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Pumpkin Spice Popcorn

Pumpkin Spice Popcorn

You know we had to do it, right? It was unavoidable. There was going to be pumpkin spice popcorn in our lives. Oh, sure, some of you are a little sick of pumpkin spice everything and we agree that not all things need to be given the PS treatment. But we stand firm in our opinion that popcorn absolutely should be.

What exactly is pumpkin spice, though? The name is confusing because it makes it seem like it contains pumpkin. But it’s really a collection of different spices that are commonly used to flavor pumpkin pie and hence the name. The blend has been found in cookbooks dating from the 1800’s and has been sold as a premade mix since the early to mid 1900’s. We tend to associate it most with Starbuck’s pumpkin spice lattes but those didn’t actually come into being until 2003.

The spices most commonly found in the blend are cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves, allspice and sometimes anise. Cinnamon is the predominant flavor and the mix contains far more of it than the other spices. So, should you buy the ready made mix or should you make your own? Our vote is for making your own because it allows you to customize. Don’t love cloves? Leave that out. Really fond of ginger? Add more! You can find your perfect quantities and make a big batch of the combination for the season. Or, just keep those spices on hand and measure them out each time you want to use them.

And we do love these warm spices in pumpkin pie but adding them to freshly popped corn is heavenly. That cinnamon aroma hits you as soon as you lift the bowl to start snacking and then it will be hard to stop.

You can combine the seasonings and just dust them over a bowl of popcorn but our recipe brings a bigger flavor punch. We cook together butter, light brown sugar, salt and the seasonings. Then we toss in the popcorn, spread it out on a baking sheet and let it crisp up in the oven. It seals the flavors into the popcorn while keeping it crisp. Maybe we should call it sugar and spice popcorn? Either way, it’s pretty irresistible.

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