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Air Fryer Popcorn

Air Fryer Popcorn will redefine movie night!  Yes, you read that right — it’s not only possible to cook popcorn in the air fryer, it’s also super easy and delicious.

close up of air fryer popcorn in a white bowl.

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Do you love your air fryer as much as I love mine? I love to use it to make everything from Air Fryer Breakfast Tarts to Air Fryer Sesame Chicken to Air Fryer Fried Ice Cream. And it’s great for making healthy snacks, too.

Fries, BBQ wings, and spring rolls all turn out crispy, crunchy, delicious. And now, as I’ve recently discovered, I can use it to make Air Fryer Popcorn as well.

Why You’ll Love To Make Popcorn in Your Air Fryer

Here are some of the benefits of making popcorn in an air fryer:

  • Healthier: Unlike microwave popcorn, which is often loaded with butter, or regular stovetop popcorn cooked in a load of oil, air fryer popcorn allows you to add as much or as little oil, butter, and salt as you want.
  • Saves time: Making popcorn in an air fryer is quicker than traditional stovetop methods. You don’t have to stand around shaking the pot or risk burning your popcorn. The air fryer does all the work for you.
  • Easy cleanup: Cleaning up after making popcorn in an air fryer is a breeze. There’s no need to wash a pot, and the air fryer basket can usually be cleaned in the dishwasher.
Overhead shot of the ingredients needed to make air fryer popcorn.

Ingredients You Need

You only need a couple of things in addition to your air fryer to make this popcorn.

  • Popcorn kernels: Use whatever type you like best.
  • Oil: You can use any type of cooking oil, including canola, safflower, vegetable, or avocado oil.
  • Salt: I like to use kosher salt or sea salt because they don’t have any additives. Use as much or as little as you like.

You may also need aluminum foil to line your basket — if your air fryer basket has large holes, the popcorn kernels will fall through. Lining the basket with foil prevents this. You only need to line the bottom of the basket with foil. Leave the sides unlined so that air and heat can still circulate freely.

Great gift ideas!
Sizzle to Success: Must-Have Accessories for Your Air Fryer

From muffin pans and racks that fit inside your basket to oil sprayers, tongs, skewers, racks, and more, these are the accessories we use the most with our air fryers.

Have a look
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What Are the Best Popcorn Kernels?

When it comes to making popcorn, the quality of the kernels you use can make all the difference in the final product. Here are some of the best kinds of popcorn kernels to use in your air fryer:

Yellow popcorn kernels: Yellow popcorn kernels are the most common type and are usually easy to find in grocery stores. They have a slightly nutty taste and are perfect for making classic popcorn.

White popcorn kernels: White popcorn kernels are smaller and denser than yellow kernels. They also have a slightly sweeter taste and tend to pop up into smaller, fluffier pieces.

Mushroom popcorn kernels: Mushroom popcorn kernels are larger and rounder than other types of kernels, and they pop up into a ball shape with a small, flat top. They have a denser texture and are perfect for caramelizing or coating with different flavors.

In general, look for fresh kernels that are plump and unbroken. You might want to purchase organic popcorn kernels to ensure that they are free from harmful chemicals and pesticides. Ultimately, the best type of popcorn kernels to use will depend on your personal taste preferences and the type of popcorn you want to make.

How To Make It

Making popcorn in an air fryer is incredibly easy. Here’s how:

  1. Toss the popcorn kernels in a little oil and put them in the air fryer basket.
  2. Air fry until you hear the popping slow down to only one pop every few seconds.
  3. Turn off the air fryer and let it sit for a minute before removing the basket. This allows any last kernels to pop.
  4. Carefully remove the basket from the air fryer and transfer the popcorn to a bowl.
  5. Add salt to taste and toss to coat.
overhead shot of popcorn in a white bowl.

Tips for Success

Here are some tips for making the perfect air fryer popcorn:

  • Use high-quality popcorn kernels. This will ensure that your popcorn pops evenly and has a great taste.
  • Use the right amount of oil. Too much oil can make your popcorn greasy, while too little oil can cause your popcorn to burn.
  • Shake the basket regularly. This will ensure that all the popcorn pops evenly and doesn’t burn.
  • Listen for the popping to slow down. This will help you know when your popcorn is done.
  • Add your favorite seasonings. Once your popcorn is done, you can add your favorite seasonings, such as butter, cinnamon, or garlic powder.
  • Store your air fryer popped popcorn in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
  • Air fryer popcorn is a great way to enjoy a healthier and tastier snack. By using an air fryer, you can make popcorn quickly and easily without any fuss. Plus, you can customize your popcorn with your favorite seasonings to create a snack that’s perfect for you. So why not give air fryer popcorn a try today? We promise you won’t be disappointed!
Low angle shot of a white bowl of popcorn with an air fryer in the background.

Flavor variations

You can flavor your freshly popped popcorn in many different ways. Here are a few favorites:

  • Butter: The classic popcorn flavorings are simple butter and salt. You can combine melted butter with a little olive oil and put them in a spritzer bottle. Spraying the combo on helps you coat the popcorn evenly.
  • Kettle corn: You can make sweet-salty kettle corn by tossing the freshly popped popcorn with granulated sugar and salt.
  • Spicy: Toss the popcorn with chili powder or another spicy seasoning mix like Japanese shichimi togarashi.
  • Cinnamon sugar: Toss the freshly popped popcorn with melted unsalted butter, ground cinnamon, and granulated sugar.
Overhead shot of a bowl of popcorn.

Air Fryer Popcorn

Robin Donovan
Air fryer popcorn is a great way to enjoy a healthier and tastier snack. By using an air fryer, you can make popcorn quickly and easily without any fuss.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 2 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Course Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 7 servings
Calories 28 kcal


  • ¼ cup popcorn kernels
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • Salt to taste


  • Preheat the air fryer to 375°F.
  • Coat the popcorn kernels in the oil.
  • Shape some aluminum foil into a bowl in the air fryer. Add the kernels and cook at 375°f for 8 minutes.
  • Remove the popcorn from the air fryer basket and salt to taste.


You can add popcorn butter and or flavored powders to kick it up a notch.


Calories: 28kcalCarbohydrates: 4gProtein: 1gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0.1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.2gTrans Fat: 0.004gSodium: 0.4mgPotassium: 16mgFiber: 1gSugar: 0.1gCalcium: 0.3mgIron: 0.2mg
Keyword air fryer, popcorn
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!


By on March 26th, 2023
Photo of Robin Donovan

About Robin Donovan

Robin Donovan is the creative force behind All Ways Delicious. She's a writer, recipe developer, photographer, and cookbook author with more than 40 books to her name, including the bestselling Ramen for Beginners, Ramen Obsession, and Campfire Cuisine. Her work has been featured in major publications, both print and digital, including MSN, Cooking Light, Fitness, Buzzfeed, and Eating Well. More about Robin

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