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An Easy Way to Microwave Popcorn Kernels—and Fun Toppings

Popcorn might be the best homemade snack in town: it’s quick to make from scratch and incredibly easy to customize, depending on your mood and what’s in your pantry. And while a load of melted butter and a few good pinches of salt are a completely suitable—and comforting!—option, sometimes it’s nice to mix things up a bit.

2 min read

It’s an easy equation: pop your popcorn, pour over some melted butter or oil, then shower with seasonings. (This dusting wand(Opens in a new window) is great for evenly distributing your flavor over the bowl and avoiding big clumps.) And the whole popping part just got easier with this new microwave-friendly popcorn bowl(Opens in a new window). You can throw the kernels right in the bowl, pop it in the microwave for 3-5 minutes, and voila—you’re ready to spice up those freshly popped kernels with seasonings. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Nutritional Yeast + Coconut Oil

Nutritional yeast is often used as a vegan alternative to any and all things cheesy—it’s flaky and savory, and popcorn is a great vehicle for it. Pour some melted coconut oil over your popcorn then finish with a few generous shakes of nutritional yeast and salt.



This is a spicy-savory-citrusy-nutty Japanese spice mix that’s often used in soups and on noodles. Sprinkle some on your popcorn and add a nip of sugar if you’re into a sweet-savory combination.


Salt + Pepper + Olive Oil

This combination might sound basic, but there’s something about the kick of freshly ground salt and pepper(Opens in a new window) on a big bowl of popcorn that will keep you coming back for more.


Lime Zest + Chili Mix

To give your popcorn the flavor of taco night without actually, um, hosting taco night, go for whatever chili powder you have—or blend some cumin, paprika, and cayenne together—then zest some fresh lime right on top for a little citrusy lift. Margaritas optional.

Cheese Powder + Chili Flakes

Grab the cheese powder from a box of mac and cheese and sprinkle it on your popcorn with a good pinch of chili flakes for a cheesy, spicy snack.


Honey Butter

Here’s a fun spin on kettle corn: heat together butter and honey in a small pot (or microwave in a silicone measuring cup(Opens in a new window)) and once it’s all melted, pour it over your popcorn, and finish with a little salt.


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