Spiced Cashew Nuts || Masala Cashew Nuts || Homemade Holiday Gifts (Paleo, Whole30, Vegan)

  Happy Holidays to all! With Christmas just being around the corner, sweet treats begin to surface everywhere. You see them at holiday parties, on food network, on instagram and also in all newspapers and magazines!  There is no harm in making sweet treats once in a while – especially during the festive season and I will be doing the same …baking a few cakes and cookies.  I will try to use healthy ingredients as much as I can for example replacing sugar with coconut sugar and / maple syrup or honey etc.

Before embarking on the sweet bakes brigade though, I thought of making some kind of savory nuts.  My brother who lives in Singapore paid us a visit last week and being a foodie that he is, our dinner chats invariably revolved around food! Oh his descriptions of all the variety of food available in Singapore – thai, malayan, indonesian, chinese etc etc made me  drool and made me and my husband want to add Singapore to our list of future vacation destinations!  And I hope and pray to God that the future happens to be ‘near future’ 🙂

My brother himself is a good cook too and one evening as I was making my chicken biryani with cashew nut and coconut  and got the cashew nuts out, he told me an easy way to make a really tasty snack – spiced cashew nuts kerala style!  Since cashew nuts are grown abundantly in Kerala, they also have different recipes to eat them! The recipe seemed so simple and yet I knew this would taste awesome with the curry leaves and the cayenne kick.  Cashew nuts are the only nuts that I have been able to re-introduce successfully into my diet after being on strict AIP this past year. So I couldn’t wait to try this recipe! Plus my husband being a cashew nut lover too, I just had to make this soon!

Came out so yum! This is one recipe you should try this holiday season! It is sure to wow your guests plus it is so easy to make! Actually these would make great holiday gifts for your friends and family too!

Spiced Cashew Nuts || Masala Cashew Nuts (Paleo, Whole30, Vegan)
Recipe type: Appetizer, Snacks
Cuisine: Indian, Fusion
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 3-4
Toasted Cashew nuts lightly spiced with curry leaves and a slight kick of garam masala and cayenne makes for a tasty snack in any season!
  • 1½ cups cashew nuts
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 1 sprig of fresh curry leaves (8-10 leaves), separate stems and tear the curry leaves into smaller pieces
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper (I used Kashmiri chilli powder to keep it mild)
  • ½ tsp garam masala
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  1. Heat a frying pan and when hot, lower heat to low and add the cashew nuts. Roast the nuts on low heat for about 4-5 mins stirring frequently until the cashew nuts have one or two brownish spots on them. Transfer the cashew nuts onto a tray. Keep aside.
  2. In the same pan, add the coconut oil. When hot, turn heat to low and add the fresh curry leaves and the stems and stir fry for about 30 secs. (Make sure to stand away as the curry leaves will spurt in the oil if they have any moisture in them). Add the cayenne pepper and the garam masala and stir fry on low for about 15 secs.
  3. Now add the already roasted cashew nuts to the pan and stir fry everything to mix well and again toast in the pan for about 4-5 mins stirring frequently until the cashew nuts are well toasted and crispy. Turn heat off. Let cool and transfer to an airtight dish.

Sugary Spiced Roasted Almonds

DSC_0502Nuts – whether they are almonds, cashews, pistachios or peanuts -you will always find these in my pantry. The ‘Mr’ loves to snack on these. So I am constantly replenishing the jars and they can never be empty because he will throw a fit. Over the years I have also acquired this habit of snacking on nuts and it has helped me tremendously to control my mid-afternoon ‘sweet’cravings.  OK so we like nuts ‘as is’  …so why the need to add sugar and spice you may ask? Well since it’s the holiday season I felt like dressing them up a little. After all these poor nuts ..they need to feel special too! 🙂  But seriously, roasting the almonds enhances the nutty flavor and the spices and sugar make it so tasty that you cannot stop munching! This recipe is terrific not only as a snack anytime but is especially great at parties when you have a crowd. And these make great holiday gift items too.

Cayenne/Chilli powder and cinnamon for spice and brown sugar and honey for the sweetness. Place these nuts in an airtight container and these will be good for at least two weeks but don’t worry they will never last that long! 🙂


Sugary Spiced Roasted Almonds

  • Servings: Makes 5 and 1/2 cups
  • Time: About 1 hour, 30 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Recipe adapted from the book “Simply homemade food gifts”


  • 4 cups whole raw almonds
  • egg white of 1 egg
  • 1 tsp water
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 2 tsp freshly ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne powder (or red chili powder)
  • 1/2 tsp salt


Spread almonds on a tray lined with Al foil in a single layer and roast at 325 Deg F (160 deg C) for about 8 minutes.  (You will need to do in 2 batches or use two trays)

Remove from oven and let cool for about 30 minutes.

In a large mixing bowl beat egg white and water with a hand mixer until the mixture becomes foamy – about 2 minutes.  Then add the sugar,honey, spices and the salt. Add the cooled nuts and mix well to coat.

Line a baking tray with AL foil and spread the nuts again in a single layer (again 2 batches or 2 trays) and bake at 325 F for about 20 -22 minutes until the nuts appear dry. Remove from oven and let cool for about 15 minutes and pack into an airtight container.


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