Homemade Popcorn – Taking your at home movie night to the next level

Wanting to take your movie night to the next level? By doing one small thing, you can take a typical family movie night and make it special for you and your lover, your kids, your roommates, or honestly for yourself! Let me share how you can up your at home movie night game!

I’m currently in the stage of life where at least one night a week is “family movie night”. Especially on the weekend, either Friday or Saturday night is deemed movie night and my two year old knows we get to watch a new movie. In her words “new movie and popcorn tonight okay mom?” 

Our friends told us on Saturday nights at their house they watch a new movie with their toddler to introduce her to different movies and to not watch the same movie nonstop that their kid is hooked on. We loved this idea and decided to adopt this as well with our toddler. We’ve loved introducing her to some of our favorite Disney Movies growing up such as “The Lion King” and “Aladdin”. We’ve watched movies like “Inside Out” as she was going through a “feelings” phase constantly stating her emotions. 

We wanted to make these nights special and different than just any old night sitting on the couch watching a movie. We’d been popping microwave popcorn which Harley loved but after moving and getting *settled* in our new house, Collin said it was time for me to pull out my popcorn makers again. 

Can we all agree that homemade popcorn is far superior to microwave popcorn?! I am a popcorn addict and have been as long as I can remember. I’ve been known to pound a large popcorn from a movie theatre by myself… in one sitting… lathered in BUTTER! It had been a long time since I’d made homemade popcorn but I have 3 different popcorn makers and all the fixins to make a mean batch.

Like I said, I’ve got 3 different popcorn makers, all of which I love for different reasons. I’ve had many others over the years but I want to share with you the 3 I currently own.


This is my newest addition and I’ve gotta say, it’s amazing! After only using it a couple times I know it’s going to be my most used. 

Why get a Salbree Popcorn Popper?

Because it’s the easiest and quickest way to get homemade popcorn! You actually just put it in the microwave with your popcorn kernels. You get homemade popcorn in the amount of time it takes to cook regular microwave popcorn. 

The Salbree can only cook ¼ cup of kernels at a time. We are used to cooking at least ½ cup of kernels to feed Collin, Harley, and myself which means we have to make two batches. But still, it’s quick and easy and I can prepare the first batch with butter and salt while the other cooks. 

The Salbree collapses down when not being use which makes it easy to store and it takes up minimal space. 

What products do I recommend with the Salbree

How to use your Salbree

  1. Pop the Salbree completely open
  2. Pour in ¼ cup popcorn kernels (do not use any time of oil or butter in the Salbree)
  3. Set the lid on, do not push it down. It lays lightly on top.
  4. Put the Salbree into the microwave and press the popcorn button.
  5. Pour the popcorn into your popcorn bowl
  6. Using a spray bottle, apply popping & topping as well as popcorn salt to taste

My sister in law gave me this for Christmas in 2019 and it has been the only one I’ve used ever since until a couple weeks ago when I tried the Salbree

Why get a Whirley Pop?

This popper is fun because it’s a stove topper that you spin yourself. I use all sorts of fun products with this to make some amazing popcorn. I think it tastes just like movie theatre popcorn once I’ve got all the fixins on it. 

You can cook ½ cup of kernels in this popper which is the perfect amount for our family. Keep in mind we each eat a lot of popcorn so ½ cup may go further in your family. 

What products do I recommend with the Whirley Pop?

How to use your Whirley Pop?

  1. Place Whirley Pop with the lid secured on the stove top. Turn to medium high heat. 
  2. Put 1 TBSP butter flavored coconut oil in whirley pop with 2 tsp Flavacol.
  3. Once melted, pour ½ cup popcorn kernels in
  4. Begin stirring and do not stop until all the kernels are popped.
  5. Immediately remove from heat
  6. Pour the popcorn into your popcorn bowl
  7. Using a spray bottle, apply popping & topping with flavacol to taste

The Stir Crazy is the popcorn popper I’ve had the longest at this point. I’ve gotten rid of all previous poppers. It’s been a few years since I’ve used it but I can’t seem to bring myself to get rid of it. It served me well for so many years and I know it’s one I’ll use again. 

Why get a Stir Crazy?

For starters, it’s convenient. It’s so easy to just plug in real quick and have popcorn in 4-6 minutes. It has a butter melting spot to drip butter on your popcorn as it pops. I’ll be honest, it doesn’t drop as much as I’d like but hey, I like to drench my popcorn in butter. 

Something I love though is that the Stir Crazy comes with a built in bowl for your popcorn. Once the kernels finish popping you just flip it over and it’s in the bowl. Perfect to serve immediately. 

The Stir Crazy can cook up to ¾ cup of kernels at a time. Again, depending on your family you will need to decide how much popcorn you make and if you’ll need to do a second batch or not. 

What products do I recommend with the Stir Crazy?

How to use your Stir Crazy?

  1. Add 1 TBSP butter flavored coconut oil & ⅓ cup popcorn kernels to the popper base (spread them evenly across)
  2. Place the cover on the popcorn base
  3. Place 1 TBSP butter (or butter flavored coconut oil) to the butter-melting well
    1. Change measurements depending on how many kernels you use
  4. Plug in the popper. When the kernels are done popping, unplug it
  5. Put the plastic cap on the butter-melting well and flip the popper over by the handles. 
  6. Using a spray bottle, apply popping & topping as well as popcorn salt to taste

Final Touch


The last thing we recommend to take your movie night to the next level is a fun bowl for your popcorn. We have a variety of sizes so everybody gets their own in an appropriate size. My toddler loves having her own legit popcorn bowl to hold and eat out of. We have accumulated ours over time from a variety of places but I’ve linked a few options here

Wrapping Things Up

  • There are three different kinds of poppers I recommend. A microwave popper (Salbree), a stove top popper (Whirley Pop), and an electric popper (Stir Crazy). 
  • To see our Amazon Shop with all of our products listed in this post click here.

Now I’m gonna go pop some popcorn because all this talk has got me craving that buttery goodness!

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