How to get Maximum Butter on Your Popcorn (with Minimal Sogginess)
Hot. Buttery. Popcorn. Just typing it out makes me want some. In real life, it rarely goes as planned. Pouring hot melted butter on freshly-popped popcorn causes it to get soggy and a bit chewy. Not only that, the popcorn on top gets super buttery and the rest stays dry. Plus, your fingers get all greasy.
Luckily, though, I found the solution. It’s a hack I’ve perfected over the years and now I’m sharing it with you so you, too, can have perfect, buttery, not-soggy popcorn whenever you want it. (Like, right now.)
Sprayable Butter Is the Secret to Perfect, Buttery Popcorn
Back in the day, a well-known brand of “buttery spread” that vociferously claims not to be butter came out with a spray version of their product. It was especially brilliant for getting a perfectly even layer of butter flavor on popcorn. But, as I got older, I decided that I would rather have actual butter on my popcorn.
Unfortunately, trying to spray melted butter doesn’t work. When I tried it, the spritz bottle would almost immediately clog up. So I started playing around and discovered mixing in a little neutral oil made a big difference.
I also found that the type of spritz bottle you use makes a difference. You want one that is food grade (BPA-free) and has a mister instead of a stream spray. It also helps if it has a little bit of a wider internal straw. Most oil misters will work, but I prefer the smaller spray bottles. These are my go-to favorites:
How to Make Sprayable Butter
To make sprayable butter, you want to start out with unsalted butter. This lets you control your salt later. Melt about 2 tablespoons unsalted butter and let cool until warm. Whisk in 2 teaspoons of any neutral flavored oil. I prefer grapeseed or avocado, but anything you have on hand will do. Pour it into a food-safe spritzer bottle and spritz away. This should just about cover 4 to 5 cups of popcorn or about 1 bag of microwave popcorn.
Troubleshooting Tip: If your spritzer was misting, but then decided to spray in a stream, your butter may be hardening. To soften it up again, dip the bottle in a mug of hot water for a minute or two.
You can also flavor your butter by adding a smashed clove of garlic or some herb sprigs while it’s melting on the stove. Just make sure to remove them before pouring the liquid into the spritzer.
I usually pour about a third of my popcorn into a bowl, spray liberally, salt, and toss. Then I repeat with the remaining two thirds of the popcorn, butter, and salt. This guarantees full coverage and maximum flavor.
Feeling a little lazy? Don’t want to get a bowl dirty? Spritz the top layer as you eat. You can even do this at the movies. Yes, I have been known to bring my spritzer with me when I go to the movies. Did you expect anything less from someone who spent this much time buttering her popcorn?
Do you have a secret for making perfect, buttery popcorn at home? Share with us in the comments!