Don’t Add Salt To Popcorn Oil – Here’s Why


Popcorns with a cozy movie at home may look like the perfect weekend activity for many. The movie you can manage, but replicating the taste of the utterly buttery crunchy soft popcorn served in the movie theatres at home might need some rethinking of your plans.

But don’t lose your hopes too early because you can still save the weekend for yourself by popping the popcorn in a great quality oil. Because the movie theatres do just that. They cook the popcorn in oil and then add the flavors later. So you can quite easily do the same for your own popcorn at home. But some specific questions will naturally pop up if you are aiming for the exact replica of the movie theatre popcorn. So let’s address them all. 

What kind of oil do movie theatres use for popping popcorn?

The buttery popcorn that you enjoy in the movie theatres isn’t actually cooked in butter. As a general rule, movie theatres use two different types of fats/oil: first for cooking and the other for topping. The cooking doesn’t involve butter, but the topping does. Most theatres directly rely on coconut oil, but there are other options that one can explore, like Olive oil, Avocado oil, and Sunflower oil, among others.

But if you are cooking it at home, then coconut oil will be the best choice for you. Majorly because it is widely available, and it also has the perfect smoke point that heats up just enough to cook the popcorn without turning unhealthy. The result? Both health and taste checks are done right!

Can you put salt in oil for popcorn?

The popcorns in the movie theatres are bathed in artificial flavors and colors, which you might not be able to arrange at home. But you can still manage the flavorings with salt and butter. Now, there is no hard rule which states that you absolutely cannot add salt to the oil for popcorn. You can if you want to.

But it is generally recommended that you don’t. Because adding salt together with the oil and the popcorn kernels will only harden the kernels and what you will get is a chewy popcorn instead of a fluffy one. Therefore, you should wait until the kernels are all popped and done and then add the flavors and salt. Moreover, adding a drizzle of melted butter will not only enhance the taste but also makes the salt stick to the popcorn.

Can you put table salt on popcorn?

Have you encountered this situation wherein you add salt over your popcorn, and they just end up depositing themselves at the bottom of the bowl? Well, that’s because you have added table salt, which is too big for popcorn. Movie theatres usually add powdered salt. And since you are making it at home, you can either purchase it, or you can prepare one at home. The most convenient solution would be to grind the table salt by running it through a blender or a mortar at home. This powdered salt will stick to the popcorn and won’t come off.   

Can you put seasoning in popcorn oil?

Now that your popcorn is popped and ready, adding a variety of flavors and toppings to your popcorn is your own call. The seasonings these days are not just limited to the simple addition of oil, butter, and salt. You can be as creative as you can with your taste and go for all kinds of sour, spicy, salty, or sweet flavors.

As for the question of whether you can put seasoning in the popcorn oil itself, the straight answer would be a no. Seasonings on your popcorn can be added in two different ways: the first would be adding it before popping, and the other would be after popping, but not in the oil itself. Ideally, you should try and add the seasoning after the popcorn is ready.

How can you add seasoning after popping it?

One of the major concerns that arise when it comes to seasoning your popcorn is that the seasoning doesn’t stick with the popcorn. There could be many reasons behind it, the seasoning might not be suitable for the texture of popcorn, the popcorn might be too dry, or the popcorn might require an adhesive liquid to retain the seasoning.

The best solution to counter all these problems is that you use a spray mister to coat a small amount of oil or butter to your popcorn and then add your favorite seasoning. Thereafter you will get your fresh, flavored, buttery, crunchy popcorn ready at home.