The 4 Best Popcorn Makers of 2024

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Everyone knows that popcorn is the best movie snack! In my house, we love popcorn and make it all of the time for movies, game days, or just an every day snack.

We love using a popcorn maker, it’s way better than microwave popcorn. It’s easy to make and so delicious, especially with melted butter and a little salt.

popcorn in bowl.
Credit: Two Peas and Their Pod

Ever since getting the Dash Fresh Pop Popcorn Maker (A.K.A., my FAVORITE popcorn maker!), I’ve been obsessed with making this family-friendly snack at home. I love making my own twists on homemade popcorn, like Caramel Corn, and my kids LOVE it!

FYI- Trader Joe’s organic popcorn is our favorite and we love this cute popcorn bowl for serving!

Below, I’ve compiled a list of the best popcorn makers on the market, all of which have rave reviews. Check them out!

My Top Picks: 

  1. What’s in My Kitchen: Dash Fresh Pop Popcorn Maker – $21.99 at Amazon
  2. Best Nostalgic Popcorn Maker: West Bend Stir Crazy Movie Theater Popcorn Popper – $69.99 at Amazon
  3. Best Stove Top Popcorn Maker: Great Northern Popcorn Machine – $32.99 at Amazon
  4. Best Microwave Popcorn Maker: Ecolution Patented Micro-Pop Microwave Popcorn Popper – $19.99 at Amazon

Reviews of The Best Popcorn Makers

1. What’s in My Kitchen: Dash Fresh Pop Popcorn Maker

Dash Fresh Pop Popcorn Maker
Credit: Amazon

This machine is how we make popcorn at my house! It’s SUPER easy to use — all you have to do is use the included measuring cup to scoop the kernels (I always use organic popcorn!), pour them into the heating chamber, and then press the start button. You don’t even need to use oil! Once it’s ready, you can either pour some butter or seasoning on top. I recommend my Garlic Rosemary Parmesan Popcorn for an at-home date night or my yummy Peanut Butter Pretzel Caramel Popcorn for a family movie!  

The Specs:

  • Capacity: 16 cups
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes (for popping chute and measuring cup/butter melting tray)
  • Dimensions: 5” L x 5” W x 13.5” H

The Pros:

  • Easy to clean
  • Easy to use
  • Inexpensive
  • No oil needed

The Cons:

  • Some reviewers found that the popping process can get a little messy 

What Others Are Saying:

This DASH popcorn maker has a 4.2-star rating from more than 26,000 Amazon reviews. Plus, Epicurious, Better Homes & Gardens, and Food Network all call it the best popcorn maker.

Buy the Dash Fresh Pop Popcorn Maker: 

2. Best Nostalgia Popcorn Maker: West Bend Stir Crazy Movie Theater Popcorn Popper

West Bend Stir Crazy Movie Theater Popcorn Popper
Credit: Amazon

This machine is too cute to pass up! The adorable nostalgic design looks like something you’d find in a movie theater, but you can use it at home for your Netflix binge-watches instead. And although it’s a bit larger than my favorite from DASH, it’s just as easy to use: You just toss all of the kernels in the center kettle, and it’ll heat up and stir them until the popcorn pops out into the machine’s clear chamber, just like at the movie theater.

Bonus: You can choose between three different colors (red, black, or light blue) to pick an option that best suits your space!

The Specs:

  • Capacity: 16 cups
  • Dishwasher safe: No
  • Dimensions: 11.7” L x 11.7” W x 19.37” H

The Pros:

  • Cute design
  • Easy to use
  • Kettle comes out for easy cleaning

The Cons:

  • Takes up a lot of space
  • On the pricier side

What Others are Saying:

This popcorn maker has a 4.5-star rating from more than 13,000 reviews on Amazon.

Buy the West Bend Stir Crazy Movie Theater Popcorn Popper: 

3. Best Stove Top Popcorn Maker: Great Northern Popcorn Machine

Great Northern Popcorn Machine
Credit: Amazon

If you’re looking for an old-fashioned popcorn maker that you can use on the stove, this is a great option. It’s simple to use thanks to the stovetop popper — you just add the kernels and oil of your choice and turn the handle, which will stir the popcorn to ensure that the popcorn doesn’t burn. You’ll know it’s done when it’s hard to stir, because that means the pot is full! It’s like having a smaller popcorn machine in your home!

The Specs:

  • Capacity: 20 cups
  • Dishwasher safe: No
  • Dimensions: 16.5” L x 9.5” W x 6.5” H

The Pros:

  • Easy to set up
  • Easy to clean
  • Lightweight

The Cons:

  • Need to manually stir the popcorn yourself
  • Requires oil

What Others are Saying:

This popcorn maker has a 4.6-star rating from more than 4,000 reviewers on Amazon.

Buy the Great Northern Popcorn Machine: 

4. Best Microwave Popcorn Maker: Ecolution Patented Micro-Pop Microwave Popcorn Popper

Ecolution Patented Micro-Pop Microwave Popcorn Popper
Credit: Amazon

This popcorn maker is the best of both worlds since you can pop it (no pun intended) in the microwave. You still buy your own container of kernels, which is much more cost-effective and customizable, and you still get to butter and season your snack exactly how you want. You just use the lid to measure out the kernels, add them to the pot, and set it in the microwave for up to three minutes. It also comes in two sizes (1.5- or 3-quarts), so you can choose the best option depending on how many mouths you’re feeding. 

The Specs:

  • Capacity: 12 cups
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
  • Dimensions: 10.1” L x 8.1” W x 8.5” H

The Pros:

  • Easy to use
  • Dishwasher-safe 
  • Compact enough to store 

The Cons:

  • This isn’t the best option if you don’t want to cook your popcorn in the microwave 

What Others are Saying:

Along with having more than 43,000 five-star reviews on Amazon, this popcorn maker gets praise from Better Homes & Gardens, Delish, and PureWow.  

Buy the Ecolution Patented Micro-Pop Microwave Popcorn Popper: 

Other Popcorn Makers to Consider

Cuisinart Microwave Popcorn Maker

This collapsible popcorn maker bowl from Cuisinart is definitely the best pick if you don’t have a ton of storage space in your kitchen. It’s really easy to use because all you have to do is add your kernels and oil, then pop it in the microwave for about three minutes. Conveniently, you can also eat right out of the bowl. However, it doesn’t have any of the cool features found in my top picks, so I’d only recommend buying this if you want something super simple. The Cuisinart Microwave Popcorn Maker is available at Amazon for $14.99.

Presto Poplite Popper

This popper is similar in style to my favorite Dash one. It has good reviews on Amazon, with people saying how easy it is to use and how affordable it is. Since I’ve tried the Dash popcorn maker and it’s a similar style, I feel more confident recommending that, but for a few bucks more, this is a good option, too! The Presto Poplite Popper is available at Amazon for $29.99.

Cuisinart EasyPop Hot Air Popcorn Maker

Cuisinart also makes a lookalike to the Dash one I love. However, reviewers say it can be a little tricky to use at first (kernels can pop out prematurely, so you’ll either lose them altogether or have to stick them back in). The Cuisinart EasyPop Hot Air Popcorn Maker is available at Williams Sonoma for $39.95.

Dash Smartstore Stirring Popcorn Maker

Another great option from Dash is this stirring popcorn machine. It has a base that stirs the kernels and a dome that the popcorn pops into. After a few minutes of heating and stirring, you can flip the whole thing upside down and take the base off, so the dome becomes a bowl you can eat out of. It’s a cool design, but it’s on the pricier side for what it is, especially because I already know and love my other pick from Dash above. The Dash Smartstore Stirring Popcorn Maker is available at Williams Sonoma for $39.95.

Why You Can Trust Me

Hi! I’m Maria, and I absolutely LOVE making popcorn for family nights! I love it so much that I’ve even come up with recipes to make popcorn even more savory or sweet, depending on what I’m craving. I absolutely love this recipe for Easy Kettle Corn, while Caramel Corn is another crowd favorite in my house. It’s why I love to use one of the best popcorn makers in my kitchen — it results in fresh, buttery goodness that seriously can’t be beat! 

best popcorn makers
Credit: Two Peas and Their Pod

To narrow down my list of the best popcorn makers, I included my favorite from Dash, and for the ones I haven’t used myself, I picked ones that have rave reviews from beloved retailers. I also looked at editorial reviews to see which ones get consistent praise from a bunch of sites. Meanwhile, features, budget, functionality, and capacity were all taken into account.

Everything to Know Before Buying a Popcorn Maker

best popcorn makers
Credit: Two Peas and Their Pod

What to Consider Before Buying a Popcorn Maker

Cooking method: Your popcorn will be ready a lot faster if you go with one that’s microwaveable, but there’s also something cool and old-fashioned about popping it on the stove. Really, it should only take a few minutes with any method — it’s all up to your preference.

Size: Some of these devices are definitely bigger than others, so you should take into account how much storage or counter space you have before making your final decision.

Capacity: All of my picks have a capacity of at least 12 cups but also go up to 20. If you have a larger family or want to use your popcorn maker to host movie nights with friends, you should opt for a bigger capacity. If it’s just you and a loved one, a smaller model would work perfectly.

How Do You Make Popcorn on the Stove?

You’ll probably find cooking instructions on the popcorn maker you buy, so don’t forget to check for those! But if you want to make popcorn without a specific popcorn maker, you add a few tablespoons of olive oil to a large pot, add in the kernels, and start stirring right away to prevent them from burning. You’ll start to hear them pop, but can keep stirring until the pot is full and the majority of your kernels have popped.

best popcorn makers
Credit: Two Peas and Their Pod

Can You Make Popcorn in an Air Fryer? 

I’ve never used my air fryer to make popcorn, but it’s possible, depending on the size of the basket you have and how much you want to make! Most recipes say to line the air fryer with tin foil and add in your kernels before cooking it for about 8 minutes. But listen to when it stops popping so it doesn’t burn!

What is the Best Oil for a Popcorn Maker?

You can also use olive oil, avocado oil, coconut oil, vegetable oil, or whatever other oil you prefer! Popcorn brands like Orville Redenbacher also make popcorn oil, which is made of soybean oil.

Can You Make Anything Else in A Popcorn Maker? 

It’s probably possible to pop other grains similar to popcorn, but I haven’t tried it.

Best popcorn makers
Credit: Two Peas and Their Pod

The Best Popcorn Recipes

You already know I have ideas for how you can spruce up your popcorn! Below are some of my favorite popcorn recipes.

Prices were accurate at time of publication. 

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Maria

I'm Maria and my husband is Josh. We share a love of cooking, baking, and entertaining. We enjoy creating recipes that are simple, fresh, and family friendly. We love sitting around the table with good food, good conversation, and good friends and family! Our kitchen is always open!
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