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November 6, 2012

Salted Caramel Popcorn Cookies

Salted Caramel Popcorn Cookie (Or the Best Cookies You’ve Ever Tasted)

I REALLY do mean that these are the most delicious, incredible-tasting cookies I have ever made. I even have people to verify this because I dropped them off all over town to my various tasters and I am telling you, the phone started ringing within in minutes. I’ve even had offers to market the cookie around the country, no joke. While I can’t take credit for the original idea of using popcorn – that would be the uber-talented Deb Perelman of ‘The Smitten Kitchen” cooking blog whose new cookbook is nothing short of stunning and will be my holiday gift to all this year (If you don’t know me or you haven’t been a good friend this year, order it here… today!) I came up with the idea of using caramel popcorn because it was all I had at the time, added the salt to cut the sweetness and I am obsessed with all things in the salty/sweet department (Yes, I know how trendy the combination is…). Anyway, if you are a holiday baker or invited to a cookie exchange, this cookie will most definitely raise the bar to a whole new level and if you’ve never been the cookie baking type, well, this will be the ONLY cookie you ever need to bake… Adapted, slightly, from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook

Popcorn Cookies

Caramel Popcorn Cookies Ingredients

(makes 24 cookies)



½ cup (115g) unsalted butter, softened

½ cup (95g) light brown sugar, packed

¼ cup (55g) sugar

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 large egg

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

1 ¼ cup (155g) all-purpose flour

½ teaspoon baking soda

4 cups caramel popcorn

Maldon or sea salt for sprinkling






  1. Preheat the oven to 350F (180C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Cream together the butter, sugars and salt in a large mixing bowl. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until smooth.
  3. Whisk together the flour and baking soda and stir into the butter-sugar mixture.
  4. Fold the popcorn into the mixture until as evenly distributed as possible (there will be a lot of popcorn and a little cookie batter).
  5. Using a small ice cream scoop or tablespoon scoop mounds of cookie dough onto the baking sheet about 2-inches apart. Sprinkle each cookie with a little Maldon or sea salt and bake for 10-12 minutes until lightly golden.
  6. Allow to cool for a few minutes before transferring the cookies to rack.


Adjust the salt according to your taste and use less if using table salt.

If making for a specific function, I strongly suggest that the cookies are placed under lock and key until then…

  • Melanie Handelsman

    My kids said this is the best cookie they have ever eaten and they eat a lot of cookies!


  • Robyncline3

    I am definitely making these today and will let you know the outcome.

  • Robyncline3

    Made them! Delicious! Alan says “thank God the Lord put Shani on earth to give us these cookies”!

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  • lellybellybean

    Just made these – as i am in the Uk i had to guess what you meant by cups of popcorn (as i found a chart for things like the equiv in flour but this would have been sacks full of popcorn- !) they are gorgeous – i also added a few bits of broken plain chocolate. They may all be gone by the time my husband gets home- thank you!