If you have been looking for the perfect home movie snack, then this recipe is for you! This sweet and salty Popcorn snack is quick and easy and will not disappoint.
This Bacon Caramel Popcorn is the perfect blend of sweet and salty. Perfect for parties, a snack, or even dessert!
Sweet and Salty Popcorn
I am a lover of snacks and more specifically a lover of popcorn. Coat it with butter, top it with cheese, or toss it with some spices, any way you make it, I am in love. Make it sweet and salty though, I nearly lose my mind.
That flavor combination has been a winner for me every since I was a kid. I remember getting caramel popcorn balls as party favors or at a fair and tearing through them at breakneck speed. I find that combo absolutely addictive.
When I was thinking about making a snack for a movie at home recently, that snack came to mind. I knew I wanted that nostalgic flavor, but I wanted to give it a little twist and I couldn’t help but think bacon might amp it up a bit.
Let’s be honest bacon makes everything better. Salty coupled with the sweet, creamy caramel over crunchy popcorn puts the perfect new spin on an old favorite. This one is a sticky concoction that is truly finger-licking good.
What You’ll Need
- Popped popcorn– Grab a big bag of pre-popped popcorn or pop your own. Four quarts sounds like a lot, but is actually just 16 cups, which after you add caramel too, will reduce in density even more.
- Light brown sugar– Or if you desire more deep, rich molasses flavor, use dark brown sugar.
- Light corn syrup– This helps the caramel stay soft and pliable instead of creating a hard candy coating.
- Unsalted butter– If using salted butter, omit the additional salt topping and make sure the pre-popped corn is salt-free.
- Baking soda– The secret ingredient to perfect caramel corn sauce.
- Vanilla extract– To balance the flavors.
- Bacon– Cooked and roughly chopped, I prefer thick-cut bacon with a little smoke on it, but you can use whatever is in the fridge or whatever strikes your fancy at the store.
- Mini chocolate chips- I felt the little ones distributed better throughout the mixture. Regular size will work perfectly too, as will peanut butter or caramel chips. Or leave them out all together.
- Fleur de sel – Optional, but nice for an even salt flavor and crunch.
How to Make Bacon Caramel Popcorn
- Preheat the oven and line a large-rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper. These aren’t necessary, but help with the clean-up with such a sticky sauce.
- In a large, heavy bottom saucepan over medium heat, combine the brown sugar, corn syrup and butter, stirring constantly, until it starts to lightly bubble. A heavy bottom pan is best for distributing heat and preventing scalding.
- Keep it consistent at a low boil/simmer for 5 minutes, without stirring. Remove from the heat and stir in the baking soda and vanilla. It might spit and bubble, this is normal.
- Spread the popcorn onto the prepared baking sheet and pour the syrup over top, tossing gently.
- Bake for 35 minutes, which helps to seal it onto the popcorn.
- Remove and sprinkle the top with bacon, returning to the oven and cooking for another 5 minutes to marry it all together. Remove and allow to cool fully.
- After the popcorn has cooled, sprinkle with mini chocolate chips and fleur de sel, if desired. You can sprinkle with the chocolate chips straight from the oven, but they will get a little melty. Not the worst thing, just a little different.
This should be made and eaten on the same day which I seriously doubt will be a problem. Bacon Caramel Popcorn is also a great party favor, potluck item or party munchie.
You can save it in an airtight container or paper bag, but the popcorn can get a little soggy from the caramel sauce.
More easy best dessert recipes:
- Apple Cinnamon Popcorn
- Dulce de Leche Dessert Panini
- Caramel Apple Poke Cake
- Balsamic Strawberry Parfaits
- Cherry Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Rolo Cookies
Bacon Caramel Popcorn
- Preheat the oven to 250° and line a large-rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.
- In a large, heavy bottom saucepan over medium heat, combine the brown sugar, corn syrup and butter, stirring constantly, until it starts to lightly bubble.
- Keep it consistent at a low boil for 5 minutes, without stirring. Remove from the heat and stir in the baking soda and vanilla.
- Spread the popcorn onto the prepared baking sheet and pour the syrup over top, tossing gently to coat.
- Bake for 35 minutes. Remove and sprinkle the top with bacon, returning to the oven and cooking for another 5 minutes.
- Remove and allow to cool fully.
- After cool, sprinkle with mini chocolate chips and fleur de sel, if desired.
- If you've tried this recipe, come back and let us know how it was in the comments or star ratings.