This popcorn has a sweet and buttery caramel crunch and is super easy to make!
I made this recipe thinking it would be something fun to simply nibble on as I watched the snow fall today. But, I’m not nibbling. I am grabbing this by the handful and eating nonstop!!
Case in point, I just finished writing those two sentences and already had to get up to get more. It’s addicting.
I didn’t think I could make caramel popcorn. I figured it would have been difficult to make. It was actually quite easy, a lot of fun and it came out AWESOME. It was definitely the perfect snack for a snow day. I’m not going to lie; I was a little nervous about making caramel. The last time I tried, it did not turn out well. I discovered that my candy thermometer was broken, while I was in the last stage of boiling. Basically, my candy overcooked and tasted awful. But, the great news here is you don’t need a candy thermometer to make this! The recipe that Once Upon a Chef lays out is very straightforward and easy peasy.
To start, I made my popcorn on the stove in a giant pot. Once it was done, I poured it onto a cookie sheet and began separating the popped corn from the kernels by sifting it through my hands. I put the popcorn in a giant bowl.
I then started the caramel process and I had no issues!
I boiled all the sugars:
Added baking soda…
…yes, baking soda!! It aerates the caramel which gives you a lighter crunch. The more you know! 😉
Once added, it turns the caramel into a foamy, opaque, hot, bubbly mess.
Pour evenly over the tray of popcorn & toss!
I said it was easy, I did not say it wouldn’t be messy. Popcorn got everywhere.
Bake, and nosh for days!
This is a lot of fun to make and it was definitely the perfect snack for a snow day. You don't need a candy thermometer to make this!
- 1/4 c vegetable oil I used coconut oil which is a good sub too!
- 2/3 c popcorn kernels You can sub in microwave or air popped popcorn. Just make sure it is unflavored and you'll need about 16cups of it.
- 1 stick unsalted butter
- 1 c light brown sugar
- 1/4 c light corn syrup
- 1/4 c pure maple syrup
- 1/2 tsp salt This salt will not add an upfront saltiness to your caramel corn. If you want that salty/sweet combo, I would recommend sprinkling some salt on after you’ve mixed your caramel and popcorn.
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
Preheat your oven to 200°F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Make your popcorn and separate from any leftover kernels. Set aside in a very large bowl.
In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the brown sugar, corn syrup, maple syrup and salt and stir until everything is dissolved. Let the mixture come to a boil and set a timer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Remove the pan from the heat and add in the baking soda. Stir well as the mixture turns foamy.
Immediately pour the syrup over the popped corn in three separate additions, stirring until the popcorn is evenly coated.
Spread the caramel corn into even layers on prepared pans. Bake at 200°F for one hour.
Final product can be stored in an airtight container for 3-4 days.
Recipe from Once Upon a Chef