Of course, Nino’s caramel corn is fresh and an amazing treat, but if you are in the mood to experiment and show your culinary skills making your own caramel corn is a good start. Generally speaking, the recipe isn’t complicated or unique. What matters is the quality of the ingredients and the amount of caramel added to the popcorn. Too little and it’s a waste; too much and it’s a mess.
Lastly, while you can cook this sauce mixture a little longer (about 10 minutes) and then pour it over your popped corn, stir it and be done with it, we recommend that you cook it less (5 minutes) before baking it. It will come out more evenly coated, lighter, and, well, just better.
With that said, here’s my recipe:
Makes about 4 quarts or 8 servings
4 Quarts Popped Corn
½ Cup Salted Plugra® Butter
1 Cup Light Brown Sugar
½ Cup Clear Corn Syrup
½ tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
½ tsp Sea Salt
- Pre-heat your oven to 250 F. Yes, 250 F.
- Pop the corn, remove any unpopped kernels, and then place the popcorn in a roasting pan (with a 2” lip), which has been sprayed with non-stick vegetable spray.
- Place the popped corn into the oven to keep warm while you make your caramel sauce.
- In a medium-sized saucepan over medium-high heat, place the brown sugar, butter, corn syrup and salt. Bring this mixture to a boil, and stir for about 5 minutes.
- Remove the mixture from the heat and stir in the vanilla and the baking soda. The baking soda is important because it will make the caramel lighter and crisper and easier to eat.
- Remove the popped corn from the oven and pour the hot sauce over the popped corn while stirring and folding it in to coat evenly.
- Place the coated popcorn in the oven and bake for 45 minutes at 250 F, stirring once every 15 minutes.
- Remove the baked caramel corn from the oven, and turn out onto a foil sheet sprayed once again with non-stick vegetable spray.
- Allow to cool. Break apart into smaller clusters, and store in an air-tight container.