Friday, September 23, 2011

Peanut Butter Cup Popcorn

Happy first day of Autumn! Fall is probably my favorite season, next to Christmas (yes I do call Christmas a season... :) ) I just love it when the air cools down and everyone seems to be so happy because the holidays are nearing! So fun!  Too bad I am now permanently in Arizona so I can't experience the pretty fall leaves like I was so privileged to see when I went to school in Utah. :( But it's okay... 

I am seriously SO happy that it is Halloween time and that I can start baking yummy treats! I have already busted out the canned pumpkin....I made delicious pumpkin whoopie pies... recipe to come soon!! SO I thought I had already posted this recipe but to my surprise, I have not!  Popcorn is such a yummy fall treat and even though this is peanut butter, not caramel popcorn, this is a WINNER recipe! And it could be made any time of the year! It is so decadent and rich and, of course, calorie free. :) This is an easy "transitional" recipe into fall baking- because let's face it: we still have three full months left of official fall/holiday baking. So excited!!

Peanut Butter Cup Popcorn
Recipe by Our Best Bites

2 bags of Simply Salted (or similar- try to choose butter-free) popcorn (or about 20 cups of popped popcorn)
2 c. honey roasted peanuts
3 c. peanut butter chips (I used Reese’s)*
2/3 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips *
1 Tbsp. vegetable shortening or oil

Place the peanuts and popped popcorn in a very large bowl. In a microwave-safe bowl, combine the peanut butter chips and vegetable oil or shortening and heat for 2-2 1/2 minutes or until smooth, stirring every 30 seconds. Drizzle the melted peanut butter chips over the popcorn and peanuts and toss to combine.
Spread the popcorn onto a wax paper-lined baking sheet. In a Ziploc bag, heat the semi-sweet chocolate chips until just melted and smooth (about 1-1 1/2 minutes, mashing the bag every 20-30 seconds). Cut a small corner in the Ziploc bag and drizzle the chocolate over the popcorn. Allow to stand long enough to become solid (you can transfer the pan to the fridge or freezer to hurry this step along). When done, break the popcorn into small pieces and enjoy!

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