7 of the Best Popcorn Maker Brands

A popcorn maker and a bowl of popcorn.

Not much can compare to buttery fresh, movie theater-quality popcorn. But, what if you could make this savory treat in the comfort of your own home? Popcorn maker manufacturers have come a long way and have been able to perfect the popcorn-making process for at-home consumption, using the best popcorn maker technology available.

If you are craving some fresh popcorn to go along with your movie tonight, consider purchasing a popcorn maker. Below, let’s take a look at the best popcorn maker brands so you can make a well-informed decision on your next purchase.

What To Look For in a Popcorn Maker

There are a large number of popcorn maker brands available on the market. There are some features that may be important for you when you look for your next popcorn maker.

Capacity

Some popcorn makers are smaller, better suited to pop enough corn for one person. There are far larger popcorn makers that can make much larger batches of popcorn. It is essential that you know how much popcorn you want to make before you select the size. The more popcorn a maker can produce means the more prominent the machine will be. If the popping machine is bigger, that means it could be heavier and take up more space.

Material

The type of popper that you purchase dictates the material from which the popper is made. You will find stovetop poppers made from stainless steel or aluminum. A microwave popcorn popper is made from silicone or plastic. Steel and aluminum poppers distribute heat are easily and evenly. Plastic and silicone are more adorable, lightweight, and difficult to break. Glass is easy to break and made challenging to store. They do not retain smells and have a better look than plastic.

Cleaning

You want to make sure that the popcorn maker you select is easy to clean. The best way to clean your popcorn maker is to put it in the dishwasher to clean it quickly and easily.

Ways of Cooking

There are different methods that popcorn makers use to cook their popcorn kernel options. Each one has the potential to cook tasty popcorn no matter which unpopped kernel options you prefer. You can use any of these popcorn poppers for white popcorn kernels or yellow popcorn options.

Stovetop

A stovetop popper is a traditional way of popping popcorn. They have a built-in mechanism to stir while the popcorn is cooking. Stirring helps to produce the most evenly cooked popcorn. This type of cooker is most likely to create old-style kettle corn. You do not need to use electricity for this type of stovetop popcorn popper. This type is not as easy to clean and more cumbersome to store. If you prefer old-school popcorn, a stovetop popcorn maker may be the right one for you.

Microwave

A microwave popper gives you an alternative to throwing a pre-packaged bag of popcorn in the microwave. You can choose how many kernels you pop and if you want to add butter. Even though you may not think so, a microwave popcorn machine is a great way to get fresh popcorn quickly. This type of cooker takes up less space and some of them are collapsible to put away more easily. They are typically made of plastic that is safe for food. Despite this, they may have odd smells and flavors.

Countertop

These are electric models that are popular and sit on your countertop. They quickly make popcorn with a simple push of a button. Some electric poppers are air poppers which means they use hot air and not coconut oil to pop the corn kernels. Cooking popcorn without oil makes it healthier. Many of the parts are dishwasher safe making them easy to clean. They are not easy to store and may be more expensive.

Best Popcorn Maker Brands

Cuisinart

Cuisinart CPM-700 EasyPop Popcorn Maker, Red
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Cuisinart offers a few different methods, including a microwave and countertop hot air popcorn popper. They are easy to use and clean. Neither of these models requires oil, which makes your popcorn healthier. They will cook your popcorn in about three minutes. They are incredibly easy to use and clean. The microwave version is easier to store. The hot air popper takes some time to learn how to get up and use the chute. The microwave version takes some tweaking to get the cooking time right. They both pop 10 cups of fluffy, healthy popcorn. Cuisinart has been around in some versions since the early 1970s. No matter which one you choose, they are backed with the knowledge and experience that comes along with Cuisinart.

Williams Sonoma

The Williams Sonoma Hot Air popcorn maker in silver.

Source: Williams Sonoma

Created by Williams Sonoma, the Open Kitchen Hot Air Popcorn Maker is one of the best popcorn machines around. This popcorn maker is easy to use, compact, and does a remarkably good job of getting every last unpopped kernel popped to perfection. This popcorn maker boasts a 95% pop rate, creating the perfect white popcorn kernel.

The model is slim and compact, easily able to sit on your kitchen counter or stay tucked away in storage until movie time. This model is also dramatically more affordable, offering a cheaper price point compared to other popcorn makers on the market.

This model uses hot air to fluff the popcorn kernels, making it a healthier alternative than microwave popcorn or popcorn that uses oil. Although this popcorn maker might be small in size, it can produce 12 cups of popped popcorn in about five minutes.

This model features a streamlined head that helps to funnel the popcorn straight into your bowl to make your popcorn pop process easier. This feature also makes the process of popping popcorn neater and cleaner.  The popcorn maker has a warming tray for your butter and features a convenient cord storage design. The popcorn machine is made of BPA-free materials, making it safe to use for years to come.

Dash Hot Air Popper

DASH DAPP150V2AQ04 Hot Air Popcorn Popper Maker with Measuring Cup to Portion Popping Corn Kernels + Melt Butter, 16, Aqua
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The Hot Air Popcorn Maker from Dash is one of the leading designs when it comes to quality and efficient popcorn makers. This design is streamlined and can use hot air for popping popcorn. Using hot air creates healthy popcorn that does not use oil or the preservatives found with microwave popcorn. Using the Dash popcorn maker, you can make yourself a healthy treat with delicious homemade popcorn.

The Dash popcorn maker is streamlined and compact and can sit on the kitchen counter without taking up much space. Although the popcorn maker is smaller, it can produce a maximum capacity of 15 cups of popped kernel perfection with a single fill of the popcorn kernel chamber. The popcorn maker also has a convenient warming center that will melt butter to perfection. The popcorn maker is durable and long-lasting and comes with a one-year warranty.

The Dash Hot Air Popper is a cute little machine. It comes in a few colors, but the most notable is the pastel-tinted one. This machine is small but mighty. It can pop as much as 16 cups of popcorn. It is compact and will not take up much space on your countertop. It has a tray that can heat on top of your machine that is perfect for melting butter. It is effective in its popping ability as it pops just about every kernel. The melting tray and popping shoot can be taken off the machine and popped into the dishwasher for effective cleaning. You should consider this machine if you want homemade popcorn.

Whirley Pop

Franklin's Original Whirley Pop Stovetop Popcorn Machine Popper. Delicious & Healthy Movie Theater Popcorn Maker. FREE Organic Popcorn Kit. Makes Popcorn Just Like the Movies.
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The Whirley Pop is a retro popcorn popper with some modern touches. This is a stovetop popper that has streamlined making regular and kettle corn in the most authentic way. Steam vents from The Whirley Pop, which releases moisture to make kernels that are fluffy. It has a hand crank that constantly stirs to distribute the oil evenly and prevent burning. It can make as much as six quarts at one time, which is double the amount you find in a pre-packaged microwave bag. It can make this amount of popcorn in about three minutes.

The Whirley Pop is made of aluminum that is incredibly durable. The lid is attached to the pot, and it has a wooden handle that you must keep in constant motion while the popcorn is popping to ensure the kernels are moving. There are some poppers that have metal gears, while others have nylon gears. Depending on what type of popcorn you want to make will dictate the kind of gears you want. It is easy to clean by simply wiping down the entire machine with a towel. You can also hand wash it with soap and water, but you cannot put it in the dishwasher.

West Bend

West Bend 82505 Stir Crazy Electric Hot Oil Popcorn Popper Machine Offers Large Lid for Serving Bowl and Convenient Storage, 6-Quart, Red
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The West Bend is a popular electric model that pops six quarts, or 24 cups, of popcorn in less than four minutes. The West Bend is a great machine if you want to make popcorn for a crowd. This machine requires that you plug it into a wall for power. The cord has storage under the machine, which prevents it from tangling. The West Bend popcorn maker machine is made of plastic that is BPA-free. The top of the popper has a lid that is clear and vented, which also doubles as the bowl for your popcorn. It includes a well for your butter where it can melt on the popcorn while it is being popped. You can forego the butter and use oil instead.

The West Bend electric popcorn popper has a rod for stirring at the bottom of the machine that helps keep the kernels moving. The stirring rod makes sure that all the kernels pop and leaves none behind. The surface of the popper is nonstick, and it is easy to clean. A simple wipe with a towel is all your need. If the lid gets really dirty, it can be put on the top rack of your dishwasher. The West Bend model is a more expensive option when you are looking for a countertop popcorn popper.

Salbree

Original Salbree Microwave Popcorn Popper, Silicone Popcorn Maker, Collapsible Bowl - The Most Colors Available (Red)
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The Salbree popcorn popper is a microwave popcorn popper. It can flatten completely for easy storage. That is how it is delivered to you, flattened. The material is silicone that is easily washed by hand. You can also place it in the dishwasher, but the silicone may get water spots. The spots do not come off easily once they are on your popcorn popper. If you want to season your popcorn, you should not do it in the popper. Using seasoning in the popper will make it even harder to clean. This may not be the best microwave popcorn maker if you want gourmet popcorn. You want to pop it first, move it to another bowl, and then season it. The Salbree has lines on the inside of it to indicate the 1/2 cup and 1/4 cup markings.

The Salbree popper cooks up delicious and fluffy popcorn in about two minutes. If you do not follow the instructions, your bowl will overflow with popcorn. The bowl gets warm during cooking, and you will need to allow it to cool down before making multiple batches of popcorn. The Salbree popper is an affordable option to purchase. It comes in multiple colors so that you can match any decor. It has handles on the side that make it easy to handle.

Presto

Presto 04821 Orville Redenbacher's Hot Air Popper
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Presto has a popcorn popper that carries the Orville Redenbacher name. It is also one of the more affordable popcorn poppers. It does not have a power switch. You plug it in to turn it on. It is on the louder side when it comes to popping your popcorn. It is a fast popper, making as many as eighteen cups in about 2.5 minutes. It has a hook on the back of the machine where you can hang the cord and store it neatly in place. The Presto is a hot air popper, which means it does not use oil or butter. Cooking without oil or butter makes your popcorn healthier for you. If you prefer butter, it comes with a butter melter that can also be used as a measuring cup. This machine helps you cook delicious popcorn.

FAQs

Finding just the right popcorn maker can be quite a task. You want to find something that perfectly balances affordability with quality to be able to find the best popcorn maker on the market. To help with your decision, we have put together a list of some of the most frequently asked questions surrounding popcorn makers.

Hopefully, you will get a better idea of how to find the right popcorn maker for you after reading through some common questions asked by people just like you.

What is the healthiest popcorn maker?

Although popcorn is traditionally thought of as a savory and buttery treat, it is possible to make a healthy popcorn snack. Often, the butter and oil are what cause popcorn to be unnecessarily unhealthy. One of the first ways to make a healthy popcorn treat is to use a hot-air popcorn popper. Compared to heavy and fatty oils and butter, hot air can simply pop the popcorn, making a light and fluffy treat.

If you are using an oil popcorn maker, it is still possible to create a healthy treat. Instead of using traditional oil or butter, consider adding coconut oil to your popcorn maker. This healthy alternative will give you the same fluffy popcorn as traditional oil but will be better and healthier for you. Using coconut oil will allow you to enjoy a healthy yet delicious treat.

What is the best popcorn machine?

When it comes time to buy the best popcorn machine for you and your family, you need first to consider what features are important to you. If you want a popcorn maker that will feed the entire family, consider purchasing a popcorn maker with a larger capacity. Some popcorn makers on our list can quickly produce a whopping 6 quarts of popcorn with a single fill.

If convenience is more important to you, think about purchasing a popcorn machine with an easy clean-up design. Look for popcorn makers that are either dishwasher safe or have a non-stick coating that will allow you to wash and wipe away oil and butter easily.

Lastly, if you are short on space, think about the overall footprint of the popcorn maker. If your popcorn maker will be sitting on the counter, you want to find something with a slim design. If your popcorn maker will be stored away in the pantry, you might want to consider a popcorn machine that has convenient storage options, like a nesting bowl or a quick cord storage device.

Choosing the best popcorn maker for you really depends on your needs and the most important features for you and your family.

Where can I buy one of the top popcorn makers?

Popcorn makers are widely popular and can be purchased from several retail stores and online shops. Many large brand stores, like Target and Walmart, regularly sell popcorn makers in their stores. Further, specialty cooking stores like Williams Sonoma also feature popcorn makers, sometimes even their own design or brand.

Further, you can readily find any number of popcorn maker options online through online markets and stores. Amazon features several brands and designs for you to choose from. Plus, shopping from an online retailer like Amazon will allow you to compare different popcorn maker brands to help you determine the right popcorn maker for you.

Are popcorn makers worth it?

Determining if a popcorn maker is worth it really depends on your intended use for the popcorn maker. If you regularly make popcorn for yourself and your family, it very may well be worth it. Popcorn makers can make popcorn remarkably faster compared to traditional microwave popcorn. By using a popcorn maker, you can quickly pop popcorn and feed your entire family.

Further, popcorn makers may be worth it if you are looking to make a healthy snack. Microwave popcorn is packed full of preservatives, and traditional stovetop popcorn uses fatty oils and kinds of butter. An air popcorn maker can make popcorn a healthy snack, perfectly suitable for any night of the week.

Lastly, a popcorn maker may be worth it if you like to have all the features of movie theater popcorn in the comforts of your own home. While microwave popcorn is convenient, it certainly lacks a movie theater quality. Many popcorn makers, though, have design features that make the popcorn look and taste like movie theater popcorn.

Not only will popcorn makers help to pop more popcorn kernels, but many even feature a butter melting device and butter warming device that will guarantee buttery fresh popcorn every time you make it.

How much is a popcorn maker?

Popcorn makers can vary pretty drastically in price. Usually, larger popcorn makers are more costly than smaller popcorn makers. Also, popcorn makers that have high-end features, like a larger capacity or a butter warmer, will often cost more money.

Further, popcorn makers that come from a well-known or reputable brand will often cost more money than an off-brand popcorn maker. For a high-end popcorn maker, you can expect to pay more than $100.

Luckily, there are plenty of affordable and cost-effective popcorn maker options too. Look for slim-line designs or straightforward and simple popcorn makers. Most hot air, small-capacity popcorn makers will run around $35 to $50. Choosing a smaller popcorn maker for a more affordable price will have fewer features but better cost savings.

Are White Popcorn Kernels Better Than Yellow Popcorn Kernels?

It really depends on what you are looking for in your popcorn. Both white and yellow popcorn kernels are delicious to eat, but they pop a little differently. White popcorn kernels will give you more tender and smaller flakes of popcorn. Yellow popcorn kernels will give you fluffier and large flakes. The yellow popcorn kernels are also more sturdy. Most of the popcorn kernels you find at your local grocery store are going to be snowflakes.

Is Too Much Popcorn Bad For Me?

As with anything, when you eat too much of it, it can be bad for you. If you make popcorn without butter or oil, it can be a healthy snack. That does not mean you should not be aware of serving sizes and stay within an acceptable serving size limit. In general, popcorn is low in calories, has high fiber, and has a low energy density. However, you still must consume it in moderation.

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