These Spiced Candied Pecans are the flavour combo you didn’t know you needed! With the perfect balance between sweet, salty AND spicy, these pecans are extra indulgent and highly addicting!
If you’ve tried my candied cashew recipe then you’re already well aware of how much a little cinnamon sugar can transform nuts into just about the greatest things on Earth. Am I right? The sweet and salty coating paired with the slow roast in the oven to achieve that perfect caramelized crust…. need I say more?
Ok, I’ll say one more thing.
Adding cayenne pepper to an already delicious mix adds the right amount of heat and takes these babies over the top. Seriously.
These Spiced Candied Pecans have the perfect bite and add the right amount of kick to any meal. I love using them on salads, as a topping for yogurt or ice cream, as a mandatory part of my charcuterie boards, on top of baked brie, for gift giving and of course, for straight up snacking. They make a great appetizer or snack for gatherings or parties (especially when you can prepare them with candy bought in bulk!) and are sure to impress the entire crowd. Just don’t be shocked when you catch several people lingering around the snack table… specifically where these spiced candied pecans are placed. 😉
The best part about this recipe is that you can use it as a base for any other type of nut out there. Or, if you’re feeling extra fancy, throw a variety of nuts into the mix. All I know is that despite the type of nut you choose, you’ll want to keep making a version of these spiced candied nuts again and again. It’s not only you who is going to be addicted.
INGREDIENTS YOU’LL NEED TO MAKE SPICED CANDIED PECANS
It really doesn’t take many ingredients to transform raw pecans into the stuff of dreams. These Spiced Candied Pecans are super chillll to make and the result is always magical. Let’s talk about the ingredients in a little bit more detail down below:
- Pecans: Well, DUH. We’re talking about spiced candied pecans here, people. The best ones to use are going to be raw, unroasted and unsalted as we’re going to be doing all the roasting and seasonings ourselves. Whole pecans work best in this recipe as you’ll want those large ridges to catch all the seasonings *drools* However, on that note, feel free to use this recipe as a base for any spiced candied nut that lies in your future. It’ll work great on anything from walnuts to macadamia nuts.
- Cayenne Pepper: I just love this ingredient on these spiced candied pecans! Cayenne pepper adds the right amount of spicy and the perfect kick to this spiced candied nut recipe. Use more or less depending on how spicy you want your nuts. However, I wouldn’t go over 2 teaspoons per batch (every 4 cups) as it tends to sneak up on you and the bite might actually become overpowering. But, as always, you do you, boo.
- Brown Sugar and White Sugar: Adds a layer of sweetness to the coating. Also caramelizes in the oven as the nuts roast creating the most perfect crunchy coating/exterior.
- Salt: Balances out the sweetness from the sugars and the spiciness from the cayenne pepper. Adds the perfect hint of saltiness to these spiced candied pecans. Also amplifies the overall flavour of the candied pecans bringing all the flavours altogether. PRO TIP: If you happen to be using salted pecans, omit the salt or add less.
- Cinnamon: Adds a warm, sweet and spicy note to the candied pecans. Balances out the spiciness and pairs extremely well with the sugar and other flavours.
- Egg White: Used to help the seasonings stick to the pecans. Provides a nice outer crust for the nuts as they bake in the oven then cool.
- Vanilla Extract: Mixed with the egg white beforehand then coats the nuts helping the seasonings stick. Adds flavour and umph to the candied pecans.
HOW TO MAKE SPICED CANDIED PECANS (KEY TIPS)
- Froth up the egg white and vanilla mixture before tossing the nuts to coat. This will help in forming the caramelized crust and getting the seasonings to stick to the nuts.
- Mix the seasonings and sugar in a bowl before adding them to the pecans to toss and coat. You want to ensure that the mix is as combined as it can be or you might end up with some pretty uneven tasting nuts! (and it would probably kinda suck to get 1 nut covered in only cayenne, for example…)
- On that note, ensure the nuts are thoroughly tossed in both the egg white mixture and again in the spice mixture. Make sure they’re all nice and evenly coated…there is tons of spice mix to go around!
- Line the baking sheet with parchment paper before adding the coated nuts. Not only will this prevent sticking but it’ll also help with easy clean up. This stuff can get pretty messy!
- Use the back of a spoon or a rubber spatula to spread the pecans out evenly on the parchment lined baking sheet before baking. Some touching is okay but try not to overlap them as a single and even layer will give you the best results.
- Stir the nuts every 15 minutes throughout baking. You’ll have to do this a total of 4 times throughout the baking process but the difference it’ll make is so worth it. You don’t want to end up with clumped up candied nuts that are unevenly baked and all stuck together.
- Let the nuts cool completely before transferring to a container or jar. Don’t get me wrong… the ones hot off the pan are lovely, too. But the flavours will definitely develop and the nuts will firm up and harden as they cool. Aka become that much more addicting!
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
If stored in an airtight container or mason jar, these Spiced Pecans will be good for up to a month. To prolong the shelf life even longer, store them in the fridge.
The egg white and vanilla mixture combined with the spice mixture will produce a sticky, almost caramel like liquid that will coat the nuts. When baked, this liquid will caramelize in the oven producing the most addicting outer layer/crust you ever did taste (you can really see it in the photos in the recipe card down below. Specifically in the photo under step #6). If your pecans are still sticky when you take them out of the oven, you didn’t bake them long enough and you need to give them some more time.
As the nuts cool, they will firm up and harden completely producing that brittle (and highly addicting!) candy coated outer layer.
Yes! Candied pecans are great for freezing. Simply store in an airtight freezer safe container or a sealed ziploc bag and they’ll be good for up tp 3 months. Just make sure you allow them to cool completely before freezing. When ready to eat again, simply thaw at room temperature for a few hours or until no longer frozen throughout.
No, not really. Praline pecans are a type of candied pecans and are usually made with butter and some type of dairy product (such as milk, cream or half and half). I see praline pecans as more of a candy version than these spiced candied pecans. Both are delicious, though!
- 1 pound Unsalted and Unroasted Whole Pecans (about 4 cups)
- 6 tbsp Brown Sugar
- 4 tbsp White Sugar
- 2 tsp Cayenne Pepper
- 1.5 tsp Cinnamon
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 1 Egg White
- Preheat the oven to 250° and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a small bowl, whisk the egg white and vanilla until very frothy and bubbles form.
- In a separate bowl, add the sugars, cinnamon, cayenne pepper and salt and stir until well combined.
- Add the pecans to a large bowl and pour the frothy egg white mixture over top. Stir until the pecans are nicely coated.
- Add the spice mixture over top and stir until well combined and all the pecans are coated.
- Lay the pecans out onto the lined baking sheet and push/spread them out with the back of a spoon. It's okay if they're touching but try not to have them overlap. Cover as much of the baking sheet surface as possible.
- Bake for 50-60 minutes, stirring the pecans every 15. Allow to cool completely on the sheet pan before eating.
This recipe for spiced candied pecans will work with other types of nuts, too.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 908Total Fat: 82gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 71gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 600mgCarbohydrates: 46gFiber: 12gSugar: 33gProtein: 11g
Nutrition is only an estimate and calculated using Nutritionix.
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