Sweet and crunchy, this caramel corn is so easy to make at home. You’ll find yourself baking batch after addicting batch. It’s a great make-ahead recipe for a party or guests and can easily be doubled.
- 10 cups (100g) air-popped popcorn*
- 1 cup (200g) packed light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup (80g) light corn syrup
- 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter
- 1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar*
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- Preheat the oven to 200°F (93°C). Spread the popcorn out onto 2 large baking sheets. Set aside.
- Combine the sugar, corn syrup, butter, cream of tartar, and salt in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir constantly as the butter melts and mixture comes to a boil. Boil, without stirring, for 4-5 minutes. (If you have a candy thermometer, the mixture should be 234°F-235°F (112-113°C). Remove from the heat and quickly stir in the baking soda. Caramel will be foamy and frothy. Pour the caramel over the popcorn and stir gently until all the kernels are coated.
- Bake for 1 hour, stirring every 20 minutes. Allow to cool on the pan and break apart large clusters if desired. Cover the popcorn tightly once cooled.
- Make Ahead Instructions: This caramel corn stays fresh for up to 2 weeks in an airtight container, so it’s a great recipe to make ahead of time!
- Popcorn: If you do not have a popcorn maker at home, you can simply add 3 tablespoons of popcorn kernels to a brown paper bag. Seal the bag tightly by folding over the top. Microwave the popcorn for approximately 1 minute, 45 seconds on High, or up to 2 minutes, depending on your microwave. This method will make 5 cups, so you’ll have to do it twice. Alternatively, you can use natural-style microwave popcorn that has no butter added to it.
- Cream of Tartar: Prevents crystallization as the caramel cooks. If you’re all out, you can make the caramel corn without it. Just know that its acidity helps to prevent crystals from forming in your caramel. Corn syrup does the same job too.
Keywords: caramel corn, homemade caramel corn