Favorite Salad Nuts

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I thought it might be nice to take a little break from the serious talk and share a yummy recipe that makes me very happy…

Candied nuts

These nuts are delicious sprinkled on a salad or eaten alone. I especially enjoy them on a bed of lettuce or baby spinach with crumbled feta, avocado, and dried cranberries or apples.

What you'll need:

  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Balsamic vinegar
  • 1/3 – 1/2 cup Sucanat* (or brown sugar)
  • 2 cups pecan pieces
  • large skillet
  • parchment paper

What to do:

Lay out a large piece of parchment paper to place nuts on when ready.

Stir olive oil, balsamic, and sucanat over medium heat in a large skillet until sucanat dissolves and mixture is bubbly.  Then stir in the pecans. Continue to stir until nuts are coated and toasty (about 6 -10 minutes).

Turn nuts out onto parchment paper to cool (the sugary coating will harden as it cools).

Once completely cool, break up any clumps.  Sprinkle over your salad or eat a few on their own.  Store remaining nuts in an airtight container for up to a week.

*I prefer to use Sucanat opposed to brown sugar because it is still a whole food and less processed.  Sucanat is basically dehydrated cane sugar juice.  You can find out more about sucanat here.  You might also enjoy reading Passionate Homemaking‘s article about natural sweeteners.

This recipe was adapted from the Spinach Salad with Mango and Candied Pecans recipe on Epicurious.  The original recipe uses 1/4 cup brown sugar for 1 cup of nuts, which would mean 1/2 cup for this recipe.  I have used this ratio and found them to be a little too sweet (but still quite good).  If you don't want to jump in and make a whole 2 cups, then I suggest using a little under a 1/4 cup of sucanat for 1 cup of nuts, 1 Tblsp oil and 1 Tblsp vinegar.

I'm linking this up to the Salad Course of the Whole Foods Progressive Dinner at Naturally Knocked Up.

While you're here, you might want to check out my other salad and salad dressing recipes.

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