clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon

Old Fashioned Popcorn Balls

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.7 from 3 reviews
  • Author: Cindy Gibbs
  • Prep Time: 15 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 Minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 5 Medium Popcorn Balls 1x
  • Category: Snacks


These Old Fashioned Popcorn Balls are buttery and molded together with a sweet simple syrup.  A reminder of Halloweens years ago, when kids were allowed to receive wonderful homemade treats. Make these wonderful little treats for the little goblins in your life!



Units Scale
  • 7 cups popped popcorn, unsalted
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/3 cup light corn syrup (or molasses for molasses popcorn balls)
  • 1 teaspoon salt (If you use salted popcorn, omit the salt)
  • 1/2 stick butter, unsalted
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  1. Sift through the popped corn and remove any unpopped kernels.  Transfer popcorn to a large bowl and set aside.
  2. Add the sugar, water, corn syrup, salt, and butter to a medium saucepan and mix over medium heat until the butter has melted and all ingredients are combined.
  3. Cook to 250 degrees on a candy thermometer or when mixture forms a hard ball when dropped in cold water.  Click the following link to see how to test candy in cold water,
  4. Add the vanilla and mix to blend it in.
  5. Drizzle the hot syrup in a thin stream over the popcorn while mixing at the same time.  Mix until all of the popcorn is covered with the syrup.
  6. Using buttered hands shape popcorn into balls and place on parchment paper.  Allow popcorn balls to sit on the parchment paper for 15 minutes and place each one in a sandwich bag.

Popcorn balls will stay fresh for up to 5 days if kept in sealed sandwich bags.