No matter how you pronounce it, caramel is delicious. So for National Caramel Month, we’re jumping on the salty-sweet bandwagon (and bringing you all along for the ride!) with this shareable recipe. Did I mention how incredibly easy these are to make? That’s a win-win situation in my book.
For something that’s essentially burnt sugar, caramel is a versatile and tasty addition to many recipes. The chewy candy has already been paired with one of autumn’s greatest bounties: apples. So of course it makes sense to take that delicious fall corn harvest and cover it with caramel, too!
Cook’s Note: Spraying cooking spray on your hands before forming the popcorn balls will prevent the mixture from sticking to your hands.
Thinking about making your own caramel from scratch? We can help! To make sure your caramel stays sticky but not stuck to your pan, add around 1/4 cup of water per cup of sugar when cooking. This will slow the boiling process, giving you more control over your candies. Feel free to experiment with the caramel flavors you use in this recipe. Something about bacon-caramel popcorn balls sounds AMAZING.
If you’re looking to save yourself a few calories, try air-popping your popcorn instead of using store-bought or instant microwave popcorn. Season with butter substitute and salt before covering it with just a bit of caramel.
- 25 caramel candies, unwrapped
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1 Tbsp unsalted butter
- 3 cups mini marshmallows
- 10 cups salted plain popped popcorn
- 2 oz milk chocolate
- 2 tsp coarse sea salt
- Cooking spray
Melt the caramel candies with the heavy cream and butter in a medium-size saucepan on low heat, stirring often. Add the marshmallows and, stirring often, heat until they're completely melted.
Place the popcorn in a large bowl and pour the caramel mixture on top. Working quickly, using a rubber spatula that has been sprayed with cooking spray, gently fold the caramel mixture into the popcorn. Immediately, spray your hands with cooking spray and form the popcorn balls into the size of golf balls.
Place them on a nonstick cookie sheet to cool.
Meanwhile, fill a small saucepan with an inch of water and bring it to a boil. Place the chocolate in a small bowl and then melt it over the boiling water. Drizzle the chocolate on top of the popcorn balls with a teaspoon. Then, sprinkle the sea salt on top.