10 Flavored Popcorn Recipes (2024)

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Julissa Roberts

Julissa Roberts

updated Aug 15, 2022

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10 Flavored Popcorn Recipes (1)

When I was a kid, back in the good old days (the mid 80s), our family didn’t go for microwave popcorn. We made our popcorn on the stove. And it didn’t come pre-seasoned or buttered. We would have to add butter and salt our popcorn before we could sit down to enjoy the best buttery, movie-style popcorn.

One day, I made popcorn and noticed, to my horror, that we had run out of salt. Desperate, I began to rummage through my mom’s spice cabinet, hoping to find a wayward container I could use. Alas, there was none. The only thing I could find that was remotely salty was Goya Adobo seasoning. Trepidatiously, I sprinkled some on —and holy moly, it was wonderful!

After that, I started spinning my mom’s Lazy Susan full of spices every time I made popcorn, choosing something new to sprinkle on. Then I began experimenting with all kinds of crazy combinations. They weren’t all winners, but the idea that I could make popcorn taste however I wanted opened up my mind to a world of possibilities.

And I’ve kept at it. More than thirty years of popcorn-making later, I’ve finessed my favorites into a solid list of surefire popcorn winners. There are just many ways to flavor your popcorn, like maple-butter spiced popcorn. So pop yourself some stovetop popcorn and then try some of these ideas for your next movie night or Oscar-watching party.

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Note: Recipes are for 4 to 5 cups of popcorn or 1 bag of microwave popcorn. They call for plain popcorn that gets buttered (here’s a smart way to do it). Don’t use pre-buttered popcorn! You will need fresh butter so the condiments stick.

1. Dill Pickle Popcorn

Just like dill pickle potato chips! The trick to getting the flavor is vinegar powder, which you can find in some spice stores, and online. It really brings home that pickle flavor. Mixed with all the different components of a pickle brine, you won’t miss that cucumber at all!

How to Make It

Start by buttering your popcorn. In a large bowl, spritz the popcorn with 2 tablespoons melted butter mixed with 2 teaspoons neutral flavored oil and toss vigorously. In a small bowl, combine 1 1/2 teaspoons vinegar powder, 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander, 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard powder, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon onion powder, 1/4 teaspoon dill seeds (crushed with the side of a knife), and a hearty pinch of kosher salt. Sprinkle over the popcorn and toss to coat completely. Top with an additional 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill. Season to taste with more salt.

2. Togarashi Popcorn

Togarashi, also called Japanese Seven Spice, is a Japanese spice mix which consists of Szechuan peppers, sesame seeds, nori, orange peel, and more. You can find it in the spice section of most grocery stores, or online. Taste a little of your mix first so you can gauge the spiciness.

How to Make It

Start by buttering your popcorn. In a large bowl, spritz the popcorn with 2 tablespoons melted butter mixed with 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil and toss vigorously. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon togarashi, and a large pinch of kosher salt over the popcorn and toss to coat completely. Top with 1/2 cup of either dried edamame or wasabi peas. Season to taste with more salt.

3. Everything-Bagel Popcorn

The new condiment on the block is here to stay! Everything bagel spice combines sesame seeds, poppy seeds, garlic, salt, onion, pepper — basically everything. You get the idea. You can buy it, of course, or blend it yourself.

How to Make It

Start by buttering your popcorn. In a large bowl, spritz the popcorn with 2 tablespoons melted butter mixed with 2 teaspoons neutral flavored oil and toss vigorously. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons everything bagel spice over the popcorn and toss to coat. Season to taste with salt.

4. Cinnamon Toast Popcorn

If you prefer your popcorn more on this sweet side, this cinnamon-crunchy topping will be just what you’re looking for. While you can use any granulated sugar, I prefer the texture of a larger crystal. Try demerara or raw turbinado sugar. Salting this mix may sound counter intuitive, but a touch of salt REALLY brings out the cinnamon.

How to Make It

Start by buttering your popcorn. In a large bowl, spritz the popcorn with 2 tablespoons melted butter mixed with 2 teaspoons neutral-flavored oil and toss vigorously. In a small bowl, combine 2 tablespoons granulated or large-textured sugar and 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon. Sprinkle over the top of the popcorn and toss to coat completely. Season with a pinch of kosher salt. Optional: add 1/2 cup raisins.

5. Pepperoni-Pizza Popcorn

Who says you have to choose between pizza and popcorn on movie night? Have them both at the same time! Try to buy dry-packed sun-dried tomatoes if you can. (They’re at most grocery stores and online of course.) Otherwise, drain the oil and blot them dry with paper towels.

How to Make It

Start by buttering your popcorn. In a large bowl, spritz the popcorn with 2 tablespoons melted butter mixed with 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil and toss vigorously. Sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano and a large pinch of kosher salt over the popcorn and toss to coat completely. Coarsely chop 4 ounces of sun-dried tomatoes and 2 ounces thinly sliced pepperoni. With your hands crumble 2 ounces Parmesan cheese crisps. Top the popcorn with the tomatoes, pepperoni, and crisps. Season to taste with more salt.

6. Garlic Parm Popcorn

Garlic and Parmesan are a classic flavor combination (that’s also great on wings). Try to get the finest grate on your Parmesan that you can. I like using a rasp grater (also known as a Microplane) to get really small fluffy strands of Parmesan.

How to Make It

Start by buttering your popcorn. In a large bowl, spritz the popcorn with 2 tablespoons melted butter mixed with 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil and toss vigorously. Sprinkle 1 teaspoon garlic powder, a large pinch of kosher salt, and a few grinds of fresh black pepper over the popcorn and toss to coat completely. Top with 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese. Season to taste with more salt.

7. Ranch and Chive Popcorn

If you like ranch-flavored chips, this recipe is going to knock your socks off. And it’s far less expensive per bag! Powdered ranch dressing can be found right next to all the other salad dressings in the store. If MSG is a concern, most all-natural or organic dressings powders don’t have any.

How to Make It

Start by buttering your popcorn. In a large bowl, spritz the popcorn with 2 tablespoons melted buttermixed with 2 teaspoons neutral-flavored oil and toss vigorously. Sprinkle 3 tablespoons ranch dressing powder and a pinch of kosher salt and toss to coat completely. Top with 1/4 cup thinly slice fresh chives or 2 tablespoons dried chives. Season to taste with more salt.

8. Maple Bacon Popcorn

This is another combo that’s great for those with a sweet tooth. Thank goodness for maple sugar, which has all the rich flavor of maple syrup with none of the stickiness. If it isn’t in your grocery store’s baking section, look in the organic section, or find it online.

How to Make It

Start by buttering your popcorn. In a large bowl, spritz the popcorn with 2 tablespoons melted butter mixed with 2 teaspoons neutral-flavored oil and toss vigorously. Sprinkle 1 1/2 tablespoons maple sugar and a large pinch of kosher salt. Top with 4 slices of crumbled crispy bacon. Season to taste with more salt.

9. Strawberry Popcorn

If you’re looking to go off the beaten path a little, this is interestingly tasty, and may remind you of a fruity kid cereal. You should be able to find freeze-dried strawberries among the organic children’s snacks in most large grocery stores — and of course online. If you’re not into (or can’t find) strawberry, however, almost any other freeze-dried fruit should work, as long as you can crush it down to a powder.

How to Make It

Start by buttering your popcorn. In a large bowl, spritz the popcorn with 2 tablespoons melted butter mixed with 2 teaspoons neutral-flavored oil and toss vigorously. In a zip-top bag, combine 2/3 cup dried strawberry slices and 2 tablespoons granulated sugar. Using your hands, crush the strawberries and sugar together until mostly powder (some larger pieces are fine). Sprinkle over the popcorn and toss to coat completely. Season to taste with a small amount of salt.

10. Movie Night Popcorn

This is all your movie favorites rolled into one giant party-mix! The fun part of this is mixing and matching whatever candies you like, then trying to grab the perfect combination of flavors out of the bowl. I like to make it with Twizzlers, M&M’s, and pretzels, but follow your heart on this one.

How to Make It

Start by buttering your popcorn. In a large bowl, spritz the popcorn with 2 tablespoons melted butter mixed with 2 teaspoons neutral-flavored oil and toss vigorously. Chop 10 Twizzlers into 1/2-inch pieces. Sprinkle a large pinch of kosher salt over the popcorn and coat completely. Top with the Twizzlers, a 3.1-ounce box of plain M&M’s, and 2 cups of mini pretzels. Season to taste with more salt.

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10 Flavored Popcorn Recipes (2024)
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