Homemade Caramel Corn Recipe

This caramel corn recipe is a favorite treat! An heirloom recipe from my Grandmother, caramel corn just doesn’t get any better!

Caramel corn was always a favorite growing up. The smell of popcorn popping and caramel cooking made our house was warm and comforting. We never were able to help our Mother stir the caramel or mix it in the popcorn. It was much too hot for us to help with that part of the process. But I remember my sister and I sitting on the stools in the kitchen watching intently as Mother mixed up this delectable snack. It was like magic.

I’d forgotten all about her homemade caramel corn until the other day when my husband came home with a bag he’d ordered from Little Buddy for his Cub Scout fundraiser. Friends came by and before I knew it, the bag of caramel corn was empty. My husband had barely gotten any of what I learned that day was his favorite popcorn.


I mixed up a batch of homemade caramel corn and had it cooling when my husband came home from work yesterday. The look on his face made me feel like I’d worked a bit of magic myself.

Here’s how I made it.

Preheat oven to 200 degrees and go ahead and tear off some parchment paper to pour your popcorn on later.

Pop popcorn and set aside in a large roasting pan. Be sure not to add oil, butter, or salt. I use an air popper and basic popping corn.

Place butter, sugar, Karo syrup, and salt in large sauce pan over medium heat. Stir consistently until reaches a full boil. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and baking soda.

Pour over popcorn.

Stir well until all of the popcorn pieces are well-coated.

Bake in preheated oven for about 15 minutes.

Remove from oven and pour onto parchment paper to cool.

Serve immediately or store in airtight containers for up to two days.

Here’s Grandmother’s Homemade Caramel Corn Recipe. I hope you love it!

Yield: 12

Homemade Caramel Corn Recipe

Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
This caramel corn recipe is a favorite treat! An heirloom recipe from my Grandmother, caramel corn just doesn't get any better!
Did you make this recipe?


  • 3 quarts popped popcorn no salt, no butter
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 cups brown sugar packed
  • 1/2 cup Karo syrup
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda


  1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees.
  2. Pour popcorn into large roasting pan.
  3. Combine butter, brown sugar, Karo syrup and salt in large sauce pan.
  4. Cook over medium heat until begins to boil.
  5. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and baking soda.
  6. Pour over popcorn and mix until well-combined.
  7. Place in preheated oven and cook for 30 minutes.
  8. Remove from oven and pour onto waxed paper to cool for approximately 15 minutes.
  9. Serve immediately or store into airtight containers.

All images and text © Robyn Stone for Add a Pinch


Did you have a favorite snack that was like magic when you were growing up?

8 comments on “Homemade Caramel Corn Recipe”

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention Homemade Caramel Corn Recipe -- Topsy.com

  2. Nice one, Robyn! Not only was caramel popcorn one of my childhood favorites too — both CrackerJacks and homemade — but I must admit that I still make it pretty often. Usually at times when I have absolutely no business doing so, such as a couple of hours after a good solid dinner. Love your ever so tempting recipe!

  3. Yum! We made some Caramel Corn last Christmas for gifts. We all loved it!
    Thanks for sharing your recipe!

  4. Wowzers. That is sure to be a family favorite at my house!

  5. Hi I don’t have any karo syrup or corn syrup as its not readily available in australia. What can I use instead? Or will it work without it?

    • The corn syrup is used in this recipe to prevent crystallization of the caramel in the recipe. You can omit it from making the caramel, but it most likely will leave your caramel a bit grainy. It shouldn’t be a major issue on the caramel corn.

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