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Air fryer popcorn in white bowl.
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5 from 5 votes

Air Fryer Popcorn

Air fryer popcorn comes together in minutes and creates perfectly seasoned popcorn kernels. It's a simple, healthy, and easy snack that's versatile and fun!
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time15 mins
Course: Snack
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4
Calories: 43kcal
Author: Alison Corey


  • ¼ cup popcorn kernels
  • ½ tsp avocado oil or other high smoke point oil
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp lemon pepper seasoning optional
  • 2 tbsp melted butter optional (Earth Balance recommended)


  • Make sure to only use ¼ cup of corn kernels. Too many kernels can mean you won't have enough room in the basket for all the kernels to pop!
  • Make a bowl like shape with aluminum foil so that it surrounds the entire basket on the bottom and up the sides.
  • Preheat the air fryer for 5 minutes at 400 F.
  • Toss the kernels in avocado oil so that they are evenly coated in oil. Place them in the lined basket in a single layer.
  • Place the basket in the preheated air fryer. Cook for 5 minutes. Remove the basket from the air fryer, and take out any kernels that have popped. Place in a large serving bowl. Return the basket to the air fryer with the un-popped kernels. Cook for an additional 3 minutes. Remove the popped kernels, and discard any kernels that haven't popped.
  • While kernels are popping, melt the butter in a small microwave safe bowl in the microwave for 10 seconds.
  • Pour the melted butter over the popcorn. Add salt, and lemon pepper seasoning (if using). Place a lid over the bowl, and toss to evenly combine seasoning and butter. Enjoy!



  • Warning! Making popcorn in the air fryer could potentially damage your machine, and cause a fire hazard. For this reason, I recommend using a different method such as stovetop popcorn or air popper if possible!
  • This recipe takes quite a bit of trial and error! The first few times you give it a try, you might not end up with the best result.
  • Preheat the air fryer! This will help ensure the kernels get popping as quickly as possible and will prevent you from having too many leftover un-popped kernels.
  • Remove the popped kernels from the basket. More than likely, not all the kernels will pop at the same time, so remove the ones that have already popped to prevent them from getting a burnt flavor.
  • Shake the basket frequently. This will help create an even pop for those kernels at the bottom of the basket. Just be careful when you open the basket because the popcorn will want to fly out! Open it just a bit, give it a shake, and put it back in!
  • You may need more or less cooking time depending on the model of your air fryer. This is not a recipe you want to walk away from, or do something else while it's popping. Keep a close eye on the process the entire time. While the timing for the popcorn is what I found worked best for my appliance, you may find that you need more or less time for your kernels to pop. The best rule of thumb is to stay close and listen for the corn to pop. When it begins to slow, remove the basket, and take out any kernels that have already popped, then return for a second time, and listen again. When the popping starts to slow, remove the basket.
  • Remove un-popped kernels. After returning the basket to the air fryer twice, remove any un-popped kernels. It is inevitable that you will end up with some kernels that don't pop!
  • Don't skip the oil! While I love a good oil free recipe, you need the oil to get the kernels heated and popping. If you skip the oil you will have very few popped kernels.


Calories: 43kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 146mg | Potassium: 28mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Calcium: 1mg | Iron: 1mg