What a treat! This Maple Pecan Popcorn is perfect for family game night or for date night with a good movie. It’s what happens when salty and sweet get together and create a wonderful dessert or whole meal (I’m not judging). Best of all, it’s gluten free!
4 quarts popped popcorn (I used 2 bags of 3.2 ounce microwaveable popcorn bags with butter flavor)
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup pecan pieces
You will also need non-stick aluminum foil.
Preheat oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit. Low and slow is the tempo.
Spread out popped popcorn on a jelly pan (17 1/4 x 12 1/4 x 1 inch) lined with non-stick aluminum foil. Place in the oven so that the popcorn will be warm.
Add 1 stick of unsalted butter (1/2 cup) to a medium sized pan. Heat on medium heat on the stovetop. Everything’s better with butter! Except a new shirt. A new shirt is not better with butter.
Add 1 cup light brown sugar.
Add 1/2 cup maple syrup. I bet you’re wondering if you can use the pancake syrup. Yep. You sure can. Sweet!
Add 1/2 teaspoon salt. Give the mixture a good stir. What does a bad stir look like? Food for thought...
Boil for 5 minutes. Stir while boiling. Looking good!
Remove from heat and add 1/2 teaspoon baking soda.
Add 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Did you know that you can make your own vanilla extract (see the internet)? However, it takes many weeks so maybe you can make some for the next time.
Add 1 cup of pecan pieces and give the mixture a good stir until thoroughly mixed.
Pour mixture over popcorn and use a spoon to turn popcorn over. You won’t be able to get all of the popcorn coated yet but that’s okay. I’m sure you tried your best but we’d better warm it up a bit.
Place popcorn back in the oven and bake for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and stir popcorn. Scrape coating from the pan to coat the popcorn. Return to the oven. Do these steps two more times for a total of 45 minutes in the oven.
Allow to cool.
Enjoy! This stuff makes my mouth happy!