Candied Pecans Recipe
This candied pecan recipe is the perfect combination of sweet and crunchy, with a hint of cinnamon! Whether giving candied pecans as holiday gifts, putting them on salads or eating them as a crunchy and sweet snack, this recipe is a must have this time of year!
I love pecans! They have such a delicious flavor and texture that pairs well in desserts, salads, and more! Try my southern pecan pie or my cinnamon brown butter pecan syrup if you’re a pecan lover as well!
Why This Recipe Works
- Money saver. I used to purchase candied pecans from a store. Not anymore. Making candied pecans is simple to do and saves you money. A store bought bag of 8 ounces of candied pecans cost me between $7-8 dollars. That’s not cheap folks. Instead of purchasing sugared pecans pre-made, you can make your own.
- The cinnamon sugar coating actually stays on. Since this recipe uses egg whites, the cinnamon sugar pecans actually stay coated! The sugared coating melts in the oven and creates a delicious caramelized pecan flavor.
- Great snack or salad topping. I’ve never been one to just snack on plain nuts. With these candied pecans, they are a delicious snack! The sweetness and nuttiness is also the perfect topping for salads.
- Baked. This recipe is the best candied pecan recipe because the pecans are baked! Instead of spending time babysitting the pecans as they cook over the stove, pop these in the oven and take a few extra minutes for yourself 😉
- Egg White: In order to get the sugar coating to stick to the pecans, we need an adhering agent. This is where the egg white comes in. The egg white acts as a glue between the sugar and the nuts. Without it, the cinnamon sugar coating falls off.
- Cinnamon: The touch of cinnamon gives these sugar coated pecans an additional flavor depth that adds warmth.
- Raw Pecans: This means classic, simple pecans — not pre-roasted or salted. This way we can control the flavor of the pecans.
- In a medium bowl, combine the sugar, salt, and cinnamon. Mix to combine. Set aside.
- In a separate bowl, whip together the egg white and water until frothy.
- Take the pecans and toss them in the frothy egg white mixture.
- Once the pecans are evenly coated toss them in the cinnamon sugar mixture.
- Grease a baking sheet or line a baking sheet with parchment paper and transfer the coated pecans to the baking sheet.
- Bake the pecans for 25-30 minutes at 300°F.
Are you halving this recipe? If so, simply whip up the entire egg white + the full measurement of water and use half of that mixture.
You can replace the pecans in this recipe to make candied walnuts, candied hazelnuts, etc.
Don’t omit the egg white step. That ensures the sugared coating sticks to the pecans. Adding a bit of water increases the foamy nature of the egg white when whisked.
Make Ahead, Storing and Freezing
Can you make candied pecans in advance? Definitely! This is a great recipe to make ahead of time. Whether it’s for a Christmas treat or to top a salad, making candied pecans ahead of time is a great way to cut down on time later.
The candied pecans will last at room temperature for up 2-3 weeks. They’ll last up to 2 months in the fridge and up to 4 months in the freezer. In all cases, be sure to store the pecans in an airtight container or Ziplock bag to help preserve freshness.
So many things! These cinnamon sugared pecans are the perfect grab-and-go snack for yourself and your kids. They are also perfect at a salad topping. I love them on a spinach salad with a poppy seed or fruit flavored vinaigrette. Cinnamon sugared pecans are also delicious in a yogurt parfait, in oatmeal, or atop ice cream.
Whether they are sticky or soft, in both cases it most likely means the pecans didn’t cook long enough to get the sugar mixture to a high enough temperature. This is another reason why making candied pecans in the oven is much better than on the stove! We can control the temperature and by following the bake time, we can ensure the pecans cook fully. Be sure to let the pecans cool as this will mean the sugary coating has hardened and won’t be sticky.
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Candied Pecans Recipe
- 1 egg white
- 1 tablespoon water
- 16 oz pecan halves
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Preheat the oven to 300°F. Grease a baking sheet or line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a medium size bowl, whip together the egg white and water until frothy.
- In a second medium bowl combine the sugar, salt, and cinnamon. Mix to combine. Set aside.
- Add the pecans to the egg white mixture. Stir to evenly coat the pecans.
- Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar mixture over the pecans and toss to coat until all of the pecans are evenly covered.
- Spread the nuts on the prepared baking sheet.
- Bake at 300°F for 25-30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.
- Remove from the oven, let cool. Store in an airtight container.
This recipe was originally published on Sept. 7, 2018. It was republished on Dec. 8, 2021, to include additional information and photos.