DIY Microwave Popcorn is Better than the Store Bought Stuff

Just buy a stack of paper lunch bags (cheap!) and a tub of plain popcorn kernels (cheap! cheap!) and you’re on your way to making your own microwave popcorn bags.

DIY Microwave Popcorn

I’m going to let you in on a dirty little secret of the microwave popcorn industry: They’re lying to us.

That’s right, I said it. They’re lying. 

You see, you don’t need to buy premixed, pre-salted or pre-flavored microwavable bags of popcorn. You can create even more flavor packed popcorn in your microwave with your own DIY Microwave Popcorn.

You can just take plain popcorn kernels, toss them in a paper bag, and pop them yourself in the microwave. Really. It works!

You get wonderful, fresh popcorn, just like out of a hot-air popper, in about two-three minutes. It’s 0% extra effort, 95% less expensive, 99% less wasteful, and 100% better for your health!

Instead of dousing my popcorn with butter, I’ll use an olive-oil mister to lightly coat it so my toppings will stick. My favorite topping is Nutritional Yeast.  It has a wonderful nutty, cheesy flavor — and it’s good for you, too!

So don’t be fooled by the microwave popcorn in the store — you can make your own at home to save money, your health, and the environment.  It’s a win-win-win!

Here’s how to use a paper bag to microwave popcorn:

Step#1

Measure 1/4 cup popcorn kernels.
Measure 1/4 cup popcorn kernels.

Step#2

Put them into a regular paper lunch bag.

Put kernels into a regular paper lunch bag.

Step#3

Make a 3/4-inch fold at the top of the bag and then fold it over 5-7 times. It’ll unroll a bit. No worries.
Make a 3/4-inch fold at the top of the bag and then fold it over 5-7 times.

Step#4

Put the bag in the microwave. Set the microwave for 4 minutes. Let it pop until there is a pause in the popping. Note that when you microwave popcorn in a paper bag like this, there is more of a chance of burning the popcorn than with the store-bought version. Once you’ve done it a few times though and get to know your microwave, it’ll be perfect every time.
Put the bag in the microwave. Set the microwave for 4 minutes. Let it pop until there is a pause in the popping. Note that when you microwave popcorn in a paper bag like this, there is more of a chance of burning the popcorn than with the store-bought version. Once you've done it a few times though and get to know your microwave, it'll be perfect every time.
As the bag was microwaving, it unrolls some more. Again, no worries.
DIY Microwave Popcorn

Step #5

Open the bag very slowly and carefully. It’s super steamy and hot in there!
Open the bag very slowly and carefully. It's super steamy and hot in there!
There it is. Easy and good. No lies here.
How to Make Your Own Microwave Popcorn

Healthy DIY Microwave Popcorn

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup Popping Corn
  • A light misting of Olive Oil
  • Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper, to taste

Directions:

  1. Place 1/4 cup dry corn kernels in a small paper bag. Be sure the bag has no staples or other metal in it.
  2. Fold the bag over a few times and place in the microwave.  Microwave on high for about 2-3 minutes, just as you would with the store-bought packages.  Once there are about two seconds between pops, hit the stop button so it doesn’t burn. There will be a few unpopped kernels, but that’s okay.
  3. Pour into a bowl and spritz with olive oil.  Sprinkled with salt and pepper.  Toss or stir to evenly coat, and enjoy!  (And don’t forget to save the bag for next time!)
Okay we’ve got a confession. We loved our own DIY microwave popcorn so much that we’ve come up with the sweetest Microwave Caramel Corn. Mmm, reminds me of a carnival!
Andrew Wilder blogs at Eating Rules, where he insists that healthy eating doesn’t have to suck. Each year he leads the October Unprocessed challenge, trying to get as many people as possible to eat no processed food for the entire month. Thankfully he considers both wine and cheese to be unprocessed!

Andrew Wilder

Andrew blogs at Eating Rules, where he insists that healthy eating doesn’t have to suck. Each year he leads the October Unprocessed challenge, trying to get as many people as possible to eat no processed food for the entire month. Thankfully he considers both wine and cheese to be unprocessed!