Learn how to make popcorn in an Instant Pot — the best, easiest, fastest way to make buttery, fluffy popcorn. It’s perfect!
Instant Pot Popcorn
When they say you can cook anything in an Instant Pot, they mean it! This Instant Pot Popcorn is easy, delicious, and ready in no time!
Skip the stove and whip up a quick bowl of popcorn in minutes, using your instant pot! Easy, less messy, and easier to contain than a pot. Delicious and perfect popcorn every time.
All you need is your Instant Pot and TWO ingredients!
The next time you’re planning a movie night or looking for a healthy snack that both kids an adults will love, give this a try! You’re going to love it!
Can You Cook Popcorn in an Instant Pot?
YES!! And here’s why it’s perhaps the best way to do so…
Growing up, my parents made popcorn on the stove top or in our popcorn maker. Yep, there was an appliance specifically for making popcorn — oh the 80s! I remember that being a real treat!
Over the years, microwave popcorn took over the scene. It’s hard to beat the convenience of microwave popcorn, but it just doesn’t taste quite as good as homemade popcorn made with love and the perfect combination of heat and air circulation. And real food ingredients.
And that’s where the Instant Pot comes in — it creates perfect popcorn that is a tad crispy on the outside and deliciously fluffy on the inside. It is a taste and texture that you just can’t get from microwave popcorn!
Plus, when making instant pot popcorn, there is no paper trash! No throwing away bags after cooking! No artificial “butter” and preservatives, and all that other stuff that is added to packaged popcorn.
This Instant Pot popcorn recipe is easy, waste-free, and the best popcorn you’ll ever taste!
Instant Pot Popcorn Ingredients
For your convenience I’ve included shop-able ad links to some of the products used to make this recipe; disclosure policy available here.
- ½ Cup Popping Corn
- 2 Tablespoons Cooking Oil — Refined Coconut Oil has a lovely subtle flavor and works wonderfully in this recipe
Kitchen Tools Used
Turn on the Instant Pot and set to “Saute.” Add the oil to the pot now.
Allow the oil to heat up for about 2 minutes or until your instant pot displays the word “hot.”
TIP: If using coconut oil, it is solid at room temperature, but by now it should melt and start to sizzle.
Add your popcorn kernels to the pot and stir for about 1 minute before putting an instant pot glass lid on top. A lid is a must for making popcorn and a glass lid allows you to see the progress.
After about 2-3 minutes, you’ll hear the first kernels start to pop. The popping frequency will increase dramatically — it will sound like a frenzy!
TIP: Give the Instant Pot a shake every minute or so. This will move the kernels around and ensure that they all get access to the cooking surface. If you don’t shake or stir the kernels, they will cook unevenly and some may not pop.
Within 5 minutes, most of the popping will be done.
When the popping sounds become sporadic, turn off the Instant Pot. Carefully removed the glass lid, as some kernels may still be popping.
Remove the liner using pot-holders or a kitchen towel to protect hands — the liner will be hot.
Sprinkle with a bit of salt, or your favorite popcorn toppings. You can also try some of our favorites below:
Fun & Flavorful Popcorn Toppings
- Melted butter and salt — the classic combo!
- Cayenne Pepper or chili powder — For a spicy kick
- Caramel Drizzle — To make decadent dessert popcorn
- Parmesan and herb — For a savory snack
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Best Oil to Use?
To make popcorn in an Instant Pot, you’ll want to use an oil with a fairly high smoke point. This includes: coconut oil, avocado oil, canola oil, and extra virgin olive oil. You can also use ghee.
Using an oil with a high smoke point means that your oil will not scorch during cooking (if you stir and shake the kernels as directed in the recipe). Burnt oil is definite not the flavor we are after here!
So then it really comes down to the flavor you prefer. Avocado oil and coconut oil are my top two choices — they make absolutely amazing popcorn!
How Do You Know When The Popcorn is Done Popping?
A glass lid is helpful because it allows you to see what is going on and get an idea of how much popcorn has popped already.
You’ll want to stop cooking when at least 2/3 to 3/4 of the popcorn is done. Just like if you’d cook in the microwave, you can usually hear when the popping noises slow down substantially.
Why Didn’t My Popcorn Pop?
There are a few reasons why popcorn may not pop as much as you’d like, or at all:
- Stale Kernels — If you don’t know how long your container of popcorn kernels has been opened, there’s a chance it could be old. Fresh kernels pop much better, and stale kernels may not pop at all.
- Wrong Setting — If your Instant Pot was on the incorrect setting, the corn kernels may not have gotten hot enough.
- Uneven Cooking — The kernels need to move around so that they are all exposed to even heating. This is why I recommend giving the pot a good shake a couple times during the cooking process.
Keep in mind that it’s totally normals for a few of the kernels not to pop. Even when you make microwave popcorn, there are always some unpopped kernels remaining in the bag after heating.
How Do You Keep Homemade Popcorn From Going Stale?
If you want to make your popcorn ahead of time, or are only looking to enjoy a single serving, you may be wondering if you can save leftovers for later.
Yes, you can keep your homemade popcorn fresh for a few days, if you take care when storing it.
First, it is important to not season or add any topping to your popcorn. Even salt can affect the texture.
Next, you want allow the popcorn to cool completely before putting it in an airtight container. Even better, use a zip-top plastic bag and squeeze out as much air as possible. This will help keep moisture from making the popcorn soggy or stale.
More of our Most Popular Instant Pot Recipes
- Instant Pot Apple Dumplings
- Angel Food Cake made in the Instant Pot
- Instant Pot Godiva Cheesecake
- Instant Pot Apple Cake
- Instant Pot Lemonade
- Spicy Instant Pot Baked Beans
- Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup
- Dr. Pepper Instant Pot Meatballs
- Instant Pot Sweet & Sour Pork
- Instant Pot Spaghetti Sauce
Grab a free printable copy of our Instant Pot Popcorn Recipe:
If you like this recipe, please rate it! We’d also love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.
Instant Pot Popcorn Recipe (only 2 ingredients)
- Instant Pot
- Instant Pot glass lid
- 1/2 Cup Popcorn Kernels
- 2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil Can also use avocado oil, EVOO
- Set Instant Pot to "saute" and add oil to the pot.
- Allow the oil to heat up for about 2 minutes, or until your instant pot displays the word “hot." The oil will start to sizzle.
- Add popcorn kernels and stir for about 1 minute before putting lid on top.
- After about 2-3 minutes of heating while covered, the kernels will start popping. Shake or stir every minute or so to move the kernels for even cooking.
- After about 5 minutes, the kernels should be mostly popped. When the popping becomes sporadic, turn off the Instant Pot and enjoy.
Pin Our Instant Pot Popcorn on Pinterest:
You might also like:
- Cowboy Caviar - March 24, 2023
- Bunny Bait - March 22, 2023
- 20 Thrifty Kitchen Hacks - March 21, 2023
Leave a Reply