Salted Caramel Popcorn

Salted Caramel Popcorn | www.cookiesandcups.com | #recipe #popcorn #saltedcaramel

This Easy Salted Caramel Popcorn Recipe is my favorite Caramel Corn Recipe! It’s so easy and adding that extra salt gives it the perfect salty/sweet combo!

Today my babies went back to school. And I cried.

Which is ridiculous because they are now in 3rd and 5th grade. And also because I have been dreaming of the first day back to school for like 6 weeks. I couldn’t help it, as much as I tried. They’ve currently been gone for about 1 hour and 9 minutes and I miss them. WHAT IS WRONG WITH MEEEEEEE???

MY OTHER RECIPES

I should be having a “Quiet House Party” or something.

Anyhow, it never gets easier, folks. At least for me. So I must distract myself from all the silence with Kardashian reruns and Caramel Corn.

Salted Caramel Corn, actually. It’s my new favorite food group.

Salted Caramel Popcorn | www.cookiesandcups.com | #recipe #popcorn #saltedcaramel

This recipe is so super simple, you guys. I have always been a little scared of making caramel corn. I know, I’m a weirdo. But let me just say, this recipe is so easy.

Salted Caramel Popcorn

Just grab some popcorn…I like to use my air-popper to make it, because I can control the amount of salt.Β  But if you don’t have an air-popper, you can use a plain microwave kind, or even pop some on your stove top!

(Here’s the link to the one I use)

Salted Caramel Popcorn

I popped 1/2 cup kernels, which yields about 16 cups of popped corn.

Next make your easy caramel sauce. Just butter, corn syrup, brown sugar and salt…

Salted Caramel Popcorn

And bring that to a boil and let it go for 4 minutes.Β  No stirring and no candy thermometer required!

Salted Caramel Popcorn

Then pour that over top of the popcorn and stir it until it’s all coated…

Salted Caramel Popcorn

Next dump all the popcorn into a lined baking pan…

And sprinkle with some more salt…

Salted Caramel Popcorn

Bake it for 30 minutes and every 10 minutes or so give it a stir.

Spread it out onto a lined counter to cool and break it into pieces.

Salted Caramel Popcorn | www.cookiesandcups.com | #recipe #popcorn #saltedcaramelHonestly, you’re not going to be able to stop eating this.

It’s ridiculous.

Salted Caramel Popcorn | www.cookiesandcups.com | #recipe #popcorn #saltedcaramel

I’m a little bit of a popcorn addict around here.Β  Check out some of my favorites:

Fruity Pebble Kettle Corn

Peanut Butter Cup Popcorn

Caramel Apple Popcorn

Red Velvet Popcorn

Snickers Popcorn

Popcorn Cake

 

Print

Description

Makes about 16 cups of caramel corn


Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup unpopped popcorn kernels (about 16 cups popped corn)
  • 1 cup salted butter
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup light corn syrup
  • 1 1/2 – 2 tsp kosher or sea salt, divided

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 300Β°
  2. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Set aside.
  3. Pop popcorn kernels using air popper into a large bowl.
  4. In a small saucepan melt butter, brown sugar, corn syrup and 1 tsp salt together over medium heat. Bring to boil. Boil for 4 minutes without stirring. Remove from heat and let it cool for 2 minutes. It needs to stop boiling before you pour it on the popcorn.
  5. Pour caramel mixture over popcorn and stir to coat evenly.
  6. Pour popcorn into lined pan, sprinkle remaining salt on top (1/2 tsp – 1 tsp depending on your personal taste preference) and place in oven. Bake for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.
  7. Allow popcorn to cool on a parchment lined counter.

Notes

You can add in 2 cups of nuts to the un-coated popcorn if desired! Coat with caramel as states!

 

309 Responses

  1. Karen

    We just delivered my daughter to her dorm at university. I dreaded that drive all summer and coming home without her, and the uncertainty of how she’ll feel there. We’ll adjust, enjoy them when they get home from school.

  2. Jeannette

    Looks great. Would I be able to make popcorn balls out of this? Form the balls before itngoesnin the oven maybe?

    Thanks for another great recipe!

        1. Maybe instead of popcorn balls, you could try them in a muffin tin? Mound and lightly press the popcorn into a muffin tin before baking? IT won’t be round, of course, but it should hold it’s shape until it’s out of the oven and the caramel has cooled down again.

        2. Beth Meadows

          You don’t bake the balls, just form them into balls and let them dry on their own. Then wrap them in plastic wrap to keep fresh.

  3. I am the same way! When they are here I can’t wait for them to go, then when they do, I’m so lonesome for them! This seems like it would make an awesome after school snack. I never knew it was so easy to make caramel corn. Thanks, Shelly!

  4. Once I start eating caramel corn it is so hard for me to stop!! It actually is something that I can eat and I’m ok with it making me sick. Besides, it isn’t a real sickness like the flu…it will quickly go away because it is only dressed up popcorn. Mind over matter…

    This is certainly something I would enjoy making myself sick over!

    1. Shelly

      That’s crazy! I have no idea how it could have been burnt in 15 minutes at 300 degrees? Have you checked your oven accuracy? Possibly the oven could be a little off, making it hotter than the temp you set it for. Because I’ve made this so many times and a few times I’ve forgotten about it and left it in for too long, by like 10 minutes and I’ve never had an issue with burning…

    2. Charlene

      Cara, my oven cooks hot too. I did this recipe for only a total of 20 minutes. I took it out of the oven after 10 minutes to stir it thoroughly and give it a chance to cool down and then put it back in the oven for an additional 10 minutes. Just keep an eye on it.

    3. Tania

      Does your oven show temperature in Fahrenheit or Celsius? In Australia for example we use Celsius (on modern ovens at least), but recipes from the USA use Fahrenheit, which is the case here, I assume. 300F is about 150C. Most Celsius ovens only heat up to 250C, hence my assumption. I would be surprised if popcorn burned so quickly at 150C, but if you set your oven for 300C, it would not take long.

  5. Cara

    I haven’t checked the accuracy but its only four months old. I wouldn’t think it would be off but maybe? Does this need to be cooked or could you just wait for the caramel to cool and eat it like that?

    1. Shelly

      You don’t have to cook it, no, but the popcorn will most likely be chewy, instead of crunchy…
      With it being such a new oven, that’s very odd… maybe try it again, and lower the temperature to 250. Are you at a high altitude?

      1. Colleen R

        I just made this and mine had burned around the edges after the first 10 minutes. I turned the oven down to 275 after that and down to 250 after the next 10 minutes but still have burned corn around the edges. Now I’m wondering about our oven too although I’ve never had issues with other baking. I’m in Alberta Canada. Not sure if that would make a difference….

    2. Jan

      Cara, we checked the temperature of our new oven and it runs about 50 degrees too cool. Not knowing how to correct it, we just add a few degrees, depending on how high we need it.

  6. pam

    I share your love of popcorn and can’t wait to try this recipe, I also cry when my kids go back to school, however, I have a senior in high school and a senior in college:)

  7. Kendra

    Hi! I really loved your blog today . I am totally with you on the sending kids back to school then crying your eyes out thing.My last son start kindergarden and I’m sad. He’s the last of my 3 sons to go, their 9, 7 and 5,and I’m not ready for the house to be so quiet. For 9 years I’ve lived in chaos and now there’s this HUGE change that has happened.I feel I’m loosing my boys. They don’t like to talk about school so I never know what happened during their day, those long hours they were away from me.Ouch! I too could not wait for school to start. They drove me crazy all summer. I dreamed that I would finally have some time to myself after 9 long years and here I am in this quiet old house, lonely. I don’t know what to do with myself. My world has revolved around them for so long. I miss them.
    Then they walk through the door and the chaos begins all over again and I remember, oh yeah…..school!

  8. Renee

    I have an obsession with popcorn of any kind! When I make mine, instead of baking it in the oven, put your popcorn in a brown grocery bag, pour the caramel over it and shake! Then put it in the microwave for 30 second increments (3 times), shaking between each time. Way less clean up! πŸ™‚

  9. pearl

    Hi Shelly,
    I love your blog and i’ve been wanting to try your salted caramel popcorn recipe , but i can’t find corn syrup here in the Netherlands. Is it possible to omit it put of the recipe? Thanks so much.

      1. Roger

        Are you stating that your friend pours straight maple syrup onto the pop corn and then bakes it, or that your friend cooks the maple syrup first and THEN pours it on the pop corn? This sounds interesting but, at the cost of maple syrup, I’d like to have as many facts up-front as possible beforehand! Thank you.

    1. Ann

      Hi Pearl, Do you have Golden Syrup there? I think that’s the same or pretty close. I live in the UK and I haven’t been able to find corn syrup either but able to get golden syrup which I used in a recipe calling for corn syrup and it tasted the same as when I made it previously with corn syrup back home.

  10. holli

    I noticed you left the unpopped kernels in the popcorn .. that is a high potential for cracked chipped or broken teeth .. it takes less than 60 seconds to use only popped corn. pop in a bowl shake so kernels are at the bottom transfer only popped corn to a different bowl. You dont buy popped corn off the shelf or at a theater or anywhere with unpopped kernels just for those reasons .. its a risk ..

  11. Debbie

    How many bags of microwave popcorn would I need to use? I don’t have an air popper, but it sounds like I’d get alot of use out of it! My boys make popcorn at least 3-4 times a week!!

    1. I know this is really late, but in case anyone else has the question… I pop regular kernels in my microwave. Put 1/4 cup of popcorn in a microwave safe glass bowl with a lid, cook for 4 minutes or so, listening for the popping to slow to 10 seconds or so… if you start to smell burnt popcorn stop it… it’s easy to go beyond popped to burnt so stay near the microwave… but you have popped corn with no oil, and none of the chemicals in the microwave stuff.

  12. jackie

    I’m definitely trying this. Except I use a large bowl shaped microwave popper. No oil, specially bagged popcorn or air popper required. Found mine at WalMart, Target, or Kmart I forget which.

  13. We used to make this popcorn with a small variation.. well sort of a big variation!! We put all of the popcorn in a paper grocery bag,, the big kind,, and pour the mixture over it.. shake it,,, and voila all done.. witho ours you didnt have to bake or use any other pans etc. to finish and it turns out pretty good too.

  14. Amy

    I just started popping my own popcorn in a pot following the directions on the bottle. But when I pour the sause on it, it deflated. It also happened when I pour butter on it. What am I doing wrong? Thanks! Its still delicious, just mushy and not as pretty.

    1. Lynette

      Try waiting a minute or two before pouring anything on corn. It will deflate when the corn is to hot or when the butter or caramel is to hot when pouring over corn.

  15. PJP

    Finall worked up the nerve to make this. I have failed so many times before making caramel corn. It turned out fabulous. Thank you

  16. Lisa

    The caramel smells WONDERFUL! I’m waitinf on my second oven stir. I can’t wait to try it. I also can’t wait to show off the website and recipe at work.

  17. Kathleen Truluck

    Loved the caramel corn recipe. I got rave reviews at my son’s high school football game when I pulled it out and shared it with everyone sitting near us. It turned out perfectly crunchy and crisp. Not soggy like I was worried about. Loved the idea of using the brown paper grocery bag to mix it all up in before you bake it. It worked amazing. Thanks for the amazing recipe!!

  18. This looks AMAZING! I’m going to make this tonight… for our long road trip tomorrow. We most definitely need some delish snacks for a road trip. Thank you for this! πŸ™‚

  19. Kal

    Do NOT use parchment paper to make this, it only makes the caramel burn to the paper. Also, I wouldn’t recommend cooking the caramel for four minutes as it too will also burn. Use silicone mats and watch the caramel boil for a few.

  20. Judy

    Okay, I guess I’m just totally lame, but the 30 minutes at 300F in my oven burned the caramel. Aaarrrgh!! Any idea what went wrong?

  21. Judy

    Oh, looking back, I see the recommendation to try 250F now. And I used parchment. Maybe that’s the problem?
    Thanks for the recipe. I will have to try again and see if I can tweak it.

    Also, for the lady in the Netherlands, I have successfully replaced corn syrup with honey in some recipes, using just slightly less honey than called for. Not sure what it would do her, but you could try it.

  22. Heather

    So, maybe it’s because my 4 year old is climbing all over the counter in anticipation and playing with butter sticks and my tea mug and asking when we’ll start, but I don’t see oven temp in your recipe. I found it (300) in your response to the commenter who had problems with burning. maybe I’m missing it.

  23. Gtace

    This came out so good! I love it when I find a recipe and it comes out exactly how I expected it to… actually better cause we don’t hold high expectations when I’m in the kitchen. This just might be a game changer. Lol. Thank you. :0)

    I added mini pretzels and saltines to mine. So delicious!

  24. Erin

    Just made this and it is so yummy. Made a double batch and baked less time as I like my caramel corn a bit on the chewy side. So easy, was scared to death to not use a candy thermometer but it came out perfect. Thanks!

  25. Rodney

    Made this using left over movie popcorn (the ‘free’ refill of our $8 extra large popcorn! Halved the recipe as did not think I had the right amount of popcorn. It was superb.

  26. Caroline

    Can’t wait to try this! Does it make a difference in taste / baking time if I use dark instead of light brown sugar? Got a big tin of dark brown sugar I want to use up!

  27. Beth

    I love this recipe. Have used it for several years and it is always a hit! And you can’t stop eating it πŸ™‚ If I want to jazz it up I put some whole cashews in with the recipe.. delicious.

  28. Marlene

    Oh.my.goodness. I made this today. It is the BEST caramel popcorn I have ever had! I followed the recipe exactly and it turned out beautifully – perfect in every way! Thank you for sharing your recipe. It will be one our family makes over and over!
    (PS. I had to send a bag of popcorn home with my daughter’s bus driver just so I wouldn’t eat the whole batch myself!!!!!)

  29. Lynn

    My husband is a musician and I go out to lots of his shows. I also love to cook, but I don’t want to weigh a million pounds, so I make things and take them out to the band’s shows for the band and friends.

    I made your salted caramel popcorn yesterday and took it to the show last night. Everyone loved it and between sets, they could not keep away. In fact, the lead singer came up to me and asked if I put crack in the mix because she didn’t want to stop eating it…lol…what could be a better recommendation? Thank you again–easy and delicious.

  30. Shelly

    I made this last night, and baked at 300 like you said. The popcorn was starting to burn after 10 minutes! So sad! The only thing I did differently was use bagged popcorn and margarine instead of butter.

  31. Kate

    Looks delicious! How long do you think this stays “fresh”? I am going to make up a few batches so I can bag them as party favors. Do you think two/three days in advance is okay?

  32. Kate

    Thanks! I made it a day and a half in advance and it held up fine in the plastic favor bags which were just tied shut with ribbons. I made about 60 goodie bags – about 120 cups of popped popcorn! It was a long messy process since I had to do batch after batch. First I popped an entire bag of corn kernels (about 4 large stock pots full) and then I baked off two trays at a time (about 5 rounds of baking). Lined the entire kitchen table with parchment paper for my workspace. Some batches baked up better than others depending on how much caramel was used (sometimes too much which made it gloppy) and how long I baked it (15 minutes was actually best for me). When you remove the hot pans from the oven I recommend dumping them out asap or the caramel that has settled at the bottom of the tray will create gooey globs all over. Not the worst thing (kids loved it) but it will definitely take a toll on your teeth. I preferred the more consistent pieces that were lightly coated and still crunchy. All and all – a huge hit! Would definitely make a normal sized batch anytime to enjoy on the couch! It’s been a few days now and I’m sharing the leftover bags with coworkers. The popcorn has soften some but everyone is thinks its delicious and wants the recipe.

  33. Andrea

    ooooh I actually have all the stuff to make this. I am taking a day trip on Friday- I think this would be an awesome snack! I know this was originally posted about a year ago- but I wanted to address the stove issue. I have a new stove that is barely 6 months old and depending on the temperature it can take up to 20 mins to reach the set temperature, even if the oven has already “dinged” that it’s ready. I learned this the hard way and many ruined loaves of bread and baked goods. But it’s inconsistent in this temp thing. My new rule: I have started using an oven thermometer. Just an FYI for those who have recipes that turn out fine and then for some strange reason – not the next time..etc. It’s saved a LOT of frustration recently.

  34. Jerri

    I have a question about the salt. I have a container of sea salt that I use to refill our salt grinder. Do I use the unground, chunky salt or grind up the salt and use it that way?

  35. Kelly

    I just made this again for about the 10th time. ALWAYS a hit, ALWAYS perfect. I usually double it and whenever I take it to work, it doesn’t even last one hour. I add almonds, pumpkin seeds, and peanuts. This is the easiest recipe and so reliable. Thanks!

  36. Stacy

    I think I may have found something that can top my all-time favorite of Almond Bark Popcorn. And this recipe is it. Can’t wait to make this before our next coming trip!
    Thank you for sharing. I have bookmarked your site and will be back!

  37. Beth R.

    Mmmmm, I love caramel and this recipe sounds so good. I think the addition of some nuts would make it awesome too. Either pecans or peanuts.

  38. Lana

    Thank you for the best caramel popcorn ever! It was sooo crunchy and sweet and had the perfect hint of salt. Yum! Because I was worried about the popcorn burning from previous comments, I started at 250 degrees. After the first check at 10 minutes, I moved it up to 275 degrees. It was enjoyed on our movie night with some left to spare, which I snacked on while making breakfast the next morning. Yes, in the morning, so addictive!

  39. shaheda timol

    Hi Shelly, omg ur intro was exactly what I say, think and do as far as watch KUWTKardash…..lol. im def gonna try this however I wanna throw in some pecan yummmm. U r so invited.

  40. JH

    Shelly — any time that I pour hot liquids onto the popcorn, the popcorn begins to melt. In other words the popcorn starts to shrink and becomes really hard. What am I doing wrong???

  41. Mags

    Love this!!! Thanks so much for sharing this recipe! Tried some last night, and now making my second batch! Though this time I may toss some chopped up snickers in just for fun πŸ™‚

  42. Eileen

    Oh nikki…my son leaves for his junior year of college in a month and I am already missing him just thinking about it. You’re not alone honey! Hardest thing in the world is to let go! Xxxooo

  43. Tanya

    Hi!
    Oh my goodness! This recipe looks amazing!!! But for some odd reason I wasn’t able to see the amount of each ingredient. I was able to see the amount of popping corn (which made 16 cups popped corn) and I seen butter, corn syrup, Brown sugar, and salt, but not the amount of each to use. Could you please send me the measurements? Oh so excited to make this!
    Thank you from Wisconsin!!!

  44. Chellsia

    Made this a few minutes ago and then added peanuts and chocolate chips to the second batch ….oh my heavens it’s so good…do I have to share?!?!? I should be nice but….lol thanks for this recipe it’s so awesome. I can make it for gifts too which is a major plus!

  45. Sarah

    I don’t have an air popper! And I only have buttered popcorn for the microwave on hand and I really don’t want to go out! Can I use this type of popcorn?!

    1. Shelly

      I have never tried it with microwave popcorn…I have heard a few people tell me it shrivels when you pour the caramel on top, but let me know if you try it!

      1. Sarah

        Well I ended up using kernels because I didn’t want to take any chances and it turned out amazing! I put the oven to 275 degrees though based on other people saying it was burning. Thanks for this recipe!!

  46. Kristin Stanley

    I just finished making this, and I think I need to file a lawsuit. The first bite KILLED my husband due to excess deliciousness! This recipe is awesome, YOU are awesome for creating it, and now my man thinks I’m awesome for making it πŸ˜‰ hehe Thank you!!!!!!!! (Btw… I followed the recipe exactly and it turned out perfect. )

    1. Pamala Huffman

      Emily, if you have a microwave you can put it a big paper grocery bag and cook 30 seconds, shake the bag, do this three times. My Aunt used this reciepie for years. Works great!!!!!

  47. Tiffy

    I just made this and it turned out PERFECT! My family loves it and so do I! Thank you!! I can’t wait to make this for more people! So delicious. We’re going to enjoy this during our scary movie tonight!!

  48. Debbie

    I have been making carmel corn for over a year now and my recipe is the same as this one. I make it in a aluminum throw away roasting pan and spray it with Pam for easy clean up. I have never had it burn, the only problem I have had with it is the peanuts don’t seem to adhere to the popcorn. Any suggestions on that issue? I store it in a large Tupperware bowl and it seems to be better the next day and it never seems to go bad even after a few days. Best recipe I have found for carmel corn and is requested for every card party we have!

  49. sarah

    I have never made this as popcorn before but have used the caramel recipe anytime I need caramel for another baking project and want to make my own. It is very good and so easy to make, I keep coming back to it again and again. Thank you for this easy recipe!

  50. Cathy Johns

    Wish I’d read the reviews first; mine burned too (after about 15 minutes). Fortunately I caught it before it got too bad and lowered the temperature to 250. It was still good enough to give me a belly ache (cuz I couldn’t stop eating it). I’ve made caramel corn for years but this recipe was much easier and quicker and I like the added salt. Keeper. πŸ™‚

  51. E

    This turned out wonderful and full of perfect salty carameliness. Is that a word? I don’t care. Delicious. No burning. No problems. I stopped cooking the caramel at 236* which was about 3 minutes into boiling. I don’t know if that contributed to my good results or not. Just thought I’d mention it. Also, I have an oven thermometer because my oven runs hot. They’re only a few bucks.

  52. Kim Collins

    Hello, I can’t wait to try this! Not sure is this makes a difference or not in cooked caramel on popcorn but, as for just for buttered popcorn you can not use melted margarine as it will shrink the popcorn, you must use real butter. This may be where some are going wrong with the shrinking popcorn, hope this helps!

  53. Heather Stone

    Made this recipe this Christmas for gifts and it was a huge hit. (I kept some for myself, of course). I did change it a bit….same amount of popcorn and made half of the caramel…it worked perfect, although I would have loved the entire bit of caramel sauce, but many of my gift recipients are on diets, so looked a bit less ‘addictive’….they loved it, anyway. Love all your recipes, girl….you’re awesome!

  54. Sandy

    Just made this now, it was wonderful!! Turned out perfect, just the right balance of salty & sweet and crunch. Thank you, definitely a keeper. πŸ™‚

  55. Robin

    Use marshmallows instead of corn syrup. My grandma’s recipe πŸ˜‰ you will have to stir it, but who cares. Yummy Yum yum

  56. Alicia Wilkerson

    3rd and 5th grade huh? Yeah….just wait until that first one goes to college. Salted caramel vodka comes in handy at that point <3

  57. Judy

    Ok, so I have questions… Has anyone ever poured hot butter on popcorn and watched it completely shrivel up. I don’t understand how you can pour boiling hot caramel on popcorn and not have it shrivel up. I would think you have to let it cool before pouring it on the popcorn. Has anyone had a problem with this?

    1. Jen

      Never had a problem with any shrivelling!
      Think because you bake it right away after it prevents that.
      The popcorn is better then any you buy in the store!

    2. Kim

      I was wondering that EXACT same thing! Hot butter always “melted” the kernels…so we’d end up with a bowl of soggy, buttered kernels essentially.

  58. Amanda

    Hey there, I REALLY want to try this recipe but live in Australia, so I wad wondering what I csn substitute for the lihht corn syrup as we don’t have that here in oz ???
    Thanks heaps, Amanda.

  59. Amy Walker

    I followed this recipe but used 1.5 bags of microwave popcorn because I don’t have an air popper. After mixing, placing in the oven and mixing again, I immediately realized I could have used 2 full bags of popcorn. Unfortunately, my 6 year old daughter inhaled the rest of the half bag of popcorn and I only had about a cup left. I added vanilla extract and mixed nuts. It’s delicious and my family went crazy! We will be making this more! Thank you for your recipe!

  60. rob

    I use a little sumac to dampen the sweetness, and vanilla to add to the flavour. I’ve never managed to have leftovers.

  61. Rachael

    Most amazing caramel popcorn recipe I have ever tried, and so simple to boot! I used Orville Redenbacher’s Home Recipe Microwave Popcorn, 2 pop-up bowls worth, and it worked perfectly! Now to hide it from the kids!

  62. Tina

    Great easy recipe! I should have read the notes before I made it! I definitely will be adding peanuts next time!
    If you love Cracker Jack, this is for you!

  63. Denise

    Made this for Super Bowl today. Amazing!!! I’m not always a caramel popcorn fan but this is spot on. I will most definitely be making this again.

  64. Mandy van der Merwe

    Hi… This looks amazing… I’m in South Africa, we don’t have corn syrup… What could I use as a substitute?
    Thanks
    Xxx

    1. Lisa

      Hello Mandy, we were caught in a snow storm and I couldn’t head out to the grocery store to pick up corn syrup so made my own and it turned out fantastic and just takes water, white granulated sugar, cream of tartar and a pinch of salt. Only addition I made to the recipe you will see is a few drops of vanilla extract after I took the mixture off the stove to cool. Candy thermometer is handy so syrup isn’t undercooked/overcooked. Hope this helps. http://www.food.com/recipe/homemade-corn-syrup-substitute-simple-syrup-74080

  65. Shannon Tennison

    I cooked mine for 20 minutes (10 short of the recommended time) and it still turned out burnt. Which was disappointing, seeing as how the mess I had to clean up after all was said and done was horrendous. Next time I’ll only cook it for 15 and add vanilla to the caramel mixture….

  66. Jerry

    This is SOOOOOO good… I used 2 bags of microwave popcorn. (wasn’t sure how this would turn out, but it was fabulous) Tossed in some cashews, almonds and Spanish peanuts. I’ll definitely be making this again. Thanks for the recipe.

      1. Jerry

        Yes Shirley, It was butter flavored and the package said it would pop larger kernels. I’ve made it a second time since… this time using only one bag of popcorn… I’d like to say it was a big mistake, but… it was still YUMMY! Just more candy than popcorn. I’ll go back to 2 bags next time. (I forgot to mention that I’d put in a little vanilla in both batches.) The only problem with this recipe is that I CAN NOT resist it. I put it in gallon plastic zip bags and was continually heading to the kitchen for “just a little more”. I’m thinking of experimenting with a few other “add in’s” next time… Coconut…heath toffee bits…White chocolate chips (at the end of the baking, after it cools a bit)… My mouth is watering! Thanks again for the recipe.

  67. Lisa

    Followed the recipe to the letter; awesome results. Thanks for sharing something so simple and delicious. I have a new “go to” for caramel popcorn. 5+ stars from a family of five!

  68. Barbara Sharp

    i have never made caramel corn, and I would love to try this recipe. One question, though. Most every recipe I have seen calls for baking soda. Is it possible that you have left this ingredient out? Would that make a difference in the baking temp or time, possibly? Thanks for your reply.

  69. Paula B.

    Shelly, I don’t want to thank you because now I have an easy but over the top way to make caramel corn, and no excuses other than the calorie count to deter me…..! Oh boy, am I ever in trouble. And, with another snow “event” on the way, guess who’ll be curled up watching Netflix with a bowl of this???? (Okay, thank you.)

  70. Anna C

    I do have a popper, but whenever I use it, the corn flies all over the place, tried using less popcorn, but still does it.. πŸ™ what can I do?? without having to trying to cover the bowl…..been using a towel over my bowl, but still have flying popcorn…”HELP”
    πŸ™

    I do use a big 12 quart bowl!

  71. Jeanne D

    Looks really good! Do you think a couple of tablespoons of COOKIE BUTTER added in to the brown sugar would work? I just discovered cookie butter and I am obsessed!

  72. Karen Wharram

    I have had a recipe similar to yours with a few twists. I make the Carmel sauce in the microwave in a 4 C. Pitcher bowl, you don’t have to cook on the stove, so about 3 min. on high will get it ready. my recipe has you put 1/2 Tablespoon of baking soda in Carmel mixture after it boils. stir this is key to my recipe. Now to make the simple step. Put your popped popcorn in a brown paper grocery bag and pour the Carmel over the top. shake and microwave on high for 1 minute, Shake, microwave again 1 minute take out and shake again Three times total, pour on 2 cookie sheets to cool. I like the addition of the salt from above recipe and will try that next time.

  73. Jodi

    I just made this during a snowstorm and turned out great!! Only issue I had, was when I poured it out onto parchment paper after baking, I noticed a lot of grease. Not sure why

  74. I just made this caramel corn, I was a little scared because of all the comments about it burning, but I followed the recipe as written, and it turned out perfect, can’t stop eating it, thanks for the wonderful recipe.

  75. Darlene Head

    For those who can’t have Popcorn you can use the No Hulls Popcorn (found on the chip rack at the grocery store) works the same.

  76. Dianne

    Don’t feel bad for crying about your kids going back to school. That just means you’re a good Mother. When my oldest son graduated from high school, I cried for a week straight. Finally he spent his graduation money on a super-soaker (A really dumb purchase I thought) and I realized my boy was still there. Thank you for posting this great recipe. I am trying it out tonight.

  77. hala

    Hi Shelly.

    Me and my kids love salted caramel popcorn too.

    I tried it this way:
    Used a thick pot with a lid for the corn. Don’t have an airpopper. and salted it a bit.
    Melted sugar in another pot, no butter added and poured quickly over salted popcorn and stirred.

    No further baking needed. It will be crunchy enough.

  78. Dan Wahl

    If you whisk in about a teaspoon of baking soda as you take it off the boil, it temporarily swells the mixture to about double the volume, (need a large pot), This added volume makes it easier to spread over everything.

    Also you should consider adding vanilla extract at the end of the boiling cycle. Improves the taste a great deal.

  79. Cathie

    OMG this is delicious! I didn’t have corn syrup so used raw honey–fantastic! I love the baking at the end, adds a nice touch so it’s not so sticky. I did remove the unpopped kernels! Since I’m going ‘healthy’, I will eventually have to try this with my stevia-in-the-raw. It will be interesting!

  80. Denise

    This is amazing. Made two batches tonight. The second batch, I drizzled chocolate on top. Yummy. Going to be making kettle corn tomorrow. Thanks for a great recipe.

  81. Keri

    I have made this recipe twice and each time it has been the hit of the event I took it to. It is amazing! Thanks for the recipe!

  82. Lauren

    I have a random question. What baking sheet are you using when making this recipe? I noticed the sides of baking sheet are raised which is great for this recipe. Thanks in advance.

  83. Sherry

    This is delicious! I made a double batch last Saturday and took it to a party. It was a huge hit! I am going to make more tonight because I am seriously addicted to this caramel corn!

  84. April

    I tried this recipe and I totally love it. Also to my delight I found this recipe works equally well when you replace the brown sugar with white sugar and stir in some coconut flakes. Yum!

  85. Brandi

    This is so good!!! I think ppl missed that you are supposed to stir every 10 minutes- mine came out perfect after about 20 minutes. This was so easy! I didn’t have brown sugar (oddly enough) so I just used pure cane raw sugar-came out great still ???? ty so much

  86. Ann

    I use one cube of butter (half cup)and 1/4 cup corn syrup. If you have a paper grocery bag, pour it in there, close up the top and microwave for 1.5 min, open bag and stir, micro for 30 seconds, stir again, micro for another 30 sec., stir, and micro for a final 30 sec. Tear open bag and let cool. We’ve been eating this since my kids were little, 30+ years ago.

  87. Just made this. Yummy. Was short 1/4 c butter so threw in a T of coconut oil, which worked fine. I only baked mine 15 mins, and since it wasn’t burnt, I called it good! and it was still crispy and yummy and EVIL!!!!

  88. Lee

    I’ve been making caramel corn for years but this is the simplest recipe ever. I like caramel corn to be sticky rather than crispy, therefore I didn’t bake it in the oven. Turned out perfect and just the way I like it so no, you don’t need to bake it. Only problem is, you can’t stop eating it.

  89. Kelly

    Holy schmoly, you’re right! Very good, and very addicting… I really don’t like being in the kitchen that much but I love sweets, and try to avoid buying artificial stuff if I can. This was a very easy and effective recipe. I personally didn’t have corn syrup and was too lazy to go buy some, so I tried subbing maple syrup and it worked beautifully, although it made the caramel sauce a bit sweeter so I used less of the sauce on the popcorn. Thanks for the wonderful recipe! πŸ™‚

  90. lori

    This looks so good! Does it get really crunchy during baking? I’d like to be able to make it and have it be kinda soft & gooey, if I baked it very little or not at all can I achieve that texture? What do you suggest?

  91. I found this on pinterest months and months ago. I have it made it for us, just to have, I have made it for my sons bday party as favors, and Its always a hit. I would love to share this recipe and my process on my blog next month, of course with your permission and all credit and acknowledgment going to you as well as link backs. Please let me know. I am such a fan!

    Thanks,
    Jen C.

  92. Anna

    I absolutely love this recipe! I did make one change though, because the first time I made it, I used 3/4 c. of butter, but that was a lot more greasy than I like, so I make it with 1 stick of butter, or even a bit less. It’s definitely a keeper!

  93. Barbara

    This sounds wonderful. My husband grew up in Argentina. In the summers there was a man who made pop corn flavored with orange marmalade that he sold on the beach. Anyone have an idea how to make it? I thought just add marmalade instead of the brown sugar but when mixed to the popped corn it just gets soggy and does not dry out in the oven!!! Help!

  94. For all of you popcorn aficionados out there try Yoder popcorn from Indiana. I buy it at the factory just south of Shipshewana, IN but you can order it. It is the best popcorn in the world. Better than Orville Reddnbacker, and for me that’s saying a lot. Crisp, sweet, huge pops. Really fabulous.
    I’ve never been able to convince my husband that popcorn is a meal.

  95. Lee

    Have made this now many times. Am the one who doesn’t bake it because I like it soft and sticky rather than crispy. Now have discovered that it keeps a lot longer than three days if kept in a covered container. Fantastic recipe!!

  96. cindy

    Don’t feel bad for missing your kids, I cried on the first day of school for years. This looks like a great recipe to distract though.

  97. nancy

    Do I put the entire sixteen cups in one baking pan? And by baking pan, do you mean like a 9×13 casserole/cake pan with higher height sides…..not like a cookie sheet height?

  98. Maria

    I don’t have an air popper so used a pot with a bit of oil. Worked fine. I wonder if the people whos popcorn burnt in the oven were using 300 celcius instead of farenheit?

  99. Sephora

    hi, this recipe looks wonderful! I was just wondering, is it possible to sub the corn syrup with something else or does the recipe not work without it? thanks!

    1. Rachel

      Putting about 1/4 cup of plain kernels in a paper bag with some olive oil and putting it in the microwave works! I just had to pop the popcorn in 2 batches.

  100. cheryl

    I just made this and it is AWESOME! I added two cups peanuts. So buttery. Thanks so much. I can’t wait for my grandbabies to get here!!

  101. Sylvia

    Help what did I do wrong? When I poured the hot caramel sauce overy the popcorn, the popcorn all shriveled up. Doesn’t look like your picture at all. According to your recipe you just pour over popcorn and stir.

  102. becca

    this looks awesome and very similar to the recipe i used last christmas…thats what everyone got for a present πŸ™‚ ive been trying to find a recipe for buffalo popcorn. I found this gourmet popcorn at the store but i want to make it myself so it isnt as expensive.

  103. Ali Jacobs

    I just made this and when I added the hot caramel sauce to the popcorn, about half the popcorn deflated from the moisture. Any tips on keeping this from happening again? Btw, the recipe turned out super tasty, regardless of the deflated popcorn. πŸ˜‰

  104. Jordan Blo

    Not quite as delicious as this recipe but you can make a tasty caramel/kettle corn with just 2/3 cup brown sugar 2tbsp oil and 2tbsp water. Bring to boil and let go for 3 minutes. I tend to eat the whole recipe in one night so the butter in this salted caramel recipe forces me to share.

  105. Rachel

    Soooo good! Making a double batch to bring to my school party this week since my family ate up a singe batch in two days… πŸ˜‰

  106. Veronica

    Does this need to be eaten right away? If not how would you store this? In a paper bag to avoid it getting soggy?

  107. Carol

    Woo hoo! Can’t wait to try this and put a few spins on it. I am eventually gonna do it with coconut oil or something similar so my vegan daughter can eat it. I just started blogging and as soon as I perfect the vegan version, I’ll do a post about it and give you the credit you deserve for hipping me to this awesomeness! My blog is Crazy Happy Healthy Living. I will comment on here as my blog as soon as I get dressed and get myself together for the day!!! Have a great holiday weekend…

  108. Omg yum!! Turned out delicious. I added mini chocolate chips. Thanks and super easy. Turned out my first time making caramel popcorn! FYI don’t touch the caramel sauce it will totally burn you, so be careful, no sampling till complete.

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  110. Traci Sparks

    I made this for Xmas, and everyone went crazy over it. Thank you for sharing this awesome recipe. I made mine with microwave popcorn. Very good

  111. hd4haja

    Absolutely amazing!!!! I don’t have an air popper, so use a paper sack in the microwave – made 3 batches to get to 16 cups. Used a small saucepan for the caramel sauce…… obviously too small and it boiled over. Then started again with a medium saucepan and it was just the right size. The end result – incredible!! I will make over and over!!

  112. Char

    This recipe is full proof. A friend gave my mother an enormous bag of popcorn, so I decided to give this a try. It does not disappoint. Thank you

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  115. Serena

    Oh my, I love Pinterest for introducing me to your blog and recipe. Just tried my first nibble after the second stir and it’s magical!! So easy too. Thank you very much for sharing!

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  117. Amanda

    Here’s a tip. I always microwave popcorn kernels by using large brown paper bags. 1/4 cup of kernels in the bag. Fold the top over few times and microwave about 2 minutes. Fresh microwave popcorn, no weird chemicals.

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    1. Shelly

      That’s so strange! Have you ever checked the actual temperature your oven cooks at? Sounds like it might have been a little hot… I picked up a cheap oven thermometer and place it in my oven to make sure the temperature is accurate.

  120. Gale

    This is definitely my favorite caramel popcorn recipe. I love sharing it with friends. My granddaughter is spending the weekend with a friend’s parents and asked me to PLEASE make some for her to take along. It’s great at Christmas, too!

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  122. dee

    does the caramel sauce be cooled down before adding to the popcorn? love the stuff but mine shrunk the moment the sauce hits the popcorn and turned soggy even after putting it in the oven. help pls?

    1. Shelly

      I have never had that happen! I add the caramel hot and then bake it up. I am going to guess it’s the popcorn you are using… what type or brand?

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  124. Andrea

    I have made this recipe a few times now and I’ll tell you this is very easy to make and soooo delicious! It’s hard to not eat the whole thing. I would like to add one tip though, after taking it out of the oven after the last 10 minutes be sure to remember to break up the popcorn before it starts to cool. I didn’t do this the first time I made this and when I broke it apart it broke into crumbs instead of remaining nice popped corn.

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  126. Christopher

    Thank you! This was super simple and came out wonderfully! I used a cup of walnut pieces and a cup of toffee peanuts and will be bringing to a NYE party tomorrow (if I don’t eat it all!)!

  127. Alicia

    It started to burn after 10 minutes so it was really dark in color and tasted bitter after 30 minutes. I might try it again and lower the temp.

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  129. Michelle

    I made this. I added peanuts. It was a big hit at a birthday gatheringβ€”all gone! The only problem I had was, even though I turned my gas burner down to β€œ2”, the caramel started smoking at 2.5 minutes, so I stopped cooking it right there and kept the burned part in the pan. The oven part went smoothly.

  130. Michelle

    It is SOOOOO frustrating to look through the 303 comments to see if people who made this have suggestions or problems only to have to wade through HUNDREDS of comments who have never made it but talk about how it β€œlooks” or β€œsounds”! So useless! WHY do people think others want to see that?? It’s just in the way of real, useful information. Aaarrrggghhhh!

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  132. Amy J

    Help! The minute we poured the sauce on the popcorn, it shriveled up right before our eyes! Is it because we used margerine?

    1. Shelly

      i would guess the caramel was a tad too hot? You pour it on hot, but it needs to stop boiling, that’s the only thing I can think!

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