I love popcorn! I think it truly is one of my favorite foods. It can be a fattening, high calorie food or it can be a very good source of fiber and low in calories if made the right way, plus super cheap.
The healthiest way to get the best bang for calories when eating popcorn is to avoid cooking it on oil and topping it off with tons of melted butter. Microwave popcorn is better, but it is still not ideal and not cheap to buy.
The easiest and healthiest way to cook popcorn is use nothing to cook the kernels, air-poppers are great. You just pour the kernels into the air-popper and let it pop with heat. If you want some flavoring, you can spray on some olive oil that is dispensed in a spray can. Then grab some sea salt and lightly sprinkle it on or better yet, some of the flavored popcorn toppings like Kernel Season's popcorn toppings. They have natural ingredients and come in several different flavors like nacho cheese, white cheddar, butter flavor and more. Now you have a yummy, healthy, good source of fiber, and a low calorie snack that is inexpensive.
What if you don't have an air-popper? Well, I have a simple solution for that. Grab a medium sized paper bag and pour a 1/3 cup of popcorn kernels into the bag. Then fold the top of the bag shut just a tiny ½ inch fold. You need to leave room for the kernels to pop so you don't want to fold it too much. Then stick that bag in your microwave for about 2 to 3 minutes. Of course pop times will vary and be careful that you don't burn your popcorn. The popcorn will be done once you hear about 2 to 3 seconds between pops so stop the microwave. Let the bag sit in the microwave for a few minutes to cool off so you don't burn yourself. Then open up the bag and pour the popcorn in a serving bowl. You are all done with your air-popped corn without an air-popper.
Another simple little gadget I found that makes good fluffy air-popped corn is Nordicware popcorn popper. I think I am failing in love with their different cooking gadgets. It is a bowl that you pour your kernels into, cover with the lid and then put in the microwave for 2 to 3 minutes. It will pop those kernels into popcorn. Plus you can use the bowl to serve the popcorn. It cost $8.99 at Target stores and Amazon.com.
All three of these ways will get you some yummy, healthy, low calorie, guiltless popcorn that was cheap to make too.