Candied Spiced Nuts

These candied spiced nuts are sweet and spicy and the sorta thing friends demolish in minutes at cocktail parties and holiday gatherings yet talk about for months afterward.

A layer of assorted nuts and rosemary sprigs on a sheet of parchment paper resting in a sheet pan

These candied spiced nuts are surprisingly easy to make and even easier to make disappear. The nuts are sweet and spicy and the sorta thing friends demolish in minutes at holiday gatherings and cocktail parties yet talk about for months afterward. Originally published November 20, 2016.Renee Schettler Rossi

*What Kind Of Nuts To Use When You Make Candied Spiced Nuts

We’ve made this candied spiced nuts recipe over and over and over with almonds, pecans, cashews, and Brazil nuts and been wowed each time although hazelnuts and walnuts could also work well here, too. Either raw or roasted nuts work spectacularly. If you use raw nuts, you’ll end up with slightly sweeter nuts. If you use roasted nuts, they’ll be more savory.

Candied Spiced Nuts

  • Quick Glance
  • 25 M
  • 1 H
  • Makes about 1 pound (455 g)
Print RecipeBuy the Seven Spoons cookbook

Want it? Click it.


  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt, plus more if needed
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne or smoked paprika
  • 1 pound raw or roasted nuts* (such as almonds, pecans, hazelnuts, walnuts, cashews, or any combination)
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cold water
  • 1 sprig rosemary, leaves only, left whole or finely chopped


  • 1. Preheat an oven to 350°F (175°C). Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone liner.
  • 2. Spread the nuts in a single layer on the baking sheet and roast until aromatic and lightly toasted, 5 to 7 minutes, stirring halfway through. Remove from the oven.
  • 3. In a small bowl, stir 1/2 teaspoon salt with the cumin, cinnamon, ginger, and cayenne or smoked paprika.
  • 4. In a large, heavy skillet, stir the sugar with the water and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, without stirring (you can tilt the skillet a bit to distribute the sugar and to swirl it, but do not stir the contents or the syrup will crystallize). Continue to cook until the sugar turns a medium amber color, 6 to 12 minutes, depending on your stove’s exact heat.
  • 5. Working carefully and quickly, stir in half the spice mixture and all the nuts and combine well. Tip the nuts back out onto the still-lined sheet pan and spread out as evenly as you can with a fork. Immediately sprinkle the nuts with 1/3 of the reserved spice mixture. Bake, stirring and flipping the nuts with a pair of forks every 5 minutes or so to keep the nuts coated in the caramel and breaking up any large clumps, 15 to 20 minutes. Each time you stir the nuts, add 1/3 of the remaining spice mixture. The last time you stir the nuts, add the rosemary and additional sea salt, if desired.
  • 6. Let the nuts to cool completely on the baking sheet, then break up any remaining large clusters. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

#leitesculinaria on Instagram If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #LeitesCulinaria. We'd love to see your creations on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

Back to Candied Spiced Nuts on Leite's Culinaria