Homemade gifts are one of my favorite things to give and receive during the holidays. To me, nothing says “I care” more than taking the time and effort to personally hand craft a present for someone. I love personalized one-of-a-kind gifts, none of that mass produced, super commercial stuff.
Over the course of the year, I collect all sorts of fun and cute jars to fill with goodies for the holidays. My first project: these addicting cinnamon sugar mixed nuts! They make a great holiday gift. They’re perfect for neighbors, friends, and make delicious stocking stuffers!
Not only are these nuts great for snacking or a healthy dessert option- they are wonderful to sprinkle over pancakes and oatmeal! But if you have a major sweet tooth like me, I add a handful of cinnamon sugar pecans to top my vanilla ice cream sundae.
You can use any nuts you’d like. I used a combination of pecans and almonds- because they’re my favorite. And if you are feeling adventurous, feel free to experiment with different spices. How about pumpkin pie spice or nutmeg?
Cinnamon Sugar Mixed Nuts
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup water
3 cups raw nuts of your choice (I did a mixture of almonds, pecans, and some peanuts)
1 1/2 Tbsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1. In a large heavy bottomed pan (preferably with high sides), add brown sugar, sugar, and water. Place over high heat and allow sugar to melt.
2. Once sugar mixture starts to bubble, lower heat to medium-high and add nuts of your choice. Using a wooden spoon (or heat proof spatula) stir nuts continuously. Continue to stir and agitate liquor sugar mixture. It may take anywhere from 3-7 minutes, but be consistent and keep stirring!
3. Eventually the liquid sugar mixture will crystalize. At this point, lower heat to medium-low. Add ground cinnamon and salt. Continue to stir until nuts are evenly coated. Remove from heat and transfer cinnamon sugar coated nuts to a parchment lined sheet tray. Allow to cool. Nuts will remain soft until cooled. Once cooled, nuts will be crunchy. Store in an airtight container. Enjoy as a snack, healthy dessert, or sprinkle over oatmeal or yogurt (or ice cream!).
Maryanne’s Chic Tip: The secret to getting that nice crunchy coating is all in the mixing. Once the sugars have melted, they need to be agitated to turn back into crystals. The more you agitate and stir the nuts in the liquid sugar, the better.