Choose poppers that have undergone scientific laboratory testing and have proved to do the best popping job, producing maximum popcorn volume and minimal waste.
If children will be operating the popper, in addition to the general safety rules, look for:
- Easy-to-follow instructions; and
- A popper that is not too heavy for a child to maneuver.
Be aware of convenience features that make the popping job easier:
- Oil line for easy measuring;
- Dishwasher-safe covers;
- Easy-to-clean surfaces; and
- Signal light.
Check the design of the popper. It should provide for the escape of steam during the popping cycle. This prevents the popcorn from becoming soggy and also reduces the chance of spattering the operator when the cover is removed. Steam-escape features vary in design from popper to popper. Many include small vents or indentations around the cover; some are designed so that the cover fits into a ridge around the popper base with sufficient clearance for steam to escape. Make it a point to look for this feature.
Before you buy, it is important that you know whether or not an electric popper is automatic or non-automatic. An automatic popper is one that contains a thermostat that automatically shuts off the heating element at the end of the popping cycle. A non-automatic popper requires you to watch more closely to prevent burning the popcorn once the cycle is complete. These poppers must be promptly disconnected. Be sure to check the label for this information.