Crisp, crunchy caramel popcorn without dairy or sugar.
My mom makes the best popcorn. This is a dairy-free variation of her caramel popcorn recipe. The secret for crisp caramel popcorn is baking it in the oven after you put the caramel on it.
My kids and I have an ongoing debate when I make caramel popcorn. Sticky or not. The kids want to eat it sticky after I pour the caramel sauce on it. I want to serve it crisp after it has baked. Yes, I will admit, I hate little sticky fingerprints everywhere. Don’t get me wrong, I think fingerprints are great on artwork for memories, but not on tables, chairs, hair and clothes. Maybe I will rethink my anti-gooey sticky policy when the kids turn 18 or so.
But until then, I love it crisp anyway.
I pop my popcorn in a heavy pan using a little oil and a single layer of popcorn kernels. To prevent an explosion of popcorn all over the kitchen, use a lid, but let it vent some steam by leaving it slightly ajar and not closing it tightly on the pot.
Honey Caramel Popcorn
A big bowl of popcorn (12-14 cups popped or 2/3 cup unpopped kernels)
1/3 cup coconut oil
1/3 cup honey
1 Tbls molasses
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 baking soda
In a medium-sized saucepan, bring the coconut oil, honey and molasses to a boil over medium heat. While stirring, boil 1-2 minutes, but don’t let it burn. Add the salt and the soda. Let boil a few seconds while stirring. Pour over popped popcorn. Stir to coat.
Heat oven to 200º. Put popcorn in an oven-safe bowl or pan, and bake for 1 hour, stirring every 20 minutes. As the popcorn cools, it crisps up and becomes less sticky.