Can you cook popcorn in an air fryer?

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “Can you cook popcorn in an air fryer?” with an in-depth analysis of how we can make popcorn in an air fryer. Moreover, we will also discuss how making popcorn in an air fryer can be healthier than other conventional methods of making popcorn along with the pros and cons of using an air fryer to make popcorn.

Can you cook popcorn in an air fryer?

Yes, we can surely cook popcorn in an air fryer. Although using an air fryer for making popcorn is new to many, it is a fast spreading and easily acceptable method of popcorn making by a large community. Especially those people who are very much concerned about their health, diet, weight loss, and weight gain, prefer using an air fryer instead of a stovetop or microwave for popping popcorn.

How is popcorn made in an air fryer healthier than the ones made in the microwave?

In an air fryer, popcorn is made by using either a minute quantity or in the complete absence of oil. This is a major edge taken by the air-fried popcorns over the conventionally made popcorns in a microwave. In a microwave, a bag of popcorn is used which contains a considerable amount of oil, butter, and other seasonings. You cannot control the number of seasonings and hence have to eat what has been made, as it is.

Along with this, an air fryer uses hot air to pop the popcorn as compared to a microwave oven which uses microwaves that penetrate through the particles, produce heat energy, and make popcorn kernels pop. Everybody knows the potential hazards of using a microwave for making or heating food.

What is the difference between conventionally cooked and air-fried popcorn?

When we use a stovetop to make popcorn, we have to add a portion of oil or butter to make popcorn. The oil contains unsaturated fats whereas butter is a pure form of saturated fats. As we do not cut down on our daily fat intake much, adding these fats to our popcorn snack will eventually elevate our blood cholesterol concentrations.

How to cook popcorn wrapped in aluminum foil in an air fryer?

  • Take 1/4th cup of popcorn kernels.
  • Take out the air fryer container and place aluminum foil in it.
  • Place the popcorn kernels on that foil and then wrap the aluminum foil.
  • Place the container in the air fryer and turn it on.
  • Eventually, you will start listening to the sound of popcorn popping.
  • Let the popcorn pop for 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Turn off the air fryer and collect all the ready popcorns.

Do all the popcorn kernels get popped during one round?

No, all the popcorn kernels never get popped in one round. Some kernels always remain unpopped.

How does aluminum foil allow the popcorn to pop?

When using aluminum foil to make popcorns in an air fryer, the mechanism that works is cooking with the help of entrapped heat. The heat produced from the dry air that circulates within the air fryer gets entrapped within the aluminum foil. This heat causes the already present popcorn kernels to pop.

How to cook popcorn without aluminum foil in an air fryer?

  • Preheat the air fryer at around 240 to 250 degrees.
  • Then take out the container and pour a quarter cup of popcorn kernels in it.
  • You can add 1 to 2 tablespoons of oil beneath the frying container. The addition of oil is dependent on the consumer. Popcorns can be made with or without using oil.
  • Place back the container into the fryer.
  • Let the popcorns pop for 10 minutes.
  • After 10 minutes, turn off the fryer. 
  • Take out the ready popcorns and collect the unpopped ones.
  • Season the ready popcorns with salt and butter and enjoy.

What to do when all the popcorn kernels do not pop up?

It is quite okay if all the kernels don’t pop up in a single go. You can increase the cooking temperature or cooking time. But both these techniques can burn out the popcorns that first popup. So it is better to remove the undone kernels and give them another for getting ready.

What is the right quantity of popcorn kernels to add to the air fryer?

Always cook a small or one-quarter quantity of popcorn in one cycle. This allows maximum popcorn to get cooked in a single turn with the least uncooked kernels. Adding a large quantity will leave a greater amount of unpopped popcorn kernels. 

You can read how to make chocolate popcorn here.

What is the correct temperature and time to cook popcorn in an air fryer?

There is no proven rule of time and temperature for cooking popcorn in an air fryer because every fryer has a different thermostat and accordingly has a different cooking time.  You have to manage time and temperature according to the handling of your air fryer.

Conclusion:

In this brief guide, we answered the question “Can you cook popcorn in an air fryer?” with an in-depth analysis of how can we make popcorn in an air fryer. Moreover, we also discussed how making popcorn in an air fryer can be healthier than other conventional methods of making popcorn along with the pros and cons of using an air fryer to make popcorn.

Citations:

https://rachnacooks.com/air-fryer-popcorn/
https://easyhealthyrecipes.com/air-fryer-popcorn/#:~:text=minutes%20before%20cooking.-,Line%20the%20air%20fryer%20basket%20bottom%20with%20a%20piece%20of,minutes%20or%20until%20popping%20stops.

Mahnoor Asghar is a Clinical Nutritionist with a bachelor's degree in Nutrition and Dietetics. She is compassionate and dedicated to playing her part in the well-being of the masses. She wants to play a fruitful role in creating nutrition and health-related awareness among the general public. Additionally, she has a keen eye for detail and loves to create content related to food, nutrition, health, and wellness.