Recipe: The Popcorn Trick

When I first heard about microwaving popcorn in a brown paper lunch bag I could not imagine that something so simple would Popcorn from 100 Days of Real Foodreally work. A blog reader actually shared this suggestion with me, and it took me a while to work up enough courage to try it out. I am so glad I finally did because approximately 3 minutes and 15 seconds later I had fresh, fluffy, whole-grain popcorn that hadn’t been touched by a drop of oil, salt, sugar, or any other additives. And after lightly seasoning it myself with a tad of oil and salt it was delicious! I will never waste my money on those store-bought microwave bags ever again.

4.3 from 22 reviews
The Popcorn Trick
Serves: 3-4
  • ¼ cup popcorn kernels, preferably organic
  • Brown paper lunch bag
  • Optional: Melted butter, oil, and/or salt
  1. Pour the kernels into the brown paper bag.
  2. Tightly fold over the top three or four times. No tape or staples are necessary.
  3. Put it in the microwave and start it on high for 3 minutes and 30 seconds.
  4. Listen for the popping to slow down to 3 or 4 seconds apart at which point you will take it out of the microwave. This usually happens for me around the 3 minute and 15 second mark.
  5. Pour popcorn into a bowl and drizzle with melted butter or spritz with olive oil and then sprinkle with salt. If you don’t use oil or butter the salt won’t stick.

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  • Comments

    1. becca |

      I really like this idea but also wondering: isn’t it unsafe to put paper bags in the microwave? (unsanitary, may catch fire, release toxic fumes from the glue)… Aren’t there specific bags you can purchase for the microwave and do you think this trick would still work with them?

      • Amy Taylor (comment moderator) |

        Hi Becca. Lisa uses regular paper lunch bags and has not had any issues. If you find bags that are specifically designed for microwave usage, let us know.

        • Jenny |

          My new microwave states in the instruction manual not to use paper bags in it. I’m not sure why, but I thought I would mention it.

      • Arthur |

        I just tried to jury rig a custom paper bag from a shopping bag. It literally lit itself on fire. If you use any thick heavily folded paper, make sure to watch it.

        • |

          I would not recommend to deviate from what’s prescribed here with a different type of bag.

    2. Nancy |

      I add 1 tsp oil and 1/8 tsp salt BEFORE popping the kernels and it turns out just right.

    3. Roma |

      I use the exact popper shown in Tangela’s post. It’s made of lab glass and works perfectly. And since you can see the popcorn pipping, you have much less waste from unpopped kernels. Highly recommend it. I got mine at our local Sur LA Table.

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