Vanilla Cardamom Candied Pecans

Add an exotic twist to your usual candied nut dish this year and serve up Vanilla Cardamom Candied Pecans.  It’ll have everyone going “what’s that spice?” While reaching for more. . .

Vanilla Cardamom Candied Pecans from The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen

I am officially over December.

I know, we are only 4 days in, but I’m done. Can we just fast forward to after Christmas?

Okay fine, that’s still technically December but after December 25th, I can breathe, I can sleep peacefully and my mind won’t be running with the million and one things to do on my to-do list.

I’m grateful, I most certainly am that my first year in this crazy cookie making business has me so busy already for during the holiday season but I also think I’m a little crazy for still doing it while working a full time job.

It’s okay though, because if I can’t sleep throughout this month as my comfort coping method, then I’ll just eat these candied pecans instead.

Vanilla Cardamom Candied Pecans | The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen

Everyone needs an easy go-to entertaining recipe between Thanksgiving and Christmas and this year, this one is mine.  It’s perfect for last minute guests when all you have at home are bags full of nuts (welcome to my house, we don’t have snacks but we do have nuts!).  Perhaps you are running out to a party and don’t want to be the zillionth person bringing a bottle of wine, your host has enough, be a little different, they can keep these for themselves or put them out for everyone to snack on.

Cardamom has been my go-to spice for the last few weeks and there’s something comforting about it, plus I love the option of not instinctively reaching for cinnamon.

It’s that spice that makes you think, “what is this?” “I know I’ve had it before but I can’t put my tongue on it”.  Commonly found in Scandinavian and Indian cuisine, it’s also what you taste in Chai.  I think it’s perfect with vanilla and the brown sugar coating these pecans.

Vanilla Cardamom Candied Pecans
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  • 3 cups pecan halves
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cane sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or seeds from half a vanilla bean


  1. In a large saute pan over medium heat, combine the pecans, brown sugar, cane sugar, water, butter, cardamom, sat and vanilla.
  2. Stir until the sugar and butter has melted and it starts to coat the pecans.
  3. Continue to stir and after a few minutes a thick syrup should form in the pan and over the pecans.
  4. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and heat your oven to 300 degrees F.
  5. Pour the pecans and any remaining syrup onto the baking sheet and spread in an even layer, making sure the pecans are not lumped together
  6. Bake for 15 minutes, remove from oven and the pecans should have a crisp sugared coating on the outside.
  7. Let cool completely before storing in an airtight container for about 1 week.
Recipe Type: Snack, Appetizer

Vanilla Cardamom Candied Pecans-

Little Red Kitchen Bake Shop

22 thoughts on “Vanilla Cardamom Candied Pecans

      1. Susan Palmer Post author

        Hi Deborah – Cardamom is a popular Middler Easter and Scandinavian spice generally found in pod form, it’s either green or black but you can generally find it already ground up as well at spice stores or some place like Whole Foods. If you buy it ground, it’s usually green cardamom. The scent is spicy-sweet and very aromatic. If you’ve had chai, then you might recognize the smell. A little bit does go a long way. Hope this helps!

  1. Heather | girlichef

    These would definitely not be safe if I was around. I love the vanilla and cardamom combo (I used it in my pear butter today, too). I bet the madness between now and the 25th will be so worth it…only smiles as you’re relaxing on the 26th.

  2. Carla

    Wait a minute, who complains about having too many bottles of wine?? 🙂 And I am a huge fan of cardamom. Glad to see a different kind of candied nut!

        1. Deborah Forrest

          Wow I wish I would have known I could have switched ingredients but a friend of mine had the cardamom so I borrowed and I have the vanilla bean paste on the way from Amazon. I hope these are worth the aggravation I hope I like them. Thanks for all your feed back much appreciated.I am so excited to try these I love pecans.

          1. Susan Palmer Post author

            I do think you are going to love them. My husband and I ate through these really quickly and you can use the vanilla bean paste in more recipes than just this. I use it in every recipe that would normally call for vanilla extract, as it’s a 1 to 1 swap. I can’t wait to hear your thoughts and happy baking!

  3. Kim Beaulieu

    Sure you don’t want to do another cookie week? Awe, c’mon now. Ha. I don’t know how you do it all woman. Work, blog, cookie biz, I’d be crying in a corner somewhere.

    I freaking love candied pecans. Just made a batch the other day, they just smell so awesome right. I can just imagine how wonderful these smelled and tasted. So gorgeous too.

  4. Nikki @ NikSnacks

    I LOVE cardamom! I always describe it as cinnamon’s sassy younger sister. I think after seeing your recipe no one would disagree. And for the record: you’re amazing. When it’s time to relax, you’re REALLY going to enjoy yourself!

  5. Nancy @ gottagetbaked

    I echo Kim’s comment – I really don’t know how you’re doing all of this right now. You’re superwoman! Full time job, hubby, fur-kid, smokin’ busy cookie business. I’d be curled up in a corner, sobbing into my bowl of vanilla cardamom candied pecans. Oh, who am I kidding? As if I’d have it together enough to make these on top of everything else. See? You’re amazing. Nice job with adding cardamom in here – I have a big bottle of the stuff that I need to use and this recipe is the perfect starting point!


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