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  • 12 ounces air-popped popcorn, or 4 (3-ounce) bags natural microwave popcorn
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter
  • 2 cups firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup corn syrup
  • 2 teaspoons Nielsen-Massey Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Bean Paste
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar


  1. Preheat the oven to 250°F. Pop the popcorn, discarding any unpopped kernels. Arrange the popcorn evenly in a large roasting pan. Place in the oven.
  2. Combine the butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, vanilla paste and salt in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil slowly. Boil for 5 minutes over medium heat, stirring constantly; do not burn. Stir in the baking soda and cream of tartar, which will cause the sugar mixture to rise. Pour over the warm popcorn, stirring until coated, Bake for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes.


For added flavor, coarsely chop 1 cup of your favorite nuts and add to the popcorn before pouring the caramel mixture over the popcorn.

Makes about 20 cups

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