Sweet & Spicy Roasted Pecans (a trader joe’s hack)

since livi’s first birthday party is tomorrow, I’m going to make this a quick & easy recipe post. being elbow deep in birthday crafting and cupcake making didn’t lend itself to having a whole bunch of time, but i can tell you that these sweet & spicy roasted pecans are SO worth the 20 min it takes to make them…. ok, well worth the 5 min of hands on time it takes. 😉

I fell head over heels hard for the sweet & spicy pecans at Trader Joe’s. they are good on so many things, but at $3.99 per 5oz pop it was starting to seem like it might not be worth it with the amount I was buying. (gulp.) that’s just far too much money on (essentially) decorative nuts! plus, i feel better knowing exactly what’s going into my food. tj’s has a decent reputation for good ingredients, but their sweet & spicy nuts are made with canola oil – something i’m trying to stay away from if i can help it. i figured it was time to make them myself. they couldn’t be that hard to emulate, right? I was sooooo right. and these are even better. i mean, as long as you’re into food that has a buttery, toasty yumminess that puts its store-bought friend to shame.

The Modern Locket // Sweet & Spicy Pecans (a trader joes hack)

sweet & spicy pecans

preheat oven to 325

in a small mixing bowl, combine:
2T white granulated sugar
2T brown sugar
1/2t cayenne pepper
1/4t fresh ground black pepper
1/4t sea salt

on the stove top, toss on medium/low heat:
8oz raw pecan halves (ironically, tj’s has the best price i’ve found for these)
2 Tbsp of butter
(just until butter is melted & pecans are warmed)

toss the pecans in the sweet & spicy mix. give it a good mix-around. then, spread the pecans on a lined baking sheet & bake for 15 minutes. halfway through the baking time, stir the pecans & get a waft of the toasty goodness.

store in an air-tight container in the fridge for 6-8 weeks to top your salads, baked potatoes, and even put in your chicken salad in place of almonds. so many uses!

i dare you to resist the temptation to burn your tongue on one straight out of the oven.