Easy-to-make, addicting, sweet, crunchy, candy coated cinnamon roasted almonds just like you get at the mall.
I don’t know if it’s every mall in the US, or if it’s just ours, but every year at Christmas time vendors set up and sell freshly made candied cinnamon roasted almonds. The smell from these crunchy, sweet cinnamon glazed almonds fills the entire mall and I can’t resist taking a sample or two as I pass by.
The almonds are a little bit expensive to buy, but pretty inexpensive to make at home. I always keep a big Costco size bag of raw almonds in my fridge for healthy snacks, so I almost always have the ingredients to make this sweet treat any time. Which could be dangerous because it really is impossible to eat just one.
There is a little bit of controversy online about whether you should cook them until the sugar crystallizes and the coating becomes furry or if you should cook them a little longer until the sugar melts again. I like them both ways and I think you will too.
Candied Cinnamon Roasted Almonds
- 1 cup brown sugar
- ¼ cup water
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 2 cups almonds
- Preheat oven to 350º.
- Combine the brown sugar, water, cinnamon and salt in a saute pan. Bring to a boil over medium heat.
- Add the almonds and cook, stirring constantly, until the liquid evaporates and leaves a candy coating on the almonds.
- Pour the almonds onto a baking sheet lined with parchment or a Silpat. Spread in to a thin layer, separating the almonds if necessary.
- Roast in the oven for 10 minutes.* Remove from oven and let cool completely. Store in an airtight container.
Today’s post is week 9 of my 12 Weeks of Christmas Treats hosted by Brenda, Meal Planning Magic. Be sure and check out all of the fabulous treats the other 12 weeks of Christmas Treats bakers baked up for this week.
It’s hard to beat the ones made at the mall that I get every year…but, these are pretty close- absolutely delicious! Also, naturally gluten/dairy free!
How long do they last after making them? I was thinking of making them fit Christmas gifts.
Hi Kariss – about 2 weeks in an airtight container.
Barbara, 2 weeks? They only last about two hours at our house. (Haha!)
lol – they are pretty irresistible! We have the same problem at our house We’ll walk by the dish and drab a couple and before you know it, they’re gone.
What is the nutrional value of these?
I was really excited to try this recipe! I made a few minor changes (subbed in some white sugar, added 1tsp vanilla). I want to add that I had to cook everything for 15-20 min before the liquid would evaporate. But I was convinced that the liquid needed to evaporate. Once the liquid was dissolved, I dumped everything on to a cookie sheet covered with a silpat and used a fork to separate the nuts. Since I used raw almonds, I roasted everything for 10 minutes. One minute longer and the coating would have started to burn. They are cooling now and are delicious.
Did you add more sugar or just substitute sugar instead of brown?
Delicious!! Thank you for the great recipe! I’m excited to give these away as gifts this fall. One question, does it matter when the cinnamon (or other spices used) are added? It seems to work fine with the cinnamon but I worry about spices burning during the caramelization process.
Also, would adding salt in the beginning effect the process? I love salt with my nuts and am wondering if this is better added in the beginning or end.
just realized that your recipe already adds salt in the beginning. Sorry for the redundant question.
Thanks Heidi – so glad you loved it. I haven’t tried it with other spices, but cinnamon is so powdery that it needs to be added early so it incorporates better, but if you used a spice that blended easily, you could try adding it later.
Keith-powered by plants :]
Just did this like 5 mins ago and WOW this is great! Very simple and delicious(im addicted to almonds),, Idk what people are doing but i did mine and the instructions were straight forward. I was even on high heat because I was being impatient(because my water was more than 1/4), once the almond started getting dry(candied) I put them in the baking sheet right away,, They are cooling ATM,,
Thanks for the recipe, will be definitely using this again,,
PS. I accidentally put 2 Tbsp cinnamon 😀 hahah still taste good, and I like cinnamon anyways,,
I tried this for the first time. Did everything according to your instructions as far as I can tell. The liquid never full evaporated before it burned. I also stirred the entire time. That’s alot of almonds out to the trash.
Sorry you had problems. My guess is your heat was probably too high.
Had it on medium, but since I have a glass top that would not be unheard of.
I had the same problem. I believed that the water was not fully evaporated so I kept stirring and then the sugar quickly melted and then burned. I had to toss everything and then I only had enough almonds left to make a half batch.
Hi Barbara, just wondering if this recipe should work for pecans and cashews as well… I have made several batches of the almonds and they turned out great! I tried making one batch of pecans and they started burning before the liquid evaporated at all. Wondering if I forgot to turn the heat to medium or what… I’m afraid to try making the cashews for fear that will happen again. But it doesn’t make sense to me that it would only be for almonds. Let me know! Thank you!
Hi Lacey – I haven’t tried it with any other nut, but I don’t know why it wouldn’t work. Perhaps with the more tender nuts you could try cooking the sugar mixture until most of the liquid has evaporated and then add the nuts so the don’t have a chance to burn? So glad you’re enjoying the recipe. Happy holidays!
I forgot to get parchment paper can I use foil when I put them in the oven?
I haven’t tried foil, but if you use it, you might want to spray it with non-stick spray first. Let me know how it works.
I used foil and everything turn out great and they didn’t stick much, thank you very much for all your help!!!!
Thanks for the update Mark! Nice to know foil works well.
I just made the almonds today and they don’t look anything like the ones I buy at the mall. I followed all the steps right, what did I do wrong? Can I just put them back on the stove and repeat the sugar and cinnamon process?
Hi Mark – yes, you should be able to heat them up again and melt the sugar again.
I’m trying to make these. I didn’t know whether to use light or dark brown sugar so I ventured a guess at dark. It’s turned into a big sticky mess though. I used roasted almonds so thought I wouldn’t have to put them in the oven, but after having them on the stovetop for 10+ minutes and stirring constantly it’s still a sticky mess. I put them in the oven for 10 minutes as you suggested and they’re still a stick mess. I’m letting them cool now to see if it’s the cooling that makes them behave. What am I doing wrong? Is it light brown sugar instead of dark????
Light or dark shouldn’t matter. I used light. You probably just needed to cook them longer. Until all the moisture is evaporated. You could probably just put them back on the stove and cook them longer.
Hi Barbara! My sister told me about your Lemon Bar Cookie Cups, and from there, I hopped to these delicious cinnamon almonds. I think I’ll make them for book club next week, but I am wondering about the type of pan you use.My non-stick skillet is too small for this recipe. I do have two cast iron skillets, would they work for making the nuts? Thanks so much!
Hi Jill – I haven’t tried it in a cast iron pan, but I think it would work well. Thanks for stopping by!