Recipe: Hot Candied Pecans (Photo Tutorial)

Guess what, I adulted today! I made a recipe for my husband knowing darn well it wasn’t something that I was going to enjoy. But, today I felt like doing something for him.

You see, there are two types of people in this world.  Those that live for sweets, like my husband. His favorite food in the world is pancakes – yes, you heard right. Pancakes, not steak! He tried rationalizing it with some comment about the bread to syrup ratio and the little pocket of hot melted butter in the middle. He’s a great talker and made a convincing argument (I think? I quit listening somewhere after “melted butter swimming pool” – Love you dear).

I try to understand, but I just don’t get it. That’s because I’m one of the other type. The type that would lick the salt off of every pretzel in the bag if allowed. Even as a child I preferred sour pickles over brownies. Oh, my favorite was a plate full of potato chips with dill pickles slices. I would make these little “sandwiches”  – chip, pickle, chip – and before I knew it the whole bag was gone.

Anyway, back to the point. He likes sweets. I like salty. How can I find a recipe that meets in the middle? Luck just so happened that good ‘ol Pinterest came to the rescue. I kept finding recipe after recipe that used fruit and nuts. Nuts are salty! (Score 1 for me). Then I thought, what if I candied the nuts before using them in the salad. Ta-da. The recipe for hot candied nuts was born.

 

sticky-pecans

 

I’m quite surprised at how much I enjoyed these addictive little monsters. (I ate half of the batch standing over the pan waiting for them to cool). They satisfy all of the senses – crunchy, sticky, sweet, and salty. There is even a little heat for that extra oomph I’m always chasing. They will be a perfect topping for an autumn salad.

Oh, It’s almost the holidays – try making them as an appetizer for the family to snack on while waiting for the big feast. Your guests will be so busy shoveling these things in their mouth they won’t have time to bother you in the kitchen. That’s what I call a win-win for everyone.

This recipe is probably the easiest and most taste-bud satisfying one I’ve made in a long time. All together I think I spent less than 20 minutes in the kitchen. The steps are very easy – the hardest part making sure not to burn the sugar while melting it in the pan. Here’s how I made them:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Melt butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Add water and sugar. Continue heating until sugar is completely dissolved. Stir frequently to prevent burning.
  3. Add cinnamon, cayenne and 1 tsp salt. Stir until blended. Remove from heat.
  4. Place nuts in large heat safe mixing bowl. Pour melted butter mixture over nuts. Toss to coat evenly.
  5. Remove nuts from mixture with slotted spoon. Place in single layer on parchment lined baking sheet. Do not over crowd pan.
  6. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until golden brown and toasted. Remove pan from oven and sprinkle nuts with reserved kosher salt.
  7. Nuts are ready to serve when cool to the touch. Store in airtight container until ready to use

 

candied-nuts

 

Update: My husband and I ate this entire batch straight from the bowl during one binge-watching marathon of House re-runs. I love me some Hugh Laurie. He is almost as delicious as hot candied nuts! Hmm, maybe I should reword that :p

 

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Print Recipe
Hot Candied Pecans Yum
Addictively sweet, spicy and sticky pecans. A touch of cayenne adds just the right amount of heat making them perfect for appetizers, salads and desserts.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings
cups
Ingredients
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings
cups
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Melt butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Add water and sugar. Continue heating until sugar is completely dissolved. Stir frequently to prevent burning.
  3. Add cinnamon, cayenne and 1 tsp salt. Stir until blended. Remove from heat.
  4. Place nuts in large heat safe mixing bowl. Pour melted butter mixture over nuts. Toss to coat evenly.
  5. Remove nuts from mixture with slotted spoon. Place in single layer on parchment lined baking sheet. Do not over crowd pan.
  6. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until golden brown and toasted. Remove pan from oven and sprinkle nuts with reserved kosher salt.
  7. Nuts are ready to serve when cool to the touch. Store in airtight container until ready to use.
Recipe Notes

Straining nuts prior to baking will decrease stickiness and allow for better crisping.

Pecans can be substituted with different nuts like walnuts or almonds.

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