Although it's only October, I know that many of you may already be starting to think about the holidays. Crazy but true. :) And with the holidays comes gift giving. I love to give homemade gifts (usually edible ones ;)), and this recipe for cinnamon sugar almonds is a perfect homemade gift idea. The almonds come together in about 20 minutes, and they involve only 4 ingredients! So simple. And they're also sooooo good!!
I found this recipe on a website, One Charming Party.
-3 cups almonds (or any other nut), raw or roasted and unsalted
-1 cup granulated sugar
-1 and 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
-1/4 cup water
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large skillet (I used non-stick), combine the sugar, cinnamon, and water. Then stir in the almonds. Over medium heat, stir all the ingredients constantly, coating the almonds with the syrupy mixture. Continue stirring until the syrupy mixture crystallizes. Once this happens, remove from heat. Pour the almonds onto the parchment-lined baking sheet, spreading them out evenly. Bake in oven for about 8 to 10 minutes more, or until almonds reach your desired crunchiness. Let cool completely and store in airtight container.
Of note, I used almonds I had purchased from the bulk bins at Whole Foods; they were roasted and unsalted. This recipe would work just as well with raw almonds as well; in fact, the original recipe called for raw almonds but I already had the roasted/unsalted ones at home, so I just used those.
As you're making these, you may think to yourself, is the sugar mixture actually going to crystallize? It will, I promise! All of a sudden, the liquid, syrupy mixture will magically crystallize, and you'll have almonds that look like the picture below. Overall, this should take less than 10 minutes in the pan, I'd say.
Continuing to bake the almonds in the oven is optional. I tasted the almonds after they had only been cooked on the stove, and to me, they were still a little too soft; I wanted them to be a bit more crunchy. So, I chose to bake them. And this also brings the nuttiness out of the almonds even more...
And after baking them for 10 minutes, their texture was perfect!
I served this easy, delicious snack at a get-together we hosted this past weekend. They were a huge hit!
I already can't wait to make these again. Perhaps the next time I'll try them with a different type of nut - maybe pecans or walnuts?! Next time I also may try adding a little bit of salt too, to have that sweet and salty flavor combination.
These couldn't be any easier. You'll love 'em!!
I just know it. :)