The $10 Food Day: Sea Salt Popcorn Recipe

Sea salt popcorn recipe. Just 23 cents a batch!! Click through for recipe.

Homemade popcorn is one of the cheapest snacks out there.

In my opinion, homemade popcorn blows microwave popcorn out of the water taste-wise. And it is so much cheaper.

The Cost = 23 Cents

I bought a big bag of popcorn for $1.80. I used about 1/2 cup to make a large bowl of popcorn, which cost me approximately 13 cents. Add in about 10 cents for the coconut oil, and you have one of the cheapest snack recipes ever.

Making Oil-Popped Popcorn Taste Even Better

To customize your popcorn, play around with different seasonings, spices, and add-ins. Here are some that I like:

  • Garlic powder
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Smoked paprika
  • Dry ranch dressing mix
  • Grated Parmesan cheese
  • Hot sauce (combined with melted butter to avoid soggy popcorn)
  • Butter infused with rosemary or other fresh herbs

Sea salt popcorn recipe

The $10 Food Day

This recipe is part of the $10 Food Day series: Four recipes (breakfast, lunch, dinner, and a snack) that will feed a family of four for less than $10 for the entire day. This sea salt popcorn is the snack. View the other recipes:

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Sea Salt Popcorn
Yield: 4 large servings

Sea Salt Popcorn

How to avoid soggy popcorn: While the popcorn is being heated on the stovetop, lift the top off for a second to let the steam out. Do this periodically during the cooking process. Extra moisture = soggy popcorn. Get rid of it!

Prep Time 3 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 8 minutes


  • 1/2 to 2/3 cup unpopped popcorn (or enough to cover the bottom of a medium-sized, heavy bottom saucepan)
  • 2 tablespoons oil (I used coconut oil, but vegetable, peanut or canola oil also work well. Do not use olive oil for popcorn making)
  • 1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt


Start with a medium saucepan with a lid (a 3-quart size saucepan works well). Place enough popcorn to cover the bottom of the saucepan (this will be a little more than 1/2 cup, most likely). Pour in 2 tablespoons of oil, and rotate the pan to evenly coat. Add a pinch of sea salt and cover the pan.

Turn the stove on to medium-high heat. Shake the pan every 20 seconds or so to evenly distribute kernels and to avoid burning. The popcorn kernels will begin to pop after about 2 minutes. Continue popping until there is a second or two between pops. Remove from heat and keep the cover on for a bit, as some stray kernels may still pop.

Pour into a large bowl, and add melted butter and additional sea salt, if desired.

3 Responses to “The $10 Food Day: Sea Salt Popcorn Recipe”

  1. 1

    Amanda — January 21, 2013 @ 6:06 pm

    I just got an popcorn popper for Christmas and I’m excited to try it out. Thank for the ideas on how to dress it up!

  2. 2

    Kelly T — January 22, 2013 @ 5:17 pm

    This is the only way I like popcorn too! Microwave popcorn just tastes so “artificial” compared to the stove-top kind. Sometimes I grate cheddar cheese over the popped hot popcorn right after I pour it in the bowl. You can also make kettle corn by stirring sugar (like 1/4 cup for a 1/2 cup of popcorn kernels, or more sugar if you like it sweeter) into the heated oil before the kernels are added. Shake your desired amount of salt over the popped popcorn. Just like the carnival kind, but at any time of the year, and much cheaper!

  3. 3

    Mitchell J. Rappaport — February 5, 2013 @ 1:42 am

    I use a hot-air popcorn popper and love it! You add only as much butter as you want – at the end. One idea is to use lemon juice instead of butter and salt. Makes for a really reduced fat recipe..

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