Cravings | How to Make Popcorn & Season It Perfectly Every Time
How to Make Popcorn & Season It Perfectly Every Time

Learn how to master the perfect pop, and then get to know what all 11 of our seasonings taste like!

At-home movie nights have become a staple in many of our homes. There’s no better feeling than ending a loooong work day or having a lazy weekend date night snuggled in a blanket on the couch with an overflowing bowl of popcorn…or is there? You could upgrade that popcorn with a burst of flavor from Cravings’ popcorn seasonings! We’ve got everything from sweet to savory spices and some that even mix and match.

Before you get to know all of the seasonings, let's start with the basics: How to make popcorn. There’s nothing like freshly popped popcorn, and you can either prepare it on the stovetop the old-fashioned way or microwave in a Stasher bag! Here’s how:

HOW TO POP

Stovetop

  1. Heat 2 tablespoons neutral oil (such as canola, vegetable, sunflower, or peanut) in a large, heavy-bottomed pot with a lid (like our braiser) over medium-high heat.

  2. Add just 3 popcorn kernels. When the kernels pop, add ⅓ cup of popcorn kernels, lower heat to medium-low, and cover almost all the way with a lid, leaving a tiny crack open for steam to escape (face the crack away from where you are standing).

  3. Cook, shaking the pot occasionally, until popping slows to 1 or 2 pops per second. Remove from the heat to avoid burning. Drizzle with oil or butter and sprinkle on seasoning liberally.

Microwave in a Stasher Bag

  1. Fill the Stasher bag with ½ cup popcorn kernels and 1 tablespoon of neutral oil.

  2. Leave the bag partially open and microwave for 2–3 minutes, or until popping slows.

  3. Remove the bag with an oven mitt—careful, it’s hot!—drizzle in butter or oil of your choice, and sprinkle on your fave seasoning.

  4. Close the bag, shake, eat, and enjoy!

NOW TIME TO SEASON!

Parmesan & Black Pepper 

Parmesan

What it tastes like: Like eating your favorite bowl of pasta, but in snack form! This iconic flavor duo brings a hint of cheesiness and a whole lotta spice to every bite.

How to season: Use ghee to pop your popcorn and drizzle on top. (Ghee is a clarified butter that has a high smoke point and toasty flavor, and will infuse your popcorn with extra savoriness.) Sprinkle on the Parmesan seasoning, and if you’re feeling extra cheesy—we always are—top it off with some fresh grated Parmesan.

Other uses: Add to your bowl of savory oats, mix into pasta with butter, or sprinkle on top of avocado toast for a cheesy, peppery kick.

The Ranchiest Ranch

Ranchiest Ranch

What it tastes like: This is creamy, herby, and zesty in all the right ways. Have a mint nearby—this one is loaded with garlic and onion. 

How to season: Drizzle the popcorn with a few teaspoons of the same neutral oil that you popped it in to ensure that you can taste the ranch flavor!

Other uses: Infuse into olive oil and drizzle on fried eggs, toast, or salad greens. Sprinkle into mayonnaise for a killer sandwich spread. Dust on top of fries—or really any kind of potato—or other carbs like macaroni and cheese for an extra kick of garlicky flavor. 

Sweet & Tangy BBQ

Tangy BBQ

What it tastes like: Perfectly sweet and tangy, this spice will remind you of barbecue chips...or the sauce you dip chicken nuggets in. It’s your new secret weapon for adding nice smokiness to popcorn—or anything else that needs a touch of BBQ.

How to season: Use a bit of the same neutral oil from popping on top, and then sprinkle away the BBQ goodness.

Other uses: Sprinkle on top of crispy potatoes, corn on the cob, burgers, or even in your steak marinades.

Blueberry Muffin 

Blueberry Muffin

What it tastes like: Like biting into a freshly baked, buttery blueberry muffin. Kind of like cake, but there are actual dried blueberries sprinkled within, so… it’s, uh, kinda healthy, right? 

How to season: Cook your popcorn in ghee or butter, which will complement the buttery muffin spice, then sprinkle the seasoning on top. 

Other uses: Mix with your favorite yogurt or combine with overnight oats to turn your morning up a notch. 

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough 

Chocolate chip cookies

What it tastes like: Sweet and buttery just like a real cookie topped with a hint of sea salt, or licking the last of the dough from a spoon. Plus, hello, mini chocolate chips!

How to season: Melted butter or ghee is the best topper for that signature baked good butteriness. Try mixing in a handful of extra chocolate chips after adding the seasoning, because why not?

Other uses: Add directly into batter when baking cookies or brownies, add to your morning oatmeal or yogurt, or mix into a bowl of ice cream!

Maple Doughnut

Maple Doughnuts

What it tastes like: This tastes like a maple bar and a churro got together. You’ll dough nuts for this spice!

How to season: Drizzle on some butter (see a pattern with these sweet flavors?) before adding a generous amount of the spice. A little extra cinnamon wouldn’t hurt, either!

Other uses: Dust on top of a fresh stack of crepes or fluffy French toast for a sweet and syrupy coating without actually needing to add syrup! It might even taste good in iced coffee...

Salt & Vinegar

CRAVINGS SPICE-SALT-VINEGAR LESLIE-GROW 1169

What it takes like: Your favorite chips—but better! This salty, tangy, one-two punch of flavor will satisfy all of your snack cravings at once.

How to season: Drizzle the popcorn with a few teaspoons of the same neutral oil that you popped it in to ensure that the salt and vinegar flavors can really shine.

Other uses: After trying on popcorn, try using it in the crust for Luna’s favorite fish sticks or on top of hasselback potatoes. Really, it’d work with any potato: French fries, roasted potatoes, mashed potatoes, you name it!

Birthday Cake

CRAVINGS SPICE-BIRTHDAY-CAKE LESLIE-GROW 1243

What it tastes like: Finally, a socially acceptable way to eat cake batter as a snack. And oh yeah—there are SPRINKLES!

How to season: Melted butter works great here since all the best cake is buttery. Use a few teaspoons and toss with the birthday cake seasoning.

Other uses: To double down on the sweet treats, try it swirled into a cream cheese–based dessert dip, on top of a vanilla milkshake, or in creamy rice pudding.

French Onion & Gruyere

CRAVINGS SPICE-FRENCH-ONION LESLIE-GROW 1286

What it tastes like: The same gooey cheese–topped, caramelized onion soup flavor you love—now in a crunchy snack. Aka the flavor of French onion soup without burning your mouth on molten cheese. 

How to season: Instead of neutral oil, use ghee to cook the popcorn. Melt and drizzle a few more teaspoons of ghee on top of the popcorn before tossing with the cheesy Gruyère and French onion seasoning. It will almost make you feel like you’re eating a hearty bowl of soup. 

Other uses: Mix into sour cream and mayonnaise for the fastest French onion dip ever, use it to season chicken breasts or pork chops, or try sprinkling some into John’s macaroni and cheese recipe.

Spicy Extra-Cheesy Cheddar

CRAVINGS SPICE-SPICY-CHEDDAR LESLIE-GROW 1258

What it tastes like: Like true love, it's extra cheesy and a little spicy so you can feel the heat. We don’t want to play favorites, but this is the ideal combo of cheese and heat for a craveable snack.

How to season: We prefer popping popcorn in neutral oil since it has a lower smoking point, but olive oil is great for drizzling on top. Add a few teaspoons to popped popcorn, sprinkle on that spicy cheddar seasoning, and maybe even add some sliced chiles in there if you’re feeling extra spicy.

Other uses: It could also be fun mixed into Easiest Broc & Cheese Calzones, Cheesy Jalapeno Bacon Cornbread, Two-Tone Potato Gratin, or—if you’re crazy enough to go sweet-savory-spicy—the dough for Apple Crumble!

Sweet & A Little Salty Coconut

CRAVINGS SPICE-SWEET-COCONUT LESLIE-GROW 1204

What it tastes like: Think of this seasoning as a tropical escape one bite at a time. Inspired by Chrissy’s favorite sticky rice, this sweet and salty blend will transport you to a warm island. It’s not as sweet as the birthday cake blend, but sweet enough to do the trick if you are in the mood for dessert. 

How to season: Have a triple threat of coconut when you pop in coconut oil and drizzle a few teaspoons on the freshly popped corn! It will give the popcorn a mildly sweet and almost nutty flavor that is intensified by the coconut seasoning—with real pieces of toasted coconut inside—in this sweet and salty blend. It wouldn’t hurt to add even more toasted coconut on top if you want to go coconuts.

Other uses: This would also work great in rice pudding, caramelized on top of grilled pineapple, mixed into whipped cream, or stirred into a PB&J Milkshake or Chocolate Pecan Brownies!

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