Spicy Candied Pecans With Cayenne Pepper, Cinnamon & Cumin

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These candied pecans with cayenne pepper, cinnamon, cumin and smoked paprika combine warm spices and a bit of brown sugar for the perfect snacking nut! Absolutely perfect to give as a gift for the holidays, these nuts are seriously addictive to eat and they’re not difficult to make!

If you have the spices or are looking for something to do with leftover egg whites (perhaps after making Caesar dressing or aioli), then these nuts are a great option! Finished in about 30 minutes (and much of that time is inactive), they are so incredibly tasty, as well.

So check out this recipe for the perfect sweet, salty, spicy snack that everyone is sure to love!

Spicy Candied Pecans
Spicy Candied Pecans

How to Make Spicy Candied Pecans

This recipe is super easy and doesn’t have a lot of steps – in fact, it comes together in about 5 minutes, you just need to be patient while they cook!

Start off preheating your oven and by mixing together your sugar and spices. In a small bowl, combine some brown sugar, a good amount of salt, some smoked paprika, cumin, cinnamon, allspice, cayenne pepper and a bit of ground cloves.

Key ingredients for this candied pecans recipe
Key ingredients for this candied pecans recipe

You can use whatever blend of ground spices you’d like, however, I find this particular mixture to complement the nuts really well.

Now, in a large bowl, add a couple of egg whites. Using a bit of elbow grease, vigorously whisk the egg whites until they are very foamy and glossy. This will take at least a minute, if not longer.

Whisking the egg whites
Whisking the egg whites

There is no need to use a hand mixer or stand mixer because we’re not looking for soft peaks here, just a frothy bit of egg white. In fact, using an electric mixer poses the risk of overwhipping the egg whites.

After you’ve got your egg whites to their desired consistency, then add the spices and brown sugar mixture to them. Whisk this all together until everything is well combined.

Adding the spices to the egg whites
Adding the spices to the egg whites

Next, fold in some pecan halves. There is no need to toast them in advance as they will get nice and toasted as they bake in the oven.

Use a spatula to ensure that the pecans are all completely coated in the egg white and spice mixture.

Adding the pecans to the mixture
Adding the pecans to the mixture

Then, spread the pecans over a parchment-lined baking sheet. it’s important that all of the pecans are distributed in an even layer on the sheet to ensure that everything cooks quite evenly.

All you need to do now is pop them in the oven for about fifteen minutes. After this, remove them from the oven and give them a good stir to break the nuts up and ensure nothing is sticking.

Spreading the pecans onto a baking dish
Spreading the pecans onto a baking dish

Reduce the oven temperature and move the pecans back in for another ten minutes. This is to make sure they get nice and crisp and the flavours of the spices really come out.

Once the nuts are done, remove them from the oven and make sure that they cool completely before serving.

Pecans coming out of the oven
Pecans coming out of the oven

They won’t have their crisp, dry texture until they get a chance to cool – the flavours can also seem kind of muted if they’re too hot!

After the pecans have cooled down, you can store the pecans in an airtight container at room temperature for a few weeks – they will stay good! This is why they also make an excellent gift.

Candied Pecans with Cayenne & Cinnamon

Spicy Candied Pecans With Cayenne Pepper, Cinnamon & Cumin

Yield: 16 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

These sweet-spicy pecans are seriously addictive and surprisingly simple to make! They keep for a long time in an airtight container and are perfect to give away as gifts.


  • 50g (¼ cup packed) light brown sugar
  • 9g (1 ½ teaspoons) salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ ground allspice
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 egg whites
  • 500g (1lb) unsalted pecan halves


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a small bowl. whisk together the brown sugar, salt, cumin, smoked paprika, cinnamon, allspice, cayenne pepper and cloves. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, vigorously whisk the egg whites until glossy and frothy, about 1 minute. Add the sugar and spice mixture and whisk until combined.
  4. Add the pecans and stir until evenly coated in the egg white and spice mixture. Scrape onto the prepared baking sheet, ensuring the pecans are settled into an even layer.
  5. Bake the pecans for 15 minutes. Remove them from the oven and stir to break up the pecans. Reduce the oven temperature to 150°C (300°F) and cook the pecans for a further 10 minutes.
  6. Remove the pecans from the oven and allow to cool completely before breaking up and serving.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 16 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 231Total Fat: 23gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 20gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 226mgCarbohydrates: 8gFiber: 3gSugar: 4gProtein: 3g

Nutritional information is automatically generated and provided as guidance only. Accuracy is not guaranteed.

This sweet and spicy candied pecans recipe is perfect for those looking for a delicious snack or a unique gift for friends!

Are you making pecans with cinnamon, cayenne pepper and other spices? Have any questions about this recipe? Let me know in the comments!

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Maggie is the creator behind No Frills Kitchen. She is a world traveller, home cook and recipe developer who loves to experiment with new cuisines and techniques at every chance she gets. No stranger to improvising and making do with the equipment and ingredients she has available, she is passionate about sharing her knowledge with others. Read More

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