Perfect Homemade Popcorn [recipe]

I’m more than a little obsessed with popcorn. Obsessed to the end that, when things started getting serious with my boyfriend, my old roommate asked “Does he know about your popcorn…thing?”. The “thing” is that I would happily skip dinner in lieu of buttered movie (or microwave) popcorn with both the white cheddar and ketchup seasonings on it. Now, that’s not exactly the healthiest meal replacement. When I started focusing on healthier eating earlier this year, I knew the chemical-laden popcorn fixation had to go.

Perfect Homemade Popcorn - Stephanie Fusco - Leopard Is A Neutral

After some experimentation with popping my own corn at home, I finally found the perfect recipe. The coconut oil imparts a really delicious flavour in the popcorn and also has heart-healthy benefits (it can be beneficial for your cholesterol and heart, according to Dr. Oz). Add some salt and paprika and you have a deliciously seasoned popcorn that can go toe to toe with my saturated-fat + sodium-laded movie favourite. This also solves the problem of hot butter making air-popped corn soggy.

Perfect Paprika Popcorn

You’ll need:

  • a medium-to-large size pot with a lid
  • coconut oil (1 tbsp per 1/4 cup of kernels)
  • paprika (smoked or regular)
  • popping kernels
  • salt

Perfect Homemade Popcorn - how to - ingredients - Leopard is a Neutral - Stephanie Fusco

  1. Melt 1 tablespoon of coconut oil per 1/4 of kernels in a large pot over high heat.
  2. When the oil is melted and hot, toss one kernel into the pan. Once it pops, your oil is hot enough. Pour the remaining kernels into the pot and put the lid on top.
  3. Allow the kernels to heat over medium-high heat, shaking vigorously once they begin to pop. When the popping slows (2 seconds with no pops),  remove the pan from the stove and immediately transfer the popped kernels to a large bowl
  4. Melt coconut oil (as much/little as you want) over high heat. Once melted, pour over popped kernels and toss to coat.
  5. Season popcorn with 1/2-1 tsp each of salt + paprika, adding more or less to taste. Toss to combine and serve.

That’s it! The whole process should take less than 10 minutes. This keeps well in a ziploc bag, but very little of mine generally manages to make it to work the next day.