How is Kettle Corn Different from Popcorn?

In recent years, kettle corn has surged in popularity across the globe. It can be found at most movie theaters, fairs, carnivals, and supermarkets. Kettle corn is a type of popcorn, but there are some significant differences between regular popcorn and kettle corn that may surprise you!


One of the most noticeable differences between air-popped and oil-popped is the character of the corn. Popcorn is often considered a salty snack, which is popularly flavored with cheese, or cinnamon. The neutral taste of popcorn is always there, modified slightly by choice of seasoning.

Kettle corn has a dominantly sweet flavor, with just a hint of salt noticeable to the palate. Kettle corn is a sweet treat in general, and you can find it in numerous delicious flavors based on your preferences.

Preparation Process

The preparation process for popcorn  is profoundly different from the method of making kettle corn. The only similarity is that both processes use corn that puffs up and expands when exposed to heat.

Popcorn often comes pre-packaged and can be prepared in pretty much any microwave oven. Although popcorn is healthy, it mostly requires oil as part of the cooking process. The popcorn machines that you see in movie theaters use a combination of steam and oil to create your movie-time snacks.

Kettle corn is always prepared in a cast-iron kettle, but you can also utilize Dutch ovens. To cook using a cast-iron kettle, you must place the sugar, oil, salt, and corn kernels together in the kettle, heating it based on the instructions that you have acquired. This mix must be stirred frequently to avoid burning. This is because sugar burns very quickly, and this must be avoided at all costs.

Nutritional Value

Comparing popcorn and kettle corn to assess their nutritional values is a complicated process. Everything depends on how much sugar, salt, butter, and artificial flavorings were added during the cooking process.

If you use an ‘air popping’ method to cook the corn and use very little salt for flavoring, you can create a very healthy snack.

Popcorn kernels are whole grains, meaning that they are packed with fibers and antioxidants. They also have naturally low levels of sugar, which makes them low in calories. However, if you prepare popcorn with loads of oil and butter, it can contain up to 29 grams of saturated fat or 50% of the recommended daily allowance.

If you’ve never tried any of the delicious varieties here at Best Darn Kettlecorn, you don’t know what you’re missing, so discover the difference for yourself!