candied pecans

This recipe is one of my favorites to make and package up as a delicious food gift for friends, coworkers and neighbors. But there is a problem with this recipe. The problem is that you need to either make a double batch so you can eat half and still have some leftover, or you need to not eat any because once you start, you can’t stop! They are wildly addicting!These pecans have it all – sweet, spicy, savory, salty and a great crunch. But that’s not even the best part. The best part of making these is that you likely have most of the ingredients in your pantry and the oven does all the work.

Simply toss the pecans with a whisked egg white and then combine with the dry spice mixture of sugar, cinnamon and cayenne pepper. Pour onto a lined sheet pan and bake. Let cool and serve or store in an air tight container.

  • Cayenne pepper has a wide range of spice level so I recommend tasting it before deciding how much you want to add to achieve the right sweet and spicy balance.
  • Wrap in treat bags and tie with a festive ribbon for a fun food gift.

Candied Pecans
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
40 mins
resting time
30 mins
Total Time
50 mins
 

These sweet and spicy pecans are perfect to serve with cocktails or over vanilla ice cream! They also make a great homemade gift. 

Course: Appetizer
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar packed
  • 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne (or more to taste)
  • 4 cups 12 ounces pecans halves, unsalted
  • 1 egg white whisked
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.
  2. Add the sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt and cayenne to a large bowl and whisk to combine. Set aside.

  3. Whisk one egg white. 

  4. In a separate bowl, combine pecans and egg whites, and gently toss until the pecans are evenly coated. Add in the sugar mixture, and toss until the pecans are coated in the spice mixture. 

  5. Line 2 sheet pans with parchment paper. 

  6. Spread the mixture out in a single layer between the two pans. Bake for 20 minutes, toss, flip pans and bake for another 20 minutes. 

  7. Remove from the oven, and let the baking sheet cool on a cooling rack until the nuts reach room temperature. Transfer them to an airtight storage container or individual packages. 

Homemade Granola Bars

Granola bars are the perfect afternoon snack or breakfast on the go, and enjoyed by people of all ages. But the good ones can be quite expensive! Not only is this recipe better than any granola bar I ever purchased, but they go a long way and stay fresh for at least one week!

Since I discovered this delicious recipe I haven’t purchased a single granola bar from a store and I am confident that if you try this recipe,  you won’t be either. It seems like a lot of ingredients but once you have them on hand, they will be in your pantry and ready for your second and third batch, which you are certain to make. Like anything homemade, the end result is superior to anything store bought.Make sure to use a sharp, strong knife when you cut the Granola into bars.

Granola Bars
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
25 mins
Total Time
40 mins
 
Course: Breakfast, Snack
Servings: 16 average size granola bars
Ingredients
  • 2 cups old-fashioned oatmeal
  • 1 cup sliced almonds
  • 1 cup shredded coconut loosely packed
  • 1/2 cup toasted wheat germ
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2/3 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar lightly packed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup rough chopped dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup dried wild blueberries
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.

  2. Toss the oatmeal, almonds, and coconut together on a sheet pan and bake for 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned. Don’t burn it! Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl and stir in the wheat germ. Reduce oven temp to 300 degrees F.
  3. Place the butter, honey, brown sugar, vanilla, and salt in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Cook and stir for a minute then pour over the toasted oatmeal mixture. Add the fruit and mix well.
  4. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Dampen your fingers and lightly press the mixture evenly into the pan into the thickness and shape you want. (I like half inch deep.) Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until light golden brown. Cool for at least 3 hours at room temperature before cutting into squares with a sharp, sharp knife. (I like to let it sit for about 5-6 hours.) Store in an airtight container with parchment in between the layers. Serve at room temperature. 

Recipe Notes

These stay fresh for at least a week in a good container, such as a glass pyrex dish with a cover.