Homemade Caramel Corn for the Big Game

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Making homemade caramel corn is easy and quick and it’s perfect for that Big Game! All you need is popcorn, butter and sugar to make a delicious snack.

big game

It’s that time of year when football season is, sadly, coming to an end.  But that also means it’s time to throw a fun party for the big game! My husband starts planning our party for the big game about six months ahead of time.  There is much discussion about food, of course.

Big Game

I usually put out a nice set of snacks for the first half of the game and then serve hot food during half-time.  At the snack table we always have chips and dip and veggies and dip.  This year we decided to do chips and dip with homemade caramel corn as part of our snack spread.

homemade caramel corn

After finalizing the menu with my husband, I headed to Smart & Final to pick up our supplies.  Smart & Final is a great place to do a one stop shop for  everything I needed for our party from napkins to popcorn.  Smart & Final carries warehouse size items and regular size items without a club fee, making shopping easy, less expensive and less daunting to shop in than a big warehouse store!  I was able to buy bulk sizes of Simply Value napkins, forks, spoons, and plates at great prices.  I also spied these Simply Value brown paper lunch bags and thought they’d be great for snacking on caramel corn during the game.

homemade caramel corn

Caramel corn is surprisingly easy to make.  It’s just a matter of popping some popcorn, making the topping and then letting it bake for awhile in the oven.   All you need is about an hour and you will have a sweet snack ready to go.  Someday I’m planning to play around with some other toppings like nuts and chocolate!  You start with 16 cups of plain popcorn.  I used 1/2 cup of popcorn kernels in my air popper and got just under 16 cups and called it good.

homemade caramel corn

Then you make your caramel mixture on the the stove.  Once the caramel is ready to go, coat the popcorn in it by stirring it on.  Bake the sheet in the oven for an hour.  You can make the caramel corn ahead of time or take this time to set up your big game snack spread.

homemade caramel corn

I have these really cute containers to hold napkins and paper plates for the spread, but I have no idea where I put them.  Somewhere really safe! So I decided to use the Simply Value lunch bags to corral the napkins but cutting off the top half. It works great!

caramel corn

When the caramel is done cooking, break it apart.  Fill up a few Simply Value lunch bags for guests to pick up and snack on during the big game!

Homemade Caramel Corn
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 stick butter
  • ¼ cup honey (or corn syrup)
  • A pinch of salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 16 cups of popped popcorn (approximately ½ cup un-popped popcorn kernels, popped in an air popper)
  1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees.
  2. Put popcorn in a very, very large bowl.
  3. Measure out salt and baking soda in to a small bowl and set aside.
  4. Get out a jelly roll or rimmed baking sheet and set aside.
  5. In a saucepan, bring the brown sugar, butter and honey to a boil, stirring constantly.
  6. Once the mixture is boiling, continue to stir continuously for 5 minutes.
  7. Turn off heat and add baking soda and salt.
  8. Quickly pour mixture over the popcorn and stir well to coat the popcorn in the caramel.
  9. Pour popcorn on to the large baking sheet (I put parchment or a baking mat down in case the honey sticks but have never had a problem).
  10. Bake at 200 degrees for 1 hour.
  11. Take the cookie sheet out of the oven and quickly begin breaking apart the popcorn. The caramel will harden as it cools and if you don’t break the popcorn apart, you’ll have popcorn balls or sheets.


Hello! Welcome to Growing Up Gabel - I am so glad you are here! I am a wife and homeschooling mom to my two young kids. This is the place where I share recipes, crafts and other DIY projects. I hope you will follow me on Facebook, Pinterest or Twitter! Just use the icons at the top of the page!

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  1. I like Carmel corn but can I use a bag or two of microwave corn since I don’t have an air popper. How important is it to have season/oil free popcorn to make a successful batch.

    • I’ve only made it with plain popcorn, but I would think it would be fine with butter or seasonings on it. It just may change the flavor a bit. Microwave popcorn is just fine, though!

  2. We just love Caramel Corn, this is a great recipe. Thanks for helping us celebrate Three Years at Full Plate Thursday. Hope you have a great week and come back soon!
    Miz Helen
    Miz Helen recently posted..Man CookiesMy Profile

  3. mmmmm good – thanks for sharing!
    Antionette Blake recently posted..Weekend Wind-Down Party #WWDPartyMy Profile

  4. Hi Camille :-) I love this, my mom used to make caramel corn balls growing up and this looks like a great recipe as well! This is a perfect game day munchie!
    Cathy recently posted..Minestrone SoupMy Profile

  5. How cute are those paper bags? I love caramel popcorn and never once thought to try and make it at home. This is so perfect for the Big Game… or any game.
    Carolyn West recently posted..Henna TattoosMy Profile

  6. This looks great and so easy to make! We definitely love caramel popcorn and I can’t wait to make it at home. Pinning :)

  7. I think my boyfriend would go nuts with joy if I were to do this! I think I will do it. He adores caramel corn!
    Liz recently posted..New York Style Snacks – Easy Party AppetizersMy Profile

  8. Yummy! That looks so good and perfect for a gathering!
    Kristin Wheeler ( recently posted..HEALTHY ESSENTIALS® to Live Your Best! #Moms4JNJConsumer #sponsoredMy Profile

  9. Oh yummy. This is a great alternative to shelling out money for Crunch N Munch.
    Tonia recently posted..Start the New Year with Brand New Styles: M By Staples Arc NotebookMy Profile

  10. That is the perfect game day snack. I like how you put it in grab and go bags.
    Angela recently posted..Catch a Falling Star #RememberWhenMy Profile

  11. I totally need to make this. My sister-in-law made some for the holidays and it was fantastic! Your looks delicious!
    Jenn recently posted..Personal Safety App by React MobileMy Profile

  12. Yum, this looks so delicious.

  13. I love caramel corn..thank you very much for sharing this. :)

  14. I’m not a big popcorn fan, but I Love Caramel corn. I guess I just love anything sweet!
    Thanks for sharing! New linky follower!
    Melissa recently posted..Three Little Love Birds for my Love Bugs!My Profile

  15. Yummy! Luv caramel popcorn! I now Follow you via Linky Followers. I’d appreciate a visit when you have a moment. Have a Great Weekend!

    ~ Jill
    Jill recently posted..February Extreme Cash #Giveaway!My Profile

  16. I love caramel corn, especially when the caramel is chewy! Thanks so much for join in the linky followers fest! So happy to have you!
    Summer recently posted..Guest Post: Michelle FromThe Momma Bird & A GiveawayMy Profile


  1. […] corn is easy and quick and it’s perfect for that Big Game! Check out Camille’s recipe here and see how she utilizes Simply Value paper products for her Big Game […]

  2. [...] If you don’t relish the thought of getting sticky, I’d suggest heading over to the homemade caramel corn recipe instead because making popcorn balls is one messy,but fun, [...]

  3. [...] Growing Up Gabel shares a recipe for Homemade Caramel Corn. [...]

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