialCapacity
Salbree Popcorn PopperSilicone½ cup
Cestari Kitchen Popcorn PopperSilicone¼ cup
Ecolution Kitchen Popcorn PopperGlass¼ cup
Presto 04830 PowerPopPlastic½ cup

Now, this is just a general table, something that is there to give you a feel for what may be the best microwave popcorn popper for you and for your needs.  Now let’s take a bit more of an in-depth look at what they can offer you and which might be the right one for you.

1

Salbree Popcorn Popper – The Shareable Model

If you’re looking for a good popcorn popper that is also a one-stop solution, one that doesn’t require that you dirty any other dishes, then the Salbree popcorn popper has you covered.

It’s a nice little popcorn popper, one that will definitely give you the tasty treat that you desire, and it doesn’t look half bad, which is always a plus.  It consists of two parts; a silicone lid, and a silicone body.  You drop a couple of kernels (up to a half cup of unpopped kernels) into the body, you drop in a bit of oil or some buds of butter if you would like to have that flavor (oil and butter not required!), you set your microwave to the ‘popcorn’ setting, and you’re good to go!  In about two minutes, you have some nice popcorn made fresh.

A great thing about this option is that, due to its silicone construction, it does not require oil or butter in order to get the kernels to pop.  Now, that being said, if you’ve ever had popcorn that was not oiled or buttered a little bit, you probably know that this popcorn is astonishingly bland and tasteless, and if you’re going to be making your own popcorn, I definitely would suggest that you include butter and salt.  A good idea is to put in a few bits of butter and mix it in, then begin the popping.  This will ensure a bit more coverage.  After the popping is done, you then take the salt and put a dash on the top, then shake up the popcorn container and you’re good to go.

This popcorn maker for microwave use may not have all the nostalgia that turning to an air popper and hearing it toss your popcorn kernels about has, but believe me when I tell you it will give you just as good a product, without having to wait as long (and without throwing kernels all over the place, as hot air poppers are wont to do).

PROS
  • Made of easy to work with and easy to clean silicone
  • Decent capacity
  • No oil or butter needed!
CONS
  • You can’t see through, which means you run the risk of either under or over-cooking your kernels
2

Cestari Kitchen Popcorn Popper – The Nostalgia Model

Once upon a time, when you went out to the movies, you would get a small, flimsy box, in red and white/gray, that held your popcorn.  If you go to some countries where they don’t eat so gluttonously, you can still find that kind of thing today, but for the most part, we’ve moved into a world where our theater popcorn comes in gigantic tubs that can even be refilled.

The Cestari Kitchen popcorn popper brings back that feel of nostalgia, at least in the shape of their popcorn popper. It looks like the old-fashioned kind of popcorn box that you got at the theaters, and that is a pretty nice touch to start with.

It is made out of the same kind of silicone as the Salbree offering, as are all the best popcorn poppers, it would seem.  It has a capacity of a fourth of a cup of popcorn kernels, which is still enough to fill the stomach of the hungry man or woman, and more than enough to make for a decently healthy snack.

Because of that silicone design, as well as the lovely silicone top, you don’t need to worry about putting in oil or butter.  Of course, let’s be honest here; without butter or oil, you’re going to be eating some very boring and tasteless popcorn, but if that is how you like to enjoy your popcorn, who am I to judge you for your bland ways and your boring food?

My one big complaint with this offering, even more than the previous one, is that you cannot really see through it to tell if your popcorn is done popping or not.  In general, when cooking popcorn, you should be nearby, ready to stop the microwave if it becomes apparent that you’ve already cooked the popcorn.  Otherwise, you end up with blackened and burnt popcorn that will make your residence smell awful for the next couple of hours. 

This Cestari Kitchen offering can help you make the best microwave popcorn you’ve enjoyed, all while doing it in a cool little container, and at a decent price, too.

PROS
  • Holds a decent amount of kernels
  • Looks very cool
  • Made of silicone
CONS
  • Not see through at all, can’t tell if your popcorn is done or not without sitting there and babysitting it
3

Ecolution Kitchen Popcorn Maker – The Classic Option

Let’s be honest with ourselves; this thing looks more like the kind of coffee container they pour you a cup of joe from in every diner ever than it does a popcorn maker.  That said, believe it or not, it’s a pretty serious popcorn maker.

You may notice the indentation in the top (which is made of silicone, incidentally). That indentation serves two purposes.  Before you begin making your popcorn, you use it to measure out a fourth cup so that you don’t overfill (and so you don’t have to spend time looking for a measuring spoon or measuring cup) and so you don’t end up with deformed and malformed kernels.  When you’re ready to cook it up, you put the top back on securely, and then you put some of your favorite butter in the silicone top, where it will slowly melt and drizzle over the popping corn.  Sounds really cool, doesn’t it?

As with the other offerings on this list, the Ecolution Kitchen model doesn’t require any silicone or popcorn to make popcorn, and if you would like to experience such bland popcorn, that is absolutely your right. It just means your popcorn will be terrible. 

As far as looking for a popcorn popper that will work, this is a great one.  It has all the feel of a Pyrex microwave popcorn popper, with a bit more reasonable a price point.

PROS
  • Easy to butter your popcorn
  • Measuring top is a nice touch, to be sure
  • See-through so you can tell how your popcorn is coming along
CONS
  • Feels kind of lightweight and breakable
4

Presto 04830 PowerPop Popcorn Popper – The Big Name Brand Popper

If the color scheme of the handle of this popcorn popper seems familiar to you, don’t fret.  It is because it is a popcorn popper that has earned the endorsement of Orville Redenbacher popcorn.

If you don’t know who that is, then you’re not really a popcorn person. They’re kind of the gold standard for popcorn these days. They’ve recently revolutionized the game again with a popcorn bag that turns into a pseudo-bowl. 

The PowerPop popcorn popper has a lot to offer you.  To begin with, it is made of solid plastic.  That means that you are not going to have to worry about it being flimsy or being easy to break, which is a nice thing to have.  Then, of course, there’s the design of the top, which is interesting.  The top is designed to be easy to take on or off, but it also, on some models, has tiny slots which you can put butter into.

As with all the other models, you don’t necessarily have to add butter or oil if you don’t want to, but as always, this will lead to your popcorn being bland and boring, and not really all that tasty. 

If you’re interested in making decent air-popped popcorn in your microwave, this is a great place for you to start, and one that carries a very prestigious seal of approval.

PROS
  • See-through so that you can tell if your popcorn is done or not
  • No oil or butter required to cook
  • Decently priced and well designed, will last a long time
CONS
  • I don’t really have anything else to complain about here

Best Microwave Popcorn Popper - Buyer's Guide

If you’ve decided that you want to pop your own kernels to save a bit of money, but you don’t want to spend a bunch of money and space on getting something like an air popper, then the microwave popcorn popper is the only option you have left (except maybe a pan on the stovetop).  Here are a few answers to questions you may have

Can’t I Just Use A Covered Bowl?

Realistically, it would be hard.  Popcorn pops because it’s in an enclosed area and the heat builds up, causing the kernels to pop.  Just using a bowl with a paper towel on top of it, you’re not going to get the same results.  You’re also not going to have the popcorn kernels all caught and kept in the right place, which is going to be a big hassle and mean a lot of cleanup, which no one wants to deal with. 

How Do I Make The Perfect Popcorn?

This is a topic of some debate, but here’s my preferred method.

To begin with, don’t put the butter in right away.  Don’t put it in as it cooks, either. 

Use light oil, something like Canola oil or even olive oil if you like that flavor.  It imparts a bit of flavor, and it also aids in the cooking.

Finally, when it is done, sprinkle on a little salt, give the bowl a shake, and slowly pour in the butter while mixing the popcorn around with a spoon.  This prevents too much butter on any kernel, which prevents sogginess.

Conclusion


So, now that we’ve taken a look at the products being offered, it is time that we talk about what product is best.  And after careful consideration, there is a definite winner.

I’m talking about the Ecolution Kitchen popcorn popper.  It is made of glass, it has a nice silicone top for melting better, and best of all, it has a decent capacity.  All told, it is the kind of popper that anyone will be happy with.

Of course, your mileage may vary, and if you’re looking for the popcorn popper for you, I’m sure it is somewhere in the list above.