Make these easy candied pecans on the stovetop for a fast, sweet and savory appetizer or snack that’s perfect for salad, entertaining, or gifting.
Holiday entertaining can be stressful, but it doesn’t have to be. I’m a big fan of quick and easy snacks and appetizers to have at the ready. A couple of my favorites are these marinated olives and my 5-ingredient cheeseball. However, I realized I didn’t have a recipe on my blog for one of my favorite holiday snack staples. Enter these candied pecans on the stovetop. They are ridiculously good, and so, so simple.
One of the best things about these candied pecans without egg is they’re made with pantry staples. The recipe is extremely versatile and can easily be changed up for a more savory version. I love making a big batch of these to add to salads, have on cheeseboards at parties, and gift out to friends and neighbors (pro tip: these make an excellent host/hostess gift). With a sweet and salty crunch, these candied pecans are incredibly addicting and always a hit.
What’s In These Candied Pecans
You only need 5 ingredients to make these candied pecans (and it’s highly likely you already have them in your kitchen pantry).
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Pecan halves
- Kosher salt
- Ground cinnamon
- Ground nutmeg
How to Make These Candied Pecans
With only 3 steps, making candied pecans on the stovetop couldn’t be simpler. Here’s how:
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large skillet over medium heat, stir the sugar, water, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg together.
- Cook until the sugar begins to melt. Then add the nuts and cook, stirring often, until the nuts are toasted and glazed.
- Spoon the nuts onto the prepared sheet pan to cool, separating with a fork.
Variations On Candied Pecans
This recipe is easy to change up if you want to make substitutions or additions. Here are some ideas:
- Feel free to use a mix of nuts if you prefer (pecans, walnuts, and almonds), or make this recipe with just walnuts
- For a bit of heat, try 1 teaspoon of chili powder and a pinch of cayenne pepper. Freshly ground black pepper would also be a great addition.
- Use freshly squeezed orange juice and orange zest instead of water
- Try brown sugar instead of granulated
- Add 1-2 tablespoons of fresh, chopped thyme and/or rosemary
- For a more savory version, leave out the cinnamon and nutmeg, add chili powder, cayenne, black pepper, 1/2-1 teaspoon of smoked paprika, and 1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder
Ideas for Candied Pecans
- Add to salads
- Lend a sweet crunch to grilled cheese
- Add to a cheese board
- Fill cute treat bags and gift to friends and family during the holidays
Are Glazed Pecans The Same As Candied Pecans?
There is not a big difference between glazed pecans and candied pecans. Glazed pecans are typically made with corn syrup, sugar, and butter, while candied pecans are usually made with sugar and egg white. The egg white is used in a lot of candied nut recipes as a binder to help the sugar coating adhere to the nuts. However, I skip the egg white in mine because it adds a milky coating I don’t feel adds much to the nuts and this sweet sugar mixture coats the nuts just fine without it.
Why Are My Candied Pecans Soft?
If your candied pecans are soft, that means you haven’t cooked them long enough. To ensure your pecans are crunchy, it’s important to spread them out evenly on the baking sheet and let them cool thoroughly. Once the nuts have cooled completely, the glaze will firm up and they will be crunchy.
Other Ways to Enjoy These Candied Pecans
- Roasted Apple, Brie and Pecan Panini
- Green Salad with Shrimp, Beets, Sweet Pecans and Goat Cheese
- Baked Brie with Cranberries, Pecans, Fig Jam and Thyme
- Sweet Bacon and Havarti Grilled Cheese
- Peach Ice Cream
If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating on this recipe below and leave a comment, take a photo and tag me on Instagram with #foodiecrusheats.
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 2 cups pecan halves
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large skillet over medium heat, stir the sugar, water, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg together. Cook until the sugar begins to melt. Add the nuts and cook, stirring often, until the nuts are toasted and glazed. Spoon the nuts onto the prepared sheet pan to cool, separating with a fork. Sprinkle with a little coarse salt if desired. Nuts can be stored in an airtight container for up to 1-2 weeks.
More Easy Appetizer Ideas
- Marinated Olives
- Fig Spread and Cheese Crostini Appetizer
- Slow Cooker Little Smokies
- Easy Shrimp Cocktail
- 5-Minute Blistered Shishito Peppers
- Light and Easy Cheese Ball Recipe
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