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Nov 1, 2006 11:36 PM

Best popcorn popper uses least oil or butter?

I just saw a stovetop popper that they claim uses only one teaspoon of oil for great popcorn in the King Arthur Catalog. Anyone have experience with it? Any other recommendations? We like popcorn but some of the packaged microwave stuff smells oily and fake buttery and the odor lingers long after you might want it to.

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  1. I bought an old-school hot air popper a few months ago for $14 from a low-brow department store recently. It's makes a lot of noise like a hair dryer but it works great. You need a big bowl because the stuff comes out like a rocket jet.

    Zero fat, unless you want to microwave a little bowl of real butter and add it yourself afterwards.

    1. Is the King Arthur one the Whirley Pop?

      We have a Whirley Pop. We LOVE it. I haven't eaten much popcorn over the years as I hate microwave popcorn...and well it's stupid, but can't stand the sound of the pot scraping on the stove top when we make it in a pan(we have an electric flattop range).

      So when I was working at at kitchen store my co-workers convinced me to try the Whirley Pop. Best homemade popcorn ever!

      We use very little oil in it...a couple teaspoons at most. It raelly does work with just a little oil. Popcorn turns out delicious and crispy everytime.

      we use a little olive oil and just as it's starting to pop put some Penzey's Brady Street sprinkle mix...mmmm honestly really good stuff!

      1. Whirley Pop all the way (that's the one KA has for sale). Once it's seasoned, you really don't need to add oil again, though it the seasoning sticks better to the kernels if you add a tsp or so with each use.


        1. Whirley Pop, Whirley Pop, Whirley Pop!! WE love ours, too.

          1. I use a non-stick stir-fry pan and really don't see a need to spend money on some overspecialized doohickey.

            I use clarified butter or ghee. Dry popcorn is as much fun as rice cakes.

            5 Replies
            1. re: SnackHappy

              I use my 16" carbon steel wok and use the steaming lid as a cover. I can pop 1 cup of popcorn in less than 2 teaspoons of peanut or sesame oil. There is just enough fat so that the salt with stick, but it is never greasy.

              1. re: Kelli2006

                I use the wok too! It works great. All the popcorn settles to the bottom where it is the hottest. I end up with very few unpopped seeds or old-maids (to be politically incorrect).

                1. re: Kelli2006

                  The wok is a great idea! Can't believe I didn't think of it. And now I'll have some use for the lid which I otherwise never use.

                2. re: SnackHappy

                  Since popcorn usually only pops in a very hot pan, I would avoid using Teflon, since that is not supposed to be used over high heat.

                  1. re: Karl S

                    You're right about Teflon. I'm phasing out all my non-stick cookware since I heard the Health Canada warning about cancer risks related to Teflon.

                    I'm going back to steel and cast-iron.