What Makes Popcorn Pop
Whether at the movies, the big game or at home on your couch, popcorn has been a Canadian snack time staple for decades. But have you ever wondered what it is that makes popcorn pop?
People have been fascinated by popcorn for centuries. Some originally believed that a spirit lived inside each kernel of popcorn. When heated, the spirit would grow angry, and burst out of it's home in a disgruntled puff of steam. While not quite as charming a tale, there is a more scientific explanation for this bursting question.
Inside each kernel of popcorn, there's a tiny drop of water surrounded by a hard outer surface. As the popcorn is heated, the trapped water expands into steam, which builds pressure inside the kernel. When the hull can no longer contain the pressure, POP! The hull bursts open and a fluffy new piece of popcorn is born.
But did you know that the signature popping sound doesn't come from the cracking of the hull? Instead, that sound is actually a result of the vapor release after the kernel has cracked.