Forget Microwave Popcorn. Go Stove Top!

What are the typical snacks? According to the National Purchase Diary Group, the most popular snacks for men and women are:

  Top 10 Snacks Consumed by Men and Women*
                Men                       Women
        1. Gum                    1. Gum
        2. Chocolate Candy        2. Chocolate Candy
        3. Fresh Fruit            3. Fresh Fruit
        4. Potato Chips           4. Potato Chips
        5. Breath/Candy Mints     5. Breath/Candy Mints
        6. Ice Cream              6. Ice Cream
        7. Nuts                   7. Cookies
        8. Cookies                8. Nuts
        9. Tortilla Chips         9. Yogurt
        10. Bars                  10. Crackers
        *Ages 18-54 Year-olds
        The NPD Group

Boy, I think that’s just a shame. Why isn’t popcorn on the list? Probably because microwave popcorn is expensive, inevitably burns, smells up the entire house, and doesn’t taste all that great.

I’m out to change that for you. Wendy and I have not purchased microwave popcorn for about six years. We’ve saved money, eaten more healthily, and enjoy popcorn much more than the people who took the NPD survey.

We buy popcorn by the 50 lb bag.

This recipe is queued up to be published in Wendy’s upcoming Love in the Kitchen Vol. 3. Here’s the recipe:

Stove Top Popcorn

By Chris Jeub
Serves 6 little kids

  • Peanut oil
  • 1 cup popcorn
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • Seasoning to taste

Pour about 1/8″ peanut oil into kitchen kettle. Place on high heat. Pour popcorn into pan. Allow oil to heat until one kernel pops. Pour the sugar over the popcorn and cover.

Allow popcorn to pop. When about half the kernels are popped, turn heat to low. Popcorn will be finished when there is about 2 seconds between pops. Remove from heat. Shake the kettle and pour into bowl.

Melt butter and pour over popcorn. Shake bowl till evenly coated. Season with your favorite seasoning. Besides traditional table salt, here are some other ideas: ranch dressing mix, taco seasoning mix, Lawry’s seasoning mix, and macoroni and cheese seasoning.

About Chris Jeub

Chris is the father of 16 children, busily running the family businesses and learning the depths of love along the way.

  • http://comptines.over-blog.com/ Nicole Snitselaar

    we have always done it that way but keeping the lid on from the beginning, never adding sugar in the pan…
    Only when pop corn is all ready then we add a bit of sugar and never butter or spices… in fact I think our pop corns are much more full of love for our weight! ;-))))))
    By the way I lost 3 kilos in 3 weeks… !!!!!!

    • http://www.jeubfamily.com Chris Jeub

      I should have talked more about the sugar. It’s added for flavor, but it makes it similar to kettle corn. Two tablespoons is pretty mild compared to actual kettle corn, though.

  • http://www.facebook.com/christina.ethridge Christina Ethridge

    Where do you find your 50# bags?  The biggest I can locate are 5# at Costco.  We go through popcorn like it’s water – it’s our mainstay snack precisely because it’s so inexpensive.  

    • http://www.jeubfamily.com Chris Jeub

      Sam’s Club. That’s where I snapped the photo.

      • http://www.facebook.com/christina.ethridge Christina Ethridge

        Ok, maybe I’m missing them at Costco.  We don’t have a Sam’s Club anywhere near here so I’m out of luck on that one.  Thank you!

        • http://www.jeubfamily.com Chris Jeub

          Click through this link: eBay.

  • jenny

    Where do you all get your things in bulk?   Is there any mail order company that has good prices?

  • Smfeet2001

    We use Stir Crazy from Westbend.  We use lots of butter and coconut oil.  No sugar.  We add kosher salt.  That is it!

    • http://www.jeubfamily.com Chris Jeub

      Spicing up the popcorn is the funnest thing about stove top, in my opinion. We have Stir Crazy on the list to try. Thanks!

  • LoriB

    Our family also loves stove top popcorn.  One of our favorite seasonings is romano (or parmesean) cheese! 

  • Justine G.

    My husband eats a bag of microwave popcorn every single night! After reading this post I decided to buy and make stovetop popcorn, the way my parents did when I was a kid! It was a huge hit, and my husband has asked that I stop buying the microwave kind and only make this version. Not only delicious, but a huge money saver! (I also spent about $2 on a shaker of very fine popcorn salt, totally worth it!)

  • Anne G

    You can still do it in the microwave.  Plain paper bag folded over and taped shut.  Pop for 2-3 minutes.  If your kernels are older you may need to add a wee bit of oil to pop, but otherwise put on your favorite toppings and you’re good to go.

  • tereza crump

    great tip!! we don’t use microwave popcorn either! I am from Brazil and there we always make stove top popcorn probably because the microwave one wasn’t sold in grocery stores until recently.

    anyway, we don’t add sugar… my sister likes to make caramel and then pour over the popcorn after it’s popped. Really good!!

    At home, we just use olive oil and salt! it’s good enough for us!!

  • Jennifer

    We love Stove Top Popcorn too…but we use coconut oil…It is beyond yummy!  And a little sea salt…and the kids like to add garlic poweder or chili powder sometimes.  Besides the taste and expense..homemade is a lot faster…I can pop enough for all of us (9)  before two bags are done in the microwave…and we would need a lot of bags.

    • http://www.jeubfamily.com Chris Jeub

      Good point about time! Microwave popcorn may be convenient for one or two people, but get a brood together and stove top definitely is easier.

  • Janetkiessling

    Love it!!! Gonna put it on the grocery list right now!!! On the bulk side of the list – we go through alot of popcorn, too! Kind of a staple around here! It almost sounds like Kettle Corn – kiddos love that! Two of ours can not have regular sugar – so this one they can have!!!
    Hugs to all – the Kiessling family…<

  • Janetkiessling

    Hey there, Jeub Family…….the Kiessling family has just made this recipe twice!! Well, the first time – 1/2 of the kernels burnt & the smoke alarm went off ( but that thing goes off with the toaster….:)) due to the fact that we have a glasstop stove…….I liked the stovetop when we first put it in 15 years ago….but in the last 10 years…….not so much!! We tweeked the instructions a bit….drum roll, please…..Our Kettle was FULL of POPPED Kernels! It tasted soooo good. Joseph wanted to throw away the microwave popcorn – he liked it so much & he is not a fan of popcorn! Daddy even liked it, too! Thanks again for the “love & fun in the kitchen”!!! Blessings!!!!

    • http://www.jeubfamily.com/ Chris Jeub

      I hadn’t thought about electric stoves! What did you tweek? That’s really important.

      • Janetkiessling

        Well, first of we really had to watch & smell. We started out with the burner on high – just like you said – but with glasstop they do not cool down – so we started turning it down with the first pop; so basicly by the time the kernels were done – the burner was off. There was still alot of heat – it was just off. With the sugar – it did burn – a tiny bit – but it still tasted really good!!! Hugs to all & Thanks again!!! :)

        • http://www.jeubfamily.com/ Chris Jeub

          Your adaptability is admirable. Glad you enjoyed it! Say goodbye to nuked popcorn. It’s tough to go back!

          • Salamander99

             My grandmother (from India) and mother used to make popcorn the “old fashioned way” on the stove (old, kerosene/butane burner) when I was a little girl.  I loved and started to make mine on the stove with some coconut oil and salt a few years ago.  It is the.best.stuff.ever.  Economical, filling, and “good for you” snack.  Thanks for posting.

            • http://www.jeubfamily.com/ Chris Jeub

              Wow, your grandmother sounds awesome. Was there a special Indian technique or interesting spice or something? 

              • Salamander99

                No, nothing but butter and salt. I like to make mine with the coconut oil (high smoke point), salt and sometimes a little carribean “jerk” spice seasoning.  It is salty and sweet and spicy at the same time.  Hmmmm.. I might need to pop a batch this evening!

  • Janetkiessling

    Hey there, Chris……the Kiessling family has had to make some more tweeks…;) We tried vegatable oil – instead of peanut oil. I could not get it to stop cooking so fast & burning – with my electic stovetop. Plus, when the first kernal pops, that when I add the sugar & I keep moving the kettle over the burner. Whew – it does not take long before they are all popped!!! Oh yea, we only use about 7/8 of a cup – that was my husband’s idea – less to cook. We all love your stovepopcorn! Our 14 year old really wants to know – why didn’t you call it the Jeub Family Kettle Corn? Hhmmmm…..recipe title…….;)
    Hugs & Blessings – the Kiesslings