I’m seriously becoming more time poor as each year passes. My kids are busy with both before and after school activities pretty much every day of the week. So the amount of time I have to spend in the kitchen is way less than when they were little and we were home a lot more. So it’s recipes like these Popcorn Caramel Chews that take literally 5 minutes to make, which are a saviour when life gets crazy.
The caramel base is the easiest caramel you’ll ever make (no heating required). The best part is they hold up much better than most no-bake treats when out of the fridge.
These are also a great treat for kids resistant to whole foods. You can serve them as is, but I’d encourage you to take the opportunity to add in some extra nourishment (suggestions to tailor the recipe to your needs and taste below). My kids think this is the best thing I’ve ever made, so I can’t wait to hear how your kids like them.
These are also super popular at parties.. I reckon they’d give Honey Joys a run for their money.
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Take a look at the variations (below the main recipe) for suggestions to alter the recipe to suit any specific dietary requirements.
These Popcorn Caramel Chews take just minutes to make and are a delicious, no-bake treat. They are great for the lunch box or for kids parties and celebrations.
- ½ cup coconut butter*
- ½ cup rice malt syrup, honey or maple syrup (you can reduce this to ¼ cup if you don't have a sweet tooth)
- ½ teaspoon vanilla essence
- Good pinch sea salt, optional
- 3 cups popcorn, plain or salted
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- ¼ cup goji berries
- ¼ cup sunflower, pumpkin or sesame seeds (raw, toasted or dehydrated)
- ¼ cup flaked, slivered or chopped nuts (raw, toasted or dehydrated)
- Top with freeze dried raspberry fruit sprinkles for a party
- * the nuts and seeds you can add in whole or grind them.
- Start by softening the coconut butter by standing the jar in hot water.
Once it can be mixed with a spoon easily, add it to a bowl with your choice of sweetener and the vanilla.
- Mix with a metal spoon until combined and creamy.
- Add the popcorn (and any extras) and fold it thorough the caramel. If it's cold and the caramel is to thick to work through the popcorn, stand the mixing bowl in hot water for a few minutes.
Divide between 18 mini patty cases. You can top with extras if you like also.
- Put in the freezer for 30 minutes or so to set.
Airtight in the freezer. They can be eaten from frozen or packed into a lunchbox with an ice-brick. The caramel will soften a little but it holds up a lot better than coconut oil based raw treats.
Make a slice
To make a slice, double this recipe and press the mixture into a lined baking tray. You'll need to really push down the mix so it's firmly packed. Pop in the freezer to set and then cut into squares.
Make them with flaked almonds instead.
Choose one of the nut-free options above or use the base recipe.
Choose rice malt syrup as your sweetener.
Choose rice malt or maple syrup as your sweetener.
*Coconut butter is NOT the same as coconut oil or cacao butter and it's NOT the cream off the canned coconut milk/cream. Though it is sometimes also called 'coconut cream' or 'creamed coconut'. I shop for it here. Many health food stores and some supermarkets stock it also.