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Movie nights were a weekly tradition in our house when I was growing up. And they were such a fun part of our family life that my parents converted the room above our garage into an amazing theater room, complete with a projector and movie screen. It was pretty darn cool.
The movie setup at our house isn’t nearly that impressive, but now that Forrest is getting old enough to really pay attention to movies (and enjoy a lot of the same movies that Jeff and I want to watch!), I am more than happy to carry on the family movie night tradition. It’s such a simple, fun way to spend time together.
And of course, having an awesome snack to enjoy doesn’t hurt, either.
Years ago, before we had kids to join in our movie nights, Jeff and I hosted a movie night for some friends who offered to bring peanut butter popcorn to serve. I’ll admit, I was skeptical. That just doesn’t sound like a flavor combo that should work, but of course, I was wrong and it was incredible.
So for our most recent family movie night, we picked up Big Hero 6 from Target, along with the ingredients for peanut butter popcorn. Definitely a great way to spend an evening.
The popcorn is so simple to make, especially since it can be made in the microwave—no pots or pans to wash. And the finished product is irresistible—crunchy and rich and delicious.
Start with some basic ingredients (you probably already have everything you need in your pantry).
Place the butter and marshmallows together with the brown sugar in a microwave-safe bowl.
And microwave it, stirring every 30 seconds, until it’s well-combined and smooth. I can’t tell you how much I loved not standing over a hot stove for this recipe.
Add the peanut butter and stir until it melts, then pour it over your popcorn and stir to coat. You could certainly stop here if you like your popcorn to be sticky and gooey and chewy.
Personally, I prefer it to be crunchy and to lose some of that sticky gooeyness, so I recommend spreading it out on a greased baking sheet to bake at a low temperature, stirring every 10 minutes. It will keep some of that yummy chewiness, but will have an awesome crunch to it and won’t stick to your fingers or teeth nearly as much.
After 30 minutes in the oven, drizzle with melted chocolate and let it cool, then break it into chunks and enjoy. That peanut butter and chocolate combo is always divine, and this is no exception.
Chocolate Drizzled Peanut Butter Popcorn
10 cups popcorn
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
20 large marshmallows
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 squares chocolate candiquik/almond bark
Preheat oven to 250 degrees and prepare a large baking sheet with a nonstick baking mat (or grease the pan lightly).
Place popcorn in a large bowl. In a separate, medium microwave-safe bowl, combine the butter, brown sugar, and marshmallows. Microwave for 90 seconds, removing from the microwave to stir every 30 seconds. When it is smooth and melted, add the peanut butter and vanilla and stir until the peanut butter melts (feel free to pop it into the microwave for another 10-15 seconds to melt the peanut butter if necessary). Pour over popcorn and gently stir until evenly coated.
Spread popcorn out onto the prepared baking sheet and place in the preheated oven. Bake for 30 minutes, stirring gently every 10 minutes.
In a small microwave-safe bowl, melt the chocolate. When the popcorn is finished in the oven, drizzle the chocolate over it and let cool, then break into chunks and enjoy.
Note: if you prefer, feel free to use 1/2 cup chocolate chips in place of the almond bark. I love using almond bark because it hardens up so nicely, whereas chocolate chips stay somewhat soft after being melted.
Recipe adapted from allrecipes.com.
If you’re gearing up for a family movie night soon, I hope you’ll try this recipe out! Forrest was crazy about Big Hero 6, and has told me he’d like to start calling me Baymax instead of Mama. Ok, kid.