Candied Walnuts to Spruce Up Salad, Oatmeal, and Beyond!

Candied Walnuts to Spruce Up Salad, Oatmeal, and Beyond!

My mom has been making these candied walnuts (or “sugared walnuts”) for years. Whenever she has a dinner party she tosses them on salad (they’re perfect on a fresh salad with sliced pear, figs, dried cranberries, and a tangy vinaigrette). And every single time mom serves this salad at least one person comments about how amazing the walnuts are.


Last Thanksgiving I gave candied walnuts a try. I failed, miserably. I put them in the toaster and it was one big mess of burned sugar and wasted walnuts (which I had to throw away—and they’re not cheap!) So I vowed to bring my mom over to teach me how to make her famous candied walnuts. As it turns out, it’s ridiculously easy.

It’s a delicate art, as sugar can burn so quickly, but it’s just two ingredients tossed in a pan, and voila! You’ve got sweet, crunchy, protein-packed gold that will spice up any fall dish. Enjoy! 

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Candied Walnuts

  • Author: Joan Cehn
  • Prep Time: 0 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1-2 servings 1x
  • Category: Side, Snack
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan


These delicious candied walnuts are perfect atop a fall salad, sweet potato dishes, oatmeal, and beyond. Plus, they’re a delicious snack to nibble on their own!


  • ½ cup of raw walnuts
  • cup of sugar


  1. In a cast iron pan over medium heat, add walnuts and sugar. Stir consistently until sugar begins to clump together.
  2. As soon as the sugar begins to melt and form a liquid, turn off heat and immediately transfer sugar crusted walnuts to a dish and allow to cool. Sugar burns very easily so keep a close watch. Walnuts should be caked with sugar, but there will also be little clumps of sugar separate from the walnuts—that’s ok!


  • There is a very fine line between perfectly sugar-coated and burned—if in doubt, take it off the flame sooner rather than later!

Keywords: candied nuts, festive, holiday, walnuts,

I love putting these candied walnuts on top of sweet potato dishes like our delicious fall-themed Stuffed Sweet Potato (pictured below). 

More Wonderful Walnut Recipes:

Candied Walnuts photos taken by Michelle Cehn. Recipe and photographs copyright of World of Vegan™, all rights reserved. Article edited by Amanda Meth. Please note that this article may contain affiliate links which means shopping through them helps lights on at World of Vegan!

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8 Comments - Write a Comment

  1. Amanda · Edit

    These candied nuts are such a simple treat! I like adding a little cinnamon, too!

  2. These candied nuts always remind me of my mom, I love making them!! Especially around the holidays 🙂 They’re also great with pecans.

  3. Yes these are awesome! They dress up a salad and make it really extraordinary. They are like “little jewels” on top of the salad. Just have to be careful not to burn them!

  4. Marie H. · Edit

    YUMMY! I love any kind of nuts, but walnuts are my favorite. Now that I’ve tried candied walnuts, I’m totally spoiled and not sure I can go back -lol. Amazing recipe!

  5. Beatriz Buono-Core · Edit

    I adore these candied walnuts! They take any simple salad to the next level 🙂

  6. Andrea · Edit

    This is the best kind of snack and topping! I love it!!


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