These caramel puff corns are a highly addictive snack that is ideal for the holidays. Enjoy salty and sweet flavors. Perfect for holiday gifting and get-togethers
Our family loves this treat, so we always make a double batch. So when I ask my family if I should use 1 or 2 bags of puff corn, they always say 2 bags is always better because this stuff disappears very easily. The buttery, salt, and sweetness of this snack are what I think to make it so addictive. I can never stop at just a few pieces, even though I always tell myself I’m going to.
What is Puff Corn?
You might wonder what puffed caramel corn is. In Canada, this is available in our grocery stores and convenience stores. The puffed corn I use for this recipe is an Old Dutch brand; another brand is Chester’s puffcorn.
Puff corn is a snack that is baked under a certain amount of pressure; the high pressure causes the dough to “puff,” and you have a great salty snack just on its own.
Why Carmel puff corn is better than caramel corn
Well, let’s be honest, they are both delicious, and if I’m offered caramel corn, I’m definitely not going to say no, and if you really want to, you can say that caramel corn is a little healthier because of the popcorn, but I don’t think anyone actually eats it to say it’s healthy.
I find caramel puff corn a lot easier to make than caramel corn because you don’t have to spend the time popping your popcorn, and then there is the trouble of some of your kernels not popping and having to make sure they don’t go into your caramel popcorn mix.
Plus, puff corn has a little bit of a salty taste to it, which helps balance the sweetness from the caramel, so if you’re like me and love the combination of sweet and salty, this is definitely the recipe for you.
Ingredients to make Caramel Puff Corn
- Puff Corn, You want to make sure you are using just the regular butter-flavored puff corn.
- Butter It is important to use real butter. For this recipe, do not substitute margarine. It will sometimes cause the caramel to separate, and you don’t want that here.
- Brown Sugar This can be dark or light brown sugar; I usually have a light on hand, so that is what I use. Both taste great.
- Light Corn Syrup Using this will make sure that the caramel will stay together through the heating process.
- Baking Soda When the baking soda is added to the other ingredients, you end up with a foamy mixture, which is exactly what you want.
How to make Caramel Puff Corn
- Melt the butter and the sugar until smooth.
- Corn Syrup Combine everything and bring to a simmer before removing from the heat.
- Baking Soda When you add the baking soda, it will begin to bubble and foam; this is normal and what we want.
- Coat the corn Put this on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet; this is the best way to go.
- Bake at 250 low and slow is the best way for this recipe, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.
- Cool, I like to do this on parchment paper on the table.
Tips for making the best caramel puff corn
- Keep your eyes on the caramel Once your sugar mixture starts to boil, you want to keep a close eye on it. (It can burn easily, so you want to whisk frequently once it starts to boil.
- Parchment Paper Using parchment paper saves me a lot of time and makes cleanup much easier. Having to clean dried caramel off of a cookie sheet is not fun.
- Bake and Stir Stirring occasionally through the baking process help to make sure that all the pieces are evenly coated and that they all dry properly. It is fine if you only stir it once or twice during the baking time, but I recommend stirring it every 15 minutes if possible.
How to Make Caramel Puff Corn
- 10 cup puff corn 175 g
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 1 cup brown sugar packed
- ½ cup corn syrup
- 1 tsp baking soda
- Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.
- Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and spread popcorn twists over top. Set aside.
- In a large saucepan, heat butter, brown sugar and corn syrup over medium-high heat, whisking often, until it reaches a boil
- Boil and stir 2 minutes, then add baking soda. It will foam up — continue cooking and whisking for 1-2 minutes until foam settles down slightly.
- Pour caramel over popcorn and stir to coat evenly. Bake for 45 minutes, stirring every 10-15 minutes.
- Remove from the oven, let cool for 5-10 minutes and then break into smaller pieces as desired. Store in an air tight container or Ziploc bag 1-2 weeks.