Planning a party? This nutty caramel corn is perfect for guests to munch on when they they arrive.
MAKE IT AHEAD! The caramel corn can be made up to 1 week in advance. Store at room temperature in a lidded container or sealable bags.
Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone liner.
Melt the butter and corn syrup in a large stockpot over medium heat, then whisk in the sugar and cinnamon. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the sugar is fully dissolved and the liquid comes to a simmer.
Whisk in the baking soda—the caramel will foam up and lighten in color. Cook, whisking frequently, for 2 minutes.
Whisk in the brandy or rum and vanilla extract and continue to cook, whisking frequently, for 2 minutes more.
Pour the popcorn and almonds into the largest mixing bowl you own. Carefully pour the caramel into the bowl and stir until the popcorn and almonds are evenly and thoroughly coated.
Spread the caramel corn in an even layer on the baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes.
Cool on the baking sheet for at least 15 minutes, then break into bite-size pieces with your hands before serving.