Best Home Popcorn Machines For True Movie Theater Experience

After 16 hours of making (as well as eating) popcorn with 14 popcorn machines, we've rounded up five of the absolute best models for the true home theater experience. Whether you're looking for a countertop, free-standing, or a budget model, we've you covered. Here are our top picks:

Best High End

Great Northern Popcorn Red Matinee Movie Theater Style

Great Northern Popcorn Red Matinee Movie Theater Style

Best Mid Range

Olde Midway Bar Style Popcorn Machine Maker Popper

Olde Midway Bar Style Popcorn Machine Maker Popper

Best Inexpensive

Roosevelt Antique Countertop Style Popcorn Popper Machine

Roosevelt Antique Countertop Style Popcorn Popper Machine

Last Updated: 6th Feb, 2020

What's better than a day out at the cinema? Heading out to see the latest blockbuster is a lot of fun, but it's expensive and inconvenient, to say the least. You're dealing with packed theaters, inconsiderate viewers, and of course, high prices. Who wants to spend so much just to deal with all these problems?

With the improvements in home theater equipment, you can bring the cinema experience to your living room. That means full surround sound, big screen experiences right there on your sofa. What's missing? The cinema snacks, of course. 

Popcorn is the quintessential cinema snack, and it's been hard to replicate in the home until now. Popcorn makers are now giving you the chance to create that freshly popped snack for you to enjoy, all while enjoying your favorite movie.

Here are 5 of our favorite home popcorn makers, so you can complete your home theater experience for yourself. 

Our Top 5 Best Popcorn Machines For Home Theaters

1. Great Northern Popcorn Red Matinee Movie Theater Style – Pro Pick


Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 14.4 (L) x 13.6 (W) x 22.8 (H)
  • Capacity: 2-3 Gallons
  • Kettle size: 8 ounce
  • Wattage: 860
  • Weight: 25 lbs
  • Warranty: 3-year on the machine and 30 days on consumable
Great Northern Popcorn Red Matinee Movie Theater Style

A popcorn machine needs to make great popcorn, but it needs to do it in style too. With this popcorn machine, you'll get exactly that. The design of the machine evokes the atmosphere of a vintage cinema, complete with gold accents and rich colors that make it look fantastic. You have the choice of buying it in either red or black, whichever works better with your kitchen's color scheme. Even better, you can buy it complete with a matching cart to put it on. Once your popcorn's ready, you can simply wheel it out to your living room and dish it up. 

How does the machine work? The machine makes roughly 2 – 3 gallons of popcorns per batch, enough to feed all the hungry cinema guests in your home. The machine uses tempered shatter-proof glass to keep it safe as it works, and uses heavy powder-coated steel in its construction. This construction means that the popcorn maker is heavy duty and ready for action, whenever you need it. 

The machine comes with everything you need to start making popcorn. You'll get the oil and popcorn scoops, as well as a reject kernel tray for keeping the unpopped corn out of your popcorn. There are spotlight warmer, stirrer, and pot warming options, so you'll be able to get the popcorn just how you want it. 

Top Features:

  • Excellent vintage design for that real cinema feel
  • Multiple warming options
  • Works on standard 110 volt power
  • Storage for all items in the base of the machine
  • Heavy duty construction

Final Note:

This is our pro pick as it offers so much within just one machine. There's excellent style, safe construction, and multiple warming options.

2. Olde Midway Bar Style Popcorn Machine Maker Popper – Best Overall


Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 14" deep x 17" wide x 24" tall
  • Capacity: 3 Gallons
  • Kettle size: 8 ounce
  • Wattage: 850
  • Weight: 32 lbs
  • Warranty: 5 Years on machine / 30 Day on Kettle and light bulb
Olde Midway Bar Style Popcorn Machine Maker Popper

This popcorn maker easily puts together retro style with modern features to give you an authentic experience. This countertop model ensures it will fit in easily in any kitchen, so you can have it ready to make popcorn at any time. With a 3 gallon capacity, you'll be able to satisfy even the hungriest guests. 

You'll get multiple accessories with your popcorn maker, including a salt shaker, ½ cup measuring cup, tablespoon, and a popcorn scoop. You'll have everything you need to put together a great batch of popcorn. The machine itself includes a warming deck and a kernel tray, to keep that popcorn nice and warm and ensure that there's no unpopped kernels in your latest batch.

The machine has been built to last, with safety in mind. All stainless steel used in construction is food safe. The tempered glass used in the machine is designed to last, and powder-coated steel completes the construction. This ensures you have a popcorn maker that's going to stand the test of time, no matter how often you use it. 

To use this machine, you just need to use three switches. These control the pot warmer, stirrer, and the spot light warmer, so everything is covered. The motor is super quiet, so you won't even have to worry about noise when you're trying to watch a movie. 

Top Features:

  • Included accessories help you get the most from your popcorn maker 
  • Excellent construction ensures that popcorn maker will last for years
  • Quiet motor ensures no noisy performance
  • Easy three switch operation
  • Kernel tray to catch unpopped corn

Final note: 

With this model, you'll get the best experience when making popcorn. You'll have a quiet operation, a large 3-gallon output, and all the accessories you need for a movie night.

3. Roosevelt Antique Countertop Style Popcorn Popper Machine – Budget Pick


Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 17.5 x 20.5 X 24.75 inches
  • Capacity: 3 Gallons
  • Kettle size: 8 ounce
  • Wattage: 850
  • Weight: 36 lbs
  • Warranty: 5 year
Roosevelt Antique Countertop Style Popcorn Popper Machine

If you're holding movie nights at home rather than spending all that money at the cinema, then you don't want to spend a lot of money on your popcorn machine, either. Can you get a good machine without breaking the bank? You certainly can with this machine. 

This model combines a classic retro style with the modern technology needed to make the best popcorn possible. The machine operates on 860 watts, making it as good as a commercial unit. You'll really feel like you're at the cinema when you make popcorn with this machine. The construction is high quality too, using stainless steel for the popcorn kettle and food zones. Tempered glass and powdered steel complete the model, ensuring that you'll only get the best quality for your machine. 

As you should expect from any popcorn machine, it's full of features to give you the best popcorn possible. The perforations in the bottom tray allow for unpopped kernels, also known as 'old maids', to fall to the collection tray in the bottom. That stops them from getting into your snack and ruining the experience. 

This model comes with all kinds of options. There's the popcorn and oil scoops, making measuring out and serving popcorn a breeze. You'll also get three plastic serving cups and 50 paper serving bags too, which really lend authenticity to the home cinema experience. 

Top Features:

  • Fully featured popcorn machine at a bargain price
  • Full set of extras, including popcorn bags for the real cinema experiences
  • Several warming options
  • Commercial grade construction for long lasting use
  • Excellent retro style

Final Note:

For a budget model, it's amazing how much this popcorn machine packs in. You'll get an excellent experience using this machine again and again.

4. Olde Midway Vintage Style Popcorn Machine – Best Design


Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 1.5' deep x 1.8' wide x 5' tall
  • Capacity: 3 Gallons
  • Kettle size: 8 ounce
  • Wattage: 850
  • Weight: 55.9 lbs
  • Warranty: 5 year
Olde Midway Vintage Style Popcorn Machine

Of course, when you buy a popcorn machine, it's not all about the way it makes the popcorn, it's about the style of it too. You want a machine that looks great wherever you put it. This machine is perfect for you if you're going all-out, making an immersive home theater experience. Got the seats and the big screen, but no popcorn maker in the room? This is the model for you. 

This model delivers on the retro charm in spades. It comes in either red or black, so you can pick the color that works best for your home decor. It has wonderful vintage styling, and the best part is it comes complete with a compact cart. This allows you to wheel it wherever you need it, and gives it the perfect place to stand. You can have popcorn in any room of the house with this model.

But does it make good popcorn? Absolutely. The machine comes complete with three switch settings, allowing for a spotlight warmer, pot warmer, and stirrer. The reject kernel tray keeps them out of your popcorn, and the overall design is reminiscent of commercial popcorn machines. You'll get top-grade, crisp popcorn out of this machine, all the time! 

Top Features: 

  • Comes in secure packaging to ensure no damage to your machine
  • Gorgeous retro styling
  • Comes complete with an attractive cart, so you can take the popcorn machine anywhere
  • Comes complete with all accessories needed to make popcorn
  • Makes 3 gallons of popcorn per serving

Final Note: 

The style of this machine makes it the perfect pick for the best design. Whichever color you choose, you'll see that it looks amazing wherever you place it in your home. 

5. Cuisinart CPM-28 Classic Style Popcorn Maker – Small & Portable


Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 9.50" x 10.50" x 19.50"
  • Capacity: 3 Gallons
  • Kettle size: 2 ounce
  • Wattage: 500
  • Weight: 9.7 lbs
  • Warranty: 3 year
Cuisinart CPM-28 Classic Style Popcorn Maker

This popcorn maker is the perfect option if you want a machine that's smaller than average. If you don't have a large kitchen, you don't have the space to house a full machine with a cart. With this model, you'll easily be able to place it on a counter. If counter space is limited, you can simply put it away when you're done using it. 

Just because it's smaller doesn't mean that it doesn't have style. A sleek black and red look will make it look at home on any countertop. It's a great design that looks as professional as a real cinema popcorn machine. It functions just like one too. This small machine can put out 10 cups of popcorn at a time, enough to feed three to four people at a time. There's no heat-up time required, just turn it on and go. A mechanized spinner ensures that all popcorn is cooked evenly, so you get the best results every time you use the machine. 

Cleaning up afterward is a breeze, too. The door and the non-stick kettle are easily removable, so you can fully clean them ready for your next movie night. The machine comes with a popcorn scoop, oil measuring spoon, and kernel measuring spoon, so you're ready to make popcorn right out of the box. 

Top Features

  • Small and portable design, perfect for smaller kitchens
  • Easy to clean with removable features
  • Tilt access door for easy serving
  • Non-stick design 
  • Makes 10 cups of popcorn every use

Final Note:

For such a small popcorn maker, this comes with all kinds of features you'll love. It's more than enough to make popcorn on movie night, and you can put it away once it's over. 

Popcorn Machines for Home Theaters - Buyer's Guide

As you've seen, there's a whole lot of choice when it comes to popcorn machines. How do you ensure that you're getting the right one for you? Use this buyer's guide to really boil down what it is you need from your machine. 

Key Considerations


<Style>

Firstly, you've got to consider the style. There are lots of popcorn makers out there, but they seem to come in two different styles: Modern and Retro styling. The one you choose is very much down to personal taste. Do you want something that's sleek and stylish, and will fit into your modern kitchen? Then a modern popcorn maker is best for you. What if you want something that's reminiscent of vintage cinemas? Then you want a retro popcorn maker. 

As for color, they most often come in red or black, although sometimes you can get different colors too. Again this is a personal preference, so choose the color that makes the most sense to you.

<Sizing>

Next, you need to consider the sizing of the kettle. They come in various sizes from 4oz to all the way up to 16oz. For home popcorn machines, 8oz is the most common size. If you're just using your popcorn machine at home, with your family and friends, then that's going to be more than enough. You can cook up to 3 gallons of popcorn every batch and typically, it takes 3 minutes for each batch. So, practically you can have up to 20 serving every hour using the 8oz machine, which should be more than sufficient even for big parties. 

Perhaps you're looking at a popcorn machine for commercial use. For example, you want a counter top machine for your bar. In these cases, you'll want more output from your machine. Because of this, you'll need to buy a larger machine (8oz+). Pay close attention to the size of the kettles when looking at popcorn machines online.

Note: Most of the sub $200 popcorn makers that are sold online are Chinese made. Although the quality is good, if you're one of those who prefer and support 'Made in America' stuff, you should look for machines in the $400+ price range.

<Wattage>

How fast the popcorn pops up depends on the Wattage of the machine. Higher the Wattage, the faster the popping will be. For home use, 650 to 800 watt is more than sufficient. To give you a context, commercial popcorn makers usually come with a 1000 watt+ filament.

<Cart Or No Cart>

Next, think about where you'll place your popcorn machine. Where do you want to keep it when you're using it? Many countertop machines will come with a cart, so you can leave it free-standing wherever you want it. Plus, it makes it easy to move it from one room to another when you want to use it. A cart's a great idea if you want to make a feature of your popcorn machine or want the option of moving it around.

What if you don't have space for a full cart? If you don't, then you can simply buy a countertop version. This is the full popcorn machine, just without the cart. These fit easily on the counter, but won't need as much room. You can even put it away once you're done using it.

<Extra Features>

As you've seen on this list, there are all kinds of extra features that can make the popcorn machine experience that much better for you. Think about what kind of things you'd want from your machine. 

For example, many come with the 'reject' tray. This is a tray that catches all the reject kernels, which fall through holes in the heating tray of the popcorn machine. It keeps them out of your popcorn, so you get a better experience. 

When considering a machine, check out the features it has. Are they something you want? If not, you may be able to find a better deal on another machine because it doesn't include it.

<Accessories>

Finally, think about the accessories that come with a popcorn machine. Most people won't have any accessories in their home, so they'll want a full set to come with their machine. That includes things like a popcorn scoop, oil measuring spoon, salt shaker, and more. Having all those things in the box is great, as you just need the corn to get started. There's no waiting until you buy the right accessories, so you can use your machine right away. 

In some cases, you'll even see the machine has a storage slot for these accessories, too. If storage is at a premium in your home, then you're going to want to take advantage of that. 

Take into account popcorn holding receptacles, too. For many people, they're happy to pick a bowl from their kitchen and load the popcorn into that. However, others want the full cinema experience. That means they want bags and popcorn bowls that are designed to look like the ones you'll get in the theater.

Sound like you? Some models will come with bags, so you can start dishing out the popcorn right away. If the model you like doesn't come with the bags though, you can easily buy them online. You can also buy hard plastic versions too, which are reusable and cut down on waste. 

Summing Up the Guide


There you have it, if you're in the market for a home popcorn machine, one of these five will surely be the best one for you. Need a machine that comes on a cart, comes with bags, or has all the accessories ready and waiting for you? One of these models has you covered. 

If you have any queries, please leave your comments below.

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