Best Easy Candied Pecans Recipe

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5 from 26 votes

Buttery, sweet and a touch salty, these candied pecans are addictively delicious and they take only 20 minutes to make! Complete a charcuterie board, toss into a salad, or sprinkle over ice cream, homemade candied pecans should be in your pantry year round!

I almost wish these candied pecans weren’t so good because I find myself reaching for them whenever the sweet tooth strikes (which is always). These sweet morsels are the best; they’re crunchy, brown buttery, and sweet yet not too sweet from a hint of salt.

Best yet, candied pecans are TOO easy to make, requiring only 3 ingredients and 20 minutes to make. I’m not sure if I should say “you’re welcome” or “I’m sorry” for introducing you to your new obsession.

Overwhelmed by all the possibilities for using these candied pecans? Start off by tossing them into a Apple Salad with some Candied Bacon!

Video: Watch Me Make Candied Pecans!


The ingredients for making candied pecans are simple. You only need 3! Here they are…

  • Chopped pecans – while you can use whole pecans, chopped pecans are my favorite options for the best pecan-to-candy ratio.
  • Light brown sugar – light brown sugar caramelizes, creating the perfect candy coating.
  • Salted butter – salted butter helps coat the pecans, and gives them a buttery, slightly salty finish.
Candied pecans recipe ingredients

How to Make Candied Pecans

Learn how to make the most delicious candied pecans in only 4 steps. Full instructions in the recipe card; this is just an outline!

  1. Melt.

    Melt butter in a LARGE pan over medium heat. Add and mix in brown sugar.

  2. Caramelize.

    Keep heat at medium and add pecans, stirring occasionally. Caramelize for 6-7 minutes until the syrup thickens.candy pecans in sugar and butter mixture for 6-7 minutes.

  3. Cool.

    Spread the caramelized pecans on a lined baking sheet. Allow to cool for 10-15 minutes until hardened.Cool candied pecans so until they harden.

  4. Cool more.

    Transfer to a bowl or container for complete cooling and hardening.


Homemade candied pecans last 2 weeks in an airtight container at room temperature. Need to store them longer? Keep them in the fridge for a month. Freeze them in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months, thawing at room temperature or in the refrigerator.

Recipe Tips

  • Want to dress up candied pecans with fun flavor variations? Add a pinch of cinnamon, nutmeg, or cayenne pepper. You can also add herbs like rosemary or thyme, a splash of vanilla extract, a dash of orange or lemon zest, or a sprinkle of sea salt after the pecans cool.
  • The candied pecans will harden more when they’ve cooled completely. Pop them in the fridge to cool them faster.
  • Yes, this recipe works with other nuts like walnuts or peanuts!

How to Use Candied Pecans

Candied pecans can be used in so many ways, adding a sweet crunch to snacks and meals. Here are my favorite ways to serve:

  1. As a snack: I mean…yes please!
  2. Salad Toppings: Sprinkle over salads. Try using these candied pecans instead of walnuts in this Apple Salad!
  3. Dessert Garnish: Use them as a topping for desserts such as ice cream with Homemade Hot Fudge, yogurt, or puddings.
  4. Baked Goods: Incorporate them into baked goods like cakes, Banana Bread Muffins, and breads for added texture and flavor.
  5. Trail Mix: Mix candied pecans with other nuts, dried fruits, and chocolate for a fun trail mix.
  6. Cheese Boards: Include candied pecans on cheese boards.
  7. Breakfast Dishes: Sprinkle them over oatmeal, Blueberry Pancakes or Mini Pancakes.
  8. Gift or Party Favors: Package candied pecans in decorative jars or bags as a homemade gift or party favor!

Other Recipes With Nuts You’ll Love!

Best Easy Candied Pecans Recipe

Buttery, sweet and a touch salty, these candied pecans are addictively delicious and they take only 20 minutes to make! Complete a charcuterie board, toss into a salad, or sprinkle over ice cream, homemade candied pecans should be in your pantry year round!
5 from 26 votes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Course: Dessert, Snack, tips & tricks
Cuisine: American, New England
Keyword: fall, winter
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 316kcal
Author: Tastefully Grace


  • Large pan


  • 2 cups chopped pecans
  • ½ cup light brown sugar packed
  • 6 tablespoons salted butter


  • In a large pan, add butter and melt over medium heat. Add the brown sugar and stir to combine.
  • Keeping heat at medium, add the pecans and toss. Let pecans candy in the butter/sugar mixture for 6-7 minutes, stirring every minute. The mixture should bubble and thicken to a sticky syrup, coating the nuts.
  • Pour nuts in a single layer on a parchment or foil lined baking sheet to cool. After 10-15 minutes, the mixture will harden enough to break into desired-sized pieces.
  • Place candied pecans in a bowl or container to cool and harden completely.



  • You can use whole pecans if preferred but use 2 heaping cups instead of 2 level cups.
  • The candied pecans will harden completely when they’ve cooled completely. Pop them in the fridge to expedite cooling!


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 316kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 13g | Trans Fat: 0.3g | Cholesterol: 23mg | Sodium: 71mg | Potassium: 133mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 14g | Vitamin A: 278IU | Vitamin C: 0.3mg | Calcium: 33mg | Iron: 1mg
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  1. Mike
    February 12, 2024 / 7:20 pm

    Should note this works for raw nuts. Roasted nuts will get unpleasantly burnt if these directions are followed. Could probably add them right at the end of the cooking cycle.

    • February 13, 2024 / 9:03 am

      Hi Mike,

      Yes, I buy just plain old pecans in the baking aisle of the grocery store! Diamond brand works great!


5 from 26 votes (26 ratings without comment)

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