While popcorn is delicious by itself or cooked in oil or butter, there are many different toppings that can add other flavors. What could be more fun than standing at a popcorn machine and popping kernels until your arm aches? Probably not much. But when it comes to making your popcorn experience even better, there are a few things you can do.
Whether you prefer sweet, spicy, salty, or other flavors, in this quick guide, we’ll show you how to add flavor to your popcorn machine for a tasty treat everyone will love. So read on and get popping!
Adding Flavor to Popcorn
It can be challenging to add flavor to popcorn. It is easy to pop popcorn in most popcorn machines, but adding flavor is an entirely different thing.
It is better to use a binding agent that you can use to coat the popcorn while cooking and then add the flavor after cooking.
Make sure not to use too much oil so the popcorn doesn’t become soggy. Then, you can add the flavoring to the popcorn. As long as they have a binding agent, the popcorn kernels will be coated with your flavoring.
Keep the Following in Mind When You Add Flavors
Things to keep in mind when adding flavors to your popcorn:
- Any flavor you add to your popcorn machine will need to be cleaned afterward. It might be easier to add your flavoring after the popcorn is made by the machine.
- First, make sure that you have a large enough container. This makes it much easier to efficiently cover all of the popcorn with your flavor. When the container is large enough, you won’t have to worry about making a mess as you coat the popcorn.
- Next, you need to focus on using the right binding agent. If you use too much of the binding agent, you can overwhelm the flavor of the popcorn. It may bind with too much salt, spice, or sweets, which can ruin the popcorn. You don’t want to overuse the binding agent.
What Type of Oil Do I Use in a Popcorn Machine?
Coconut oil is a good choice as it burns cleanly and most people enjoy the added flavor notes it offers. It is the choice of vendors at ball games and movie theaters.
However, if you’re not a fan of coconut then other oil options are:
Always follow your machine’s instructions. It way state that you should NOT add oil to the cooking process.
Flavor Popcorn After Making it in a Popcorn Machine
The biggest mistake popcorn lovers make when trying to use a binding agent is overcoating the popcorn and making it soggy. The most common binding agent is oils, such as melted coconut oil or olive oil. Some people also use melted butter. The way to prevent your popcorn from becoming soggy is to put your binding agent in a mister and spritz or mist your popcorn.
This type of device will evenly coat your popcorn with a thin layer of the binding agent, so each kernel will be coated in your flavoring.
After you mist the popcorn, you can sprinkle your seasoning into the bowl and toss it. This should give you perfectly coated popcorn.
If you don’t have a mister, you can use a bowl. Make sure that your bowl is large enough to hold the popcorn, and coat the bowl with a mixture of the oil and seasoning you choose. Make sure that you cover the sides and bottom of the bowl without creating a puddle in the bowl. After you coat it, put your popcorn in the bowl and toss. The oil and seasoning mixture should stick to the popcorn.
Can You Season Popcorn Before You Pop It?
If you are using a machine that takes oil, you can mix the seasoning with the oil and coat your unpopped kernels. The seasoned oil will coat each piece of popcorn as it pops. If you plan to add more seasoning after it pops, do so quickly because as the popcorn cools, it will not bind to the seasoning.
Remember that anything extra you add may be difficult to clean from your machine and it may be a while before future popcorn can taste of anything different.
You can use this trick if you plan to cook popcorn on a stove, in a microwave, or in a popcorn machine that uses oil. Unfortunately, you can’t use this method in an air popper.
Can You Fix Soggy Popcorn?
If you overdo the oil when you are trying to season your popcorn, it can become soggy. Rescuing soggy popcorn is possible – try this:
- Preheat your oven to 250 degrees.
- Place the popcorn on a baking sheet
- Leave in the oven for five minutes, and it will draw the moisture out and crisp the popcorn
- Don’t leave it for longer than five minutes or you can burn it
If you have an air fryer these are perfect for crisping up soggy popcorn. Pop in for 5 minutes on medium heat. Enjoy!
Can You Add Flavor to a Popcorn Machine?
No, unless specified in the manufacturer’s instructions it’s usually not the best idea to try and add flavoring to your popcorn while in the popcorn machine. You will get better results if you season your popcorn after cooking. This is because:
- it can affect the consistency of your popcorn
- it can affect the popping rate of your popcorn
- it can clog up your machine
If you are using a popcorn machine that takes oil, you could add the seasoning to the oil, but make sure that it is crushed to a fine powder so that it doesn’t overwhelm your popcorn.
There are many different types of flavors that you can add to popcorn, but make sure that you use a light binding agent so that the popcorn doesn’t get overwhelmed by the flavor.
We’ve got an article about small popcorn machines you might like.