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Here’s how to make candied walnuts: a no-fail method that works every time! Add a crunch to ice cream and salads, or just eat them by the handful.

Candied walnuts
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One of the tastiest ways to cook with walnuts? Try this Candied Walnuts recipe! This no-fail recipe makes a crunchy, cinnamon-spiced candy coating for the rich, chewy nuts. They taste incredible by the handful and they’re endlessly versatile: use them as a topping for salads, ice cream, pancakes, oatmeal and more. Or, use them as DIY housewarming or holiday gifts! Every time we whip up a batch we’re obsessed: snacking on them plain and even putting them in our 5-year old’s lunch as a treat.

Ingredients for candied walnuts

Candied walnuts are walnuts coated in a crunchy sugar coating, similar to candied pecans. The typical method for making this tasty treat is to coat the nuts in egg whites, sugar, and spices, then bake them until crispy. It makes a candy-like coating that stays crisp for weeks. 

In contrast, glazed walnuts are similar, but they have a smoother, glossy exterior and they’re not quite as shelf stable. We prefer the candied nuts, if you have time to make them! Here’s what you’ll need to make candied walnuts:

  • Walnut halves
  • Granulated sugar
  • Light brown sugar: a mix of brown and white sugar yields the best, most developed flavor
  • Cinnamon
  • Ground ginger
  • Vanilla
  • Egg white: egg white helps the sugar and spices adhere to the nuts and it adds a glossy, form exterior
  • Salt
Candied walnuts

How to make candied walnuts

This candied walnuts recipe is a no-fail way to make crunchy, shelf-stable candied pecans. All you need are a few ingredients and an oven! While you can candy walnuts on the stovetop, the oven is an easier and more reliable method. Simply bake at 325 degrees Fahrenheit until the candy coating is hardened. It takes just about 30 minutes and works every time, where stovetop methods you risk a soft or powdery coating. Here are the basic steps (or jump to the recipe below):

  • Mix: Mix the dry and wet ingredients separately, then toss them with the walnuts.
  • Spread onto a baking sheet: Spread the nuts in a single layer on a parchment lined sheet.
  • Bake 30 minutes at 325°F, stirring once. Bake 15 minutes, then stir. At this point, the nuts will look very foamy: that’s ok! Continue to cook until they are light brown and hardened.

Storage info

This method for candied walnuts results in crunchy, warm-spiced walnuts that last for weeks at room temperature or frozen for months. We were surprised at how well these hold up! They’re perfect for housewarming or holiday gifts, but we prefer to

  • Store at room temperature for up to 2 weeks in a sealed container.
  • Store frozen for up to 2 months. Place the nuts in a freezer safe sealable bag: if you can, suck all remaining air out using a straw. (Removing extra air helps the nuts to stay fresher for longer.)
  • Make sure to fully cool the nuts before storage. Allow the nuts to cool for at least 45 minutes so they don’t have an residual moisture when stored.
  • For gifts, store in lidded jars. These candied walnuts make great DIY housewarming or holiday gifts. Indicate on the jar to store for up to 2 weeks.
Candied Walnuts

Ways to use candied walnuts

Once you’ve made a batch, there are loads of ways to use candied walnuts. The easiest, of course, is by the handful! But we love to use them in other ways, too. Here are a few ways to use candied walnuts:

How do plan to use your candied walnuts? Let us know in the comments below!

Candied walnuts

More walnut recipes

Got lots of walnuts? Here are some great walnut recipes to use them:

This candied walnuts recipe is…

Vegetarian, gluten-free and dairy-free.

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Candied walnuts

Candied Walnuts

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  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 3 cups 1x
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Here’s how to make candied walnuts: a no-fail method that works every time! Add a crunch to ice cream and salads, or just eat by the handful.


  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 teaspoon water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups (12 ounces) raw walnuts


  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F.
  2. Whisk the granulated sugar, light brown sugar, cinnamon, ground ginger, and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg white, water and vanilla extract until foamy. Toss the walnuts with the egg white mixture with a spatula until well coated. Add half the sugar mixture and stir with a spatula until fully coated, then add the remaining sugar mixture and stir until coated.
  3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and pour the nuts in an even layer on top. Bake for 15 minutes, then remove the tray from the oven and stir (the nuts will look foamy at this point). Bake for another 15 minutes until lightly browned. Cool about 10 minutes before eating and completely (about 45 minutes) before storing. Store in an airtight container up to 2 weeks and frozen in a freezer-safe bag (with the air removed with a straw) for up to 2 months.
  • Category: Essentials
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegetarian

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes and the joy of cooking! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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1 Comment

  1. Sonja Overhiser says:

    Let us know if you have any questions!