Christmas is the perfect time to make a bowl of delicious peppermint popcorn. This crunchy white chocolate popcorn is topped with a drizzle of dark chocolate and a sprinkling of crushed candy canes.
Peppermint and chocolate are a wonderful flavor combination, especially for Christmastime.
Adding peppermint candies or crushed candy canes to white chocolate popcorn makes a wonderful holiday treat.
This is one of my favorite gourmet popcorn flavors to package to give as Christmas gifts. It's so pretty and it tastes great.
How to make Peppermint Popcorn?
If you read my White Chocolate Popcorn tutorial, I talk to you about the various kinds of white (and dark) chocolate that you can use to make chocolate-coated popcorn. I prefer to use compound white chocolate to make chocolate popcorn.
Check out my chocolate-making tips page for more information about the types of chocolate (pure chocolate vs. compound chocolate).
To make this particular recipe, I chose to use Wilton Candy Melts, a popular brand of compound chocolate that can be purchased at grocery, discount, and craft stores. They melt easily and harden quickly and are available in white, dark, and milk along with all sorts of colors. Candy Melts are super easy to use when making gourmet popcorn.
I also chose to use Wilton's Peppermint Crunch Holiday Sprinkles which you can find at retail stores including Walmart, Meijer, and Jo Ann's. I love that the tiny candy cane pieces are bright red with white stripes instead of white with red stripes. The red really pops against the white popcorn.
You can break up candy canes if you prefer. The flavor will be the same. Try to find candy canes that have more red than white and your popcorn will look just as pretty.
To make this festive Christmas popcorn, you'll melt the Candy Melts, pour them over popped popcorn, and spread it onto a pan. Then, drizzle the white chocolate-coated popcorn with dark chocolate and sprinkle candy cane pieces over the top. It's that easy!
Packaging Christmas popcorn.
If you plan to make this popcorn to give as a Christmas gift, here are a few packaging ideas:
- Popcorn Tins - White chocolate popcorn will stay fresh for at least 2 months if stored in a metal popcorn tin so that is my favorite way to package the popcorn to give as gifts. I've actually kept white chocolate in a big popcorn tin for up to 4 months. It didn't taste as fresh as it did a few months earlier but it still tasted pretty good.
- Cellophane Bags - I love to package the popcorn in cellophane bags even though it will only stay crispy for a week or two. It looks so pretty in cello bags and this popcorn is so irresistible that it probably won't be around for much longer than that.
- I've had customers tell me they enjoyed their bags of popcorn a month after buying it but it does start to lose some of its crunchiness after a while.
- Just be sure not to package the popcorn in zip-top bags. It will lose its crunchiness in just a few days.
- Popcorn Buckets - Package your Christmas popcorn in a festive Christmas popcorn bucket or box. Wrap the bucket in clear cellophane. Once again, the popcorn will only last a week or so if packaged this way.
- Candy Dishes - Pile the peppermint popcorn up on a red and white striped candy dish or any Christmas tray or bowl and the popcorn will stay fresh for a week or so.
If you package the popcorn in bags, but you have some large popcorn tins on hand, you can place the bags of popcorn in the tins to keep them fresh for a few months.
I bought big 6-gallon tins just to keep my bags of popcorn fresh. I could get 8-12 bags in each tin. I sold hundreds of bags of popcorn each Christmas and the tins would keep the popcorn fresh so my customers could have a week or so to enjoy their popcorn.
If you plan to serve this peppermint popcorn for a Christmas party, showcase it in a clear bowl. It's so pretty and it's nice to see it through the glass.
More chocolate peppermint dessert ideas:
If you love the combination of white & dark chocolate flavored with peppermint, you might also like these other delicious Christmas recipes:
- Peppermint Bark Fudge
- Candy Cane Bowls with Chocolate Mousse
- Peppermint Bark Dessert in Mini Mason Jars
- Peppermint Swirl Mousse Cake with a flourless chocolate cake layer
Candy Cane Popcorn Recipe
White chocolate popcorn drizzled with dark chocolate and sprinkled with candy cane pieces.
- 9 cups popped popcorn
- 12 ounces White Candy Melts (or compound white chocolate)*
- 3 ounces Dark Cocoa Candy Melts (or compound dark chocolate)*
- ¼ cup Peppermint Crunch Sprinkles or candy cane pieces
Layer a baking tray with parchment paper.
Pour the popped popcorn into an extra-large bowl, making sure to remove any un-popped popcorn kernels.
Pour the white candy melts into a microwave-safe bowl.
Heat on high power for 30-second bursts of high power, stirring after each, just until the chocolate melts.
You can also melt the candy melts on the stove. Fill a saucepan with 1 inch of water, set it over low heat, and set a snug-fitting bowl over top so it does not touch the water. Pour the candy melts into the bow and stir often until melted.
Pour the Dark Cocoa Candy Melts into a small microwave-safe bowl.
Heat for 15-second bursts of high power, stirring after each, until melted.
Pour the White Candy Melts over the popcorn and gently stir just until the white chocolate coats all the popcorn. Don't stir too much or the white chocolate will harden.
Spread into an even layer on the parchment paper-lined baking tray.
Immediately drizzle the Dark Cocoa Candy Melts over the popcorn and quickly sprinkle the Peppermint Crunch Sprinkles or candy cane pieces over the top of the popcorn.
Tap the pan on the counter a few times. This will ensure your candy cane pieces stick to the chocolate popcorn.
Chill in the refrigerator for 15 minutes until the chocolate hardens.
Then, break up the peppermint popcorn into chunks. Don't try to break the popcorn into really small pieces or the popcorn will crumble and the candy cane pieces will fall off.
Serve and enjoy!
Store your peppermint popcorn in an airtight metal popcorn tin for up to 2 months, in an airtight plastic container for up to 2 weeks, or in a cellophane bag for about a week.
*You can use any white compound chocolate or white pure chocolate to make this gourmet popcorn.
- Compound chocolate also known as Candy Melts, confectionery coating, melting wafers, or almond bark made using palm kernel oil or other vegetable oil can easily be melted and will harden quickly once the popcorn is chilled.
- Pure chocolate which contains cocoa butter must be tempered (heated and cooled to specific temperatures) in order to harden properly.
- Be sure to read my Chocolate Making Tips page (https://hungryhappenings.com/chocolate-making-tips/) for melting and tempering instructions.