Let’s Bake: EP 1 – Homemade Caramel Popcorn!
Baked Caramel Corn
- 1 Cup Butter
- 2 Cups Firmly Packed Bown Sugar
- 1/2 Cup Light or dark corn syrup We used light
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
- 1 tsp Vanilla
- 1 1/2 Bags Popped Popcorn (This is for a reasonable amount of caramel corn.)
- Pop the Popcorn
- REMOVE ALL UNPOPPED KERNELS!
- Pre Heat oven to 250° F
Make the Caramel
- Melt Butter
- Stir in brown sugar, corn syrup and salt
- Bring to a boil stirring constantly
- Boil without stirring 5 minutes.
- Remove from heat; stir in soda and vanilla.
Make the Popcorn
- Lay foil on baking sheet.
- Add popcorn to baking sheet in an even layer.
- Pour caramel mixture over popcorn and stir to mix. (Optionally, add
- Bake for 1 hour, stiring every 15 minutes.
- Let cool and enjoy!
The joke in our house is my Aunt Christy has never steered anyone wrong. She is my dad’s oldest brother’s wife, meaning she has been in the family the longest of any of the spouses. My aunt is one of the people I look up to. She is a former teacher and reading specialist, so she always bought us the best books (I thank her for my and now Olivia’s love for If You Give a Mouse a Cookie. When it was time for my sister and me to fly across the country together alone at 14 and 15 years old, she made sure we had tricks up our sleeve and we were safe at our gates. Yes, in the pre 9/11 days, my aunt convinced a TSA agent to let her walk us to our gate and make sure we were okay. She is one of my all-time favorite people. So when I saw that this recipe was from her, I knew it was going to be good.
I love chocolate more than the next person, but I had been looking for a simple recipe that didn’t have chocolate to help balance my dessert plates. I thought the next best thing would be caramel!
We gathered all the ingredients and I will say we used the packaged popcorn even though the recipe called to “make your own.” I like the idea of knowing that you only needed a couple of bags to make the recipe and have some leftover for movie night or to make more batches. We made WAY too much it was almost comical. I read the recipe wrong or the recipe was written out wrong, either way, we made an obscene amount of popcorn. We couldn’t stop laughing.
What I loved about this recipe is the great balance between salty and sweet caramel. We did use a natural and very simple/basic flavor because of the sweetness we were expecting the caramel to have.
This was also my first time diving into making caramel from scratch for the first time. It was easier than I thought, but I will say it took a lot of stirring and watching. I was stressed out the whole time hoping not to burn it.
It was a bit difficult to spread the popcorn and caramel at first. Mixing the popcorn while in the oven is key! It really helped get everything coated. Next time, I will try to make a little bit of a smaller batch of popcorn, just to see if I can get it coated a little bit more. To me, it was perfect the first time, which is a miracle for me, but now that we know what to expect, we can adjust the recipe to our liking.
I was amazed at how much this tasted like Cracker Jacks and I love Cracker Jacks! After we tasted it we knew this was going to be a recipe that we could make during holidays and give away. Now that we’ve done it, it’s a simple recipe and we are even thinking about adding in peanuts next time to see if we can recreate Cracker Jacks.
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