Ok, here is the thing. There are just a handful of sweet treats, not many but just a select few, that I just can’t stop once I start.
I cant be left alone with them for fear of an extreme tummy ache and a night full of regret…..ok ok ok, maybe not regret but definitely a belly ache. 🙂 Caramel corn is one of those few. I can’t with it. But I can. It’s addicting, I have no self-control, I can’t stop, and I am not sorry about it!
This is what gets me, the salty sweet combo. We can all stop right there. No more explanation will be needed.
I more often than not nowadays crave salty crunchy things rather than sweets. But see here is the thing with homemade caramel corn, it is the best of both worlds. Sweet but balanced with a salty finish. It is crunchy on the outside but sticky chewy on the inside. It is a perfect blend and marriage of all flavors and it gets me on a different level.
So much so that my mom, sister and I made tubs full for our wedding. Who needs party favors when you can go home with paper bags full of caramel corn served right out of our childhood wagon? I mean it was pretty much perfect.
This year I gave the classic recipe a sophisticated upgraded. Dressed it up with a little more salt in the caramel, tossed in crunchy toasted pecans and a drizzle of dark chocolate that perfectly melts in your mouth as you eat it. I didn’t think this recipe could get any better but by all means, it has!
Homemade caramel corn isn’t as daunting as it sounds. It all starts with plain popcorn. I highly recommend a Whirlypop! Say bye bye to burnt popcorn pieces and unpopped kernels. This pot makes the best popcorn of all time and it will quickly become one of your most loved kitchen toys.
Then comes homemade caramel which is easier to make than you think. Brown sugar, butter, and salt boiled until bubbly. Pour over popcorn & pecans, toss until coated. Bake in a low temp oven for an hour to help dry the sticky exterior out. Finish with a drizzle of dark coco, let dry and dig in!
This is perfect to bring to your holiday parties! It makes great hostess gifts and easily packaged for a homemade present to any friend, neighbor, boss or family! You will be raved about for the next year and it will become expected and requested from now on! 🙂 Happy holiday baking kickoff! Be sure to send me all your Loaded Salted Caramel Corn pictures!
- 2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil
- 1.5 Teaspoons Salt
- ½ Cup Popcorn Kernels
- 1 Cup Brown Sugar
- ½ Cup Butter
- ¼ Cup Light Corn Syrup
- 1 Teaspoon Salt
- ½ Teaspoon Baking Soda
- 1 Cup Pecans
- 4oz Dark Chocolate
- Preheat oven to 200 degrees.
- In a whirly pop, large pot or any popcorn maker you have, add in coconut oil, 1 teaspoon of salt and popcorn kernels. Turn the burner on high and constantly keep the kernels moving. Once the kernels start popping turn the heat off and wait until the popping slows down. Immediately pour into a large bowl.
- Add pecans to bowl with popcorn.
- In a heavy-bottomed pot add in brown sugar, butter, ½ teaspoon salt & corn syrup over medium heat. Stir occasionally. Cook for 5 minutes once the mixtures start to boil, keeping a close eye on it.
- After 5 minutes, or when the color starts to darken and the aroma of caramel is strong, take off the heat and add in baking soda.
- Stir until the caramel turns a lighter color and immediately pour over the popcorn and pecans.
- With a pair of tongs or 2 wooden spoons, mix popcorn mixture until all kernels are evenly coated with caramel.
- On a baking sheet spread out caramel corn. Place in preheated oven and bake for 1 hour, stirring 2-3 during the hour.
- Remove from oven and let cool slightly.
- In a glass bowl melt dark chocolate. Use a spoon and drizzle over caramel corn. Let it sit out to cool and harden then break into chunks.
- Store in gallon size ziplock bags for 3-4 days or in a freezer for up to 6 months.