These candied walnuts are so perfect in a fresh salad or eaten right out of the bowl as a snack! They’re sweet and salty with just the right amount of kick!
Our recipe calls for a half a teaspoon of cayenne pepper which may sound like a lot but we promise it isn’t! Mixed with the sugar, the kick comes in at the end of the snack. Enjoy!
Spicy Candied Walnuts Recipe
what you'll need
- 3 Tbsp honey or light corn syrup
- 2 Tbsp water
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup brown sugar firmly-packed
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 lb walnuts halves
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (not to worry this will not make it hot with all this sugar)
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- kosher salt for sprinkling
- cayenne pepper for dusting
let's do it
- Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Spray one baking sheet with cooking spray to allow the parchment paper to adhere to the pan. Spray the parchment paper to keep the nuts from sticking. In a large bowl, mix water, honey and vanilla. Add nuts to coat. Set aside.
- In a small bowl, whisk together sugars, cayenne and salt. You may need to use your fingers (or run it through a strainer) to break up any clumps of brown sugar in the mix. Then sprinkle sugar mixture over the nuts and toss to fully coat.
- Place nuts on the prepared sheet and bake for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes. As the sugars melt, they slide off the nuts so stirring will help keep them nice and coated.
- Remove pan from oven, stir well then slide paper off the pan and onto a cooling rack. Cool for 5 minutes. Hold your hand above the nuts to evenly dust with kosher salt and cayenne to taste. The initial ½ tsp of cayenne in the recipe won’t make them hot; it will just give them character. I like my nuts to have a little heat, so I dust generously with cayenne at this point.
- Keep breaking the nuts apart as they cool so that they are individual nuts rather than clumped together like peanut brittle. Nuts may be stored in dry, air-tight container for up 2 weeks.