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Have anyone tried making microwave popcorn in a oven? What temperature is preferred? For about how long does it have to be in?

I know I could just rip the bag and pop it a pot but if it's possible to do it in a oven I would try.

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Buy normal popping corn without the stupid microwave bags, cover the bottom on a sauce pan one kernel deep, and add a teaspoon of oil. Put on medium high heat. Shake pan now and then, when it start popping shake the pan much more frequently until all popped. Eat. What's so hard about that? Stop using up the world resource on stupid microwave popcorn bags etc. –  TFD Feb 13 '12 at 23:28
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@TFD Amen. It actually tastes good that way too! –  Brian Feb 14 '12 at 0:03
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Or buy an air popper if you want to be lazy. That tastes good too, especially after adding real butter and salt. –  thursdaysgeek Feb 14 '12 at 0:14
    
You can also make conventional popcorn in the microwave: put 1/4 cup (about 50 g) popcorn in a lunch-sized paper bag, fold the top closed and secure (you can use a staple as they don't seem to generate sparking). Run on high for 2 to 3 minutes stopping when the popping rate drops to a few per second. Season to taste. The paper bag can be re-used and unless you get it greasy by pouring butter in there or mangle the top with too many staples. –  dmckee Feb 14 '12 at 0:26
    
@dmckee, that seems to be an answer not a comment. If that works, make it an answer. The rest of us were saying what else to do, instead of answering the question. –  thursdaysgeek Feb 15 '12 at 0:27
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2 Answers

I tried the convection mode thinking it would seal on moisture. At 500 degrees F the kernels did start to pop. However, letting the bag stat that hot so long made the plastic melt and the paper seams unglue. Sort of worked, but the burnt plastic smell was awful and probably chock full o' dioxins.

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I'll come out and say "no, you can't make microwave popcorn in a conventional oven."

For popcorn to pop, the kernel must reach a temperature well above boiling (which builds up steam, causing the kernel to explode). It must do so very quickly, otherwise the moisture will just slowly evaporate out, simply drying the kernel rather than popping it.

Microwave popcorn works because the microwave is primarily heating the kernels directly (because they contain the most water), and quickly. Air poppers don't use the oil, but they do get very hot, and the forced air heats the kernels very fast. And stovetop methods use the heat built up in the oil to heat the kernels quickly. Even fire-popped corn (a fun prospect) relies on fast heat.

Unfortunately, ovens are anything but fast. In the time it would take to heat the kernels, they would just dry out, and possibly start to burn the bag.

If you want popcorn without a microwave, stovetop popcorn is quite easy, and very tasty. I like using a wok, because it's shape is well suited for popcorn (sloped sides keep the kernels in the hot spot, while allowing popped kernels space to expand).

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