Homemade Caramel Corn!

I’ve had a rough day football wise – got destroyed in fantasy, lost all my point spread tickets, Seattle barely scraped out a win against the 49ers … it’s been a tough day in the Barker-Prins house.

So, to cheer myself up I’ve been thinking of things that I love and this homemade caramel corn is right at the top of that list! I got this recipe from my Aunt Val one year at Christmas. In our family, everyone has food and snacks they always bring to family Christmas and this corn is now on that list. Keep reading for the super easy recipe. It can cheer up even the most dreadful football days.

What you need:

2 cups of packed brown sugar
1 cup of butter or margarine
1/2 cup of corn syrup
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
30 cups of air popped corn (1 1/2 cups of un-popped kernels)
9 tablespoons of vegetable oil (if you’re popping your corn on the stove)
Plus: 3 or 4 large bowls, baking sheets, and tin foil

What you do:

  1. I pop my popcorn on the stove, although I’m sure an air popper is much easier. If you use an air popper, skip to step 4!  To do this, put 3 tablespoons of oil in a large pot with a lid. With the lid slightly ajar to let steam out, add in 3 corn kernels and once they start popping, you know your oil is warm.
  2. From here, add 1/2 a cup of corn kernels, and with the lid ajar, swirl the pot on the stove to keep the kernels from burning and let it pop for about 25-30 seconds or until the popping stops. Remove from the stove and let it sit for a minute or so and wait for the last few kernels to pop. Measure out into a large bowl – you should have 10 cups.
  3. Repeat steps one and two twice more or until you have 30 cups of popped corn. Usually only takes me 3 times in total to get the right amount. Also, I know 30 cups of popped corn sounds like a lot but it’s really not!
  4. In a pot on the stove, turn to medium heat and mix the first four ingredients together (brown sugar, corn syrup, butter and salt) and heat until it all boils.
  5. Now add your baking soda and vanilla. Mix well. It should become foamy and light brown in colour.
  6. Evenly pour the caramel over the popcorn (I usually separate my popcorn into four bowls to make mixing easier). Mix so all the popcorn is covered.
  7. Pour your caramel corn onto a baking sheets lined with tin foil to avoid it from sticking.

*Tip: I use four baking sheets so the popcorn isn’t piled high. My stove is small so I can only bake two sheets at once making it a longer process, but the final result is better.

  1. Bake at 200 degrees Fahrenheit for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes.

Stirring is very important or the caramel will settle at the bottom of the tray, the popcorn will stick together, and it will come out sticky.

Store in an airtight container (if it’s not devoured straight out of the oven!)

The Worlds Best Ribs Recipe

I wish I could take credit for this recipe, but I can’t. This came from Man Fuel Food Blog after a long and tiresome search for the best rib recipe ever. I’ve tried a lot of different recipes but none fit what I wanted – juicy, flavorful, fall-off-the-bone ribs. Most I tried were too dry or didn’t have enough flavor. I tried this recipe two years ago and couldn’t believe how amazing it was. To this day, J says they are “the best ribs I’ve ever eaten. Ever”. Honestly, I want to enter these in a rib fest competition – I’m positive they would win. Okay, my mouth is watering now and I’m dreaming of ribs.

What you need:

1 full rack of bone-in baby back ribs
2 tbsp of onion powder
2 tbsp of garlic powder
4 tbsp of brown sugar
2 tbsp of oil
1 tsp of cumin
1 tsp of salt
2 tsp of chili powder
2 tsp of smoked paprika
¼ tsp of black pepper
Your favorite BBQ sauce

What you do:

1. Start by cutting your ribs in half – it’s easier to rub them down and cook them later. Plus, the meat falls off the bones so it’s hard to divide post-oven.


2. This is optional – removing the silverskin on the bottom of the ribs. It’s connective tissue on the underside of the ribs and if you remove it, the ribs turn out a bit better. However, I’ve never done this on mine and they’re always perfect.

3. In a separate both you’ll make the dry rub – combine onion powder, garlic powder, brown sugar, smoked paprika, cumin, salt, pepper and chili powder.

4. Add the oil to the dry rub and mix really well with a spoon.

5. Apply the rub all over the top and bottom of the ribs.

6. Put the ribs in a large Ziploc bag and let them marinate at room temperature for 1 hour. You can marinate them overnight, just make sure they’re room temperature before they cook

7. Now preheat your oven to 250-260°F

8. Wrap each set of ribs in a piece of tinfoil, creating a pouch and sealing off all sides (this traps the flavor and steam in, making them juicy and delicious.

9. Put them on a baking sheet and cook them on the middle rack for 4 hours.

10. After 4 hours, take them out of the oven and carefully drain the liquid from the pouch (I do this by cutting a corner in the foil, tipping the pouch and letting it pour out.

11. Once the liquid is gone, open up the foil package and let the ribs breathe. They’ll look a bit dry or funny, but don’t worry – that’s supposed to happen.

12. Put your sauce on them and then throw them under the broiler for 3-4 minutes – watch them closely though because they could quickly become burned or overdone

These ribs are best eaten by two people – since they’re already cut into two parts and dividing them is near impossible with the meat literally sliding off the bones onto your plate. I love to serve them with garlic mashed potatoes and even use the drippings from the pouch to make a gravy or sauce.