Spiced Orange Popcorn

Sweet cinema-style popcorn with orange and spices – The perfect accompaniment to a Christmas film.

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spiced orange popcorn christmas

In my house, an important part of getting into the Christmas spirit is watching Christmas films. To celebrate the start of the Christmas film season, traditionally the Friday before Christmas (it is a real thing, I haven’t just made it up – honest), I thought I’d share with you my recipe for festive spiced orange popcorn.

Homemade popcorn is really quick and fun to make, and much cheaper than buying it in the shops. This popcorn costs just 15p per portion. It’s also fun to make with children as they love watching the corn popping in the saucepan. I wasn’t sure if they’d like the flavours as I thought the orange and spices might be a bit grown up, but they kept coming back for more!

spiced orange popcorn square

Choosing our Christmas films – I need your help

I have a bit of a problem this year. I know that our Christmas film watching will include our favourites – Love Actually and The Holiday, but this year I want to watch more films as a family too.

This is where I need your help.

This is the first year the boys are really old enough to sit and enjoy a Christmas film, so we don’t have any family favourites from other years. What are your recommendations? If you’ve got young children, I’d love to hear from you about which Christmas films they love to watch (preferably ones that are fun for grown ups too).

After all, it would be a shame to choose a rubbish film to watch with the children when I’ve made such lovely popcorn to go with it.

Spiced Orange Popcorn

Sweet cinema-style popcorn with orange and spices – The perfect accompaniment to a Christmas film.
Active Time 3 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 4 people


  • 80 g Popping Corn
  • ½ tsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp Butter
  • 2 tbsp Soft Light Brown Sugar
  • 2 tbsp Golden Syrup
  • Zest of ½ an Orange
  • 2 tsp Ground Mixed Spice


Make the Popcorn

  • Put the vegetable oil (½ tsp) into a saucepan and use some kitchen paper to spread it around to coat the bottom and sides of the pan.
  • Add the popping corn (80g)
  • Cover with a lid and place over a medium heat. Shake the pan occasionally as this helps to ensure that the popcorn at the bottom of the pan doesn't burn.
  • Once the pan is warm enough the corn will start popping, leave on the heat until all the corn has popped - the popping sounds will die down to about once every second.
  • As soon as the corn has popped, remove from the heat and tip the popcorn into a large bowl (the biggest you can find) - You don't want to leave the popcorn in the pan as the residual heat may burn the corn at the bottom making it taste bitter.

Make the spiced orange flavouring

    • Place a small saucepan over a low heat.
    • Add the butter (2 tbsp), light brown sugar (2 tbsp) and golden syrup (2 tbsp) and continue to heat until the butter has melted.
    • Remove from the heat.
    • Add the ground mixed spice (2 tsp) and grated orange zest (½ orange).
    • Stir to combine all of the ingredients and pour over the cooked popcorn
    • Toss the popcorn in the flavouring until there is a fine coating on all of the corn.
    • Serve


    If you would prefer to make your popcorn in the microwave you can find instructions here.
    Have you tried this recipe? Please leave a comment and rating at the bottom of the page to let others know what you thought.
    Recipe Type: Snack

    Nutritional Information

    Serving: 15g | Calories: 192kcal | Carbohydrates: 30g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 15mg | Sodium: 54mg | Potassium: 54mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 14g | Vitamin A: 3.5% | Vitamin C: 1.5% | Calcium: 1.2% | Iron: 4.5%
    Any nutritional information shown is the estimated nutritional information per serving. Please refer to my guide to Charlotte’s Lively Kitchen nutritional information if you want to learn more about how this is calculated.

    Free From/Suitable For…

    The ingredients I used to make this recipe are all free from the following allergens. However, please check any labels carefully for allergens you need to avoid as brands can vary and product recipes can change over time.

    • Suitable for Vegetarians
    • Gluten-Free
    • Egg-Free
    • Tree Nut-Free
    • Peanut-Free
    • Sesame-Free
    • Soya-Free
    • Sulphur Dioxide & Sulphite-Free
    • Fish-Free
    • Crustacean-Free
    • Mollusc-Free
    • Celery-Free
    • Mustard-Free
    • Lupin-Free

    This recipe can be made dairy-free and vegan by switching the butter for a dairy-free alternative.

    I’m sharing this recipe with #FestiveFoodFridays with Taming Twins.




    1. Wow, will have to try these!!! Never made popcorn with maple syrup. Maybe for next Christmas: I liked a lot “How to Train a Dragon” 🙂

    2. Aww this must be so tasty! I already want to prepare it, thanks for the recipe! 🙂

    3. I love the idea of this. So many sweet treats at Christmas as so heavy and sugary (not that I mind obviously!) but this sounds full of Christmas flavours without being quite so weighty. Did you watch The Snowman and The Snowdog in the end?! We like Elf too, a bit old for my too but they do think “the silly man!” is very funny.. Thanks for linking to #festivefoodfriday and happy Christmas!

      • We’ve had a busy few days so we’ve not had a chance to watch it yet but we’ll definitely watch it sometime before new year (It’s OK to watch Christmas films until then isn’t it?).

        I really enjoyed being part of #festivefoodfriday this year. See you again for another go next year.

        Happy Christmas x

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