Colored Kettle Corn

I love kettle corn.  It reminds me of summer and craft fairs and that deliciously sweet popcorn-y aroma wafting through the air.

Little did I know that kettle corn can also be made at home!  I was researching ways to color popcorn (for a boy themed baby shower), and came across this kettle corn recipe.  Yay!  From there, it became a simple matter of adding the food coloring with a few super delicious experiments to get it just right.  Now the only problem is not making this every night!

Recipe notes:
*Placing the initial 3-4 kernels of popcorn in the oil in the beginning ensures that the oil is at the perfect temperature for popping, without robbing the bulk of the kernels of moisture during the heating process.
*I like to use a two handled pot to make kettle corn, so I can shake the pot easier.  I also wear these gloves, so save my hands from the heat.
*When removing the lid, beware of escaping steam.
*I typically use a premium popcorn, like this one

Colored Kettle Corn
Adapted from Savory Sweet Life

¼ cup vegetable oil
½ cup popcorn kernels
1/3 cup granulated sugar
¾ - 1 tsp coarse sea salt
Generous dollop of gel food coloring (optional)

Stir together the sugar and salt.  With the back of a spoon, grind the food coloring (if using) into the sugar mixture.  The food coloring does not need to be perfectly mixed in, but there shouldn’t be any large globs of food coloring.

Meanwhile, place the oil and 3-4 kernels of popcorn in a large stockpot (uncovered), over medium-high heat.  Allow the oil to heat up until the first kernels begin to pop.

Quickly add the remaining unpopped kernels and the sugar mixture to the pot and stir to mix.  Place the cover on the pot. 

Once the popcorn begins to pop a second time, carefully lift the pot and give it a gentle shake every few seconds to keep the sugar from sticking to the bottom and burning.

Once about half of the kernels have popped, reduce the heat to medium-low.  Continue shaking the pot every few seconds.

Once the popping has slowed to 1-2 seconds between pops, remove the pot completely from the heat.  Carefully remove the cover and pour the kettle corn immediately into a large bowl.  Allow the popcorn to cool for at least 5 minutes before attempting to eat it.  At that time, break and large chunks of stuck together popcorn into more manageable sizes and serve.



  1. That color looks awesome. I should have made that last month with some orange food coloring in honor of Halloween. Thanks for sharing

  2. my son will love you for this recipe thank you for posting his favorite and it looks fabulous!

  3. I love everything with color!!! ESPECIALLY edible things.

  4. I made this with fushia coloring and it turned out pretty in pink! My 4 year old said it was perfect.


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