Candied Pecans – Easy Candied Nuts
Easy two-ingredient candied pecans are so simple to make! They are gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan. You’ll never buy expensive candied pecans again.
Candied pecans are freaking delicious and so versatile. We put them in salads, I’ve seen them used to top sweet potato casserole, and let’s be honest, they’re super tasty to snack on.
Making candied pecans is stupidly easy. You’ll kick yourself once you find out how simple it has been this whole time. And then you’ll kick yourself harder if you’ve ever shelled out (ha ha) money to buy them pre-made.
We have been making candied pecans since I was in junior high. My aunt always hosted Thanksgiving dinner, and one year she debuted what we affectionately started to refer to as “Linda’s salad”. It was a huge mess of greens, thinly sliced pears, gorgonzola (which I picked out for years until I realized it was delicious), a homemade dressing, and candied pecans.
We would show up to the house a few hours before mealtime. It always smelled amazing, but Aunt Linda would be busy still cooking away. As someone who likes to help and needs a task to keep from being destructive, I was given the job of making the candied pecans. From the outside, candied nuts look like something where one would need special equipment or culinary training. Afterall, the price they command in the store is outrageous. Once I started making them, I wondered how many other things in life looked this impressive, but were really so simple.
For this recipe, you’ll want a piece of waxed or parchment paper on hand. The first time I made the candied pecans on my own, I stupidly put them on a paper towel to cool. The hot and sticky pecans, of course, stuck to the paper towel and were ruined. Doh!
I love the brand If You Care for parchment, cupcake liners, and waxed paper. The products they make are top notch, sustainable, free of sketchy ingredients, compostable, and nothing sticks to them. Nothing. I won’t make cupcakes or muffins with any other liners because they never peel cleanly from the paper. Unlike other parchment I have purchased, I can reuse this brand’s stuff over and over until it essentially falls apart. It lasts forever. This is not an ad or sponsored. Azure Standard has great sales on their products, and I find them on Amazon as well.
On top of candied pecans being super easy to make, they also store for months at room temperature. Which means, you can make these this weekend, and use them for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Boom. You are now the hero of your future self. P.S., your future self has amazing hair.
Just thought you’d like to know.
- 1 cup pecans
- 3 tbsp sugar
Heat a large frying pan/skillet over medium heat. Add sugar and wait. Patiently. Clean up the photos on your phone. Read the news. Paint your nails.
Eventually, you'll see the sugar melting. The sugar will slowly start to caramelize. Add the nuts, and stir to combine. Stir often to keep the sugar from burning and to distribute it evenly.
Then give it another few stirs until all the sugar is melted. Pour the candied nuts on a piece of parchment or waxed paper until cooled.
Store them in an airtight container, and they'll keep for months.
If your pan has any sugar residue left on it, add some water to the skillet, and turn the heat on low. It will dissolve in minutes.
You can use any type of nuts if pecans aren't your jam.