Homemade Caramel Corn is one of the best comfort foods around! It’s a little bit crunchy, a little bit gooey, and completely delicious. This recipe is perfect for family movie and game nights.
There are two things I love that seem to go hand in hand in my life. Traditions and food! As I think about certain traditions I have with my family, most of them seem to involve food. Taco Tuesdays, Friday night Pizza night, Chicken and Waffle Sliders on Super Bowl Sunday, Honey Baked Ham on Easter, do you see my point? I could keep going! I absolutely love it.
The tradition I am sharing with you today has to do with popcorn. On Saturday nights we cuddle up on the couch and watch a movie. When watching a movie, it is a must that I make popcorn!
Sometimes we do plain, sometimes I put M&Ms in it, or sometimes I might put out some flavored popcorn seasonings. But if I really want some delicious popcorn then I make my homemade caramel corn.
Oh, my goodness folks, this stuff is GOOD! This caramel popcorn literally melts in your mouth and you will be so happy that you made it. So, cuddle up on the couch with your loves, watch a fun movie, and enjoy this caramel corn. I promise it will be your favorite part of movie night!
HOMEMADE CARAMEL CORN RECIPE QUESTIONS ANSWERED:
What happens if you forgot the baking soda in caramel corn?
Baking soda is basically what makes the caramel corn chewy with a little bit of crunch. Baking soda reacts with the brown sugar and corn syrup creating small carbon dioxide air bubbles. This is the foaming you see in the picture above. After the caramel has cooled on your popcorn, the air bubbles inside the caramel create a softer texture. This softer texture means you will not be biting into hard caramel. Yay! It will literally melt in your mouth. Long story short, the baking soda is very important for your caramel corn!
Why is my caramel corn so sticky?
If your caramel corn came out sticky then, unfortunately, it has not been cooked properly. It is very important to bring the caramel mixture to a boil and boil it for 5 minutes. This helps make sure it dries as a shiny coating during the cooling process instead of a sticky mess.
How long will homemade caramel corn last?
Homemade caramel corn can last up to 3 days on the counter as long as it is stored properly in an airtight container. You can help it last even longer, for up to 3 months, if you store it in the refrigerator. The caramel corn should still be kept in an airtight container whether it is in the fridge or being stored at room temperature.
RELATED RECIPE: Movie Theater Popcorn
How to make caramel corn?
- Begin by preheating your oven to 200 degrees F and move the oven rack to the middle position.
- Next, place the popped popcorn in a large roasting pan.
- Meanwhile, in a large saucepan over medium heat add the brown sugar, butter, salt, corn syrup, and vanilla. Stir everything until it is melted together and comes to a boil.
- Keep stirring while the mixture boils for 5 minutes. Then stir in the baking soda.
- The last step before baking it for 1 hour is to pour the caramel mixture over the popcorn and stir until the popcorn is covered in the caramel.
- While it is baking, stir the caramel corn every 15 minutes.
- Then, line the counter with wax paper and pour the caramel corn onto the paper.
- Finally, spread the caramel corn and let it cool and dry for at least 15 minutes before enjoying it.
Cook’s Note – Caramel Popcorn:
- Leftovers need to be stored in an airtight container at room temperature. It will keep for 24-28 hours when stored this way.
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- 24 cups popped popcorn 6 quarts
- 1 cup salted butter
- 2 cups packed light brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup light corn syrup
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- Move oven rack to middle position and preheat to 200 degrees Place the popped popcorn in a large foil roasting pan.
- In a large saucepan over medium heat add the butter, brown sugar, salt, corn syrup, and vanilla. Stir occasionally until everything is melted together and comes to a boil. Continue to stir while the mixture boils for 5 minutes. Take the saucepan off of the heat and stir in the baking soda.
- Pour the caramel mixture over the popcorn and stir until the popcorn is coated in the caramel.
- Bake for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes.
- Line the countertop with waxed paper and pour the popcorn onto the paper. Spread it out and let the caramel corn cool and dry for at least 15 minutes before eating.
This post first appeared on Food Folks and Fun on April 23, 2013. I have since updated the pictures and some of the originals are below.