5 Steps for Setting Up Your Own Popcorn Bar


Throwing parties and gatherings is super exciting, but with the preparation usually comes a lot of unnecessary stress and angst. A popcorn bar is an easy way to host an event without the pressure to provide food for a lot of guests and very minimal setup. 

Here are 5 steps to making your next planned event a painless one.

Step 1: Gather your materials 

First thing’s first, nail down the number of guests you’ll be serving. Once you have an idea of your head count, you’ll need to purchase popcorn boxes. There’s a ton of different options on Amazon! Depending on the color scheme of your event, you can choose traditional red and white stripes, solid colors, or even polka dots and zig-zags. If you’re up to it, you can add your own sticker to customize your bar. This could be something that says “It’s movie night!” or “Thanks for poppin’ in!” and even adding a fun birthday message! In this case, we added The Sunshine House logo to our boxes!

Step 2: Pick a popcorn 

There are many types of popcorn brands out there. Some have funky seasonings while others are plain and simple. Some are pre-popped and others need a little heat prep! Your choice of popcorn depends on the type and ease you would like for your party. We chose to go with Quinn's Snacks ready-to-serve popcorn. Quinn’s takes an all-natural approach with their farm-to-bag popcorn so it’s super fresh!

Step 3: Choose your toppings 

Toppings are an important reason for getting an accurate guest count. You’ll need to know how many toppings you should purchase. No, we aren’t talking about just salt and butter! Some topping ideas include M&M’s, mini marshmallows, banana chips, dried apples, sprinkles and even raisins! If you want to take a healthier approach, you can pick dried fruits, cereals, and even choose a popcorn that has no seasoning added. If you’re looking for more of a care-free snack, it’s always fun to choose popular candies, sprinkles and even chocolate chips!

Step 4: Separation is best 

Putting your toppings in various containers and setting up labels doesn’t just add appeal, it makes it seamless for guests with allergies. While it’s simple and sweet to have ready-to-grab popcorn boxes topped with all kinds of goodies, it’s much easier for guests with allergies to choose the toppings that best suit their needs and avoid cross-contamination of your garnishes! Hence another reason a popcorn bar is a great go-to: popcorn is always gluten-free.

Step 5: Add a favorite film 

Popcorn and movies are the perfect match! You can show a movie on your television or set up an indoor/outdoor streaming station using an inexpensive projector for a unique experience! Movies can be projected on a blank wall in your house, or you can simply hang up a white sheet outside and project the movie onto it!


However you choose to set-up your popcorn bar, it’s always a crowd pleaser! It’s fun, cost-effective, and stress-free. Check out our Popcorn Bar Ideas Pinterest board for more ideas and inspiration!


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