Do they conjure up images of poor little Charlie Brown for you like they do for me?
All I can think about is Charlie trick-or-treating with his group of friends in his hole-y sheet saying, “I got a rock.”
Whoever had the idea of creating popcorn balls obviously hated their dentist with a sadistic, sugary passion.
Anyone who can throw together popcorn, marshmallow, and other candy junk together in one hard-to-eat ball must have been seeking some kind of insane revenge. Perhaps for years of braces where they were prohibited from eating anything delicious (here’s looking at you, taffy).
I can attest to that. I was the worst braces-wearer ever (don’t tell my mom).
First of all, I’m a psycho-gum-chewer (in that I LOVE gum obsessively and must have it pretty much at all times) and could not give up gum to spare my future-straight teeth. And when it came to parting ways with caramel, licorice, or gummies, my fragile heart couldn’t bear it and I caved. Multiple times. Same goes with popcorn.
In a way, these Monster Munch Popcorn Balls are like an homage to ex-braces-wearers or dentist-haters everywhere. It’s like giving dental work the middle finger, if said middle finger was a popcorn ball the size of your face. And smothered with marshmallow. But you understand.
Monster Munch Popcorn Balls
About 8 cups popped kettle corn (can substitute regular air-popped popcorn), stray kernels removed
1/4 cup butter
1 pkg miniature marshmallows
About 1 cup honey roasted peanuts
About 1 cup candy corn
About 1 cup candy corn (white chocolate) M&M’s
1. Gently toss together the kettle corn, peanuts, candy corn and M&M’s together in a very large bowl. Set aside.
2. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the marshmallows and stir until melted and gooey. Pour the hot mallow mixture over the popcorn mixture, and toss gently to combine and thoroughly coat.
3. Working quickly (the key here!!) and with greased hands, grab handfuls of the popcorn mixture and gently yet tightly form them into compact balls, about 3-4″ in size. Place on a foil-lined baking sheet.
4. Allow the popcorn balls to set–about 30 minutes at room temperature–before packaging. Store airtight to keep fresh.
**Notes: You MUST work very quickly with this, because when the marshmallow cools, the mixture won’t stick together.
**Make sure your hands are greased well (I used cooking spray) in between forming the popcorn balls.
**You may need to reform some of the popcorn balls as they may start to slightly fall apart while you’re working; that’s okay, just gently form them back to a round shape to keep them compact. They’ll cool and dry that way.**
I was so surprised at how easy it was to make these popcorn balls! Besides the sticky marshmallow goo (which, let’s get real, is awesome), it was super simple and everyone at my mom’s work loved them. Plus, fun fact: candy corn + honey roasted peanuts taste just like a PayDay. So while these popcorn balls lacked caramel, the combination of flavors added a fun, caramel-y twist to these treats!