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Spiced Nuts

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Elevate your next cocktail hour with these caramelized spiced nuts. They make a great gift, too!

Spiced Nuts

The balance of salty, sweet, and spicy flavors makes these spiced nuts hard to resist. The recipe is adapted from restaurateur Danny Meyer’s cocktail and bar fare book, Mix Shake Stir, and it is based on the nut mix served at the bar at Gramercy Tavern, one of Meyer’s most beloved NYC restaurants. I’ve made a few changes to the original recipe to make it more accessible to home cooks, using ingredients that are easy to find or in your pantry already. The result is a delicious and easy-to-make snack that’s perfect for serving with cocktails or gifting during the holidays.

What You’ll Need To Make Spiced Nuts

ingredients for spiced nuts

Step-by-Step Instructions

Preheat the oven to 275°F and set an oven rack in the middle position. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large bowl, combine the brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, cayenne pepper (if using), ginger, nutmeg, water, and corn syrup.

spiced nuts seasoning and sugars in bowl

Mix until evenly combined.

spiced nuts coating mixed in bowl

Add the nuts and toss with spice mixture until evenly coated.

nuts tossed in coating

Transfer the nuts to the prepared baking sheet and arrange in a single layer, making sure the syrupy spice mixture is evenly distributed.

spiced nuts arranged in single layer on baking sheet

Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, stirring once halfway through, until the nuts are caramelized and lightly toasted. (To check for doneness, take a few nuts out of the oven and set them on a cool surface for a few minutes; if done, they will be dry to the touch.)

spiced nuts after cooking

Carefully slide or lift the parchment and nuts off of the hot baking sheet and onto a countertop; let cool completely.

spiced nuts cooling on counter

Break up the nuts with your hands. Store in an airtight container in a cool, dark place for up to one week.

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Spiced Nuts

Elevate your next cocktail hour with these caramelized spiced nuts. They make a great gift, too!

Servings: 3½ cups
Prep Time: 10 Minutes
Cook Time: 40 Minutes
Total Time: 50 Minutes

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup (packed) dark brown sugar
  • 1 scant teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¾ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 3½ cups raw unsalted nuts (I use equal parts cashews and pecans, but you can use any combination of cashews, pecans, and almonds)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 275°F and set an oven rack in the middle position. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, mix the sugar, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cayenne pepper (if using), water, and corn syrup. Add the nuts and toss with spice mixture until evenly coated. Transfer the nuts to the prepared baking sheet and arrange in a single layer, making sure the syrupy spice mixture is evenly distributed. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, stirring once halfway through, until the nuts are caramelized and lightly toasted. (To check for doneness, take a few nuts out of the oven and set them on a cool surface for a few minutes; if done, they will be dry to the touch.) Carefully slide or lift the parchment and nuts off of the hot baking sheet and onto a countertop; let cool completely. Break up the nuts with your hands. Store in an airtight container in a cool, dark place for up to one week.

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Per serving (14 servings)
  • Serving size: 1/4 cup
  • Calories: 215
  • Fat: 18 g
  • Saturated fat: 3 g
  • Carbohydrates: 11 g
  • Sugar: 5 g
  • Fiber: 2 g
  • Protein: 6 g
  • Sodium: 92 mg
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

Gluten-Free Adaptable Note

To the best of my knowledge, all of the ingredients used in this recipe are gluten-free or widely available in gluten-free versions. There is hidden gluten in many foods; if you're following a gluten-free diet or cooking for someone with gluten allergies, always read the labels of your ingredients to verify that they are gluten-free.

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Comments

  • I’ve always used egg white for that “crunch” in my spiced nuts, though gotta admit, they don’t look too pretty. These ones are way prettier (love that gloss!) and have this fantastic texture — really crisp with just a hint of chewiness. Absolutely delicious!

    • — Nicole on December 20, 2023
    • Reply
  • Hi! I need substitution for corn syrup, because it isn’t available here. What does this ingredient do, what is the purpose of using it? Thanks in advance.

    • — András Király on December 18, 2023
    • Reply
    • This recipe really relies on the corn syrup to help with the texture and there’s not a great substitute for it. Instead, I’d go with these nuts, which are ridiculously good!

      • — Jenn on December 20, 2023
      • Reply
  • Can I sub honey or agave for corn syrup

    • — Jacquie on December 17, 2023
    • Reply
    • Unfortunately, that won’t work here — sorry!

      • — Jenn on December 19, 2023
      • Reply
  • Way too much cumin. Maybe our cumin is more pungent than normal but we made these last year and only one of us could eat them. This year, we used about 1/16 the amount of cumin and it’s just barely there but more than enough. Note: we really like cumin and use it a lot.

    • — Andy on December 11, 2023
    • Reply
    • Hi Andy, You’re not the first to mention the cumin being overpowering. I retested them without the cumin and they are delicious, so the recipe has been updated. Thank you for your feedback!

      • — Jenn on December 18, 2023
      • Reply
  • The recipe sounds great as almost all of yours do! I haven’t made this yet because I need to know the nutritional values, please. They’re usually posted at the bottom of the recipe, but not in this case. Would love your help. Thanks for this & all the other awesome food ideas & comments you provide!

    • — S. Lee on September 16, 2023
    • Reply
    • I just added them. Hope you enjoy!

      • — Jenn on September 18, 2023
      • Reply
  • So, so good! I handed these to a friend and he couldn’t stop eating them and then turned to me and said that they were so good and asked how I made them! Making them again in the same week. Such a great balance of flavors and the cayenne pepper definitely adds another level to these. Such a great snack to have around the house or while running errands or attending ball games. Can you tell how much I love this recipe yet?!

    • — Felishia on June 20, 2023
    • Reply
  • Perfect snack…Delicious and so very easy….not too spicey and not too sweet…everyone loved them. I’ll make them often.

    • — Leanne McKinley on January 29, 2023
    • Reply
  • These are excellent and so quick and easy to make. I left out the cayenne because I was taking them to a party. Everyone seemed to love them.

    • — Joan on December 31, 2022
    • Reply
  • very tasty and easy to make, but not sure why Cumin is in the mix. it kind of spoils the whole thing.

    • — Karen on December 21, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi Karen, That seems to be the consensus, so I’ve updated the recipe to exclude the cumin. I appreciate the feedback!

      • — Jenn on December 19, 2023
      • Reply
  • Are you starting with raw nuts?

    • — Ruth on December 20, 2022
    • Reply
    • Yep!

      • — Jenn on December 22, 2022
      • Reply
  • Can I substitute maple syrup for corn syrup?

    • — Staci on December 19, 2022
    • Reply
    • Unfortunately, that won’t work here — sorry!

      • — Jenn on December 20, 2022
      • Reply

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