This simple and easy recipe for Five-Spice Maple Pecans features an Asian twist on a classic holiday treat. Crunchy spiced pecans lightly coated in maple syrup make for great homemade holiday gifts.
What are pecans?
Pecans are nuts that grown primarily in the southern United States and Mexico.
They have a brown, textured appearance, making them similar to walnuts.
However, pecans are smaller in shape and darker brown in color, compared to walnuts.
What do pecans taste like?
Pecans have a sweet, buttery, rich nutty flavor, making them suitable for pecan pie, or praline candy.
What is Chinese five spice?
Chinese five spice powder is a mixture of 5 spices used in Chinese cuisine.
There are many variations, but most commonly they include:
- star anise
- Sichuan pepper
Chinese five spice is predominantly used in savoury dishes, especially in flavoring meats (duck, chicken, or beef).
You can find Chinese five spice in Asian grocery stores or supermarkets. Every brand will have a different blend of spices, so find one that you like.
Why you'll love this recipe
Easy to make: This Five-Spice Maple Pecans recipe is really simple to make.
Delicious snack: it's oil-free, dairy-free, and egg-free, and is naturally vegan and gluten-free.
Great for gifting: make a large batch and package them into jars for holiday gifts.
Ingredients you'll need
You'll only need 5 ingredients to make this!
- pecans: de-shelled, unsalted
- maple syrup: use 100% real maple syrup
- fine sea salt: balances out the sweetness
- five spice powder: you can find already-blended powders in Asian supermarkets or you can make your own
- ground cinnamon: optional, but highly recommended
How to make maple pecans
Place the pecans, maple syrup, sea salt, 5-spice powder and ground cinnamon into a saucepan or pot.
Bring the mixture up to a low simmer over medium-low heat and stir intermittently to coat the pecans evenly.
Once the mixture begins to become sticky, bubbly and thickened, remove from heat.
Transfer the maple-coated pecans in a layer onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Bake at 300F for 20-25 minutes.
Remove pecans from oven and let cool completely on the parchment.
Break into clusters and store in an airtight container at room temperature.
How to store
Store the Five-Spice Maple Pecans in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.
Alternatively, you can store the maple pecans in the freezer or fridge in an airtight container.
How to use
You can use any other nuts such as walnuts, almonds or peanuts.
For more crunchier pecans, pop them into the freezer, which will crystallize the sugar.
Maple syrup crystallizes once heated to a temperature of 235F/113C, so baking the maple pecans in the oven will ensure that the syrup reaches that temperature.
For gifting, package the maple glazed nuts into a jar and tie with a pretty ribbon.
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Five-Spice Maple Pecans
For accuracy and precision in baking recipes, use weight (metric) measurements when available.
- 1 C halved pecans
- ¼ C maple syrup
- ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon five-spice powder
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Place the pecans, maple syrup, sea salt, 5-spice powder and ground cinnamon into a saucepan or pot.
- Bring the mixture up to a low simmer over medium-low heat and stir intermittently to coat the pecans evenly.
- Once the mixture begins to become sticky, bubbly and thickened, remove from heat.
- Transfer the maple-coated pecans in a layer onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Bake at 300°F/149°C for 20-25 minutes.
- Remove pecans from oven and let cool completely on the parchment.
- Break into clusters and store in an airtight container at room temperature.
The nutritional information provided should be considered as approximate and is not guaranteed. Please use your best judgment to ensure food is safely prepared and/or a good fit for your diet.