These easy slow cooker cinnamon sugar candied nuts makes a delicious snack for the holidays, an addition to a salad, or even a gift for neighbors and friends! Mixed nuts coated in ground cinnamon and other simple ingredients then roasted to perfection make these an addicting and delicious snack! Plus, they’ll make your house smell amazing the entire time they’re cooking in the crock pot!
I made these candied nuts for people to take home as a little party favor during my nutcracker games, and people were absolutely loving them!
If you’ve never had candied nuts before, they’re basically nuts with a sort of coating made out of egg whites and sugar. This is a really easy recipe but the amazing flavor makes them taste gourmet, like you’re getting something from that mall kiosk we all know is there every year during the holiday season!
And while candied nuts are popular around Christmas time, I actually love to make these all year long to add to my salads! It may not be the healthiest addition, but it sure makes them taste good!
Plus, these sweet treats are made in the slow cooker with very little hands on cook time, so they’re super easy! Whip up a double batch for a last-minute gift for neighbors and friends or just make some for you to have on hand throughout the season!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Amazing house smell – okay I know this isn’t actually about the recipe itself, but these are one of those holiday recipes (like this homemade wassail) that just gives your house an incredible smell. This particular recipe gives off a cinnamon aroma and makes it smell like the holidays.
- Basic ingredients – everything to make this sweet snack can easily be found at a grocery store or honestly maybe in your own pantry. And there is some versatility if you don’t want to use mixed nuts and would prefer to use different types instead!
- Great for holiday gifts – bag these up or add them to fun little jars, add one of these Christmas gift tags, and hand them out as holiday gifts. As long as there are no nut allergies (or aversions), I can guarantee they’ll enjoy them!
- Mixed nuts – I did a combination of cashews, almonds, and walnuts but you could definitely use any other variety of nuts that you prefer as well. Or you can use a can of mixed nuts that’s already pre-mixed if you’d prefer!
- Cinnamon – want to switch things up and make these for Thanksgiving? Use pumpkin pie spice instead of cinnamon!
- Egg whites – make sure to just use the egg white and not the yolk for these. This will help the sugary coating stick to the nuts and plus, you don’t want actual egg yolk cooked onto the nuts!
- Sugars – the combination of the brown sugar and white granulated sugar gives these the perfect sugar coating that’s not too thin or too thick! The combo is honestly one of the reasons that this is my favorite candied nut recipe I’ve tried.
how to make candied nuts in the slow cooker
There are a lot of different ways that you can make candied nuts, but I like doing them in the crockpot (aka slow cooker) because I can just toss everything in there and forget about it other than stirring for hours. And unlike roasting in the oven or on the stove, they don’t go from perfection to burnt in seconds if you’re not watching carefully.
Plus, making them in the slow cooker is seriously so easy.
1 – Prep the Nuts
Start by adding the mixed nuts (pecans, almonds, cashews) or whatever nut you choose to cook into a large bowl.
In a separate medium bowl whisk together the egg whites and the vanilla extract until the mixture is frothy.
Pour the egg whites into the large bowl with the nuts and toss them together making sure they are coated well. This will help the candy coating stick to the nuts.
To make the cinnamon sugar, mix together the brown sugar, white sugar, salt, and the cinnamon. If you are going to use cayenne pepper, add it here.
Add the cinnamon sugar mixture to the coated nuts and toss until all of the nuts are coated as completely as possible.
2 – cook the candied nuts
Lightly spray the slow cooker with a non stick spray to make sure that the nuts don’t just stick to the pan. If you want to go for easier cleanup, you can also use a crockpot liner.
Add the mixture of nuts into the slower cooker, trying your best to pour them evenly in the pot. They don’t have to be perfect, but just even it out a bit if you pour them all in one place.
Cook on low for three hours, stirring every 15-20 minutes to keep the nuts from getting stuck and burning on the bottom.
Once the three hours is up, they should be good and candied! I mean just look at how delicious those look! I can eat these by the handful!
3 – Cool and Enjoy
After the three hours has passed, pour the mixture of nuts onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet (or two) in a single layer so that they don’t just stick together. I like to stir them a bit once they’re on the parchment paper to keep them from just cooling into huge clumps of nuts.
Once the nuts are completely cool and the sugar coating has hardened, transfer them to an airtight container to store or to containers like a small mason jar or treat bag to gift to others! Just make sure not to do this until the nuts cool or you risk them getting stuck on the containers!
And the best part? Those particular ornaments actually loosen and tighten, so they’re perfect for wrapping around gift bags!
Expert Tips & Storage Info
Store candied nuts in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week or in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three weeks.
Freeze any leftover nuts by placing them in a freezer safe zipper top bag and freezing for up to two months. Make sure if you’re going to freeze right after cooking that you let them cool completely before freezing.
Set a timer on your phone or in the kitchen to stir the nuts and make sure to rotate the ones from the bottom to the top so the bottom doesn’t burn. I typically just stir every 20 minutes or so, but it’s easy to forget and leave them. If you do burn the bottom of the pot, you can still use the rest of the nuts on top.
Remove any burnt nuts from the batch once they’re on the cookie sheet. While they aren’t terrible, burnt nut is not my favorite type of flavor.
Add storage notes to the back of your gift tag if you’re giving this nutty treat away as a gift so people know the best way to keep them good for the longest!
Add a dash of cayenne pepper to the cinnamon sugar to make these nuts sweet and spicy instead of just sweet if you want to try something different and like things hot!
Candied nuts are typically a mixed nut coating in some sort of sugary coating. They can be any type of nuts but the most popular typically in a candied nuts recipe are either mixed nuts, candied walnuts, or candied pecans. They’re called candied nuts because the sugary coating makes these delicious taste more like candy than raw nuts.
Candied nuts will keep up to one week stored in an airtight container at room temperature, up to three weeks stored in an airtight container in the fridge (my preferred method) or up to two months in the freezer. I love to keep some in the fridge for any time my sweet tooth strikes!
Candied nuts do not need to be refrigerated since everything on them is cooked, but they will last longer if stored in the fridge. If storing in the fridge, I do like to take them out about 15 minutes before serving (if using in something like a salad or for a Christmas party) to allow them to come to room temperature before eating.
More Great Food Gift Ideas
If you are looking for great holiday gift ideas like these yummy nuts that your friends and family can eat, these treats would be perfect!
- Cranberry orange bread – this is what we gift to friends every year, and I’ve never heard a single complaint!
- Grinch balls – these cute treats are inspired by everyone’s favorite green guy!
- Peanut butter snowballs – if you want to stick with the nut theme, these white chocolate covered snowballs are a hit every time!
- Reindeer chow – add this holiday version of muddy buddies to a gift bag with a cute reindeer tag for the best edible gift!
- Cookie Oreo brownie recipe – if you want to give something more substantial, these brownies have layers of cookie dough, Oreos, and brownies and are amazing.
Cinnamon Sugar Nuts
- 12 Cups unsalted mixed nuts – pecans, cashews, and almonds
- 4 egg whites
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 2 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp ground cinnamon
- Start by adding the pecans, almonds, or cashews into a large bowl.12 Cups unsalted mixed nuts – pecans, cashews, and almonds
- In a separate medium bowl whisk together the egg whites and the vanilla until they are just frothy.4 egg whites, 2 tsp vanilla extract
- Pour the egg whites into the large bowl with the nuts and toss them together making sure they are coated well.
- Mix together the brown sugar, white sugar, salt, and the cinnamon. If you are using cayenne pepper, add it here as well.2 cups sugar, 1 cup brown sugar, 2 tsp salt, 2 tbsp ground cinnamon
- Add the cinnamon sugar mixture to the coated nuts and toss until all of the nuts are coated in the sugar mixture as completely as possible.
- Lightly spray the slow cooker with a non stick spray to make sure that the nuts don’t just stick to the pan.
- Add the mixture of nuts into the slower cooker, and cook on low for three hours, stirring every 15-20 minutes to keep the nuts from getting stuck and burning on the bottom.
- After the three hours has passed, pour the mixture of nuts onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet (or two) in a single layer so that they don’t just stick together.
- Once the nuts are completely cool and the sugar coating has hardened, transfer them to an airtight container to store or to containers like a small mason jar or treat bag to gift to others!