Caramel Cheddar Popcorn

Caramel Cheddar Popcorn

There’s a sweet and salty allure to eating caramel corn and Cheddar popcorn in the same bite, but popcorn purists can keep the two flavors separate. Either way, a giant tin of homemade fancy popcorn is the gift that everyone wants and no one thinks to ask for. And it’s a lot less expensive to make yourself than it is to buy. The popcorn will last stored airtight at room temperature for up to two weeks.
  • Serves: 6 persons



  1. Step 1

    Heat oven to 250 degrees, and line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Step 2

    Make caramel popcorn: Place popcorn in a very large mixing bowl. In a medium pot, bring brown sugar, butter and corn syrup to a boil. Cook, stirring constantly, until butter and sugar have melted (the mixture should be foamy), about 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in salt and vanilla. Remove from heat, and stir in baking soda. (Mixture should bubble up.)
  3. Step 3

    Immediately pour hot syrup over the popcorn and use a spatula or large spoon to mix it well. Scrape popcorn onto the prepared baking sheets in one layer. Bake until crisp, rotating the pan and tossing popcorn after 15 minutes, 20 to 30 minutes total. To test for doneness, carefully remove a piece of the popcorn, let it cool for 30 seconds or so, then take a bite; if it’s crisp, it’s done. Set aside to cool.
  4. Step 4

    While the caramel popcorn is in the oven, prepare the Cheddar popcorn: In a mixing bowl, whisk together the Cheddar and mustard powders and salt.
  5. Step 5

    Place popcorn in a very large mixing bowl. Pour melted butter on top of popcorn and toss to combine. Sprinkle Cheddar mixture over popcorn and toss well using a rubber spatula. If the mixture looks dry, add a little more melted butter.
  6. Step 6

    Pour popcorn onto the second prepared baking sheet in one layer. Bake until dry, about 5 to 10 minutes, rotating the pan and tossing popcorn halfway through. Let cool completely.
  7. Step 7

    Combine Cheddar and caramel popcorn, or keep them separate, and pack them into tins, jars or bags.