Homemade Kettle Corn

Sweet Homemade Kettle Corn is easy and delish. You’ll never want to buy it again after you try Our Homemade Version, because it’s AMAZING!!

For more popcorn recipes try White Chocolate M&M Popcorn, Caramel Popcorn, and Birthday Cake Popcorn.

Homemade kettle corn recipe in bowl

Sweet PopCorn

It’s hard NOT to love popcorn – especially when it’s sweet and delicious! We’ve always been long-time fans of Kettle Corn, but wanted to try a homemade version, and we are so glad we did.

Homemade Kettle Corn is traditionally made in an oiled on the stove popper and is tossed with seasonings while it’s popping so it picks up the sugar all over the kernel. Our friend first showed us how to make it, and now we’ll never go back to store bought. It’s sweet, addicting and perfect for our Friday Movie Nights.

Since first making it, we’ve made lots of versions, including a Cinnamon Kettle Corn (just add cinnamon when adding the sugar). We knew we’d be making this a lot, so we bought a Popcorn maker (we bought this one). If you love popcorn too, you’ll love this recipe!

Ingredients for kettle corn recipe

How to make kettle corn

PREP. Lay out jelly roll pan or parchment paper to pour popcorn onto when done. Set aside.

POP. Add coconut oil, sugar and popcorn kernels to stovetop popcorn popper. Turn to medium heat and stir popper constantly until kernels pop and it’s full (lid will start to open when it’s full).

**Pro Tip: Start with hot oil, put 3 kernels in the oil and as soon as they all pop you can pour in the rest of the kernels. This way you know the oil is hot enough.

SEASON. Pour popcorn onto pan or parchment paper and immediately sprinkle on ½ tsp salt. Let cool for a few minutes and ENJOY! (For different versions, add ½ tsp. cinnamon (this is my favorite flavor). For a more caramel version use ½ cup brown sugar instead of regular sugar.

Note: If you make multiple batches, you will want to rinse out the extra sugar between batches so that it doesn’t burn.

Microwave Version:

Make this in the microwave if you have a vented bowl cover. Then combine the ingredients in the bottom of a microwavable bowl and cover the kernels with it. Microwave with the vented cover for 3-4 minutes or until there are 5 seconds between each pop. 

How to make kettle corn in a popper

Tips + Variations

  • Oil: Coconut oil can withstand high heat and is healthier than other oils. It is a good choice for popcorn for these options, as well as the fact that the coconut flavor won’t overpower the kettle corn flavor. Other oils like canola oil, vegetable oil, avocado oil, or peanut oil will also work.
  • Kernels: We really like Orville Redenbacher kernels, but you can use your personal favorite, we just advise not using bagged popcorn kernels
  • Pot: Use a bigger pot than you think you need, you don’t want to run out of space and risk the sugar burning in the pot.
  • Pan: A jelly roll pan is just a slightly smaller cookie sheet with higher sides. It would be better to use this rather than a cookie sheet because it holds the popcorn on the sheet easier.
  • Troubleshooting: If your popcorn turns out to be chewy the lid on the pot may have been too tight while popping. This would restrict the steam from escaping and the trapped steam collects on the kernels and makes them chewy instead of crunchy. Next time adjust the lid to allow some of the steam to escape during the process

Kettle Corn in the pot with salt sprinkled on top

Storing Tips

STORE homemade kettle corn in an airtight container for up to 2-3 weeks. Or, store it “fair style” in a plastic bag, but this can limit the freshness to one week.

Homemade Kettle Corn recipe in bowl

For more yummy popcorn treats, check out:

Homemade Kettle Corn Recipe

5 from 3 votes
Sweet Homemade Kettle Corn is easy and delish. You'll never want to buy it again after you try our homemade version, because it's AMAZING!!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 340 kcal
Author Lil' Luna

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup popcorn kernels
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Optional Flavors

  • 1 tsp cinnamon for Cinnamon Kettle Corn
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar instead of regular sugar for more Caramel version

Instructions
 

  • Lay out jelly roll pan or parchment paper to pour popcorn onto when done. Set aside.
  • Add coconut oil, sugar and popcorn kernels to stovetop popcorn popper.
  • Turn to medium heat and stir popper constantly until kernels pop and it's full (lid will start to open when it's full).
  • Pour popcorn onto pan or parchment paper and immediately sprinkle on ½ tsp. salt. Let cool for a few minutes and ENJOY!
  • For different versions, add ½ tsp. cinnamon (this is my favorite flavor). For a more caramel version use ½ cup brown sugar instead of regular sugar.

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About the Author

Kristyn Merkley

My name is Kristyn and I’m the mom of SIX stinkin’ cute kids and the wife to my smokin’ hot hubby, Lo. My mom’s maiden name is Luna, and I’m one of the many crafty “Lil’ Lunas” in the fam. On this site I like to share all things creative - from recipes to home decor to gifts and home decor ideas. Welcome!

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Comments:

  1. I dint know what i did wrong. It only cooked partway and had lots of kernels not popped. I cooked on medium high. ☹️

    1. I wish I knew?? I’m sorry. Maybe it needed a little more heat or needed to be on there a little longer?

    2. I had this problem when I first started making popcorn on the stove. Make sure you’re using a large enough pot so the kernels are in a single layer.

      I know this comment is old but I thought my answer might help someone else. 😁

  2. 5 stars
    Anytime kettle corn is being sold my family always buys 1 or 2 bags. They will be so excited when I tell them I found the perfect recipe to have amazing kettle corn at home! Movie night here we come!

  3. 5 stars
    thanks for the great and easy recipe! I aLmost followed it exactly…i just substituted grapeseed oil for coconut oil.