I tried to make gebrannte mandeln – German candied almonds, popular at Christmas – with coconut sugar this week, and (shock) it doesn’t work. Pure coconut sugar is too dry and doesn’t caramelise during the second cooking period for the almonds.
Enter these spiced honey roasted almonds, which are kind of similar, and equally delicious! Using much less sugar, in the form of honey and a touch of coconut sugar, they share the same warm spiced flavour and are just sweet enough.
These make a wonderful gift for the holidays wrapped up in a pretty jar. The sprinkle of sugar at the end prevents the nuts from being sticky once they’ve cooled down and adds a bit of crunch to the outside. A hint of salt is optional but highly recommended.
If you, like me, try to make lots of homemade Christmas gifts, this is a lovely option. So much easier than candied almonds and beautiful, too. For a couple other homemade edible gifts, try vegan chocolate truffles or make a loaf of Pain d’epices.
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
- Honey: I haven’t tested this, but I imagine maple syrup would work for a vegan alternative. But, you know, honey roasted almonds, it is right there in the name.
- Spices: change the spices based on your preferences. Something like a gingerbread (Lebkuchen) spice blend would be delicious, and of course you can add or leave out what you like.
- Coconut sugar: it would be possible to toss the nuts in icing sugar rather than coconut sugar, for a snowy look. I haven’t tried this but it is more typical for store-bought and what you’ll find at the markets.
- Sea salt: Use flake salt if you like a stronger salted taste.
Step by Step
Step 1: add the honey to a large pot.
Step 2: heat gently until melted.
Step 3: add the almonds and spices, then stir to coat.
Step 4: tip out onto a lined baking sheet and spread into an even layer.
Step 5: roast for about ten minutes.
Step 6: coat in sugar while the nuts are still hot, then cool fully and store.
Notes and Substitutions
Keep an eye out during the oven time, as almonds burn quickly if they’re forgotten. If your oven tends to run hot, reduce the temperature slightly as even 10° difference can result in burnt nuts.
It’s vital to coat the roasted almonds in the sugar and salt while they’re still hot. If they’ve cooled, the sugar won’t stick, and then there’s no point.
How to Store
Keep in airtight containers for up to a month in a cool, dry place. If it’s too humid, the nuts will start to get sticky. I don’t recommend freezing these.
- Blanch the almonds: if you want a softer end result, or don’t like almond skins, blanch the almonds beforehand or buy them already blanched to use for this recipe.
- Don’t over-cook: the almonds can burn easily if you forget about them, so keep an eye out while they’re in the oven.
More Almond Recipes
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Honey Roasted Almonds
- 60 grams honey
- 300 grams raw almonds
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon fresh nutmeg
- 1 pod cardamom peeled and crushed
- 1 tablespoon coconut sugar
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F) and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Add 60 grams (3 tablespoons) honey to a large pot. Heat on low until the honey is melted, but not bubbling.60 grams honey
- Add 300 grams (2 1/4 cups) almonds, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, and crushed cardamom pod. Stir to fully coat the almonds in the honey and spices.300 grams raw almonds, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon fresh nutmeg, 1 pod cardamom
- Tip the nuts out onto the prepared baking sheet and spread into an even layer.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until golden and fragrant. The almonds might pop occasionally during roasting, this is normal.
- Remove from the oven and immediately add 1 tablespoon coconut sugar and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Stir to coat the almonds. If they stick to the baking paper, carefully remove (the paper won’t be hot, but the pan will be) and then mix.1 tablespoon coconut sugar, 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- Cool fully on the pan. Once cool, store in airtight containers for up to a month.
* For American cup measurements, please click the pink link text above the ingredient list that says ‘American’.
Nutrition is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate. If this information is important to you, please have it verified independently.
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