Round Popcorn – What It Is & How To Make It

Popcorn kernels pop into two major shapes – round popcorn and butterfly popcorn. The different shapes of the popped corn kernels, the flavors, colors, and textures are factors that make eating popcorn a whole lot of fun.

Round popcorn is the focus of this article. The shape and sturdy texture of this popcorn will get anyone’s attention, even if you’re not eating it for the first time.

Why do some popped popcorn kernels come out rounded? Are they made from a special popcorn kernel? How can you make this chewy and sturdy popcorn? These are some of the questions you’ll be getting answers to in this article.

What is round popcorn?

Round popcorn is also known as mushroom popcorn. The popcorn comes from the mushroom type of popcorn kernels. The popped popcorn kernels come out large, round, sturdy, and chewy.

In addition, the roundness makes a larger surface area for a variety of thick toppings. Mushroom popcorn is commonly used for candied popcorn and kettle corn.

How to make round popcorn


  • Stove
  • A deep pan
  • 3-4 tablespoons of high smoking point oil like extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, peanut oil, hazelnut oil, sunflower oil, grapeseed oil, vegetable oil, sesame oil, palm oil, or hemp seed oil
  • 1/3 cup of mushroom popcorn kernels


  • Turn on the stove and put it on a high setting
  • Place the pot on the stovetop and add the oil
  • Then, allow the oil to heat up and evaporate moisture. You’ll know this is happening when you see steam leaving the oil
  • Afterward, add a few kernels to the oil and allow them to pop
  • Thereafter, pour in the whole mushroom popcorn kernels and wait for them to begin to pop
  • When you see a few more kernels pop, cover the pot and gently shake the pot. Agitating the popcorn helps the kernels to pop into the round popcorn, and it also prevents them from burning
  • When the popping sound reduces or is less rapid, take the pot off the heat
  • Allow the popcorn to cool before you serve

Can you make mushroom popcorn in a microwave?

The heat in the microwave is not enough to pop mushroom popcorn kernels into roundness and sturdiness.

If you want perfectly rounded mushroom popcorn, pop the kernels in a pot of hot oil on a stovetop.

Although mushroom popcorn kernels have the genetics to make them pop into round popcorns, they need high heat and agitation to convert the water in the kernels into steam.

The steam explosion works together with the genetic makeup of the kernels, so they pop into round, sturdy popcorns.

What is the difference between round popcorn and butterfly popcorn?

Round or mushroom popcorns and butterfly popcorns come from two different corn kernels. These are the noteworthy differences:

  • Butterfly popcorn is a more common popcorn. It is mostly seen and sold in movie theatres, arenas, carnivals, and stadiums. Mushroom popcorns are not common for commercial purposes
  • Round popcorns are dense, sturdy, and larger, while butterfly popcorns are very light, fragile, fluffy, and smaller
  • Also, butterfly popcorns are crunchier than the round ones
  • The sturdiness and round shape of mushroom popcorns make them ideal for thick, gooey gourmet dressings, which would naturally make butterfly popcorns crumble. Mushroom popcorn is usually served with toppings like glazes, cheese, chocolate, and caramel
  • Additionally, round popcorn is best for gourmet dressings because it doesn’t get stale or lose its crunch as quickly as butterfly popcorn does


Is butterfly popcorn better than round popcorn?

No popcorn is better than the other. Round popcorn and butterfly popcorn are two different shapes of popped popcorn kernels.

Each comes out as delicious as you make it to be. Their unique differences only make them suit individual preferences and some recipes.

Can you use a normal popcorn maker to make round popcorn?

No, you can’t. Round popcorn kernels or mushroom popcorn kernels are gotten from a special popcorn variety called mushroom popcorn. Regular popcorn is what pops into butterfly popcorn.

Is round popcorn genetically modified popcorn?

No, it is not. None of the popcorn varieties of maize grown in the U.S. is genetically modified.


Round popcorn, which comes from the mushroom type of corn kernels, is quite different from the other popcorn kernels. It has a good edge over butterfly popcorn kernels.

Mushroom popcorn is best for recipes that need thick toppings on the popcorn. Moreover, their sturdiness makes them easy to stir and keeps them from breaking apart. However, mushroom popcorn is not common in movie theatres.

Follow the recipe in the article and indulge yourself in making round popcorn for Sunday family snacks.

Thanks for reading.

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