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May 7, 2024

Candied Walnuts

An easy way to add crunch to salads, or the perfect sweet treat to munch by the handful, homemade candied walnuts are ready in ten minutes.

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a bowl of homemade candied walnuts made with brown sugar, butter, salt and cayenne
Photography by Gayle McLeod

We have more recipes for walnut lovers!

Homemade Candied Walnuts

Candied walnuts are an easy make-it-yourself moment in the kitchen. The first time you make them you’ll wonder why you hadn’t done it before. Soon you’ll be tossing candied walnuts onto all of your salads, and stocking your pantry with the sweet little gems to have around at all times. Candied walnut salad will become your middle name. Ten minutes is all it takes!

walnuts, brown sugar, butter, salt and cayenne in bowls to make candied walnuts

Ingredients For Easy Candied Walnuts

  • Unsalted butter

  • Brown sugar

  • Fine sea salt

  • Cayenne pepper (optional)

  • Roughly chopped walnuts

walnuts, brown sugar, butter, salt and cayenne cooking in a skillet

How to Make Candied Walnuts With Brown Sugar

  1. Place a piece of parchment paper or a silicone baking mat on a flat work surface.

  2. Heat a medium non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add the butter, brown sugar, salt, and cayenne, if using. Cook, stirring often, until the butter melted, sugar dissolves and mixture begins bubbling, about 2 minutes. Stir in the walnuts and cook, stirring, until coated and sticky, about 1 to 2 minutes.

  3. Transfer the candied walnuts to the parchment paper or mat and spread out into a single layer. Allow the walnuts to cool completely.

  4. Before serving, break the walnuts apart.

homemade candied walnuts cooling on parchment paper

Use The Best Candied Walnuts On These Recipes From The Modern Proper

Salads, after a plain handful as a snack, are the best way to eat candied walnuts. Here’s a few places to use them:

homemade candied walnuts made with brown sugar, butter, salt and cayenne

How to Freeze Candied Walnuts + Tips

  • Candied walnuts can be stored in the freezer in an air-tight container for 2-3 months. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week or refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.

  • Chopped walnut pieces are often less expensive than whole walnuts at the grocery store.

  • We like to use a nice sea salt like Maldon to sprinkle on our candied walnuts.

a bowl of homemade candied walnuts made with brown sugar, butter, salt and cayenne

Chock Full Of Nuts Recipes At The Modern Proper

Totally Nuts For Candied Walnuts

For more recipe inspiration, follow us on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok and Pinterest or order our cookbook. We love when you share your meals. Tag us on Instagram using #themodernproper. Happy cooking!

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Candied Walnuts

  • Serves: 8
  • Yields: 1 cup
  • Prep Time:  5 min
  • Cook Time:  5 min

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1 cup roughly chopped walnuts (about 4 ounces)

Method

  1. Place a piece of parchment paper or a silicone baking mat on a flat work surface.

  2. Heat a medium non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add the butter, brown sugar, salt, 2 teaspoons of water and cayenne, if using. Cook, stirring often, until the butter melted, sugar dissolves and mixture begins bubbling, about 2 minutes. Stir in the walnuts and cook, stirring, until coated and sticky, about 1 to 2 minutes.

  3. Transfer the candied walnuts to the parchment paper or mat and spread out into a single layer. Allow the walnuts to cool completely.

  4. Before serving, break the walnuts apart. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week or refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories80
  • Protein1 g
  • Carbohydrates5 g
  • Total Fat6 g
  • Dietary Fiber1 g
  • Cholesterol4 mg
  • sodium73 mg
  • Total Sugars4 g

Candied Walnuts

Questions & Reviews

Join the discussion below.

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  • Carrol

    Can I bake the walnuts instead of putting in a skillet?

    Can I double this recipe?

    Hi Carrol, you can double it! WE haven't tested this specific recipe in the oven, some things would probably need tweaked so we recommend using the skillet.

  • Sandy

    What is one serving? How many walnuts ?

    2 tablespoons. Hope you enjoy!

  • mikal

    should the walnuts be toasted first for the candied nut recipe?

    Nope, no need. Hope you enjoy!

  • Lisa

    Really good recipe! Simple and delicious!! Thanks!!!

    Thanks Lisa, glad you loved these!

  • christopher

    lovely recipe, added smoked paprika to add extra flavor to salads

    Thanks Christopher, glad you loved it!

  • R

    Love the recipe! Simple and delicious!

    Thanks, so glad you loved it!

  • Marie

    These candied walnuts are amazing. They only took 10 minutes and I want to put them on everything and just eat them by the handful.

    Thanks Marie, we are so glad you loved them!