Maple-Bacon Nuts

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Makes about

    3 cups

Appears in

The Bacon Bible

The Bacon Bible

By Peter Sherman and Stephanie Banyas

Published 2019

  • About

I love eating candied nuts as a snack, adding them to salads or pancake batters, and sprinkling them on a bowl of ice cream. I love them even more when bacon is added to cut a bit of that sugary sweetness, and even more when dried cranberries are thrown in for a touch of tartness. Dried cherries work really well, too.


  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 6 ounces (170 g) slab bacon, cut into lardons
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
  • 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cups (200 g) pecan halves
  • ½ cup (60 g) dried cranberries


Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil and spray lightly with nonstick spray or grease with a bit of butter.

In a large sauté pan, combine the oil and bacon and cook over medium heat until golden brown and crispy and the fat has rendered, about 8 minutes. Remove to a plate with a slotted spoon. Pour all but 1 tablespoon of the rendered bacon fat from the pan into a small bowl and save for another use.

Add the butter to the pan with the bacon fat and cook until melted. Add the pumpkin pie spice, orange zest, and 2 tablespoons water and cook for 30 seconds. Add the maple syrup and salt and cook until the syrup begins to simmer, about 1 minute. Add the pecans and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly toasted and the glaze has evenly coated the nuts, about 5 minutes. Return the bacon to the pan, along with the cranberries, and cook for 1 minute longer.

Transfer the mixture to the prepared baking sheet and separate the nuts immediately using two forks. Let cool completely. (Do not try to touch with your hands or eat. The maple syrup is very hot.) Store the cooled nuts in a container with a tight-fitting lid at room temperature for up to 2 days.