I'm going to confess something right now: I am COMPLETELY addicted to popcorn. It's got to be my most favorite snack. I love it plain, salty, buttery, sweet, cheesy...it doesn't matter how it's prepared, I can eat bowls and bowls of it at any given time!! So, when I saw this recipe for Cinnamon Bun Popcorn floating around Pinterest, I had to make it!
A couple of Christmases ago, my mother gave my family a good old fashioned Orville Redenbacher hot air popcorn popper. This totally changed our lives! I literally threw out every package of microwave popcorn I had (microwave popcorn is full of chemicals) and went online to find some super yummy, gourmet kernels! The website Nuts.com is amazing! This recommendation is 100% unsolicited...it is just me, sharing with you, my love of the most delicious popcorn I have ever eaten! They sell about 10 varieties of kernels (as well as a million other snack foods).....I have tried every single kind! My family's favorite kernel are by far the mushroom kernels! They produce the largest, fluffiest popcorn I have ever tasted. I am NOT exaggerating when I tell you that we eat through a 5 lb bag of kernels every three months.
Okay, so, why am I telling you all this? Just get to the recipe already, you say! I figured now would be a good time to share my love of my air popper with you, since this is a popcorn recipe after all, ! And to also say that of course, I used fresh kernels to make this delicious cinnamon bun popcorn. Okay, so on to the recipe......
WOW is this decadently sweet popcorn beyond delicious! I just made it for a party I'm hosting tonight and I can't stop munching on it! It was very easy to make, too! The recipe comes from straight from the blog Make Yourself Right at Home. (I'm stepping off my popcorn platform now....) Enjoy!
12 C popped popcorn (about 1/2 C kernels)
1 C pecan halves, roughly chopped
1 C brown sugar
3/4 t cinnamon
1/4 C karo syrup (or honey makes a good substitution)
1 stick real butter (1/2 C)
1/2 t baking soda
3 squares almond bark (about 4 oz)
Preheat oven to 250 degrees
Place popcorn and chopped pecans in a large bowl and set aside.
Combine brown sugar and cinnamon in a 2 liter capacity microwave safe bowl. Mix well. Chop butter into chunks and place on top of sugar mixture. Pour corn syrup over the top of everything. Microwave on high for 30 seconds and then stir to combine. Return to microwave and heat for 2 minutes. Remove and stir and then microwave for 2 minutes more.
Remove from microwave and add in vanilla and baking soda. Stir to combine. Mixture will foam and rise. Pour caramel mixture over popcorn and pecans and stir very well so everything is well coated.
Spread popcorn mixture onto a foil-lined jelly roll pan. Place in oven and bake for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.
Remove from oven and spread out on a large piece of parchment, waxed paper, or foil.
Melt almond bark according to package instructions. Drizzle over popcorn mixture. When almond bark is hardened and popcorn is cool, break into chunks.