This zebra popcorn is a delicious crunchy caramel popcorn covered in melted chocolate and white chocolate. It’s the perfect sweet and salty snack!
This zebra caramel popcorn is such a delicious snack. It’s the perfect caramel popcorn, all drizzled in chocolate and white chocolate, giving it those “zebra” stripes.
The popcorn is coated in a homemade caramel, and then baked up in the oven to get a nice crunchy caramel texture. The last time I made it, my husband literally said “it’s the best caramel popcorn he’s had.” And said it had the perfect crunchy texture that doesn’t stick to your teeth.
I got the idea for this popcorn from Popcornopolis’s Zebra Popcorn, which is drizzled with white chocolate and chocolate and I knew I could easily repeat the same thing at home for snack I loved even more, but can also have any time, and at a much cheaper price.
This zebra caramel popcorn is a great snack. It’s so fun for a game night, or movie night at home. (Which we’re doing a lot more of with the cold weather these days). And it makes a big bowlful so it’s a great option for sharing too. It would be a fun sweet snack for a party, to package up for a holiday treat, an afternoon snack, you name it.
Make a double or triple batch and package it up in cellophane to share with your co-workers, or neighbors for a holiday treat.
This is a quick overview of the ingredients you’ll need for this Zebra Popcorn Recipe. Specific measurements and full recipe instructions are in the printable recipe card below.
- unsalted butter
- brown sugar
- corn syrup
- vanilla extract – gives the caramel the best flavor
- baking soda – keeps the caramel from turning too hard
- white chocolate chips
- chocolate chips – choose your favorite, milk chocolate, semi-sweet, or dark chocolate chips.
How to make Zebra Caramel Popcorn?
Start by popping your popcorn kernels. You can use a lightly salted microwave popcorn, or pop up some popcorn kernels in the microwave, an airpopper, or on the stove top. I like tossing my popcorn in a little salt, for a little sweet and saltiness to the treat. Set it aside, and then let’s make the caramel.
Add the butter to a large sauce pan and let it melt. Then add in the brown sugar, corn syrup, and salt and heat it over medium, and bring it to a boil. Once it is boil, set a timer for 5 minutes, and let it cook without stirring it at all. You can check it with a candy thermometer, and you want it to reach 234-235 F.
Remove the caramel from the heat and add in the baking soda, and vanilla extract and stir it in the the caramel, it’ll probably foam up a little.
Pour the caramel over the popped popcorn in a large bowl and mix it all together to cover the popcorn evenly in the caramel.
Pour the popcorn onto two cookie sheets lined with parchment paper, and spread it evenly over the two sheets.
Bake the popcorn in the oven, stirring every 15 minutes. Remove it from the oven and let popcorn cool at room temperature.
Microwave your white chocolate chips in a small microwave bowl at half power in 30 second increments, until you can stir it smooth. Transfer it to a bag (or drizzle with a spoon) and snip the corner off and drizzle all over the top of the popcorn evenly.
Repeat with the chocolate and then let the popcorn sit until both chocolates are set.
How to store Zebra Popcorn?
Store any leftover popcorn in a ziplock bag or other airtight container for up to 1 week.
Tips for making Zebra Corn:
- Pour your popped corn over a cooling rack. The extra kernels will fall through the rack, and the popcorn will stay on it, helping you to remove the unpopped kernels.
- You can add nuts to your popcorn, Add 1-2 cups of salty peanuts, pecans, or macadamia nuts to the popcorn and toss it in with the popped corn for an extra salty crunch!
- Use white chocolate and chocolate baking melts to make the melting extra easy without any worry about overheating chocolate chips.
This Zebra Popcorn tastes just like its from Popcornopolis. It’s crunchy, caramely, sweet, and so delicious. It’s a great treat for a party, movie night, or game night, or anytime you need it.
Looking for more Popcorn Recipes:
- Caramel Popcorn Balls
- Marshmallow Caramel Popcorn
- S’mores Popcorn Balls
- White Chocolate Covered Popcorn
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Zebra Caramel Popcorn
- 15 cups popped popcorn (About 1/2 cup kernels popped)
- 1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks)
- 2 cups brown sugar
- 1/2 cup light corn syrup
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 3/4 cup white chocolate chips
- 3/4 cup milk chocolate chips
- Preheat the oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit. And spray two cookie sheets with nonstick spray.
- Pop your popcorn kernels using an air popper or microwave, or stove top.
- Add the butter to a large sauce and melt it over medium heat.
- Add in the brown sugar, corn syrup, and salt and stir to combine it all together, and let the sugar melt.
- Bring the mixture to a boil, then set a timer for 5 minutes and let it cook for 5 minutes without stirring. (You can check the temperature with a candy thermometer and have it reach 234- 235F.
- Add the baking soda and vanilla extract to the caramel and stir it together.
- Pour the caramel over the top of the popped corn in a large bowl (or two) and stir it all together to coat.
- Pour the caramel popcorn over the baking sheet and spread it out evenly.
- Bake the popcorn for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Remove the popcorn from the oven and let it cool on the pan.
- Place the white chocolate chips in a small microwavable bowl and melt in the microwave at half power for 60 seconds, then in additional 20 second increments (at half power) stirring it as much as you can in between each section, until you can stir it smooth.
- Add the melted chocolate to a ziplock bag and znip the corner off with scissors and drizzle it over the top of the popcorn evenly.
- Repeat with the chocolate chips. Let the popcorn sit until the chocolate is set.
- Break the popcorn pieces and store in ziplock bags for up to 1 week.
This Zebra popcorn was first posted on January 12, 2015. The photos, text, and recipe were updated on November 23, 2022.
Made this , did not care for it ! A recipe I made last year was perfect, and it did not call for condensed milk.
I made a double batch ! what a waste instead of being crunchy this is so chewy and sticks to your teeth !
So sorry you didn’t like it
Hi I dont own a microwave what can I do? Can i make it on the stove?
You can heat it on the stove, I’m not sure how long it will take so I’d use a thermometer to heat it to 244-248 Farenheit.
Ginger Bacon says
I tried the Popcornopolis version I got from a friend and LOVED it but when I went to buy some myself I was crushed to see a price tag of $20.59 for a 24oz. bag…seriously? It better do the dishes too for that much! So I begged google to please help me and it showed me this recipe that looks identical, yay Google! I’m now excitedly off to go try and recreate this tasty masterpiece, then I’ll try the Butterfinger one too!! It’s going to be a great day to be a tastebud!!
Karen L says
I mixed the popcorn and caramel but it was sticky and clumped the popcorn together. I baked it and was still clumped up, even after cooling. What did I do wrong? It’s still sticky.
The caramel is a bit more sticky than some others, but baking it should have helped solidify it a little more. You could try baking it longer to see if it reaches your desired texture. I spread it out pretty thinly on my pan to help with that too
Made this at home today for a Christmas present – here are a couple of notes:
1) I used two movie theater butter microwave popcorn bags. Kettle corn or plain would be best.
2) I switched to a punch bowl for stirring the caramel and popcorn; even my large Pyrex bowl was too small for easy stirring without popcorn falling over the side.
3) The recipe is missing how long to microwave the chocolate chips for; I did three sets of 30 seconds with stirring in between.
4) I goofed up my light corn syrup substitution – it was supposed to be 5/8 cup sugar dissolved in 1/8 cup water, but I ended up doing 1/8 cup water with 1/8 cup sugar dissolved in.
5) The caramel in my popcorn started to get crumbly after three 15-minute segments in the oven (probably because of my messed-up corn syrup substitution), so I took it out early.
JACKELINE SMITH says
Hi there! Could I make this recipe without the corn syrup? How would it affect the result? I tried the recipe with and found it was too chewy for my liking. The flavor was wonderful.
Ive never tried it without corn syrup, but there are other recipes without so it seems like it would work. Let me know if you try it!
Sue Bibee says
I just made this recipe, I doubled it for Super Bowl Sunday. I accidently reached for dark brown sugar, but was happily surprised at the flavor it gave the caramel. used 3 chocolates milk, dark & white. It turned out great. Thank you for a fun treat to bring to the party
So glad you liked it! Hope everyone at your party did too!
Can you substitute the coconut oil for a different oil?
Aimee Berrett says
The coconut oil just helps the chocolate to be a little smoother when melted and to harden a little faster. I would just leave it out instead of subbing it!
Denise Sesson says
You can substitute the coconut oil with vegetable oil, Crisco shortening, and Wilton’s have a product to thin chocolate and or candy melts or barks.
Shortening would work the same way.
Jessica @ A Kitchen Addiction says
Love caramel corn! The drizzle of chocolates makes it irresistible!
Aimee Berrett says
Right?! Isn’t everything better with chocolate?
Shelby @ Go Eat and Repeat says
This would be a great super bowl snack
Aimee Berrett says
Yes it would. Hoping to make another batch!
This looks amazing… My girl would die for this!!!
Lydia @ Suitcase Foodist says
Looks amazing. I am now craving popcorn at 8:07 am…. A first for me.
Jen @ Baked by an Introvert says
White and milk chocolate are winners in my book. I’d gobble this up with a quickness!
Yum, yum, yum! I could eat this all day!
Wow this looks crazy good. Not just good..CRAZY good!
Anything with sweetened condensed milk gets my vote. This popcorn looks amazing!