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Best Bacon Cheddar Popcorn Recipe

Snack lovers, this bacon cheddar popcorn recipe is for you! If you haven’t had popcorn cooked in bacon grease, you’re in for a tasty treat.

This incredible snack features fresh, fluffy popcorn cooked in bacon fat for extra flavor. Then it’s tossed with melted butter, Parmesan and cheddar cheese, crispy bacon, salt, and freshly ground black pepper for the most epic popcorn you’ve ever eaten. 

Whether you serve it as an easy party appetizer or enjoy it as the perfect movie snack, you may never go back to plain popcorn again! 

A red and white bowl filled with cheddar bacon popcorn.

If you love bacon snacks as much as we do, be sure to check out our recipes for Bacon Parmesan Crackers, Mini Bacon Cheese and Jalapeno Quesadillas, and Bacon Jerky!

Ingredients Notes

Parmesan and Cheddar cheese, popcorn, butter, salt, pepper and bacon on a cutting board.

Shown above, here’s what you’ll need to make this tasty popcorn snack!

10 ounces center cut regular sliced bacon – I prefer center cut bacon for this recipe because the bacon bits you make will be more meaty and less fatty. You’ll cook the bacon to render 3 tablespoons of bacon grease for cooking the popcorn.

1/2 cup top quality popping corn kernels – I used Trader Joe’s organic popcorn for this batch.

3 tablespoons salted butter

1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

1/2 cup finely shredded Cheddar cheese – Shredding the cheese finely will allow it to melt and adhere to the warm popcorn more easily.

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper for sprinkling

Equipment Needed

You don’t need any special kitchen equipment to make this cheesy bacon popcorn:

  • Kitchen scissors or a sharp knife to cut the bacon
  • A large skillet (this is our pick for the best frying pan for cooking bacon)
  • A slotted spoon to transfer the cooked bacon pieces
  • Paper towels to drain the bacon
  • 3 quart heavy bottom pot with lid
  • Tongs for tossing the popcorn with other ingredients
  • Oven mitts or potholders to hold the pot while cooking and shaking it
  • Large serving bowl

Step by Step Instructions

STEP ONE: Cut the bacon in 1-inch pieces. I like to use kitchen scissors for this task.

STEP TWO: Fry the bacon in a large skillet until crispy and golden brown.

Cutting raw bacon in 1/2 inch pieces.
Cutting chopped bacon in a skillet.

STEP THREE: Use a slotted spoon to transfer the cooked bacon bits to paper towels to drain. Allow the pan to cool off the burner for about 10 minutes, and do not drain the fat from the pan.

STEP FOUR: Measure 3 tablespoons of bacon fat from the pan and transfer to a large, heavy bottom pot.

Golden brown cooked bacon bits draining on paper towels.
Measuring a tablespoon of bacon grease to make bacon popcorn.

STEP FIVE: Add the popcorn kernels to the pot, cover, and turn the heat up to medium.

STEP SIX: Cook the popcorn. As the kernels start to pop, shake the pan gently. This will keep the popcorn from burning or sticking on the bottom of the pan.

Unpopped popcorn kernels in a pan with bacon grease.
Cooking popcorn in a large lidded pot.

STEP SEVEN: As soon as the popping slows to about 1 pop per second, pull the pan off the stove, carefully remove the lid to let the steam escape, and pour the popped corn into a large bowl.

Drizzle the popcorn with the melted butter and use tongs to distribute the butter over the popcorn. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.

STEP EIGHT: Sprinkle the warm popcorn with finely shredded cheddar and Parmesan cheeses. Toss well to combine. The cheeses will melt slightly and stick to the buttered popcorn…. so tasty!

Drizzling melted butter on cooked popcorn in a mixing bowl.
Sprinkling finely grated cheddar cheese on cooked popcorn.

STEP NINE: Add cooked bacon bits to the bowl and toss to combine. Serve and enjoy! Makes about 6 generous servings.

Looking down at a serving bowl of bacon cheddar cheese popcorn.

How to Store Leftovers

Can I be honest? Homemade bacon cheddar popcorn is best served hot and fresh.

If you have leftover popcorn, you can tightly seal the bowl or transfer it to a zip-top plastic bag and refrigerate for up to 24 hours.

To reheat it, spread it on a baking sheet and cook in a 350 degree F oven until hot, about 8 to 10 minutes. However, it just won’t be quite as light and crispy as freshly made popcorn.

We Live for Your Ratings and Comments!

If you enjoy this bacon cheese popcorn recipe, we’d be thrilled if you clicked on the stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ below and left a rating! We love reading your comments, too!

Here’s the full, printable recipe:

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A red and white bowl filled with cheddar bacon popcorn.

Bacon Cheddar Cheese Popcorn

Eliza Cross
Bacon Popcorn is the ultimate snack! Featuring fresh popcorn cooked in bacon fat and topped with melted butter, melting Parmesan and cheddar cheese, seasonings and crispy bacon, it's perfect for parties and movie night!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Bacon Appetizers, Snacks
Cuisine American
Servings 6
Calories 213 kcal

Equipment

  • kitchen scissors
  • Large skillet
  • Slotted spoon
  • paper towels
  • 3 quart heavy bottom pot with lid
  • tongs
  • oven mitts
  • large serving bowl

Ingredients
  

  • 10 ounces center cut bacon
  • 1/2 cup unpopped popcorn kernels
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup finely shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Instructions
 

  • Cut the bacon in 1-inch pieces using kitchen scissors or a sharp knife.
    Cutting raw bacon in 1/2 inch pieces.
  • Fry the bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crispy and golden brown.
    Cutting chopped bacon in a skillet.
  • Use a slotted spoon to transfer the cooked bacon to paper towels to drain. Allow the pan to cool off the burner for about 10 minutes, and do not drain the fat from the pan.
    Golden brown cooked bacon bits draining on paper towels.
  • Measure 3 tablespoons of bacon fat from the pan and transfer to a large, heavy bottom pot.
  • Add the popcorn kernels to the pot, cover, and turn the heat up to medium.
    Unpopped popcorn kernels in a pan with bacon grease.
  • Cook the popcorn. As the kernels start to pop, shake the pan gently. This will keep the popcorn from burning or sticking on the bottom of the pan.
    Cooking popcorn in a large lidded pot.
  • As soon as the popping slows to about 1 pop per second, pull the pan off the stove, carefully remove the lid to let the steam escape, and pour the popped corn into a large bowl. Drizzle the popcorn with the melted butter and use tongs to distribute the butter over the popcorn. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
    Drizzling melted butter on cooked popcorn in a mixing bowl.
  • Sprinkle the warm popcorn with finely shredded cheddar and Parmesan cheeses. Toss well to combine. 
    Sprinkling finely grated cheddar cheese on cooked popcorn.
  • Add cooked bacon bits to the bowl and toss to combine. Serve and enjoy! Makes about 6 generous servings.
    Looking down at a serving bowl of bacon cheddar cheese popcorn.

Notes

Storing leftovers: Any leftover bacon popcorn should be refrigerated within 2 hours of serving. Tightly seal the bowl or transfer it to a zip-top plastic bag and refrigerate for up to 24 hours.
To reheat the popcorn, spread it on a baking sheet and cook in a 350 degree F oven until hot, about 8 to 10 minutes. 

ADD YOUR OWN PRIVATE NOTES

Whenever you come back to this recipe, you’ll be able to see your notes!

Nutrition

Calories: 213kcalCarbohydrates: 11gProtein: 15gFat: 13gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0.2gCholesterol: 28mgSodium: 1125mgPotassium: 54mgFiber: 2gSugar: 0.2gVitamin A: 305IUCalcium: 106mgIron: 0.4mg
Nutritional Information Disclosure
Keyword bacon grease, bacon popcorn, bacon snacks, popcorn
Did you make this recipe? We love seeing what you made! Be sure to leave a review, and show us your bacon creations on Instagram! Tag us at @BensaBaconLovers!
Tried this recipe?Mention @WPRecipeMaker or tag #wprecipemaker!

Got questions? Just ask! I’m happy to help.

If you post your creations on social media, tag #BENSABaconLovers so I can share! Thank you for your support. – Eliza

Nutrition Disclaimer: All nutritional information shared on this site is an approximation. I am not a certified nutritionist, and any nutritional information should be used as a general guideline.

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A red and white serving bowl filled with bacon cheddar cheese popcorn.
eliza cross

About Eliza & BENSA

BENSA was founded by bacon expert Eliza Cross, author of more than a dozen cookbooks. She has written three bacon cookbooks including the award-winning Bacon Beans and Beer, the bestselling 101 Things to Do With Bacon, and the popular sequel 101 More Things to Do With Bacon. Learn more about BENSA...

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