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A local farm not too far from us hosts a Harvest Festival each fall. One of the activities at the festival involves having the kids wander into the corn field to pick their own Indian corn right off the stalk.
My kids harvested several ears of Indian corn at last fall’s festival, and after waiting a month or two for the corn to dry, we got to make our very own Indian corn popcorn right in our microwave. The result was so cool!
Plus, it was tasty and healthy (unlike most microwave popcorn sold in grocery stores).
Note: For more corn activities, see my Corn Unit Study page.
To make Indian corn popcorn, we started with an ear of corn that was very dry after sitting in our dark pantry for several weeks. The ear had no husk.
We placed the ear into a brown paper bag.
Then we taped the ends shut to contain the popped kernels in the bag.
We placed the bag into the microwave and microwaved on high for several minutes. Basically, I just listened to the kernels popping, and once the popping slowed down I stopped the microwave and removed the bag.
NOTE: Do NOT microwave for too long or you may create a fire hazard! Once the kernels are no longer popping in quick succession, it is time to remove the ear of corn from the microwave.
We opened the bag very carefully, because the contents inside were hot.
Here is what our ear of Indian corn popcorn looked like. Many of the kernels had popped, but still remained attached to the cob.
Other kernels were loose in the bag, so we tossed them into a bowl to enjoy.
The kids also took turns eating the popped kernels right off the cob.
More corn resources
More corn posts from Gift of Curiosity:
- Books about corn
- Montessori activities to learn about the parts of corn
- How to make corn husk dolls
- Math activities with corn kernels
- Corn fine motor activities
- Sprouting Indian corn
- Simple corn crafts for kids
For more corn activities, see my Corn Unit Study page or my Corn Unit Study board on Pinterest!
Follow Katie @ Gift of Curiosity’s board Corn Unit Study on Pinterest.
What a cool idea (especially since my kids LOVE popcorn). Do you know if this would work with regular corn? Also did you take the husks off before letting the corn dry?
I don’t think it would work with regular, fresh corn. The corn we used was hard and dry before we popped it. And yes, the corn dried with the husks off.
This is awesome – I love it!
Can’t you buy Indian Corn in the store? Isn’t it just decorative corn?? If you do buy it do you need to put it in a dark area still?
I’m sorry I don’t know the answer. I imagine there are stores that sell Indian corn. Whether you need to put it in a dark area or not may depend on how long ago it was harvested and how dry it was. Although our corn felt dry and hard when we harvested it, the recommendation we received from the farm we picked it at was to wait another month before trying to pop it in order to get the best results. But you can always try it and see what happens!