Caramel Corn – Easy, Chewy, Homemade Recipe: After the caramel is cooked on the stovetop, just toss it with the popcorn and let dry! No oven or baking needed!
Caramel Corn Recipe
Each year when the temps lower to…oh… say 40 degrees or so, I start craving all the winter goodies. Lattes, peppermint sweets, sugar cookies, and well… just about anything not good for me. Caramel corn is one of those winter staples that I begin craving like crazy.
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I remember making caramel corn as a kiddo with my parents, and I thought it was one of the coolest things ever. Now, I can make caramel corn with my kids and make our own memories!
Easy Caramel Corn Recipe
With only using a few ingredients, you can make this super easy caramel corn at home too. Here are the every day ingredients you’ll be using…
- Popped Popcorn
- Light Brown Sugar
- Vanilla Extract
- Baking Soda
Full printable recipe card and instructions below!
CHEWY Caramel Corn, Not “Crunchy”
Now, this caramel corn recipe is SO much different than what you buy at the store.
It’s a chewy (not soggy) caramel corn, rather than hard crunchy caramel corn that you may be used to/expecting.
But the BEAUTIFUL thing about this caramel corn is that it lets you encapsulate (yeah, that’s the only word I could think of at the moment for some reason) the butter and vanilla. Really, it’s amazing.
That heavenliness above makes this caramel corn the absolute best.
Homemade Popcorn in the Microwave
To make your own popcorn (instead of using microwaveable bags, or going to the trouble of popping in oil, etc.) you should check out my homemade popcorn recipe to see how we make it with brown paper bags! So easy.
However, instead of buttering/seasoning like I did over there with that recipe, only pop the corn and head back over here to finish it off with the caramel sauce.
Easy Chewy Caramel Corn Recipe
- 8 cups Popped Popcorn
- 1 cup butter
- 1 cup light brown sugar
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt or to taste (We like to use kosher salt.)
- Make plain popcorn by following THIS RECIPE or using store bought, and place in large mixing bowl.
- Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat.
- Add brown sugar and salt and stir until mixed.
- Bring the butter and sugar mixture up to a boil, stirring consistently.
- When it begins to boil, stop stirring and allow it to cook for 5 minutes, but after 4 minutes add vanilla and stir to mix.
- Continue to boil for one more minute and then add the baking soda, stir until mixed in.
- Grab the bowl of popcorn and drizzle the caramel sauce over the top. Using a spatula or wooden spoon, gently stir until all the popcorn is covered with the sauce.
- Pour the popcorn out and spread out onto a flat surface to allow cooling. (i.e cookie sheet, wax paper, etc.)
Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutritional content will vary with brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes and more.
This caramel corn is such a treat in our house. But I really have to limit myself and just “walk away” at some point, or I’ll make myself SICK eating all of it.
When it cools, if you have some left over after snacking (which has NEVER happened in our house), store in an airtight container.
But we prefer it warm, and fresh.
Can You Bake This Caramel Popcorn?
I’m sure you can. I may actually try it sometime just in case other’s prefer more of a crunch type of caramel corn.
But really, it’s hard to stray from this trusty goodness.
However, if you want to bake it, I’d try a low oven temp (say around 200 degrees or so) and bake it for 15 minutes, give/take, to see if it has reached your desired level of crunchiness.
If not, toss/stir the popcorn and add an additional 20 minutes of bake time. Do this until it reaches the “crunch” that you like. (An hour of bake time is pretty common in other caramel corn recipes.)
Thank you so much for coming by! Enjoy your caramel corn, and let me know when it’s ready. I’ll be right there…
More Easy Dessert and Snacking Recipes
If you’re on the hunt for more desserts and sweet snacks, then you’ll love these trusty, easy recipes!