Baby Poop Smells Like Popcorn: What it Means & What to Do

Baby Poop Smells Like Popcorn

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So it is time to wipe your baby and change her diaper, but then the smell of popcorn hits your nose immediately after you unclip the diaper. At first, you might feel like you are losing your mind as this can be very strange and perplexing at the same time, especially when you are experiencing this smell for the first time.

It is typical for baby stool to have a pungent odor whether they are breastfed or bottle-fed, the odor is even worse when they are introduced to solid foods due to the formation of bacteria in their digestive system.

Yes, it is normal for babies, especially newborns and breastfed babies, to have varieties and different kinds of poop odor. This is usually due to food sensitivity or allergies to the mother’s milk.

However, it is quite out of the ordinary for your baby’s poop to turn out to be smelling more like popcorn rather than the usual foul smell you are used to. The question that first comes to mind is if this is normal.

Now let’s delve deeper into this quizzing matter, we will uncover what it means when your baby’s poop smells like popcorn and the best thing to do when faced with this situation. Hang on.

Is It Normal For Babies poop To Smell Like Popcorn?

Yes, it is normal for a baby’s poop to smell like popcorn or any other sweet-smelling item. This is mostly common among breastfed or formula-fed babies. If your baby falls under any of these categories, you shouldn’t be surprised when this occurs.

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The smell of the poop can vary based on dietary changes, and the breakdown of bacteria and proteins in your baby’s gut. This occurrence shouldn’t be a cause of concern or worry, except if your baby shows symptoms of feeling unwell.

That said, if the smell persists along with signs of distress and discomfort, reach out to a pediatrician immediately to get a professional idea of what is the cause and receive personalized guidance on the next best thing to do.

Baby Poop Smelling Like Popcorn: What It Means

When your baby’s poop smells like something similar to popcorn, it is no cause for alarm as long as the color of the poop is in line with the specific type of baby poop. Usually when the poop smells like popcorn, it is attributed to the normal breakdown of proteins and bacteria in the digestive system.

Also, the diet of the baby or the breastfeeding mother can have a significant effect on the odor of the poop. This is why moms are advised to be mindful and watchful of the things they eat or drink and also be sure of the formula, puréed, or solid foods they offer to the baby. If the popcorn smell still persists, the following can be the potential reasons why this happens;

  • Gut Microflora Imbalance
  • Food Sensitivity
  • Medication Sensitivity
  • Crohn’s Disease
  • Nutrient Malabsorption

Ultimately, it is best practice to talk to your pediatrician to better understand why your baby’s poop has a different smell than you are used to. Also, understand that if your baby’s poop still has a normal color, and your baby is not showing any symptoms or signs of discomfort, you and your baby are in the clear and there is no cause for alarm.

What To Do When Baby Poop Smells Like Popcorn

If your baby’s poop smells like popcorn, it is perfectly normal, in fact, it is nice smelling compared to having to deal with foul-smelling poop during a diaper change. However, if you are still concerned about this, here are the things you should consider doing;

1. Observe Your Baby

What To Do When Baby Poop Smells Like Popcorn
Image: Wikimedia Commons

Keep a close eye on your baby and the color of the poop. If the baby is showing signs of illness and the poop color is quite unusual, that is a clear indication of an underlying health issue and would require immediate medical attention.

2. Make Adjustments To Diets

If your baby is still breastfed exclusively, moms might consider making some changes to their diets. Try to be very observant about the particular meal they consume that causes this quizzing scent. For formula-fed babies, parents should consider switching to another nutrient-rich formula.

3. Consult With A Pediatrician

If all else fails, and you notice a negative change in your baby’s behavior, it is always best to seek help from a pediatrician. The doctor would offer a professional explanation of the situation and provide recommendations to improve your baby’s health.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can baby poop smell like vinegar?

Yes, babies’ poop can smell like vinegar. Various factors can cause your baby’s poop to smell vinegar-like, most times it’s the substance present in the breast milk or formula and a change in their diet.

What does a nice-smelling baby poop indicate?

Usually, this is not a cause for alarm as this could be an indication of a healthy digestive system. However, it could also be a sign of an underlying health condition if your baby feels unwell and the color of the poop is quite abnormal. Be sure to always consult with your pediatrician.

When should I be worried about the baby’s poop?

You should be concerned about your baby’s poop when the smell persists for too long, the poop color is looking out of the ordinary, and your baby is feeling unwell or ill.

Is it normal for baby poop to smell candy-like?

Yes, it is perfectly normal for this to happen. The nature of the poop can most times give off a candy-like smell that can be pleasant to the nose. This shouldn’t make you worry, as long as your baby is thriving in sound health and the color of the poop doesn’t change.


Every day is a whole experience with babies, and the fact is, parents do not always have all the answers. Buttered popcorn like smelling baby poop is mostly a welcome scent to the nose, however, it can be alarming, especially when you are new to the smell.

Some moms usually wonder if it indicates a health problem in their baby, nonetheless, this is mostly no cause for worry as this is a normal experience as strange as it may seem.

However, it is highly recommended to see a doctor if you are still concerned about your baby’s health or when your baby shows signs of underlying health issues.

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