These delicious Keto Candied Pecans are a healthy treat on their own, or a crunchy, sweet enhancement for salads, desserts, or sweet potato recipes.
Caramelized with low-carb sweetener, vanilla, and a hint of cinnamon, they make a lovely treat for the holiday season or wrapped up as a gift for friends and neighbors.
Also amazing-- this is a no-bake recipe, and comes together in only 5 minutes on the stovetop! A great last-minute addition to your holiday table.
I love to add a little sweetness and spice with these caramelized pecans year-round too.
During the spring and summer, they go fantastic on salads, fruit desserts such as Baked Apples or Fruit Crisps. During the fall and winter, they top sweet potato recipes and even go great over green beans if you like that salty-sweet thing.
This pecan recipe uses Swerve brown sugar as the sweetener. Pecans on their own are high in fiber and lots of vitamins and minerals with healthy fats. If you're watching your calories or your sugar intake, this is a great option as it's a fantastic zero-calorie brown sugar alternative. It works just like its regular brown sugar.
Why you’re going to love this!
- Easy recipe! Comes together in 5 minutes with simple ingredients
- Perfect topper for salads, desserts and more.
- Satisfies your sweet tooth while staying on the keto diet with only 1 gram of net carbs
- Great for gift-giving
- Pecan halves - Halves are best to use especially if you want to snack on them. You can use chopped pecans or pecan pieces, which is great for toppings, but not quite a finger food. Walnuts are the closest to the pecan and can be substituted.
- Swerve Brown Sugar - This brown sugar alternative does not affect blood sugar. Therefore, the calorie count for one teaspoon is a big zero. You could also use a brown monk fruit sweetener. However, regular brown sugar (or regular sugar ) works just fine if you're not counting calories. If you like something a little more pure, use maple syrup. In my opinion, the brown Swerve is the best option.
- Vanilla Extract - Pure vanilla extract is best, I prefer to not use imitation.
How To Make Keto Candied Pecans
This is an overview of the recipe, make sure you read the full printable recipe card below for all the details.
Before you begin, prepare a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and set it aside. I love this easy and inexpensive set. Nordic Ware Aluminum Commercial Baker’s Half Sheet.
- Mix water, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, and vanilla together.
- Toast the pecans on medium heat in a saucepan. Stir occasionally until they become fragrant, about 5 minutes.
- Pour the sauce mixture over the pecans in the pan and stir well to coat.
- Spread the coated pecans on the parchment lined baking sheet in a single layer and cool at room temperature. The pecans will harden in a few hours.
- Fresh is best! For best results, fresh pecans are a must-have. If you have some pecans that have been in the cupboard for awhile, check the date. Nuts can go rancid. You can always store them in the refrigerator or freeze them after you buy them in an airtight container and then thaw them for an hour on the counter when ready to make this recipe.
- Coating- When coating your pecans in the saucepan, be sure to stir constantly just until the brown sugar is dissolved. You can burn pecans and sugar and they will be bitter. Be careful not to leave them in the pan for too long.
- Prep- Don’t forget to have your cookie sheet ready. When the pecans come out of the pan, they need to go straight onto the parchment paper and cookie sheet. If you forget this step, you can risk burning them.
Frequently Asked Questions
Candied nuts will stay good in an airtight container in the fridge for up to two weeks. You can also seal them in an airtight container and freeze for up to six months.
After your pecans have cooled, if they are still sticky, this could mean they didn’t cook long enough in the skillet. Caramelized pecans need to reach a high enough temperature for the sugar to harden. Simply, put them back in the pan, and toast for another 2-5 minutes.
But keep in mind that candied pecans cooked on the stove will have a stickier texture than a baked recipe. These are more glazed and caramelized than baked in.
Yes! Toasting your pecans before caramelizing brings out the flavor of the nut and allows the sugar and spices to caramelize and harden on the nut surface the best.
The Difference between Glazed Pecans vs. Candied pecans is candied pecans typically will use white sugar, and an egg white. Glazed pecans brown sugar, corn syrup, and melted butter. And, pralines are essentially coated in a caramel sauce made of brown sugar, butter, and heavy cream.
So this keto pecans recipe is not quite exactly like those as we're substituting sugar-free sweeteners and using a stovetop method.
Storing and Freezing
Store candied pecans in an airtight container for two weeks, or freeze for up to six months.
More Keto Recipes
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Keto Candied Pecans
- Rimmed baking sheet
- parchment paper
- small sauce pan
- 1 ½ tablespoons Swerve brown sugar
- 1 ½ tablespoons water
- ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup pecan halves
- Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Mix water, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt and vanilla together.
- Heat a small saucepan to medium heat. Add the pecans and stir occasionally until they become fragrant, about 5 minutes.
- Pour in the cinnamon sugar mixture and stir to coat. Remove from heat.
- Spread the coated pecans in a single layer on the prepared pan.
- Cool at room temperature. The pecans will harden in a few hours.
- Brown Monk fruit sweetener can be substituted.
- When coating your pecans in the saucepan, be sure to stir constantly just until the brown sugar is dissolved. Be careful not to leave them in the pan for too long.
- Don’t forget to have your cookie sheet ready. When the pecans come out of the pan, they need to go straight onto the parchment paper and cookie sheet. If you forget this step, you can risk burning them.
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