Popcorn is one of the most popular snacks in the world. It is hard to imagine watching movies without having a popcorn tub regardless of whether the movie is watched at a movie theatre or home. There are several reasons behind the immense success of popcorn as a snack, they’re delicious and have many health benefits. If you are too fond of popcorn and often make popcorn in the best popcorn popper, then you should check out consumer reports best popcorn kernels to determine the best popcorn that suits your taste.

Reviewing The Best Popcorn Kernels

1. Orville Redenbacher's Original Gourmet White Popcorn Kernels

consumer reports best popcorn kernels

Get this pack of 30 oz., unpopped popcorn kernels, which are flavored with butter popcorn coil to let you enjoy creamy and crunchy popcorns prepared in the stovetop popcorn popper or hot air popper. The popcorn kernels are made with 100% whole grain, which allows you to make a great, gourmet popcorn snack quickly. These are completely natural and non-GMO popcorn kernels, which offer a delicious treat for your movie time or after-school snack.

2. 4099 Great Northern Popcorn Premium, Popcorn Portion Packs

consumer reports best popcorn kernels

These popcorn kernels are stored in high-quality pouches, which keep them safe and fresh for a long duration. The popcorn kernels are pre-measured by the company itself, so you don’t have to measure them, just open the pouch, pour the popcorn kernels and enjoy delicious popcorn in no time.

There won’t be any loose ingredients that can spill and no use of measuring cups to clean, thus creating a mess-free experience. Every batch consists of the same quality of popcorn, so you will get creamy and crunchy popcorn with every batch. Each serving would cost the same, so it won’t matter who makes the corn. These popcorn kernels are gluten-free and Diacetyl-free, so anybody can consume the popcorn without any issue.

3. Amish Country Baby White Popcorn Kernels

consumer reports best popcorn kernels

Check out these popcorn kernels, which are made in the heart of Amish country. You can keep these popcorn kernels for a long duration, provided you use a resealable plastic or glass container. Keep the container in a cool and dry place to prolong the life of the popcorn kernels.

The company has made sure that popcorn kernels are consumed by everybody, so they have made non-GMO and gluten-free. Also, the popcorn is low on calories, so you can enjoy it anytime, anywhere in a guilt-free manner. You also don’t have to bother about the nut allergies with Amish Country Popcorn products because there won’t be any.

4. JOLLY TIME Gourmet Unpopped Popcorn Kernels

consumer reports best popcorn kernels

Jolly Time brings to you 12 polybags of yellow popcorn kernels, where each bag containing around 27 servings. Each serving equals 5 cups of popped popcorn, which makes it one of the healthiest snacks that can be prepared quickly. You just need to make this popcorn in the hot air popper machine, use a stove with coconut oil, or pop the popcorn into a microwave oven to make delicious popcorn.

You don’t have to add salt, butter, or seasoning to these kernels, as they already have all these things. You can easily add these kernels to any recipe like kettle corn or caramel. The company has made non-GMO and gluten-free kernels, which make them safe for the consumption of anybody. Each cup of popped popcorn has around 20 calories and 4 grams of protein. These popcorn kernels are a great alternative to microwave popcorn, so make sure you make them a part of your diet especially when you look for an instant snack.

5. Nostalgia KPP424 Best Tasting Premium 4-Ounce Popcorn

consumer reports best popcorn kernels

The best thing about these popcorn kernels is the incredible taste and smell that is exactly like the popcorn you buy at movie theaters, baseball games, carnivals, and so on. Each case has 2 dozen packets, and each case has a balanced proportion of popcorn, oil, and seasoning salt that are properly sealed for freshness. The case is pre-measured as well, so you don’t have to measure it with a cup, hence creating less mess to clean up.

Each packet weighs 4 oz., which pops up to 16 cups of hot and buttery popcorn per batch. Each batch contains 100% natural, soft shell popcorn kernels with butter-flavored coconut oil and seasoning salt. Also, the popcorn kernels are free from GMOs, gluten, diacetyl, saturated fat, trans fat, or cholesterol.

Different Types Of Popcorn Kernels

As you browse through the wide selection of popcorn kernels, you may notice that there are different types of popcorn kernels. Different varieties are divided according to colors, shapes, and sizes.

I have listed and differentiated the four most common types of popcorn kernels.

White Popcorn

As the name suggests, white popcorn is colored bright white. This type of popcorn has a neutral flavor, which tastes purely like popcorn.  It has a neutral and pure popcorn flavor, which makes it excellent for adding seasonings and flavorings.

Yellow Popcorn

Yellow popcorn has a yellow tint, which offers a buttery appearance to it. Yellow popcorn tastes much better than white popcorn, where some people have claimed its tastes nutty.

Butterfly Popcorn

Butterfly popcorn, also sometimes called "snowflake popcorn", is a kind of popcorn based on its physical feature, and shape. Butterfly popcorn has an irregular shape and you will also see wings protruding from the popcorn kernel. These wings help retain seasonings and flavors better. Butterfly popcorn is generally lighter and tender. It is most often used in carnivals and cinemas. It is best when eaten fresh, for optimal crunch!

Mushroom Popcorn

Mushroom popcorn is another form-based type, which has a round shape that resembles the top of a mushroom. It is also denser and sturdier than butterfly popcorn. Because it is less brittle and because of its compact structure, it is ideal for coatings of toppings and glazes, without crumbling easily. It can withstand the caramel-coating process and is less prone to crushing.

Choosing the Best Popcorn Kernels

Before buying popcorn kernels, some considerations should be taken into account. You should look into the size, flavor, and characteristics of the popcorn, among others. You should also consider your preference and other people involved.

Do you like seasoned popcorn or do you prefer caramel-coated popcorn? Do you like smaller popcorn or do you prefer bigger ones? These are just a few considerations to keep in mind. Below is a buying guide to help you choose the best popcorn kernels for you.

1. Size

Core size refers to the size of the core. These are measurements in grains per gram. This means that the greater the number of grains per gram, the smaller the grain size.

This kernel size does not necessarily refer to the size of the popcorn. It is the expansion rate that can give you an idea of the size of the popcorn when cooked.

2. Expansion rate

The expansion ratio is the measure of the number of popcorns produced from several kernels. For example, a cup of popcorn with an expansion ratio of 35 will produce 35 cups of popcorn.

A good quality popcorn kernel has an expansion rate of around 35 to 40, and some can even amazingly exceed that number.

3. Shell

All popcorn has shells. These are the outer layers of popcorn, which can sometimes get stuck on your teeth. Some popcorns may have more shells than others.

If you're the type that isn't comfortable with picking hulls off the roof of your mouth or on your teeth, popcorn that has fewer hulls is the best option for you. In general, smaller grains have thinner and fewer shells.

4. Form

Your preference will dictate which type or shape of popcorn works best for you. If you prefer lighter, fluffier popcorn, or seasoned popcorn, then butterfly popcorn would be ideal for you.

If you like denser, more compact popcorn, or caramel or chocolate glazed popcorn, then mushroom popcorn would be a great option.

5. Moisture content

Moisture content affects burst rate and expansion rate. The moisture content of popcorn kernels can limit full popping potential, which can produce unpopped kernels.

On the other hand, higher moisture content can limit the expansion rate of the popcorn kernel and can also make the popcorn chewy. For maximum popping efficiency and optimum crunch, choose a good popcorn kernel that has a moisture content of around 13-14.5%.

6. Cooking method

There are a variety of cooking methods for popcorn kernels. Popcorn can be made using a stove, microwave, or special popcorn maker. Choose the popcorn kernel that can be made with the cooking method available to you.

Summing Up

Now that you have figured out different brands and their popcorn kernels from the consumer reports best popcorn kernels, you can decide which type of popcorn kernels is the best for tastebuds. Get a bulk bag and enjoy the creamy and nutty flavor of the popcorn in the comfort of your home for several months.