Cheddar Cheese Popcorn

Learning how to make homemade cheddar cheese popcorn will change snacktime forever! Enjoy it on movie night or at the holidays!

kernels of cheddar cheese popcorn spilling out of a bowl

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Popcorn has magical healing powers. I’m convinced.

It’s a cure for the inevitable afternoon snack craving.

It also helps the scary parts of the movies feel, well, a lot less scary.

cheddar cheese popcorn in a gray bowl with a blue tea towel

Another magical quality: I’ve been missing my grandmother a lot lately, and popcorn always seems to make me feel closer to her.

She was the popcorn queen.

My grandmother always had a few Orville Redenbacher packets in her cupboards, ready for a spin in the microwave.

If we ever found ourselves at a festival that served popcorn, she was sure to buy a bag to share.

There is no kind of popcorn she would turn down.

kernels of cheddar cheese popcorn on a white surface

Especially cheddar cheese popcorn.

This crunchy, cheesy goodness goes so wonderfully with both butter popcorn and caramel popcorn.

It is often the star of Christmas popcorn tins and it is a valiant sidekick in Chicago popcorn mix.

cheddar cheese popcorn in a gray bowl with a blue tea towel

How to make cheddar cheese popcorn

Cheddar cheese popcorn is so easy to make.

First, you need to start with popped popcorn. You can buy it pre-popped, or use a microwave bag.

But did you know a jar of popcorn kernels costs about the same as a box of six popcorn bags, and yet you can make three times the popcorn from it. There are lots of ways to make popcorn from home.

You can use the paper bag method or the stovetop method. You can also invest in an air popper machine (too much cabinet space).

But my favorite way is with this magical microwave popcorn bowl.

It’s my favorite it because you can cook popcorn without greasy oil, it won’t burn as quickly and the silicone bowl collapses for easy storage when you’re not using it. Oh, and it’s easy to clean too! It’s magic, I tell you.

a heaping serving of cheese popcorn in a grey bowl

Now that you have your popped popcorn, it’s time to make it cheesy! The best part of all.

Which cheese powder is best for popcorn?

To make cheddar cheese popcorn, you will need dehydrated cheese powder to sprinkle all over your popcorn.

Cheese powder is great for flavoring other foods too, like macaroni & cheese, vegetables and casseroles.

You can also add it to pizza popcorn for a cheesy twist.

Here are a few types of cheese powder to try:

kernels of cheddar cheese popcorn spilling out of a bowl

How do you get cheese to stick to popcorn?

But to get the cheese powder to stick to the popcorn, you will need to first coat it in melted butter that has been slightly cooled.

Salted or unsalted butter will work great. I typically use salted, but if you use unsalted you may wish to add some more salt to compensate.

Feel free to substitute vegan butter here if you like!

a bowl of cheddar cheese popcorn with kernels spilling out of the side of the bowl onto a white surface

To combine the popcorn, butter, salt and cheese sprinkle, you can do it all in a big mixing bowl with a spoon or spatula, or you can do it all in a big ziptop bag and give it a big shake.

Up to you! Either way, you’ll love it. Be sure to store it in an airtight container. It will stay fresh for about two days — if you can wait that long!

Don’t forget to snap a photo and say cheese! (My grandmother definitely would.) // susannah

cheddar cheese popcorn in a gray bowl with a blue tea towel

Cheddar Cheese Popcorn

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 3 minutes
Total Time: 8 minutes

From movie night to holiday gifts, cheddar cheese popcorn is always a hit!



  1. Cook your popcorn kernels your preferred way. If using a silicone popcorn bowl, cook kernels in the microwave with the lid on for about 3 minutes on high, or until popping slows to 8 seconds between pops.
  2. While popcorn is cooling, melt butter in the microwave (around 45 seconds to 1 minute) and let cool slightly.
  3. Pour popcorn into a mixing bowl. Drizzle half the butter over popcorn, then sprinkle with half the cheddar cheese sprinkle. Stir with a spatula or wooden spoon. Repeat with the remaining butter and cheddar sprinkle, and season with salt, to taste. Enjoy!

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 3.5 cups popcorn
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 169Total Fat: 17gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 46mgSodium: 331mgCarbohydrates: 1gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 4g

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