holiday treats: candied cinnamon pecans

This past week, our little family was away on a fun, sun-filled vacation, sailing around the Caribbean on the world’s largest cruise ship – the Allure of the Seas. It was an awesome trip overall, but certainly not without its challenges (especially with a toddler and preschooler to constantly chase around!). 



After our trip, we spent the day at a mall in Ft. Lauderdale as we waited for our red eye flight home that night. The first thing that caught my attention (or rather, my nose’s attention) in the food court was a tiny booth selling candied nuts. For $6.99. Per. Half. Pound. Insert jaw dropping here.



So what was the first thing I did when we arrived home (at 2 am!) Tuesday morning? Sleep? Nopers. Guess again. Look up my mom’s awesome holiday recipe for candied nuts? Ding, ding, ding! You betcha! I had picked up a large bag of pecan halves at Costco a few weeks prior (for pumpkin pecan bread loaves, mmm…) and had a lot leftover.


TheBoy will be giving some of these candied pecans to his preschool teachers as part of their Christmas gifts this year. Not to mention, they are great to toss on top of salads or eaten alone as an afternoon or midnight snack 🙂  And they will make your house smell amazing! Really, my brother came over to visit the kids that night and immediately asked what the awesome smell was.


So, here it is folks. Let me warn you though, the recipe is addictive.


1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
4 cups unsalted pecans halves
1 egg white
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon water

1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with a Silpat baking mat or parchment paper and set aside.

2. In a medium bowl, add both sugars, cinnamon, and salt. Stir until combined. Set aside.

3. In a large bowl, whisk the egg white, vanilla, and water together until bubbly. Add the pecans and gently stir them around until the pecans are well coated. Add the sugar and cinnamon mixture and stir until pecans are covered.

4. Spread the pecans out in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet. Bake for about 40-45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes. The sugar mixture will look gooey at first but will eventually dry on the pecans.

5. Remove from the oven and let the pecans cool on the baking sheet. When completely cool, store in an airtight container.

6. Devour them!!! Yum yum 🙂

Happy baking!


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