It's all personal oppinion, he asked about the easiest and the cheapest. That is popcorn.
In 15 years of painting and taping I can honestly say 90+% of all the lids I textured were "popcorn". Orange peal 5%, nockdown 3%, and smooth being the remaining %. My suggestion is to always match what is in the rest of the house. Unless it can be touched, then Orange peal and Knockdown are better choices, but both of those options require coats (plural) of paint after texture, that means more cost. Many people dont want to deal with the extra costs invoved.
For as many very vocal people who hate it, there are just as many as like it, or just dont care.
...."I am haunted by waters "....