Memorial Day weekend is just around the corner and so is the start of grilling season! See our list for economical meats and ways to prepare.
Air Poppers Popcorn Makers
Popcorn Poppers Features (continued)
Hot Air Poppers.
Cheap air poppers range in price from about $17 to $30 and their features are nearly identical.
Popcorn Poppers Safety.Although a watched pot never boils, a watched popcorn maker is a necessity, especially in the low-priced end of the market. Many cheap air poppers and electric oil poppers lack an automatic shut-off feature -- the Kalorik PCM28276 Hot-Air Popcorn Maker (starting at $19, Amazon) being an exception -- so whoever is in charge must be vigilant. When the last kernels are just about ready to explode, turn off the popcorn maker or pull out the plug; the West Bend Air Crazy features an on/off switch but the Presto PopLite and West Bend Stir Crazy do not. None of the stovetop popcorn makers let you walk away from the stove; you must keep stirring until the popping stops. Although higher-end popcorn makers may allow for less focused attention, the entire process doesnít take very long so it probably isnít worth any extra cash for those few minutes of freedom. And when kids are involved, always make sure thereís adult supervision; stoves get hot and electric sockets can be shocking.
Popcorn Makers Clean-Up.The more complicated a popcorn maker is, the harder it is to clean effectively. Cheap air poppers, like the Presto PopLite, only need a wipe down after each use. Stray pieces of popcorn can be brushed out but the plastic cover may need some soapy water, especially if you melt butter in the measuring cup. A quick wipe down for stovetop popcorn makers usually works despite the oil thatís required. The manufacturerís specs for the Wabash Valley Farms Whirley Pop, for example, say no further cleaning is necessary if itís used at least once a week. Cleaning the West Bend Stir Crazy is a bit more complicated. The plastic dome gets a soapy wash, the stirring rod must be unscrewed and washed, and the popper base also gets a swipe from a damp, soapy cloth or sponge: each piece must then be dried. The Cuisinart CPM-900PK (starting at $40, Amazon) is an electric oil popper like the West Bend Stir Crazy, but the popping base, stirring arm, and plastic popping cover are all dishwasher-safe.
Don't Bother Cheap Popcorn Poppers
Kalorik PCM28276 Hot-Air Popcorn Maker
For a hot-air popper, the Kalorik PCM28276 is certainly cheap enough, but its performance pales compared to similar models in the same price range. Users critique the end product and are irritated by its automatic shut-off, which interferes with popcorn popping sessions. Read more »
West Bend Air Crazy 82416 Air Crazy Corn Popper Review
Cook N Home Aluminum Popcorn Popper Stovetop Review
Kalorik PCM28276 Hot-Air Popcorn Maker Review
West Bend Stir Crazy Popcorn Maker Review
Wabash Valley Farms Whirley Pop Review
Presto PopLite Hot Air Corn Popper Review
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