Popcorn Snowballs

Sweet, crunchy and gooey popcorn snowballs are a delicious snack. They make great party favors or holiday treats!

Popcorn snowballs can even be made a few days ahead to give you a jump start with any party prep. Easy Microwave ToffeeHomemade Peppermint Bark, and Homemade Peanut Brittle are great additions to any gift plate or holiday party spread!

Popcorn Snowballs served in blue polka dot cupcake liners

Edible Snowballs

I’m usually not very adventurous when it comes to popcorn. I prefer butter, kettle or my aunt’s famous caramel corn. However, I thought I’d get a little creative and make something new. These popcorn snowballs seemed like a perfect treat for the party.

For these popcorn snowballs I added a pinch of salt and some vanilla extract. I find those ingredients to be essential in any type of baking or “candy making.” They add both depth and flavor.

Since I wanted to make them extra festive, I went with blue sanding sugar, jumbo snowflake sprinkles and a variety of blue M&M’s.

They’re crunchy, gooey and sweet- perfect for any occasion! Place them in cupcake liners and package them in cellophane bags for a great holiday gift. Or serve them at a party as a fun little treat! 

How to make popcorn snowballs

POPCORN. Place a heavy bottom dutch oven or saucepan over medium heat. Add the oil and popcorn and stir the kernels so that they are evenly coated. When the oil becomes hot and sizzles, add the sugar. Shake the pot or pan until the first few kernels pop.

Place the lid on top and continue gently shaking back and forth while the remaining kernels pop. Once the popcorn stops, remove from heat and place into a large mixing bowl to cool.

SAUCE. In a small saucepan over medium heat, add the butter and marshmallows. Stir continuously until the marshmallows are melted. Remove from heat and add the salt and vanilla extract.

COMBINE. Pour over the popcorn and coat evenly. Add M&Ms, sprinkles or nuts.

FORM + COOL. Cover your hands with a light layer butter or coconut oil. Form the popcorn mixture into 3″ balls. Set them on a piece of wax (or parchment) paper to cool completely, about 30 minutes.

Popcorn Snowballs covered in blue sprinkles and M&Ms

Tips + Storing Info

 Here are a few tips when making them:

  • Try to remove any un-popped kernels before adding the marshmallow mixture to your popcorn.
  • Add a few drops of food color to the marshmallow mixture or use pastel colored marshmallows for some fun and festive tints.
  • Any kind of popcorn can be used – even microwaved or air popped. You will want to use at least 12 cups of popped popcorn for this recipe.
  • Add in any candies that you like to your popcorn balls – skittles, cut up gum drops, candy corns, and Reese’s pieces would all be fun additions.

STORE cooled popcorn balls wrapped tightly in plastic wrap at room temperature for up to 5 days.

a pile of blue sprinkled Popcorn Snowballs

More Yummy Candy Treats:

Popcorn Snowballs Recipe

Sweet, crunchy and gooey popcorn snowballs are a delicious snack and make great party favors or holiday treats!
5 from 1 vote
Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 5 mins
Cool: 30 mins
Servings: 12
Calories: 276kcal
Author: Life Made Simple Team
Print Recipe

Ingredients

  • 3 Tbsp canola oil
  • 1/2 cup popcorn kernels
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 4 Tbsp butter
  • 5 cups mini marshmallows
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup M&Ms
  • sprinkles or peanuts optional

Instructions

  • Place a heavy bottom dutch oven or saucepan over medium heat. Add the oil and popcorn and stir the kernels so that they are evenly coated. When the oil becomes hot and sizzles, add the sugar. Shake the pot or pan until the first few kernels pop. Place the lid on top and continue gently shaking back and forth while the remaining kernels pop. Once the popcorn stops, remove from heat and place into a large mixing bowl to cool.
  • Next, in a small saucepan over medium heat, add the butter and marshmallows. Stir continuously until the marshmallows are melted. Remove from heat and add the salt and vanilla extract.
  • Pour over the popcorn and coat evenly. Add M&Ms, sprinkles or nuts.
  • Cover your hands with a light layer of butter or coconut oil. Form the popcorn mixture into 3" balls. Set them on a piece of wax (or parchment) paper to cool completely, about 30 minutes.

Notes

Substitute butter for coconut oil (and omit chocolate candies) to make this recipe dairy-free.

Nutrition

Calories: 276kcal | Carbohydrates: 42g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 13mg | Sodium: 111mg | Potassium: 21mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 31g | Vitamin A: 155IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 22mg | Iron: 1mg

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Perfect Rice Pilaf | lifemadesimplebakes.com

Recipe Source: adapted from The Pioneer Woman, Popcorn Balls

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Comments:

  1. Love these. I like the idea that you can change them up to fit any occasion or holiday. Fun, fun, fun!! Thanks for sharing the recipe.

      1. Where do you get the jumbo snowflakes?? I’ve been searching and can’t find them. My daughters frozen bday is this Saturday. Help!

        1. Hi Candice! I bought them a year ago form Karen’s Cookies (they are Wilton brand), but I believe they are now discontinued. I think you can still find them on Amazon and at candywarehouse.com. I hope that helps!

  2. This recipe didn’t work at all. The popcorn mixture won’t form into balls and if it does, it falls apart shortly after being put down.

    1. I’m sorry you had trouble with it! I turned out just fine for me. It’s pretty much the same as making rice krispie treats, so I’m not sure why it isn’t holding together for you. I’ll definitely give it another try!

  3. I am unable to make popcorn the hot oil way because our ceramic cooktop will get ruined by the moving of the pan (I didn’t realize this when buying our new stove….I hate it for this very reason-I love “shaking” my pans). Anyway, is there anyway of doing this recipe with air popped popcorn?

    1. I totally understand! You could probably skip the sugar all together if you really wanted to! I did “kettle” because I wanted them to be extra sweet, but rice krispies don’t have extra sugar in them and they still taste delicious 🙂

  4. I used Rice Krispies instead, but that worked just fine. What an adorable alternative to Rice Krispie squares for my daughter’s nursery school Christmas party…ok for peanut allergic too (if you leave out the optional peanuts, of course!) which is more difficult to find than you would think! Thanks so much, Natalie!

  5. Is there any reason why mini milk chocolate balls wouldn’t work in place of the M&Ms? I’m having trouble finding the blue M&Ms for a reasonable price, but I’ve found pretty shimmer blue & white mini chocolate balls on Amazon for a reasonable price. Thank you!

  6. I’m planning on using microwave popcorn. Can you tell me approx. how much or how many bags I may need to use?