Stove-Top Bacon Popcorn

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This popcorn recipe is over-the-top amazing.

Stove-Top Bacon Popcorn
Photo: Victor Protasio; Food Styling: Emily Nabors Hall; Prop Styling: Christine Keely
Active Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
20 mins
Servings:
4

When we're preparing for a nice movie night, we're going all out. The lights are dimmed. The wine or soda is poured. The blankets are set out. And of course, no movie night is complete without popcorn. For a night like this, which is an event all its own, microwavable popcorn just will not do. And don't even dare to suggest a store-bought bag of popcorn. No at-home movie night is complete without our Stove-Top Bacon Popcorn, which turns any old weeknight in into a real occasion.

When the cravings hit, get creative with your popcorn game. Bacon? And popcorn? It doesn't get much better than that. This Stove-Top Bacon Popcorn has certainly earned its moment in the limelight. Serving the upgraded popcorn in paper cones adds a touch of whimsy to any at-home movie night or backyard kids' birthday party.

You can make your own snack mix with four sweet and savory ingredient combos. If you like it sweet, go for popcorn spiked with Maple and Glazed Pecans. If you like it spicy, opt for our Jalapeno-Parmesan Popcorn. For a western movie screening, kick things up a notch with Smoky Chile-Garlic seasoning. And finally, you can simply never go wrong with Ranch and Chive Popcorn. No matter which flavor combination you choose, this base recipe for Stovetop Popcorn is one you'll want to keep around.

Ingredients

  • 8 bacon slices

  • cup popcorn kernels

  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt 

Directions

  1. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium. Cook bacon slices in 2 batches, flipping occasionally, until browned and crisp, about 8 minutes. Transfer bacon to a plate lined with a paper towel to drain, and pour bacon drippings from skillet into a small heatproof bowl. Crumble bacon, and set aside.

  2. Add 3 tablespoons of the bacon drippings into a 6-quart pot fitted with a lid; heat over medium. Add 2 popcorn kernels. Cover and shake saucepan until kernels pop, 5 to 6 minutes. Add remaining kernels; cover and shake constantly until kernels stop popping, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat.

  3. Immediately add salt, crumbled bacon, and desired toppings to pot while popcorn is still hot; stir to coat. Serve immediately.

Make Your Own Mix

Maple and Glazed Pecans: Add 1 Tbsp. pure maple syrup, ¼ tsp. ground cinnamon, and ½ cup chopped glazed pecans after bacon in Step 3.

Smoky Chile-Garlic: Add 1 tsp. ground cumin, 1 tsp. chile powder, ½ tsp. smoked paprika, and ¼ tsp. garlic powder after bacon in Step 3.

Jalapeño-Parmesan: Add 1 thinly sliced seeded jalapeño chile to the skillet with the bacon halfway through the cooking process in Step 1. Sprinkle popcorn with 3 Tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese.

Ranch and Chive: Add 3 Tbsp. ranch dressing mix (from a 1-oz. envelope) and 2 Tbsp. thinly sliced fresh chives after bacon in Step 3.

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