How to Make Caramel Popcorn At Home

Sweet and salty, caramel popcorn is generally associated with parties, Halloween, and carnivals, where it is served in the form of popcorn balls, or in whimsical red and white striped containers. However, if you are in the mood to indulge your sweet tooth with this comforting snack, there is no need to wait for a special occasion – use a few simple ingredients to make yourself a batch at home.

Prep time: 30 min
Cook time: 1 hour
Total time: 1 hour and 30 min
Yield: Makes 5 quarts
Utensils: Saucepan, bowl, baking dish, spoon.

Butter: 1 cup
Brown sugar: 2 cups
Corn syrup: 1/2 cup
Salt: 1 teaspoon
Baking soda: 1/2 teaspoon
Vanilla extract: 1 teaspoon
Popped popcorn: 5 quarts


  • 1

    Start by preheating your oven to roughly 250 degrees F (95 degrees C). While the oven is heating up, you can work on prepping the caramel popcorn.

  • 2

    Now, place all the popcorn in a bowl – make sure it is a large one, so you have plenty of space to mix the whole thing up as you add in the ingredients.

  • 3

    Place a medium-sized saucepan on the stove over medium heat. Put in the butter and allow it to melt completely. Once it has melted, add in the brown sugar, the corn syrup, and the salt. Keep stirring continuously, until you bring the butter up to a boil.

  • 4

    Now, allow the butter to boil without stirring it for around 4 minutes. Then, remove it from the heat, and stir in the baking soda and the vanilla extract. Your caramel is now ready.

  • 5

    Pour this mixture all over the popcorn in the bowl, and toss it to coat it evenly with the caramel. Once this is done, spread the popcorn out onto two shallow baking dishes covered with parchment paper.

  • 6

    Slide these dishes into the preheated oven, and allow them to bake for around an hour, stirring the popcorn after every 15 minutes. After the hour is up, remove the dishes from the oven, and place them on a counter to cool. Once they have cooled completely and hardened somewhat, you can break them into pieces, and serve.

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