Sweet and Spicy Cajun or Crunchy Cinnamon Nuts!

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These sweet savory nuts are perfect for entertaining and great for giving. I first tasted similar nuts at a holiday gifts cooking class taught by a well-known chef. To ensure everyone could enjoy them guilt-free, I re-tooled the recipe cutting out the unnecessary oil while slashing the sugar by more than 75%. Still irresistible in taste, these tasty nibblers are now low in carbohydrates–and they’re naturally gluten-free.

Warming the egg white first with the sweetener ensures a nice even coating of the sweet and the heat. If you don’t have a traditional double boiler (like me), simply place a glass or metal bowl on top of a medium-sized pot filled about one-third full with water. It will only take a couple of minutes over the simmering water for the egg white to warm thin out.

I personally love the mixture of sweet, salty and heat, but they can also be made with cinnamon instead of Cajun seasoning. Served warm, the finished nuts will remind you of the those you might find at a street fair. The nuts will last from 2-3 months when wrapped and stored in the fridge and up to 6 months when placed in the freezer.

1 large egg white
1/3 cup granulated sweetener*
2 cups pecans or walnuts (or a mixture)
1 tablespoon Cajun spice blend or cinnamon
1 ½ tablespoons granulated sugar

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.
  1. Beat egg white and granulated sweetener together in a double boiler (or the like). Heat the egg mixture over simmering water until it is just warm to the touch, whisking it occasionally. (If the egg white starts to cook, remove from heat). Remove pan from heat. Toss the nuts into the egg white mixture and add the Cajun spice.
  1. Spread coated nuts onto the sheet pan. Sprinkle sugar over nuts and bake for 15 minutes, mixing nuts after baking halfway. Let nuts cool before placing them in an airtight container.

* If using a stevia/sugar blend, like Truvia for Baking or Splenda Naturals Sugar & Stevia Sweetener, use ¼ cup and omit the granulated sugar. Place 3 tablespoons of the blend in with the egg white, and reserve 1 tbsp. for sprinkling in step 3.

NUTRITION INFORMATION PER SERVING (1/4 cup or 1-ounce) : Calories 185 | Carbohydrate 7g (Sugars 2g) | Total Fat 17g (Sat Fat 1.5g) | Protein 5g | Fiber 2g | Cholesterol 5mg | Sodium 125mg | Food Exchanges: 1/2 Carbohydrate, 3 Fat | Carbohydrate Choices: 1 | Weight Watcher Smart Point Comparison: 6

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