CEO Warren Buffett's preference for relatively dependable, low-risk companies has helped Berkshire Hathaway significantly outperform the S&P 500 index amid tough conditions for the stock market over the last year. 

Chart showing Berkshire Hathaway's total return outperforming the S&P 500's since late 2021.

BRK.A Total Return Level data by YCharts

But value stocks and highly profitable industry giants aren't the only holdings in the Berkshire Hathaway portfolio. While the investment conglomerate's portfolio is weighted toward safer, mega-cap companies, it also owns small positions in some high-risk stocks that have the potential for parabolic breakouts -- meaning their stock charts could wind up looking similar to the right side of a parabolic curve moving upwards exponentially.

Read on for a look at two high-risk, high-reward stocks in Berkshire's portfolio that could deliver explosive returns. 

Warren Buffett in a crowd smiling.

Image source: The Motley Fool.

1. Snowflake

Snowflake (SNOW -1.26%) could become one of the most influential companies of the next decade and beyond. The software specialist is already leading the cloud-based data warehousing space, and its technology makes it possible for customers to combine, store, and analyze otherwise walled-off information from Amazon, Alphabet, and Alphabet's respective cloud infrastructure networks.

Data analysis is more important than ever for businesses and organizations, and the explosion of data generation set to continue in coming years points to strong demand for Snowflake's services. The company's growth opportunities also extend far beyond the main data warehousing and analytics focus that have made up the core of the business so far. Snowflake is aiming to make its platform a go-to foundation for application development, and it could play a key role in the evolution of cloud software.

With the built-in ability to draw from and analyze the combined data originating from different cloud infrastructure services, Snowflake's platform simplifies data pipelines and can offer improved engineering efficiency and superior responsiveness for applications. Snowflake also mostly uses a consumption-based billing model, and continuing to gain favor as a platform for developing and running applications could help power huge sales growth as projects are launched and scaled. 

Even with its move to disrupt application development still in relatively early stages, the business has been serving up very impressive growth. The company grew sales 83% year over year in the second quarter, with the strong performance powered by a 71% jump in spending from customers already using its services and a 36% increase to its total customer count.

With a market cap of roughly $58 billion, Snowflake is already a large company. Moreover, its forward price-to-sales multiple of roughly 32 makes it clear that some strong growth is already priced into the company's valuation. On the other hand, the stock has fallen roughly 45% year to date despite strong business performance, and the company looks well positioned for long-term success. For risk-tolerant investors, Snowflake is a stock that has the potential to deliver massive returns. 

2. StoneCo

StoneCo (STNE 2.15%) is a Brazil-based fintech company that's been hit hard by macroeconomic and regulatory headwinds. The company's share price has fallen roughly 30% this year, and it trades down a whopping 86% from the high that it hit in February 2021. 

In addition to high inflation and other macroeconomic pressures that have generally depressed valuations for fintech stocks, the company's loan business for small and medium-sized businesses has seen a high level of defaults, and it's set to take a substantial loss even after having some success reducing the size of its troubled portfolio. The company estimates that of its loan portfolio totaling 603.9 million Brazilian reals at the end of the second quarter, 495.8 million reals will wind up being written off as bad debt.

On the other hand, StoneCo's core payment-processing business still looks very healthy, the credit business could eventually be repositioned for long-term success, and the stock looks oversold at current levels. 

StoneCo's revenue rose roughly 83% year over year in this year's second quarter, after making adjustments for the company's acquisition of enterprise software company Linx and accounting for negative revenue revisions made to last year's Q2 performance due to the credit business. The company's payment-processing solutions have continued to grow at an encouraging clip, with the business adding 195,500 net new small and medium-sized business and micro-merchant clients to bring its total category count above 2 million at the end of last quarter. Adoption for bank accounts and card- and app-based payments in Brazil appears to be on track for secular growth, and StoneCo remains positioned to facilitate and benefit from the trend.

Despite headwinds, the company has managed to remain consistently profitable, and it has the potential to serve up much better performance if and when the economic situation in Brazil improves. With a market cap of roughly $3.6 billion and a large and increasing addressable market to expand into, StoneCo is also still small enough to see huge growth over the long term. With shares valued at roughly 41 times this year's expected earnings, StoneCo still has a growth-dependent valuation, but it could go on to be a huge winner for investors willing to take on its risk profile.