I can’t even.

This popcorn is… addicting.

And you know? I’ve always claimed I was never a huge popcorn person, but lately it’s been all I’ve wanted. I think it started with those popcorn crunch brownies. Oomph.

This is my second recipe to pair with Pavan – and this time around we it’s going with the signature Mediterranean cocktail. I mentioned last week that Pavan is made with grapes – it’s actually like a white wine liqueur that makes you want to set up home on the french riviera (they actually have a contest going on right now to win a trip there!… ugh, I’m so in); so this cocktail is made with a little vodka and lemon juice. It’s so simple but just perfect! I always love (and need) some extra flavor in my vodka and this is just to die for.  As a side note: last night my uncle deglazed a pan of chorizo + jalapeño littleneck clams with Pavan. Uh huh. No words.

The popcorn is (…wait for it) popped in bacon grease and tossed with a few smoky spices and a burnt sugar glaze. It’s the perfect combo of salty and sweet.

Yeah. See? Can’t even.


Smoky Bacon Popcorn with Burnt Sugar and Sea Salt

Yield: serves about 2

Total Time: 30 minutes


6 slices thick-cut bacon
1/3 cup corn kernals

1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup boiling water

1/2 teaspoon flaked sea salt
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon cumin


Heat a large skillet over medium-low heat and fry bacon until crispy. Once crispy and fat is rendered, remove bacon and let drain on paper towels. Remove bacon grease from the skillet, except for about 2-3 tablespoons. Continue to heat over medium-low heat and add popcorn kernals. Stir or shake the pan until the corn begins popping, cover it once it does. Continue to shake the pan until all the kernels are popped. Turn off heat and add popcorn to a large bowl. Season with salt, cumin and smoked paprika, then crumble bacon over top and toss.

To make the burnt sugar glaze, add sugar to a (different) large skillet and heat over medium heat, stirring constantly. Stir for about 6-8 minutes, until the sugar becomes golden, then add in boiling water and whisk until the sugar is disclosed. If a few pieces crystalize, it's fine. Simple strain the sugar/water immediately to get all the liquid, then pour it oven the popcorn. Toss constantly for a minute or two until the bacon and glaze are evenly dispersed. Serve!


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33 Responses to “Smoky Bacon Popcorn with Burnt Sugar and Sea Salt.”

  1. #
    Kristin — June 15, 2013 @ 8:12 am

    “Addictive,” not “addicting.” Sorry, pet peeve of mine. :) And now I’m craving popcorn!


    • Brett — June 16th, 2013 @ 7:56 am

      Hi totally agree with Kristin, Addictive not Addicting either way awesome recipe thank you for the time you take to put this blog together


    • heather — June 22nd, 2013 @ 8:16 pm

      it is so rude to correct another adult’s grammar without being asked. ugh, do something fun instead!


  2. #
    Tieghan — June 15, 2013 @ 8:37 am

    I have been popping popcorn all week and putting it everything. I went a little popcorn crazy! LOL

    But popcorn with bacon! That I did not do! Awesome!


  3. #
    Lauren @ The Highlands Life — June 15, 2013 @ 8:43 am

    Ok, this is just too much! This is every man’s dream to have to waiting on them when they come home. Must make soon.


  4. #
    Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers — June 15, 2013 @ 8:51 am

    Wow! I can only imagine how wonderful your popcorn must taste! Yummy!!


  5. #
    Sophie @ life's philosophie — June 15, 2013 @ 9:18 am

    Ummmm excuse me? I can’t express to you the happiness I am feeling right now because I have all of the ingredients at home. It has bacon which means it must be good, but I can’t wait to try for myself.


  6. #
    kelley @mountainmamacooks — June 15, 2013 @ 9:33 am

    Holy moly. I have no words. Except I need to make this asap.


  7. #
    Becky @ A Calculated Whisk — June 15, 2013 @ 9:57 am

    Yum! Where did you get/make those adorable purple cups? Love it!


  8. #
    ami@naivecookcooks — June 15, 2013 @ 10:00 am

    Girl you rock!!


  9. #
    Kristen @ notsodomesticated — June 15, 2013 @ 12:12 pm

    You are bad. ;) Popping popcorn in bacon grease?! Pretty sure that’s illegal! ;)


  10. #
    Heather — June 15, 2013 @ 12:55 pm

    Jessica that just looks fab! i saw this one this morning and couldn’t help but think of your love for smores!



  11. #
    Lori @ Intoxicology101 — June 15, 2013 @ 4:38 pm

    Bacon makes everything better! Those drinks look amazing too. Love your photos, we just finally upgraded from our kit lens to start taking better pics. Cheers!


  12. #
    Ruthy @ Omeletta — June 15, 2013 @ 4:43 pm

    GAH caramel popcorn with bacon is one of my all-time guilty pleasures. And tell me you made those paper popcorn holders yourself- extremely cute!


  13. #
    Victoria — June 15, 2013 @ 4:54 pm

    I dreamt about this after I saw it on Instagram! Really! I’m going to make this ASAP and tell you how it turned out:)


  14. #
    Leanne — June 15, 2013 @ 5:15 pm

    Oh, this looks awesome! I’m not usually a huge popcorn fan either, unless it’s covered in cheese and garlic, or along the lines of caramel and bacon. I’ve been lucky enough to have a different version of your recipe before (although the popcorn was much messier, totally covered in hard caramel with salt and bacon thrown in) so I just *know* this will be equally delicious.

    Loviing those purple paper cups as well!


  15. #
    Averie @ Averie Cooks — June 15, 2013 @ 6:45 pm

    I love popcorn and normally don’t intend to burn sugar (but I manage to do it anyway sometimes LOL) and I can see where the two would be a great pair! Burnt sugar is just one step past caramel sauce for caramel corn, anyway, right :)


  16. #
    Heather of Kitchen Concoctions — June 15, 2013 @ 11:12 pm

    Sometimes I wish I could be in your head… to see how your mind works when developing recipes! You come up with such crazy (crazy in a totally amazing way) delicious ideas!


  17. #
    Nessa — June 16, 2013 @ 10:29 am

    Droool…this looks delicious!


  18. #
    Barb | Creative Culinary — June 16, 2013 @ 12:48 pm

    I judged a bacon contest yesterday (I know, tough job) and I was mostly under-impressed. True story…I told my co-judges I was disappointed no one had done something with popcorn,. Seems they had but just not in Denver! You win! I would have made this first place in a heartbeat.


  19. #
    Colette @ JFF! — June 17, 2013 @ 12:56 pm

    How so very interesting.
    I’m speechless.


  20. #
    erin @hooleywithaz — June 17, 2013 @ 2:35 pm

    holy crap (i almost just swore there, i feel so strongly). i just died and went to popcorn heaven.


  21. #
    Nutmeg Nanny — June 26, 2013 @ 10:40 pm

    Wow! This combination of flavors sounds just too good to be true, I love it!


  22. #
    wj1 — December 15, 2013 @ 12:32 pm

    I just came across your recipe and it sounds wonderful. I would like to make some to give as gifts. Do you know if it would it stay fresh for a couple of weeks in an airtight container? Thanks!



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