Chilli & fennel frosted nuts spilling out of a paper bag

Chilli & fennel frosted nuts

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Prep: 5 mins Cook: 10 mins Plus cooling


Serves 6 (3 gift bags)

Give an edible present this Christmas like these moreish frosted nuts with chilli. Present them in gift bags, or serve them with drinks at a festive party

Nutrition and extra info

  • Gluten-free
  • Vegetarian
  • Vegan

Nutrition: Per serving (6)

  • kcal267
  • fat12g
  • saturates2g
  • carbs35g
  • sugars34g
  • fibre1g
  • protein3g
  • salt0.4g
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  • 600g caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
    Fennel seeds

    Fennel seeds

    feh-nell seeds

    A dried seed that comes from the fennel herb, fennel seeds look like cumin seeds, only greener,…

  • 1½ tsp dried chilli flakes
  • 350g mixed nuts (we used a mix of brazils, macadamias, pecans, pistachios and walnuts)
  • 1½ tsp flaky sea salt


  1. Put the sugar and 150ml water in a pan, bring to the boil, then reduce by half, but don’t let it caramelise – remove swiftly from the heat if this begins to happen.

  2. Tip the fennel seeds and chilli into a mortar and gently crush using a pestle (or use a heavy saucepan and a rolling pin) to just crack the seeds and break down the chilli a little.

  3. Add the fennel and chilli to the sugar along with the nuts and 1½ tsp sea salt, stirring quickly to crystallise the sugar. Scrape the nuts out of the pan and on to a baking sheet lined with non-stick parchment. Leave to cool.

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Comments, questions and tips

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Be the first to comment...We'd love to hear how you got on with this recipe. Did you like it? Would you recommend others give it a try?
8th Dec, 2019
Do I take the nuts off the heat and stir or keep heating. I couldn't get the frosted look
10th Dec, 2019
You do this on the heat, if the nuts haven't frosted then the sugar syrup probably hasn't reduced enough, keep cooking it until it is reduced by half. I hope this helps. Tom Kerridge uses the same method for pistachios in this recipe.
15th Dec, 2018
How far in advance can these be made if you are giving them as gifts please?
goodfoodteam's picture
17th Dec, 2018
Thanks for your question. These will stay fresh for a couple of weeks if kept in an airtight container.
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