Popcorn vs Chips

By | December 13, 2019

Popcorn and chips are two of the most popular snacks in the world. They are great if you want to eat something while watching a movie. They are also suitable snacks when gathering with your friends. However, you are probably wondering whether popcorn vs chips is actually healthier. Popcorn is generally better, but only the specific types.

Continue reading below to find out more about:
– The total calories in popcorn and chips,
– The nutritional values contained in popcorn and chips,
– The effects on satiety provided by popcorn vs chips, and
– Which snack that is generally healthier.


Before we mention the numbers, you should know that there are different kinds of popcorn. The ones that are popped in oil or butter usually have high calories. They get significant additional calories from the oil or butter. The total calories are almost similar to chips. See also: Popcorn White vs Yellow.

A cup of oil-popped popcorn contains about 500 calories. That is very high. Meanwhile, 100 grams of potato chips can give you approximately 547 calories. So, excessive consumption of oil-popped popcorn or potato chips can easily lead to weight gain and obesity.

If you don’t want to gain weight, air-popped popcorn makes a much better choice. Air-popped popcorn only has about 128 calories per serving, according to Livestrong.That is a significantly lower amount. This is why air-popped popcorn is generally considered healthier.

Fat and Protein

Popcorn generally has lower fat and higher protein, which is good. Fat acquired from oil or butter contains cholesterol, so it is really bad for people with high cholesterol. Cholesterol may cause cardiovascular diseases. So, once again, make sure that you choose air-popped popcorn.

On the other hand, chips generally have much higher fat and lower protein. Chips are almost always cooked by frying. Traditional frying in oil will add significant levels of cholesterol into the food. So, chips are not good for people with high cholesterol.


Popcorn is a better source of dietary fiber than chips. Popcorn can give you 9% – 11% of the recommended daily value for dietary fiber. On the other hand, chips can only provide 5% – 6% of the recommended daily value for dietary fiber. The body needs dietary fiber to control your blood sugar and cholesterol levels. Dietary fiber can also help to prevent heart disease and various digestive problems, such as bloating and constipation.

The higher fiber content is one reason why popcorn tends to feel more filling. Popcorn can make you feel satiated more quickly. This is another reason why popcorn is better for avoiding weight gain. On the other hand, chips aren’t really filling, so you will be tempted to eat more until you feel satiated.

Furthermore, it is recommended that you eat whole grains for half of your daily grain serving. Popcorn can help you fulfill that goal, as popcorn is considered as whole grains. In addition, popcorn also provides polyphenols, which are antioxidants that can prevent health problems caused by free radicals. On the other hand, chips don’t have such benefits.

Popcorn vs Chips

- Air-popped popcorn has much lower calories- Significantly higher calories
- Lower fat and higher protein- Higher fat and lower protein
- Higher dietary fiber- Lower dietary fiber
- Much more filling, can make you feel satiated more quickly- Significantly less filling, may tempt you to eat more
- Can help to provide whole grains into your diet- Chips are not whole grains


In general, air-popped popcorn is much more recommended than oil-popped popcorn and chips. Air-popped popcorn contains significantly lower calories, so it is unlikely to cause weight gain or obesity. It also has lower cholesterol, higher protein, and higher dietary fiber. It will make you feel full and satiated more quickly than chips.

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