Crunchalicious Kettle Corn You Can Make at Home

Kettle corn is typically sold at farmer’s markets and fairs, even many sporting events. This popcorn recipe is my family’s all-time favorite!  It’s light and fresh tasting with just the right amount of sweetness.  It’s truly the perfect blend of popcorn, sweet and salty. Now you can make it at home anytime you want itOne thing I know for sure, it’s hard to resist!  Even though my recipe calls for just 3 ingredients to pop, it’s crucial to have the right proportions.  It took me numerous attempts to finally come up with this winning recipe. It’s healthier than some of the kettle corn out there because it’s popped in canola oil and I’m not using as much oil or sugar. Each serving has 125 calories, 7 grams fat and 4 Weight Watchers Freestyle SmartPoints. Wait until you taste this!!!  It’s sure to become a staple in your home. Have fun crunching!

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10-12 minutes


¼ cup canola oil or vegetable oil (do not use olive oil for this recipe)

¼ cup white sugar

2 tablespoons water

⅔ cup un-popped white popcorn kernels, if possible, see shopping tips

½ teaspoon salt or to taste


1. In a large, deep nonstick pan or pot add the oil, sugar, water, popcorn and mix together until all kernels are coated.  Shake to spread out over pan.  Cover and heat on medium-high heat.   Shake the pan often to keep the sugar from burning.  Once the popping has started, shake pan continuously until all kernels have slowed to once every 2-3 seconds, remove the pan from the heat and continue to shake until the popping has stopped.

2. Immediately pour into a large bowl so it doesn’t burn the popcorn.  Sprinkle with a little salt and serve warm.  It’s delicious at room temperature too!  Store any leftover kettle corn in a plastic bag or airtight container.

Serves 8 (about 2½ cups each serving)

Food Facts
So you might be wondering, who exactly invented Kettle Corn?  It’s been popped for decades and continues to grow in popularity.  One story says farmers and cowboys of the old Midwest made their own version of kettle corn.  After a day of harvesting, they would put rendered fat in a cast iron pot sitting on the fire.  When the fat was hot they’d add some corn kernels and whatever sweetener they had on hand, usually honey or molasses.

Un-popped kernels are called “old maids!”

Healthy Benefit
Popcorn is a whole grain in the same league as oatmeal, barley, brown rice, and millet.  It contains a fair amount of fiber.

Shopping Tips
Most places that sell kettle corn use white popcorn.  Although it’s a little tricky to find, I’ve found it at Von’s, Safeway, Food 4 Less and Scolaries.  If you can’t find white kernels, yellow will work too.

Substitution Tips
If you want this recipe to be a bit more sugary, use ½ cup of popcorn instead of ⅔ cup.  It will add a little more calories and fat to the Skinny Facts.

Serving Tips
This sweet popcorn makes a great treat to pack in your kids lunch!  If you’re looking for a regular popcorn recipe be sure to try one of my favorites.  It’s popped in heart healthy olive oil called Skinny Old Fashioned Popcorn.

Weight Watchers
 Freestyle SmartPoints 4
Weight Watchers POINTS PLUS

SKINNY FACTS: for 1 serving (about 2½ cups)
125 calories, 7g fat, 1g sat. fat, 0mg chol, 1g protein, 14g carbs, 1g fiber, 147mg sodium, 6g sugar
FACTS: for Freestyle SmartPoints
84 calories, 1g sat. fat, 0g protein, 6g sugar