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Candied pecans are one of those truly popular snacks for the festive season and sometimes other parts of the year as well. They date back all the way to 1636 and have only increased in popularity since.
This classic Candied Pecans recipe is a great addition to your Holiday festivities. Great as a crunchy snack, on salads, as part of a charcuterie board or as a homemade gift. Made with cinnamon sugar and a few other warm spices, this EASY and simple recipe is sure to be a hit!
Candied, Praline, and Glazed Pecans, What’s the Difference?
There are many different ways of preparing pecans as a snack, and candied pecans are one of them. Some of the other most popular sweet pecan treats include praline pecans and glazed pecans.
These three things are similar in some ways, yet the candied pecans recipe is still significantly different from either praline pecans or glazed pecans. Let’s take a closer look at some of the key differences.
- Preparation: Making candied pecans involves coating the nuts in a sweet mixture, which is typically composed of sugar, butter, and occasionally salt. Before being coated, the pecans are typically toasted.
- Texture: The caramelized sugar coating on candied pecans gives them a crunchy texture.
- Taste: Candied pecans have a flavor that is primarily sweet with a hint of butteriness. For added flavor, they can also be infused with extra flavorings like cinnamon or vanilla extract.
- Preparation: Pecans, sugar, butter, and cream are all combined to make praline pecans. Cooking the mixture until it turns caramelized is followed by spreading it out to cool and harden.
- Texture: Praline pecans have a hard, crunchy texture that is brittle in nature.
- Flavor: A rich, caramelized flavor characterizes praline pecans. The taste is distinct from candied pecans and is produced by the addition of sugar, butter, and cream.
- Preparation: Pecans are coated with a thin layer of glaze, which is typically made from a syrup of sugar and water, to create glazed pecans. Before being glazed, the pecans are frequently toasted.
- Texture: The thin layer of glaze gives glazed pecans a shiny, glossy appearance. Their texture is a little bit sticky.
- Flavor: Glazed pecans have a sweet flavor, though it is not as strong as that of candied or praline pecans. The glaze adds a delicate sweetness that balances the nuttiness of the pecans.
Why Are Candied Pecans So Popular?
This candied pecans recipe, and others like it, are immensely popular and enjoyed by food lovers the world over. But why are candied pecans so popular?
There are many reasons why people love this snack, and some of them include the following:
- Tradition – To many people, candied pecans are the taste of the holidays. It’s been a tradition for so long that they love it simply out of a sort of nostalgia, and certain times of the year feel incomplete without it.
- Simplicity – Almost every candied pecans recipe is incredibly simple to make. This makes it accessible even to the culinarily challenged. For that reason alone, candied pecans deserve a place among the best snacks.
- Flavor – Candied pecans are ridiculously tasty. With hints of clove, allspice, and even cinnamon, these lovely snacks are bursting with flavor.
- Versatility – Candied pecans have a wide range of uses. They can be eaten as a standalone snack, added to various recipes, or used as a garnish for sweets like ice cream or pies. People can experiment with various culinary creations and use candied pecans in both sweet and savory dishes, thanks to their versatility.
- Nutritional Benefits – Pecans have a wealth of nutritional advantages on their own. They are a good source of fiber, essential nutrients like vitamin E, magnesium, and antioxidants, as well as good fats and fiber. People can indulge in a sweet treat while also gaining the nutrients the pecans offer by eating candied pecans.
There are many other reasons why candied pecans hold the affection of so many people. However, these are some of the most noteworthy.
Overall, candied pecans’ allure stems from their delectable flavor combination, satisfying texture, adaptability, and association with special occasions. Candied pecans are a delicious treat that satisfies the sweet tooth and the love of crunchy nuts, whether eaten as a snack or added to recipes.
Why do you love candied pecans? Feel free to let me know in the comments.
How to Make Candied Pecans
For full recipe details, including ingredients and measurements, see the printable recipe card below. Here is step by step what you can expect making this recipe:
Preheat Oven + Prep Baking Sheets
Preheat oven. Line 1 large or 2 small baking sheets with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
Whisk Egg White + Water, Then Add Pecans to Coat
In large bowl, whisk egg white and water. Add pecans to bowl and stir to coat thoroughly.
Combine Spices + Sprinkle Over Pecans
In a separate bowl combine sugar, clove, allspice, cinnamon and salt. Sprinkle sugar and spice mixture over pecans and stir to coat thoroughly.
Spread on Baking Sheet + Bake
Spread evenly on baking sheet(s). Bake for 1 hour, stirring every 20 minutes.
Loosen Pecans From Baking Sheet + Allow to Cool
Immediately loosen pecans from baking sheets by shaking or using a spatula. Allow to completely cool before storing.
Storing Candied Pecans
Store pecans in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week, or in the fridge for 2-3 weeks.
Once the nuts have completely cooled, arrange them in a single layer on a baking sheet, then place it in the freezer for a few hours or even overnight. When completely frozen, transfer the nuts to ziplock freezer bags. Freeze flat for up to two months. Thaw in the refrigerator when ready to use.
Uses for Candied Pecans
Enjoy them as a snack, give them as a neighbor gift, add them to your seasonal salads, use them as an ice cream topping, or bake them into your next batch of pumpkin bread. The possibilities are endless!
More Recipes with Nuts to Try!
- Baked Brie Recipe with Brown Sugar Hazelnuts
- Pecan Pie Recipe
- Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler
- Pumpkin Cake Recipe with Walnuts
The printable recipe is below. Be sure to save, print, bookmark or share this recipe. Enjoy!
- Preheat oven to 250° F.
- Line 1 large or 2 small baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mat.
- In large bowl, whisk egg white and water.
- Add pecans to bowl and stir to coat thoroughly.
- In a separate bowl combine sugar, clove, allspice, cinnamon and salt.
- Sprinkle sugar and spice mixture over pecans and stir to coat thoroughly.
- Spread evenly on baking sheet(s).
- Bake for 1 hour, stirring every 20 minutes.
- Immediately loosen pecans from baking sheets by shaking or using a spatula.
- Allow to completely cool and store in an airtight container.