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I’m ready for fall flavors.

So when my mom brought over a bag of puffed corn and suggested turning it into caramel corn, I was ready to add an autumn twist.

She found a fairly simple caramel-corn recipe on, and I added a couple of my favorite fall-flavored spices to give it some September oomph.

The full teaspoon of ground cinnamon is quite a bit — you could always tone it down to half a teaspoon or omit it altogether.

I also suggest making

this recipe with unsalted butter if you’re using salted puffed corn and peanuts, but again, use your own discretion.

You can buy puffed corn in the snack aisle at the grocery store.

I never considered caramelizing it until my mom suggested the idea, but it’s genius for toddlers, because it’s less of a choking hazard than traditional popcorn.

(Of course, peanuts are a choking hazard, too. Omit those or pick them out of the mix if you’re serving toddlers.)

I also thought the corn did a nice job of soaking up the cinnamon and caramel flavors.

I’ll be making this recipe again, maybe with different spices or nuts. It’s a versatile concept.

Cinnamon-Caramel Puffed Corn8 ounces puffed corn (this will look like a large bag)

1 cup salted peanuts

2 sticks unsalted butter

1 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 cup light corn syrup

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Heat oven to 250 degrees.

Cover bottom of a large roasting pan with parchment paper.

Toss together peanuts and puffed corn.

Meanwhile, in a heavy-bottom saucepan, cook butter, brown sugar and corn syrup until it boils.

Cook two more minutes, stirring constantly.

Remove from heat and mix in baking soda.

Caramel mixture will foam.

Add cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla. Stir well.

Pour over puffed-corn mixture and use a silicone spatula to coat corn well.

Bake 45 to 60 minutes or until caramel hardens.

Toss every 15 minutes so mixture dries out evenly.

Break apart and store in an airtight container.

Meg Dickinson is a communications professional who spends many waking hours daydreaming about food. To submit a recipe, email

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