Sweet and Spicy Roasted Cashews are a delicious, wholesome snack for cooler weather. Honey and chili powder give the yummy cashews their sweet heat and crunchy coating.
WATCH: How to Make Spicy Roasted Cashews
One of the reasons why I love to travel, are the wonderful food experiences every place has to offer. I always return with new inspiration and at least one or two things that I can’t wait to recreate at home.
Our recent trip to Cambodia was no different. In many restaurants we were served roasted peanuts with our drinks – to tide us over until our food arrived. Even while waiting for takeout (or ‘take-away’ as they call it in here) a small bowl of peanuts was placed in front of me. All for free.
I especially loved the peanuts we were served at our hotel with the poolside cocktails. They were perfectly salty, sweet and spicy all at the same time. I even detected a hint of lemon grass.
For my homemade version I decided to make sweet and spicy roasted cashews instead of peanuts. And I used no refined sugar. The raw cashew nuts are coated in a honey chili mixture and roasted to perfection in the oven.
After roasting, the nuts are tossed with salt and coconut sugar (or unrefined cane sugar). This gives the roasted nuts great texture and keeps them from sticking together.
A note about chili powder: here in Thailand chili powder is just straight up ground dried chili peppers, like cayenne pepper. North American chili powder is actually a mix of different spices – which makes it less hot. So either use cayenne or more (North American) chili powder to achieve the same level of heat.
Now that we are heading into cooler seasons (even here in Thailand) nuts are a perfect, weather-appropriate snack. They take over from summer snacks like fresh fruit and popsicles with warming sweet heat and crunchy deliciousness.
Presented in a mason jar with cute ribbon and maybe even a recipe card, these Sweet and Spicy Roasted Cashews would also make a wonderful edible gift for the Holidays.
- ¼ cup honey
- 1 teaspoon ground chili powder (like cayenne), adjust to taste
- 12 ounces raw cashew nuts
- 2 tablespoons coconut sugar or unprocessed cane sugar
- 1.5 teaspoons sea salt
- Preheat oven to 325 F and line a baking sheet with parchment.
- Stir together honey and ground chili powder. Microwave for a few seconds to liquify the honey even more. Add the raw cashews and toss to coat.
- Spread the cashew nuts on the prepared baking sheet in a single layer and roast for 10-15 minutes. Stir after 5 minutes and keep a close eye. Take the nuts out when they look just a little darkened. You don't want to burn them.
- While the cashews are roasting, stir together coconut sugar and salt. Let the nuts cool for 5 minutes, then toss in the sugar-salt mix.
- Let nuts cool fully and store airtight.
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