Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Nut Free Cracker Jack Popcorn

We went to the pumpkin patch the other day as a family.  It's one of my favorite fall traditions!  As we were walking around looking for our perfect pumpkins, my mouth was watering from the scents of kettle corn and caramel filling the air!  Many people were walking around with little bags of caramel corn so I had to come home and make something.  I tried this recipe from Mel's Kitchen Cafe.  It tastes like cracker jacks, only without the peanuts.  My boy especially liked it!  Hope everyone has a safe Halloween on Thursday!

Nut Free Cracker Jack Popcorn
From Mel's Kitchen Cafe, adapted nut free by Egg Free Bakery

10-11 cups popped popcorn  
1/2 cup real butter
1 cup plus 2 tbsp light brown sugar
1/3 cup dark karo syrup
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp baking soda

Preheat oven to 250 degrees.  Grease a large rimmed baking sheet and set aside.  Pop popcorn in an air popper according to manufacturer directions, or you can use microwave popcorn, but find something that is natural and lightly seasoned.  In a saucepan, melt butter over medium high heat.  Once butter has melted add brown sugar, dark corn syrup and salt.  Bring to a boil, stirring frequently.  Once mixture has reached a full boil,  reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 3 minutes.  Remove from heat and add vanilla and baking soda.  Stir to combine.  The mixture will bubble.  Pour hot mixture over popped popcorn.  Stir until everything is well coated.  Spread popcorn onto greased baking sheet.  Bake for an hour, stirring every 20 minutes.  Remove from oven and let cool.  Then break into pieces and enjoy.  Store in an airtight container for 1-2 weeks.

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