We’ve Finally Discovered the Best Ways to Clean a Disney Popcorn Bucket!

Zero 30th Popcorn Bucket
Credit: Disney

One of the Walt Disney Company’s most ingenious business models has been the creation of the beloved popcorn bucket souvenir and its subsequent cycle of profit.

By creating popcorn buckets, Walt Disney World Resort has ensured that fans will always have something to spend money on in a cyclical fashion.

Mickey skeleton popcorn bucket

Credit: Disney

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It starts when Disney World releases a collectible, limited-edition, themed popcorn bucket. Fans want to add it to their collection, and because it’s a refillable popcorn bucket (and at a lesser price, no less), guests are incentivized to stop at a popcorn cart and grab some of the salty snack at a discount.

And any Disney fan can tell you that once you start buying the popcorn buckets, you just can’t stop!

Popcorn Buckets Are a Fan-Favorite, But We Can’t Deny the Inconvenient Part…

rainbow disney pride popcorn bucket disneyland eats food guide

Credit: Disney

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But as adorable as each infamous themed popcorn bucket is, it can’t be denied that each one creates a unique challenge: keeping it clean. Everyone knows that Disney popcorn is absolutely covered in salt and butter. Not only that, but the little pieces can get stuck in all of the nooks and crannies of the buckets, making it difficult to clean them.

It’s also worth noting that specialty popcorn buckets sometimes include little mechanics, such as light-up fixtures and music boxes. That can make the idea of cleaning them quite daunting. But never fear! Cleaning one of these popcorn buckets isn’t as difficult or as scary as it seems. There are a few different methods for keeping them clean, and we’re here to list them out, making it as easy as possible!

Hand-washing With Dish Soap

Cinderella Premium Popcorn bucket Magic Kingdom Walt Disney World Disney100


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Our first piece of advice: hand-wash each popcorn bucket, and keep them out of the dishwasher.

It might sound too easy, and maybe that’s because it is, but hand-washing the popcorn-containing section of each bucket with some warm water and dish soap is a great way to clean away any butter, oil, salt, or crumbs.

The lighting and music-playing fixtures should still work afterward, especially if you take extra care while washing them.

Wiping the Bucket Down

Disney World Figment popcorn bucket

Credit: Disney

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Don’t feel totally comfortable washing your specialty popcorn bucket? Simply take a wet paper towel or dishrag and wipe down the inside of the bucket until it’s clean.

Afterward, wipe the bucket down with a dry paper towel, and it’ll be as good as new!

Keep Popcorn Out of Your Popcorn Bucket

simba popcorn buckets

Left: Black History Month Simba Popcorn Bucket (Credit: Disney). Right: Animal Kingdom Simba Popcorn Bucket (Credit: @rose_red_disney on Instagram)

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This last method may seem counterintuitive, but just hear us out!

It may sound silly, but it’s actually super common: lots of fans purchase popcorn buckets for the express purpose of collecting or repurposing them, asking for the popcorn in a disposable container instead.

This keeps the popcorn bucket in pristine condition, ensuring you’ll never have to go through the hassle of washing one.

We want to hear from our readers! How many popcorn buckets do you have? Which one is your ultimate favorite? Let Disney Dining know in the comments below!

About Isabella Reimer

Isabella Reimer grew up visiting Walt Disney World and relocated to Central Florida to be even closer to The Most Magical Place on Earth. She earned her Bachelor’s from Florida State University, where she studied Creative Writing and Women’s Studies. Her biggest hobby is bonding with the ikran at Avatar Flight of Passage, and her retirement plan includes becoming the 1,000 Happy Haunt of the Haunted Mansion.