The 10 Best Popcorn Kernels 2023 [Recommended]
You may not have gotten the memo yet – but popcorn are kind of a big deal! Besides being delicious and easy to make, they are also quite good for your health.
Recent studies have shown that a daily biting of these snacks can provide you with a generous supply of antioxidants. In fact, a day’s worth of popcorn has got more antioxidants than a day’s worth of veggies and fruits. Unbelievable, right?
But there is something you need to note here. Not all popcorn is terrific for you. The ideal popcorn is one that’s pure, plain, and fresh. So, who makes the best popcorn kernels in town? In the following few lines, we’ll talk about 10 well-made kernels that we believe are worthy of your attention.
A few quick points to note about the best kernels of corn.
- It should be freshly packed & taste fresh
- It should be well-packed preferably in water-tight bags
- Pre-measured supplies e.g. salt and oil are a big plus
Unfortunately, we live in times when everyone wants to have you believe that what they offer is the absolute best. That’s, however, not always the case and that’s why we have lined up the following 10 reviews for you.
Best Popcorn Kernels Comparison:
Psst! The following list is quite long. So, why not save a few minutes by consulting the following shortened list?
1. Great Northern Popcorn (GNP) 4100 4 Ounce Premium Popcorn
Popcorn lovers normally look out for healthy popcorn that pops well, that is easy to prepare and what’s more, it should taste heavenly like movie theater popcorn.
To ensure that they give their customers only the best popcorn the folks at Great Northern stick to certain guidelines.
First, their popcorn is stored in specially designed storage bins immediately after harvesting. Then the popcorn is processed and packed in batches. After that, each batch is tested for quality before being dispatched for sale.
Here are the key highlights of the Great Northern Popcorn (GNP) 4100.
GNP has a great authentic flavor just like movie theater popcorn.
A package includes the popcorn kernels, popcorn seasoning, and the popping oil. So, even if this is your first time making these snacks, you’ll have a pretty easy time doing so. The seasonings and oil have already been selected and measured for you.
All you need to do is simply pop them – which is something you can do in just a few minutes.
Just as importantly, the GNP has zero transfats and no cholesterol and, therefore, can suit anyone who is health conscious. In addition, it is gluten free for those who are trying to keep gluten from their diet.
That is not all, the popcorn is Diacetyl Free and, therefore, there is no risk of getting lung disease when eating them.
Lastly, there are various sizes available and, therefore, you get to choose a size that will suit your needs. Each order comes as a pack of 24 pieces.
- The popcorn is great tasting
- It is pre-measured
- It has no cholesterol or transfats
- It is a pack of 24 pieces and therefore you wont have to keep ordering packs
- Gluten free
- If popped in the popper and left for too long, it becomes dry and not great tasting
- The paper packaging is not so solid
2. Snappy Popcorn, Yellow, 4 Pound, Pack of 6
Snappy Popcornis one of the best popcorns in the market. The Snappy Popcorn companyhas been in the business of popcorn making since 1940. The popcorn is grown in Iowa.
It is whole grain popcorn, with high fiber, low fats and it is non-GMO popcorn and therefore it is healthy.
The size of each Snappy Popcornpopcorn is small, and this makes it different from theatre popcorn. In this regard, if you are looking for popcorn for adding caramel layer or other toppings, this might not do well.
The good thing with this popcorn, though, is that it is great tasting. When popped rightly, you will hardly get any unpopped kernel.
Additionally, you get microwave safe popcorn. Microwave popping is preferred in making popcorn because it is fast and healthy too.
The order comes in a pack of six for your convenience.
However, in comparison to other brands in the market, this brand doesn’t come with seasonings or oil, you, therefore, have to measure the oil and salt for cooking it.
- Convenient amounts, if you need more, you simply cook more packs
- It is a product of Snappy Popcorn who have been in popcorn selling since 1940
- It tastes great
- It is microwave safe
- It is healthy, GMO free
- You get a pack of six
- It comes in a solid container pack
- No premeasured ingredients provided
- Small corn kernels
3. Bob’s-Red Mill Popcorn Whole White, 27 Oz, 4 Pack
The Bob’s-Red Mill Popcorn is a product of Bob’s Red Mill which was founded in 1978 by Bob Moore. To ensure that only the best popcorn is packed, the producers select the corns from the best of harvested corns. The Bob’s-Red Mill Popcorn is organicWhite whole grains which is an excellent source of dietary fiber with low calories.
They are non-GMO. The popcorns are 100% natural with no added ingredients in them like salt, preservatives or oil and they are therefore vegetarian or vegan safe. The popcorn is healthy containing no transfat or saturated fat.
Additionally, it is gluten-free. When you order, you will receive four packs.
The downside of this popcorn pack is that because oil is not supplied, you have to measure oil and seasonings yourself.
For preparation it is entirely up to, they are microwave safe or they can also be prepared on a stove or air popper.
- It is manufactured by a company with a reputation of producing wholesome foods since 1978
- The small quantity pack is convenient, you can prepare more packs if you need more popcorns
- They are a rich source of dietary fiber
- They are 100% whole grain
- The popcorns are gluten free
- They are organic and non-GMO
- The popcorns do not contain transfat or saturated fats
- They are microwave safe
- Popping ingredients not supplied and that is seasoning and oil.
- The packaging is not solid
Also Read: 10 Best Canned Chili – Our Unbiased Insights & Guide
4. Orville Redenbacher’s-Gourmet Yellow Popcorns Kernels, 5 lb, 12 oz
Orville Redenbacher’s-Gourmet Yellow Popcornsare grown using the highest standards possible. The popcorns are non-GMO and are grown without the use of pesticides. They are also gluten-free and as such, they are ideal for anyone allergic to gluten.
They are 100% whole grain yellow kernels. Most importantly, they are great tasting with a tender inside and crispy outside.
The popcorns can be prepared in different ways to achieve great results including popping in a popcorn machine, microwave popping, air popper or cooking them on a stovetop.
The quantity in each jar is quite large. Actually, all of them are supposed to be prepared and eaten at once. This can be a bit challenging unless you have a big family or you are hosting a party.
If your family size is small, the large quantities can only be great if you make popcorns regularly, because if they are stored for too long after opening they will harden.
The jar packaging is better than paper packagings making it is easier to pour out the popcorns when cooking. In addition, the jar makes storing any left over unpopped popcorns easy.
- They are 100 percent natural yellow kernels
- The packaging is damage free and easy to store
- Varied ways of cooking yet great results achieved
- The popcorns are grown pesticide free
- They are non-GMO
- They are gluten free
- The big quantities suits parties or someone with a big family
- Pre-measured preparation ingredients are not provided
5. Franklin’s Gourmet Popcorn-Movie Theater Organic Popping Corn
Making of popcorn at home only makes sense when the process is made easy and fast. The Franklin’s Gourmet Popcorn-Movie Theaterorder includes popcorn, seasonings and 100% coconut oil for your convenience.
You can be rest assured, you can prepare the popcorn within no time. The popcorn is organic and non-GMO. Just as importantly, the included oil is 100% pure coconut oil. What’s more, the seasonings make the popcorn taste great.
The Franklin’s Gourmet Popcorn-Movie Theater popcorn is premeasured and each pack comes with the required amounts of seasonings and cooking oil. It is, therefore, a no-brainer cooking, you don’t measure the popcorn, seasonings or cooking oil.
Furthermore, there are 24 packs in one order. Each pack is small enough to prepare everything at once, and if you require more popcorn, you simply add more packs.
However, although you can use a variety of ways to prepare the popcorn but it doesn’t come with the convenience of microwave popping.
- It includes cooking oil and seasonings
- The seasonings make it taste like movie theater popcorn
- It is a healthy wholesome snack, non-GMO, 100% coconut oil
- Coconut oil has many health benefits
- Ideal for small quantity requirements or large quantity requirements
- Easy to cook thanks to its pre-measured supplies
- It should not be prepared in a microwave
- Unlike a jar, the packaging is not sturdy
6. Amish Country Popcorn-BabyWhite Small Tender Popcorn
Popcorns are great for creating family memories. The Amish Country Popcorn-BabyWhiteis grown, processed and packaged in the USA. The manufacturer has a long outstanding history. In 1965, Brian, the vision founder when he was only 6 years old, with the help of his father started growing popcorn.
The popcorn is grown in the cornfields of Berne, Indiana. It is BabyWhite popcorn which is usually small, tender and great tasting. It is all natural with no additives or preservatives. Consequently, it is a healthy snack.
Because it has no other additives it gives you the flexibility to prepare it the way you want whether stovetop, air popper or microwave. What’s more an ebook with fifteen popcorn recipes is part of the order.
The good thing is that there are various packs to choose from, small and big.
Besides, it has no nuts, dairy, lactose and it is non-GMO. It is, therefore, suitable for individuals with allergies, for vegans and vegetarians.
On the flipside, the package does not include seasoning or cooking oil, they have to be purchased separately, then measured.
- The firm has been farming popcorn since 1965
- There are small and big packs to suit different needs
- It is full of flavor
- Preservative free
- It is non-GMO, gluten free
- Popcorn recipe ebook with 15 recipes provided
- It is great for individuals with allergies, for vegans and vegetarians
- Supplies can be limited sometimes
- The packaging is not as sturdy as a jar packagingor resealable
- Premeasured supplies not provided
7.Arrowhead Mills-Organic White Popcorn, 24 oz. Pack of 6 Bag
The Arrowhead Mills-Organic White Popcorn is natural whole grain popcorn which is a good source of fiber and it is low in fat. It has a great taste and because the popcorn is in a ball shape, chocolate or caramel can be added to it.
The farming of this brand of popcorn uses selected high quality corn kernels that are organic. The farming is free from chemicals that destroy the environment and therefore planet-friendly.
Besides that, the kernels are certified by Kosher, Non-GMO Project Verified and USDA-Certified Organic. In addition to that, they are gluten free.
The 6 packs are convenient and each pack is small enough to finish one pack at a go. Please note that if there are leftover uncooked popcorns, they have to be stored in another container to prevent them from going stale.
- It is a great snack with low fat and a good source of fiber
- It is organic kernel and therefore chemical free and planet-friendly
- Great tasting
- Ideal for making into popcorn balls
- Certified Kosher
- The popcorn does not contain the major eight allergens
- 6 packs for the convenience of having enough stock
- Non-GMO Project Verified
- USDA-Certified Organic
- Its packaging isn’t air-tight
8. Paragon-Manufactured FunYellow PopCorn Bulk Bag (12.5-Pounds)1022
The Paragon-Manufactured Fun Yellow PopCorn is ideal for home use or commercial use. The yellow butterfly popcorn is of premium quality. The popcorn is the unique yellow Iowa popcorn. It comes with an irregular shape, it is larger than the regular popcorns that are medium sized and what’s more it has fragile and light wings.
The popcorn has a 14% moisture content. Additionally, it has an expansion ratio of 43, as such, you need much fewer popcorns to make a good amount of popcorn. It is a great popcorn to sell or distribute during events like carnivals, movie theaters, or concession stands. When popped it is golden with a crispy outside and a tender fluffy inside.
You can pop it in your own style using a microwave, air popper or stovetop. The other good thing, there are different quantity sizes to choose from to suit different needs.
However, the packaging is flimsy and especially if some popcorn has to be left over. Another disadvantage, it is not premeasured popcorn and also popping ingredients namely oil and seasonings are not provided.
- The popcorn has a generous size
- It is ideal for events
- It tastes great and it is nice and fluffy when popped
- t is grown in Iowa and packed in the USA
- List Element
- Flimsy packaging, if some is left over, you need a container for storing them
- It is not premeasured popcorn
- Ingredients are not supplied with an order
9. Hoosier Hill Farm-Original White-Popcorn Lovers 4 Pound Jar
The Hoosier Hill Farm-Original White-Popcorn is worth craving for. It is Indiana grown non-GMO popcorn. Indeed, popped white popcorn has more cyanidin & anthocyanin than yellow popcorn. Cyanidin & anthocyanin have many health benefits including acting as anti-oxidants, anti-cancer, anti-viral and anti-inflammatory. In addition, the popcorn is full of fiber.
It is, therefore, a healthy snack to eat that is crunchy and full of flavor.
The good thing is that it can be cooked in a variety of ways namely stove top, hot air popcorn popper among others.
It comes in many packages with different quantities to suit commercial and home users. More so, the popcorn has a long shelf life of up to 24 months.
Another good thing, the jar packaging is ideal for keeping any left over popcorns, although the manufacturer recommends storing leftover uncooked popcorns in the freezer.
On the flipside, the popcorn is not premeasured, and premeasured cooking ingredients namely cooking oil and seasonings are not provided.
- It is healthy popcorn which has fiber and Cyanidin & anthocyanin
- It is grown in Indiana on Hoosier Hill Farm
- Sturdy jar packaging
- Long shelf life
- Different quantities available for sale
- It is ideal for commercial and home use
- Ingredients for popping are not provided
10. Orville Redenbacher’s-Original Gourmet Yellow-Popcorn Kernels, 30 Ounce
Orville Redenbacher’s-Original Gourmet Yellow-Popcorn is heavenly tasting popcorn and an ideal gourmet popcorn snack for home, carrying to school or work. They are a product of Orville Redenbacher’s which has been in the business of popcorn for over 70 decades. It is fresh popcorn that is 100% whole grain with no additives. It pops well and grown by a special group of farmers selected by the manufacturer since 1952. The popcorns are non-GMO and gluten free and ideal for anyone with a gluten allergy.
There are various package quantities on sale to suit the different needs of consumers.
The popcorns come out great whether prepared in microwave or stove top or other methods. They pop out light fluffy and large popcorns
They come packaged in a nice jar. It makes preparing them easy and also storing left over uncooked popcorns easy.
However, popcorn preparation ingredients are not provided. Premeasured portion packs make the process of popcorn preparation easy.
- The popcorns are manufactured by a reputable firm
- They pop well
- They are packaged in a nice jar
- They are full of flavor
- It is grown by selected farmers
- They are healthy snacks, non-GMO
- Different package quantities on sale
- This product is overpriced on Amazon (cheaper on Walmart)
The Buying Guide – How To Buy Popcorn Kernels
If you want to pop salty and buttery popcorn, you’ve got to start by getting the right kernels for the job. You also need to ensure that the right seasoning is provided, otherwise, your success could be limited. The following guide is meant to guide you through each step of the way.
Made in Iowa
Although Iowa isn’t the only place in the world where good popcorn comes from, the Midwestern state is recognized as among the best places to get kernels from. In fact, the state is known to be home to almost all the leading popcorn manufacturers these days.
We’re talking about brands like Jolly Time, Iowa Popcorn Company, Snappy Popcorn, Great American Popcorn Company, Brandmeyer Popcorn Company, and even the Tiny But Mighty Popcorn company.
So, if you choose kernels that are made in Iowa, chances are that you’ll find among the best ones available in the USA currently.
The Types of Kernel
Even though all kernels may seem similar at first glance, they tend to differ in terms of structure, uses, and even benefits. So, it’s important to be familiar with the different types available so you can choose ones that best fit your needs.
Butterfly: These are known for their non-uniform, irregular shapes. They are commonly found in movie theaters, carnivals, and stadiums.
Mushroom: The kernels are known to be compact. They are commonly used for gourmet popping roles, especially where chocolate, cheese, and caramel coatings are applied.
It’s important that you settle for fresh popcorn that’s well packaged. Packaging that leads to a loss of moisture can badly affect the quality of the kernels.
It’s important to pay attention to the expansion rate of the kernels. For instance, if you come across popcorn with an expansion rate of 38, it means if you prepare a cup of it, you’d get 38 cups. In general, popcorn kernels with an expansion rate of 35 to 40 is generally considered ideal.
Which One Is The Best?
In our view, the Snappy Popcorn from Iowa is probably the best there is in the country right now. It’s grown and packaged in an uncompromising farm plus it’s made of whole grain. So, not only does it pop nicely but it’s also good for your health.
Whether you want theater popcorn or something better, we hope that the tips and tidbits provided above will come in handy in your decision-making. And of course, we hope that you’ll be able to bring home some of the tenderest popcorn you can ever find. All the best.