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Make your own healthy DIY popcorn oil for delicious popcorn!

So, you want to have a movie night at home with your family but you have a quiet craving for movie theatre popcorn?

Thankfully, the answer is much much easier than you thought – and significantly healthier!

Enter… homemade movie-style popcorn oil.

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There are only two ingredients in this homemade popcorn oil, and they're both nourishing fats that help you avoid sugar and help your brain function optimally. Namely, coconut oil and palm oil.

Now, when I say “palm oil,” I'm talking about a specific kind of palm oil. It's RED palm oil that is sustainably grown and harvested. Yes, there is such a thing.

The reason red palm oil is important here is both for flavor and for carotenoids. You know that nutrient that helps bell peppers be so brilliantly red and carrots so brilliantly orange? Those are carotenoids, and they are exactly what give this fat its deep orange color as well.

They're also the secret to making popcorn taste like movie theatre popcorn – it's that salty, savory goodness you just can't put your finger on.

Nutritionally-speaking, palm oil is somewhat similar to coconut oil in that they're both derived from the fruit of their respective palm tree varieties and carry a similar nutritional profile. 

Like coconut oil, red palm oil is very easily digested and used by the body. It includes both short and medium chain fatty acids (aka fats that increase your metabolism and that your body can burn very easily for energy), with about 40-50% saturated fats, 40% monounsaturated fats, and 10% polyunsaturated fats. This makes for an excellent pairing with coconut oil, which is about 86% saturated fat and about 90% medium chain fatty acids.

And best of all, both of these tropical oils are known for their ability to promote heart HEALTH, despite their high levels of saturated fats. (source

All in all, this turns your formerly-guilty pleasure into brain food.

Palm oil fruit


Buying Recommendations for Sustainable Red Palm Oil

Equally important is sourcing red palm oil that is sustainably and ethically grown and harvested.

The only way to know a company's practices is to read the label and/or visit their website to view their harvesting practices and eco-certifications. If there is no indication either on the label or on the company's website about their practices, you know that they very likely do not practice sustainable methods, as any company who wants your business and to be known as a reputable company in eco-friendly circles will go out of their way to make that information available.

Here's a general list of companies producing sustainable, ethical red palm oil. Please please please let me know of other companies you know of that have a reputable product, as I'd love to make this a thoroughly comprehensive list – and support as many family farms and ethical companies as possible! 

For palm shortening, I also purchase from Spectrum Naturals.


Okay – enough talking (seriously!) – let's make homemade popcorn oil!

Make your own healthy DIY popcorn oil for delicious popcorn!

Homemade Movie-Style Popcorn Oil

Yield: approximately 2 cups
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes


  • 1 1/2 cups coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup red palm oil
  • 2 tablespoons ghee (optional)


  1. Melt the two oils together over low heat and swirl gently to mix well.
  2. Pour into a dark-colored glass jar. You may also use a mason jar and cover it with a paper lunch sack to block out light.
  3. Store in a dark cupboard at room temperature for up to 6 months.

To make popcorn

  1. Melt 2-3 tablespoons of popcorn oil over medium heat to pop 1/2 cup of unpopped popcorn kernels.


Feel free to change the ratios according to taste. The recipe here uses a 3:1 ratio of coconut oil to red palm oil and easily scales to any amount. If you want a "butter-ier" flavor, feel free to add 2 tablespoons ghee, although I prefer it without it.

Make your own healthy DIY popcorn oil for delicious popcorn!

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5 thoughts on “Homemade Movie-Style Popcorn Oil

  1. Diane Call says:

    Do you pour this over popped popcorn; or do you melt it in a pan, add popcorn kernels, put on the lid, and shake over heat until popping noises stop?

    • Kresha Faber says:

      It’s just popcorn oil – the oil you use in the pan to pop the kernels and pop exactly as you describe.

      I haven’t tried melting it to pour over – I usually just use plain butter if we drizzle anything, but you could definitely try it!

      Either way, enjoy! πŸ™‚

  2. Beth M. says:

    I absolutely LOVE this popcorn oil! I use 1 1/2 tablespoons for 1/3 cup of kernels. I also add 1/4 teaspoon of popcorn salt (just sea salt whizzed in my spice grinder for a few seconds) to the pan. Delicious! Thank you so much for all you do. I sincerely enjoy visiting your site.

    • Kresha Faber says:

      I’m so glad! πŸ™‚ And I love the popcorn oil too – always glad to share the love of good food. πŸ™‚

  3. Pingback: Homemade Movie-Style Popcorn Oil – Lori's Recipes

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