Sunday, January 8, 2017

Christmas Family Recipes - Red Hot Popcorn & Great-Grandma Kelly's Gingersnaps

I can’t believe it’s already been two weeks since Christmas!  You may have seen some photos on Facebook or Instagram of a mother/daughter baking day I had with my mom over the holidays.  We baked several treats that are family recipes I wanted to share.

We made red hot popcorn, which is the most addicting popcorn you’ll ever eat.  This is one of my favorite family recipes.  Coated in melted butter, Karo syrup & red hots, it is like a cinnamon version of kettle corn. If you’re not careful, you can easily finish off a bag in one sitting.  The recipe looks like it makes a lot, but trust me, you’ll want more. 

Then we made gingersnap cookies that are my Great-Grandma Kelly’s recipe (my mom’s mom’s mom…) They are one of my favorite cookies ever with lots of molasses and dusted with a coat of sugar.  They aren’t really ginger “snaps” because they are actually soft gooey cookies.  The red hots obviously aren’t part of the original recipe, but my mom has adds them in the center for decoration in her version. Again, the recipe makes a lot, but you’ll want them all! I have a copy in a cookbook from elementary school – all the parents submitted their favorite family recipes and compiled them into one book. 

We also made WAY too many cutout cookies, which were from a Pinterest recipe.  My mom made the dough from the blog Babes in Disneyland.  We couldn’t find her rolling pin, so at first we were rolling them out with a wine bottle (didn’t work as well as we hoped).  Luckily, we were able to borrow one from a neighbor for the rest. 

We started out with super intricate designs, but quickly realized that it would take days to decorate them all at that pace, so towards the end they just got dunked in icing and coated in sprinkles. 

Lance and I have been in our house since March and had still only met a couple of our neighbors, so we wrapped the cutout cookies up and brought them to all our neighbors on our block.  It was such a nice way to meet everyone, plus it saved us the calories of eating them all ourselves. 

Hope you enjoy these family recipes. If you have any family favorites, send them my way – I’d love to try them!

Red Hot Popcorn

  • 5 bags kettle corn
  • 4 boxes Red Hots
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1/2 cup clear Karo Syrup

1. Pop popcorn & empty into a large pan.

2. Melt butter in a saucepan & add Red Hots & Karo syrup. Stir constantly on medium so they don't burn until Red Hots are dissolved.

3. Pour Red Hot mixture carefully onto popcorn small amounts at a time. Mix popcorn until all of it is coated and mixture is gone.

4. Bake in 250 degree oven for 1-1/2 hours, turning every 30 mins. Put on wax paper to cool.

Great-Grandma Kelly’s Gingersnaps

  • 4 cups sugar
  • 3 sticks butter
  • 4 eggs
  • 7 cups flour
  • 3 t. baking soda
  • 1 cup molasses
  • 4 t. vinegar
  • 4 t. ginger
  • Dash of cinnamon and cloves
  • Red hot candies (optional)


1. Cream butter and sugar.  Add eggs, molasses, vinegar, and remaining dry ingredients, sifted together. 

2. Form into balls.  Slightly flatten down, add a red hot candy to the center, and top with granulated sugar.  Bake at 375 degrees for 9-10 minutes.  

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