Hi all! So today we have another great edible holiday gift to give out this holiday season. It’s a mix of cheddar and caramel popcorn. This is inspired from this great place called Garrett’s Popcorn in Chicago. They have multiple locations, but it originated in Chicago…as did The Chicago Mix… The combination might sound weird, but it’s not. It’s really not. It’s totally awesome. It totally plays on the sweet and salty flavors, with the addition of nutty and cheesy…SO GOOD! I love going home for the holidays and NOT attempting to stop at a location to pick some up. I stick to ordering mine online every year…why? Because lines for Garrett Popcorn Shops are usually at least a block long. No joke. Holidays are the worst too. When I don’t feel like spending $25 on shipping for popcorn I usually go out and buy my own cheddar popcorn, make my own caramel corn and mix ’em up. Caramel corn is a lot easier to make than most might think. So try this recipe out because it’s easy, fun, tasty, and you can package it in cute jars and give them out as gifts. Enjoy!
Here are a couple more snack recipes you might also enjoy:
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Cheddar and Caramel Popcorn Mix
- 5 ½ quarts popped popcorn
- 1 cup lightly salted peanuts
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 2 cups light brown sugar
- ½ cup light corn syrup
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon heavy cream
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 4 quarts store bought cheddar popcorn
- Preheat oven to 250°F.
- Pour popcorn and peanuts into a very large bowl (or two large mixing bowls and set aside.
- Melt butter in a (medium) saucepan over medium-high heat.
- Stir in the sugar, corn syrup and salt until fully incorporated.
- Bring mixture to a boil, frequently stirring.
- Once mixture has come to a boil stop stirring and continue to boil for about 5 minutes.
- Remove saucepan from heat and carefully stir in baking soda (the mixture will vigorously boil).
- Stir in the cream and vanilla and pour the caramel sauce over the popcorn. Fold together until mostly combined.
- Evenly spread the caramel popcorn onto two parchment lined baking sheets, in a single layer.
- Bake for about an hour, removing the mixture from the oven every 15 minutes to stir.
- Allow caramel corn to cool completely before breaking up into pieces.
- Toss together with cheddar popcorn until fully combined. Serve.
- *Makes 9 quarts Popcorn
- *1 serving = 1 cup
Did you make this recipe? We want to see!
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What are the utensils needed?
I’ve been missing this popcorn since I moved to Austin, TX from Chicago! The good news is that a lot of cities now have boutique-style popcorn shops who love mixing me a bag of Chicago mix!
Sorry, when do you add the cream? I must be going insane!
Nope, you’re not! I forgot to add it to the instructions, but it’s there now! You add it to the caramel sauce, right as you’re adding the vanilla. Sorry about that…enjoy!
Oh. My. God. I just found your blog (thanks pinterest!) and then I found this and I almost fell over. I LOVE Garrett’s popcorn. I crave it. I may or may not have done a little dance when I found it in the airport over Thanksgiving at O’Hare. You have a new fan here!
Mmmm… something just right for me, it looks wonderful!
I have to give this recipe to my wife ;-)
blythe @ 75th + Sedgwick
Incredible. I love Garret’s Popcorn! When I first saw the photo though I was equally as excited about it because it reminded me of those amazing popcorn buckets from the drug store! I LOVE those! :)
Katie @ Livehalffull
This is so amazing! Also really dangerous! Garrett’s is so good-my suggestion is go to the one in the Merchandise Mart. There is never a line! Although it’s only open M-F.
Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar
Neat combo! Would love to try this!
Oh man, this stuff is amazing. Fortunately, there’s a local shop that makes it so that I don’t have to make the drive from Minneapolis to Chicago (or pay for shipping). Even so, it’s pretty pricey stuff, so I’m excited for this recipe!
One question: What happens with the peanuts?
Hi Brianna! Thanks for catching that error….I forgot to include them in the direction! It’s all fixed now. You add the peanuts to the bowl of popcorn before you add the caramel sauce. Glad you’re excited about this one :) xx
Every time I stop in Chicago, I always get some. But the Garretts at the airport, NEVER A LONG LINE! NOTE TO SELF! Go there instead of the one in the city, or even the one at Navy Pier (no one is ever there either). So grab a hand of that greasy goodness and enjoy!
Thanks for the awesome tip! I always forget about the one at the airport!
Oh dear GOD, I love that you combined cheese with sweets. Yes, yes yes. Doing THIS.
This looks so good! The Pirate’s Booty I’m snacking on is all of sudden not what I want anymore… I want to make this!