Portable poppers are easy to move into position– but what do you do if you don’t have room for a big wagon? If you have some extra countertop space, you may want to consider going with one of these best tabletop popcorn poppers instead.
Tabletop popcorn units cost less than portable poppers, but they are equally as sturdy. And they have just as many features.
- 1 Why Brand Name Tabletop Poppers Are Better
- 2 1. Hollywood Hot Oil Kettle Maker by Funtime
- 3 KPM508 Vintage Collection Popper by Nostalgia Electrics
- 4 PMW17R Royalty Edition by Carnival King
- 5 The Roosevelt Popper by Great Northern
Why Brand Name Tabletop Poppers Are Better
Popcorn machines are tools that you can use to make money. That’s why you shouldn’t go with cheap knock-off brands if you’re serious about impressing your customers.
Even if you only intend to use your tabletop popper at home, you don’t want to worry about it breaking down when you have guests over for movie night.
If you’re shopping for a new tabletop popcorn machine, these four brand name popcorn poppers should be at the top of your wish list.
1. Hollywood Hot Oil Kettle Maker by Funtime
One of the best things about the Hollywood Hot Oil Kettle is its bright internal lamp and illuminated signage. This tabletop maker simply looks awesome in the dark.
This model is a good choice for anyone in search of cool decorations to add to their home theater. It’s
perfect for birthday parties because you can write a custom birthday message by changing the lettering on the signage. Also, the drawer in the front is removable. You can take it out and use it to serve a big bowl of hot, fresh popcorn to your friends and family.
This popcorn machine takes a while to get going and doesn’t produce that much popcorn, so if you’re looking for a commercial popcorn machine you might want to go with something a little larger and more powerful.
On the other hand, the customizable signage is great for attracting customers. You can use the sign to communicate price info or advertise your company’s brand.
What We Enjoy:
- Vintage art deco design. This cooker looks a lot like the ones used by professional movie theatre chains in the 50s.
- Low price. This popper costs a fraction of a price of a real commercial popper, but you wouldn’t know that by looking at it.
- Excellent customer service. The people at Funtime do a good job of taking care of their customers. One Amazon reviewer said that he had trouble getting all the kernels to pop. He rang up customer service and together they found out that something was wrong with the kettle. Days later, a new kettle appeared on his doorstep.
What To Fix:
- Add more safety features. The kettle gets extremely hot. Getting the popcorn out is no problem because you can use the crank. However, you do have to touch the kettle to put more popcorn in. If you’re not careful, you can burn your hand. Why not add a lever that lifts the lid of the kettle up?
KPM508 Vintage Collection Popper by Nostalgia Electrics
From a distance, this unique popcorn popper from Nostalgia Electrics looks like a big vintage popcorn wagon that you might find at a carnival. Once you get closer, you realize that it’s actually small enough to fit on a countertop.
This popcorn popper is super easy to use and also quiet compared to most popcorn poppers. You can get up in the middle of your movie and put in more kernels without having to hit pause.
The windows are made of tempered plastic, not glass– but that’s a good thing. Glass can shatter and break. This popper makes great tasting popcorn, but the case is a little small compared to other tabletop popcorn poppers. Because there are so many little corners and crevices, it’s a little bit hard to clean.
What We Liked:
- Compact size. This little popper serves a whole family, but can fit on any kitchen countertop.
- Old-timey design. The old-school style brings to mind the popcorn wagons of the late 19th century.
- The price. Like the Hollywood Hot Oil Kettle Maker, the KMP508 looks great but is very inexpensive compared to most professional popcorn makers.
What To Work On:
- Add customizable signage. Customizable signage is not only fun, it’s also useful for selling popcorn at events.
- Make it easier to clean. This machine has lots of crevices and crannies that are hard to get to when you clean it. It would be nice if the manufacturer would provide some kind of matching cover to catch old maids and prevent stray bits of popcorn from falling into hard to reach places.
PMW17R Royalty Edition by Carnival King
This 8oz tabletop popper is good choice for anyone thinking of selling popcorn at events. If you’ve got about 36 inches of horizontal space that you’re not using, this popcorn maker can help you reel in some extra income.
The standout feature on this unit is the storage shelf. The shelf allows you to prepare bags of popcorn in advance. That’s a very helpful feature to have if you sell other snack foods.
This popcorn machine is powerful enough to quickly churn out lots of popcorn– but it’s also larger and significantly more expensive than our other recommended popcorn poppers. If you’re looking for the best tabletop popcorn popper for your home movie theatre, you might want to go with one of the other products on our list.
- Lots of shelf space. The shelves allow you to prepare for a rush of hungry customers.
- Lots of power. This popcorn popper features a 1700W heater.
- Safety features. A magnet holds the kettle open, allowing you to refill the kettle without burning yourself.
- Improve the warming lights. The main 250W warming deck does a good job of keeping your popcorn hot, but the 60W warming lights that heat the shelves are just mediocre.
- Make it flashier. This popcorn machine looks great when it’s full of popcorn. But decorative and better signage would improve its “wow” factor.
The Roosevelt Popper by Great Northern
We love the tabletop edition of this popcorn popper just as much as the full-size, portable version. With the Roosevelt Popper, you get a classic design and a slew of useful features. The built-in control switches are especially useful. The switches allow you to turn down the heat when business is slow. You can also amp up the power when you need a lot of popcorn right away.
Like the PMW17R, the Roosevelt Popper is designed with shop owners in mind. It’s sturdier and more powerful than the first two items on our list, but it’s also quite a bit more expensive.
What We Love:
- The wattage controls. You can turn up the heat when the line gets long and turn it down during lulls in the action.
- Accessories are included. This unit comes with a matching scooper and a few other useful utilities.
- Steel construction. This popcorn popper is heavy, but it’s sturdy construction allows it to survive many dings and nicks.
What Could Be Improved:
- Add a few external decorative lights. The internal warmer lamp does a pretty good job of illuminating this popper from within. However, adding a few flashy external lights could help attract even more customers.
These are just some of the best tabletop popcorn poppers available on the market today. If none of these models fit your needs or taste, we’re sure that there’s a better popcorn maker just waiting for you to try out.