Gluten-Free Buttered Parmesan Popcorn

This popcorn is easily one of my kids’ favorite after-school snacks. Mine, too. We left microwave popcorn behind a long time ago. Just about the same time Isaiah’s science project  Play-Doh figurines blew up our microwave.

True story.  Lesson learned: Do NOT microwave Play-Doh. Not even for a few seconds.

Back to popcorn…


I grew up in an era of Jiffy Pop and air-popped popcorn. That’s what my Mom made and we loved every kernel. I never actually knew you could pop popcorn in a pot. Until I tried it myself. I was suddenly inspired by a mason jar full of kernels that I picked up at my local farmers’ market one Saturday. It was partly the packaging: The kernels just looked so pretty sitting in that glass jar.  Then, a few days later, I made popcorn. I’ve never made it any other way since.

The beauty is that all you need is a cast-iron pot, corn kernels and oil. Then, flavor as you want: salt, butter, parmesan, parsley, chile powder, smoked paprika, cinnamon. Your call (or your kids!). Feeling decadent? Make some caramel corn or even better, my caramel corn chocolate-pecan bark from my cookbook (page 218).

But, for right now, here’s the perfectly buttery, parmesan-flecked popcorn ready for popping.


Gluten-Free Buttered Parmesan Popcorn

Yield: 6 cups


1½ tablespoons canola oil

¼ cup popcorn kernels

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

¼ cup packed grated parmesan

¼ teaspoon salt, or to taste


  1. In a 3-quart heavy saucepan, heat the oil with a few kernels over medium-high heat, covered, until a kernel pops. Add the remaining kernels and cook, covered, shaking the pan frequently, until the popping slows down, about 4 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl.
  2. Drizzle over the melted butter and top with the parmesan and salt; toss.



  1. LOL – good advice on the play dough! My best friend learned the same lesson when trying to melt down crayons for a project with her kids!

    Your cook book looks amazing – I am ordering a copy of dish towel diaries right now!! 🙂

  2. …sorry, ordering a copy of Cooking For Isaiah right now… LOL! Its too early on Saturday morning!! 🙂

  3. Never thought of using cheese on popcorn before, it looks good though!

  4. I heard that some cheeses are lactose free from aging. Is parmesan one of those cheeses?