The 10 Best, Non-Niche Popcorn Flavors, Ranked
Photo: Adrian Cogua / Unsplash

The 10 Best, Non-Niche Popcorn Flavors, Ranked

We pop 'em like Orville Redenbacher!

10. Plain

Might as well have a rice cake that gets stuck in your teeth, big dog.

9. Kettle Corn

Kettle corn is a gateway to other non-butter popcorn flavors—it’s got a sweet and savory two-piece that’s simply untouchable. However, once you, ahem, expand your palette, the allure of sweet, sweet popcorn drops to the bottom of the bucket.

8. Ranch

Ranch on popcorn might sound gluttonous. And, well, that’s because it most definitely is. My defense: If it works on potato chips and hot wings, why not popped corn?

7. Caramel

If kettle corn is Tha Carter, caramel corn is Tha Carter III—bigger impact, a whole new texture, and the stickiness of a “Lollipop,” all while retaining its undeniable foundation.

6. With Milk Duds

It’s always the weird shit that turns out to actually be dope. In case you don’t already know, let me learn you something: Dump a box of Milk Duds inside a bucket of popcorn, swirl it around, and go to town. The result is a great flavor profile of chocolate, creaminess, saltiness, butter, and caramel, in varying bursts. You’re welcome.

5. Garlic Parmesan

Cheddar is the go-to cheesy option for popcorn, but don’t sleep on heated kernels cut with garlic and parmesan. Bada-bing, bada-boom!

4. Cheesy Jalapeno

If there’s one duo that tops sweet and savory, it’s savory and spicy. Cheesy jalapeno gets that done in a delicious manner, without physically assaulting your tastebuds. (Seriously, this is barely hot, a notch above black pepper.)

3. White Cheddar

An icon. There’s something about that manufactured, caked-on, cheesy flavor that really works. If you don’t like this junk food flavor, I’m not sure popcorn is for you.

2. With Hot Sauce

But it’s gotta be a Mexican hot sauce. None of that fruity stuff. Just herbs, chilis, vinegar. Dash that liquid picante into your popcorn—just make sure you have a paper towel roll handy. It’s worth the mess.

1. Butter

If you were anticipating an “I can’t believe it’s not butter” gag, I’m sorry to disappoint. Anyways, shut your trap, I’m trying to watch a movie here!

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