Get ready to elevate your game day or movie night snacking with irresistible Homemade Peanut Butter Popcorn! A delightful twist on classic popcorn, this snack is sure to score big with its delicious combination of flavors and textures. Made with simple ingredients like fluffy popcorn, chunky peanut butter, and a sweet blend of sugar and corn syrup, every bite offers a burst of savory and sweet goodness.
This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
What Makes Peanut Butter Popcorn So Good?
Toffee, caramel, chocolate, and butterscotch are some of the most popular popcorn flavors. However, one flavor that is not commonly found in store-bought popcorn is peanut butter, which is quite an unfortunate situation for peanut butter lovers.
With this recipe for Peanut Butter Popcorn, you can make your own candy corn at home. Peanut Butter Popcorn is a tasty snack that combines sweet popcorn with salty peanuts, creating a perfect balance of flavors. It's a treat you won't be able to resist!
Why This Is the Perfect Recipe for Peanut Butter Lovers
The increase in peanut allergies has given peanut butter somewhat negative PR recently, but plenty of people still can't get enough of it. If you are the type of person who loves to eat peanut butter straight from the jar with a spoon, then this recipe is going to become one of your favorites.
Although making this impressive snack from scratch is already quick and easy, you can cut the amount of prep time you need for this Peanut Butter Popcorn recipe in half by using premade unsalted popcorn. Microwave popcorn without salt is a great option for this.
Peanut Butter Popcorn Ingredients
For the popcorn, you'll need:
- Popcorn kernels
Any popcorn kernels will do, but if you are going to go through the trouble of popping your own, why not choose extra-large mushroom popcorn kernels for their jumbo-sized popped corn with a denser, chewier texture?
Many think coconut oil provides the best flavor for popcorn, but if you worry about using it for health reasons, go with canola oil or vegetable oil instead.
For the peanut butter sauce, you'll need:
- White sugar
- Light corn syrup
- Chunky peanut butter
- Vanilla extract
How to Make This Peanut Butter Popcorn Recipe
To pop the popcorn:
- Place a large saucepan on the stove top over medium heat.
- To prepare the oil for popping popcorn, add it to a saucepan and wait until it starts to shimmer. Add a few popcorn kernels to test whether the oil is at the right temperature. The oil is ready to use if the kernels begin to spin or pop.
- Very carefully pour the rest of the popcorn kernels into the saucepan. Use a wooden or silicone spatula to stir to coat the kernels.
- Cover the saucepan partially, leaving a small gap to let the steam escape to avoid blowing off the lid.
- Give the saucepan a shake every 10 to 15 seconds to prevent the kernels from sticking to the bottom and burning.
- Once the popcorn starts popping, continue shaking the saucepan until the popping slows to about one pop every two or so seconds. Remove the saucepan from the heat, but continue to shake the saucepan until the popping completely stops.
- Pour the popped popcorn into a large bowl and pick out all the unpopped kernels.
To make the peanut butter sauce:
- Add the white sugar and light corn syrup to a small saucepan and place it over medium heat.
- Stir the mixture with a wooden spatula until the sugar dissolves and the mixture comes to a rolling boil. Be very careful, as the sugar syrup is extremely hot and may splatter.
- Turn off the heat and remove the saucepan from the heat. While the sugar syrup is hot, stir in the crunchy peanut butter and vanilla extract.
To flavor the popcorn:
- Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Pour the warm peanut butter mixture over the popcorn in the large mixing bowl.
- Gently stir with a wooden spatula until you evenly coat all the popcorn with the peanut butter sauce.
- Pour the flavored popcorn onto the prepared baking sheet and separate any clumps. Allow the popcorn to cool completely before transferring it to a storage container.
This recipe for Peanut Butter Popcorn is a great starting point; however, you can make it even better by making a few tweaks. Here are some suggestions you may want to try:
- Chocolate makes everything tastier. Combining chocolate with peanut butter is the ideal match, so why not toss in a couple of handfuls of chocolate chips or drizzle some melted chocolate over the top?
- Get even nuttier. Mix some candied nuts like toffee-coated peanuts with the Peanut Butter Popcorn. Don't be afraid to go beyond peanuts and include other varieties of nuts like praline pecans or Jordan Almonds.
- It's time to be a bit twisted. Mini pretzels are a nice addition. Chocolate-covered or peanut butter-filled pretzel nuggets are even better!
- Add some candy. Peanut Butter M&M's or Reese's pieces are great for an addition of sweet chocolate and peanut flavors.
How to Store Peanut Butter Popcorn
Place the cooled popcorn in an airtight container and keep it somewhere cool and dry, away from strong odors--no one likes onion-scented Peanut Butter Popcorn.
How Long Does Peanut Butter Popcorn Last?
Well-sealed popcorn should last about five days, but it will still be tasty even if it goes a little stale.
More Game Day Snacks
Peanut Butter Popcorn
- 2 to 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
- ½ cup popcorn kernels this should yield 4 quarts of popped popcorn
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ cup light corn syrup
- ½ cup chunky peanut butter
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. To test if the oil is hot enough, put a couple of kernels in the pot. When they start to pop or spin in the oil, it's ready.
- Place popcorn kernels into the pot and give it a quick stir to coat them in oil. Place the lid on the pot, leaving a small gap for steam to escape. This helps keep the popcorn crisp.
- Once the kernels start popping, gently shake the pot back and forth over the burner. This movement helps prevent the kernels at the bottom from burning and ensures even popping.
- When the popping sound slows down to about 2 seconds between pops, remove the pot from the heat. Wait a few seconds to make sure there are no more pops. Then remove the lid and pour the popcorn into a very large bowl.
- Combine the sugar and corn syrup in a small pot over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until it comes to a rolling boil. Remove the pot from the heat and mix in the peanut butter and vanilla.
- Pour the peanut butter mixture over the popcorn and toss to coat. Store in an airtight container.