Caramel corn is one of my favorite treats, especially at holiday time. I love the deep caramelized corny flavors that make my mouth sing when enjoying a nice handful or two. Making your own caramel corn is a fun way to celebrate the holidays and share some of your homemade talents with your family and friends. In this recipe, I add a few holiday spices and nuts to the traditional caramel corn recipe, which makes it much more festive at Christmastime.
Making your own caramel corn doesn’t take a lot of effort. Most of your time is spent peering through the oven door, while your caramel corn dries out in a low oven. Just remember this is homemade caramel corn, so every piece won’t be coated perfectly, like that manufactured stuff, but the flavors are out of this world.
12 cups popped corn
1 cup smoked almonds
1 cup whole cashews
1 cup roasted peanuts
2 cups brown sugar
2 sticks butter
1/2 cup light corn syrup
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cloves
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Pop your popcorn either by air popper, microwave or stove top, pour into a large bowl. Add the nuts.
2. In a saucepan over medium heat, add the brown sugar, butter, corn syrup, vanilla, salt, cinnamon cloves, nutmeg and allspice. When the mixture comes to a boil, cook for another 5 minutes, then remove from the heat.
3. Pour the mixture over the popcorn and stir & toss to coat, quickly. Watch your fingers, it’s hot!
4. Pour the popcorn out onto 2 sheet pans. Place in the oven for 1 hour, alternating racks every 15 minutes.
5. Remove the popcorn from the oven and allow to cool for 45 minutes. When cool, break the popcorn apart with your fingers and place in a sealed canister or jar. Enjoy!