Simple Sweet and Savory Spiced Walnuts

"These are really simple and use much less butter than some. They are mildly sweet and mildly spicy---those who love super spicy will have to add cayenne, etc. They are a lovely complement to a glass of sherry or a cheese board to be served with wine. They are a great addition to salads and can be chopped and included in any number of sweet and savory pastries."
photo by COOKGIRl photo by COOKGIRl
photo by COOKGIRl
photo by Diana 2 photo by Diana 2
Ready In:
2 cups




  • Have ready a silpat on a sheet pan or a parchment lined pan on a surface which can withstand heat.
  • Mash the garlic with the brown sugar and spices to form a paste.
  • Melt the butter in a non stick skillet over medium heat.
  • Add the sugar/spice paste to the skillet and, using a wooden spoon or spatula, stir to combine the butter and paste (about a minute or two).
  • Once it is roughly combined, add the walnuts and stir to coat; this will take no more than a minute or two.
  • When the walnuts are coated, transfer them to the silpat or parchment.
  • Spread them out with your wooden spatula and allow to cool.
  • Store the cooled nuts in a tin or jar.
  • Use in salads (butter lettuce, beets, blue cheese and these nuts--super!), or as a nibble with cocktails/apertifs.

Questions & Replies

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  1. I doubled the recipe because I had to made a big batch for our upcoming Easter lunch on Sunday. Four cups of a variety of raw nuts were added: hazelnuts, peanuts, pecans, whole almonds and the walnuts. First I roasted the nuts and whole garlic for about 20-25 minutes @ 350 degrees. In the meantime, melted the butter and added the spices. As soon as the nuts were removed from the oven,the spice mixture was added then proceeded with the recipe as indicated. (I minced the garlic,too.) These are positively addicting! Thanks for posting the recipe.PS the salad suggestion is on my list to try!
  2. 5 spice powder sees little use in my kitchen as I usually find it overpowers everything. I decided to try the recipe anyway with 1 cup of nuts. I am so glad I did! The nuts are wonderful- sweet, sassy, and very balanced. They only took minutes to make and cooled on the parchment paper while I assembled the salads. I used them in a salad of mixed greens and assorted vegetables topped with bleu cheese crumbles and a sweet onion dressing. Yum! A definite keeper of a recipe. Thank you for your contribution to RSC & good luck!
  3. These turned out nice and had an interesting taste that I enjoyed. Good luck!
  4. On their on these are okay but they really do add a nice spark to mixed greens. I did experience a little problem with the spices "clumping" and not coating the nuts smoothly. These were mixed into salad greens, cranberries and a balsamic vinaigrette for a delightful dinner salad. Good luck in RSC.
  5. I was really looking forwrd to trying this one, I love spiced nuts, but unfortunately it just wasn't over the top for me. Some spice was coming through just too strong for me and left an aftertaste I just wasn't fond of. I also added salt after they were finished, which definitely upped the flavor. They stayed a little sticky upon cooling. It's a very easy quick recipe just unfortunately didn't have the right flavors for my taste. Creative recipe for the contest. Good luck!


<p>I have always loved to cook. When I was little, I cooked with my Grandmother who had endless patience and extraordinary skill as a baker. And I cooked with my Mother, who had a set repertoire, but taught me many basics. Then I spent a summer with a French cousin who opened up a whole new world of cooking. And I grew up in New York City, which meant that I was surrounded by all varieties of wonderful food, from great bagels and white fish to all the wonders of Chinatown and Little Italy, from German to Spanish to Mexican to Puerto Rican to Cuban, not to mention Cuban-Chinese. And my parents loved good food, so I grew up eating things like roasted peppers, anchovies, cheeses, charcuterie, as well as burgers and the like. In my own cooking I try to use organics as much as possible; I never use canned soup or cake mix and, other than a cheese steak if I'm in Philly or pizza by the slice in New York, I don't eat fast food. So, while I think I eat and cook just about everything, I do have friends who think I'm picky--just because the only thing I've ever had from McDonald's is a diet Coke (and maybe a frie or two). I have collected literally hundreds of recipes, clipped from the Times or magazines, copied down from friends, cajoled out of restaurant chefs. Little by little, I am pulling out the ones I've made and loved and posting them here. Maybe someday, every drawer in my apartment won't crammed with recipes. (Of course, I'll always have those shelves crammed with cookbooks.) I'm still amazed and delighted by the friendliness and the incredible knowledge of the people here. 'Zaar has been a wonderful discovery for me.</p>
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