A favorite treat, very popular with my family, hope it's just as popular with yours.

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Recipe Summary

Servings:
15
Yield:
15 - 20 tennis ball sized balls
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Ingredients

15
Original recipe yields 15 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Butter the sides of a large saucepan. In the sauce pan combine the sugar, water, salt, corn syrup and vinegar. Cook over medium heat to the hard ball stage 250 degrees F (120 degrees C). Stir in the vanilla and slowly pour the hot mixture over the popped popcorn, stirring just to mix well.

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  • Butter hands lightly and shape into balls. Mixture will be hot so be careful. Place balls on waxed paper to cool.

Nutrition Facts

220 calories; protein 1.1g 2% DV; carbohydrates 41.7g 13% DV; fat 6.3g 10% DV; cholesterolmg; sodium 239.2mg 10% DV. Full Nutrition

Reviews (58)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 4 stars
10/31/2007
helpful hint: when making mixture get a glass of cold water, drip mixture in and listen to it, if it crackles, its ready, just do this often you don't want your candy to burn! it works and they come out great. we love them Read More
(114)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 1 stars
04/30/2003
These were a disaster for me too. )o: Seemed like I had to cook and stir the syrup mixture forever and then it "sugared" after just a few hours. My girlfriend said she loved ME but these were the worst popcorn balls she'd ever had! Ugh! Going to try a batch that calls for butter..... Read More
(13)
63 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 40
  • 4 star values: 12
  • 3 star values: 3
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 8
Rating: 4 stars
10/31/2007
helpful hint: when making mixture get a glass of cold water, drip mixture in and listen to it, if it crackles, its ready, just do this often you don't want your candy to burn! it works and they come out great. we love them Read More
(114)
Rating: 5 stars
07/02/2005
All of the one star/negative reviews are obviously from people who are not willing to invest the necessary time to make this recipe. To say "it never did reach hard ball stage" is a ridiculous statement. As with any taffy-type candy, it takes a while, but of course it will eventually reach that stage. I made the popcorn balls this afternoon and they turned out great. The only thing I may do differently next time is to take the candy to crack stage so it is a bit more brittle (personal preference). Thanks for this good old fashioned recipe, Lynne. Read More
(84)
Rating: 5 stars
10/31/2005
I loved this recipe, it tasted just like my grandmother's popcorn balls. I think those who tried this recipe and did not wait long enough for the sugar mixture to turn to hardball stage, just did not wait long enough. It did take quite some time to get to that point over a medium/low fire but it did reach the hardball stage. The end result was WONDERFUL and the mixture did not "sugar" after it had set for a few hours...they were perfect and tasted wonderful, just like Grandma's. Thank you Lynne for posting this recipe. Read More
(57)
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Rating: 5 stars
12/07/2007
This was a fun one!!! I made two batches in one hour and the party loved them... I ate 8 myself... I had no idea what the hardening stage was until it happened.. then i waited bout ten more minutes to make sure and made the batch in a CLEAN kitchen sink and i was done with in an hour.. with two batches... honestly.. try the sink Read More
(30)
Rating: 5 stars
11/25/2003
I did this recipe for my children and never made popcorn balls before. I added yellow food coloring to the candy mix and candy corn to the popcorn before the candy mix was added and shaped them like corn on the cob for Thanksgiving. I love the recipe thanks so much. Angie Read More
(25)
Rating: 4 stars
12/22/2008
The trick to getting this recipe is a thermometer! They came out ok but a little chewier than I like. For those having trouble with the syrup DON'T cook over medium heat! It will take too long and you won't have a workable syrup. Mix enough to combine then let it cook over high heat (and yes it's still going to take about 10-15 min.). Watch it carefully! (mine jumped from 220 to 250 in about 10 seconds)Good luck! Read More
(16)
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Rating: 1 stars
04/30/2003
These were a disaster for me too. )o: Seemed like I had to cook and stir the syrup mixture forever and then it "sugared" after just a few hours. My girlfriend said she loved ME but these were the worst popcorn balls she'd ever had! Ugh! Going to try a batch that calls for butter..... Read More
(13)
Rating: 1 stars
10/28/2004
Couldn't get it to the hard ball stage. The mixture is WAY to watery. Must have gotten mixed up. Looking for another recipe. Read More
(11)
Rating: 5 stars
11/04/2010
The best popcorn ball recipe that I've found in awhile. I made these for our neighbors Halloween Party and Haunted Barn and they were a huge success. Read More
(8)