a balanced plate with room for dessert

Sweet & Salty Kettle Corn


I love going to the farmer’s market. I’m proud to say that Madison is home to one of the greatest farmer’s markets ever. I’m also proud to say that the Appleton market is also pretty darn spectacular. I try to go to the market every weekend. Since we have a garden full of veggies, I don’t usually end up buying any vegetables. The one thing I make sure I walk away with? Kettle corn.

Yum. There’s something about that sweet and salty combination that just get to me. It’s dangerous. One minute I have a warm, foot-tall bag. The next, it’s empty and my stomach hurts. To make it worse, I am left kettle corn-less for a whole week until I buy another bag on Saturday. Repeat over and over and over.

Well, I finally figured it out. I can make it at home with my Whirley Pop! This is bad news. I made my first batch on Friday night as a movie snack. I inhaled it. Then Saturday night I ate kettle corn for dinner. I’m going to be out of town for work for a couple days, and I’m contemplating cooking up a huge batch of it to bring with me. A suitcase half full of kettle corn… Hmm.

sweet & salty kettle corn |

Sweet & Salty Kettle Corn
make this easy snack in a Whirley Pop* or a large lidded pot

1 tablespoon canola oil
1/2 cup popcorn kernels
1/4 cup sugar

  1. Whirley Pop directions: Heat canola oil in a Whirley Pop over medium-high heat. Place  a few popcorn kernels in the popper. When the kernels pop, it means the oil is hot enough! Place remaining kernels in and pour in sugar, stirring constantly. Stir popper over heat until popping slows down to 3 – 5 seconds between pops. Remove from heat and continue to turn handle until popping stops.
  2. Large pot directions: Heat canola oil over medium-high heat with a few popcorn kernels. Once these kernels pop, pour in the remaining kernels and sugar and stir quickly with a wooden spoon to coat the kernels. Cover the pot and shake vigorously every 5 – 10 seconds to keep sugar from burning. Continue to shake until popping slowly to 3 – 5 seconds between pops. Remove from heat and continue to shake until popping stops.
  3. Pour popcorn into a large bowl, shaking salt over it as you go.
  4. Popcorn may stick as it cools – simply give it a good shake in the bowl or gently break it up with a wooden spoon.
  5. Serve immediately. Sharing is optional 🙂

*Don’t have a Whirley Pop? Get one. Now. I use mine all the time to make popcorn! I’m pretty sure that there’s no such thing as too many popcorn makers. I also own an air popper and I’ve been known to make microwave popcorn as well once in a while. YOLO.


Author: Jenni

Dietitian by day and Midwest food blogger by night. Lover of whiskey, running, and all things food.

4 thoughts on “Sweet & Salty Kettle Corn

  1. I am from Madison myself, and I can say I wholehearted agree! The farmer’s market is a wonderful Saturday morning tradition enjoyed by the whole city.

  2. Pingback: Top 13 Recipes of 2013 |

  3. Pingback: Popcorn & Prosecco | Love Ya Bean It

  4. This is amazing! I have a whirley pop also and love it! Thanks for reminding me of kettle corn 🙂

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