Sweet-and-Salty Nut Brittle


Preparation info

  • Serves


    • Difficulty


Appears in

One Good Dish

By David Tanis

Published 2013

  • About

This caramelized nut brittle is a bit addictive. Nearly any nut can be a candidate for a one-nut version, but a mixture of nuts, or even seeds, like sesame or pumpkin, makes it more interesting, and a final sprinkling of sea salt adds an especially pleasing note. Break off pieces to serve as after-dinner sweets or with tea or coffee. It can also become a dessert topping, coarsely crushed and crumbled over ice cream.


  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened, for the baking sheet
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup sliced almonds
  • ½ cup pecan halves
  • ½ cup coarsely chopped pistachios
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • ½ teaspoon flaky sea salt


    Generously butter a 10-by-15-inch baking sheet and set aside. Put the sugar in a 2-quart stainless steel saucepan and slowly add the water, taking care not to splash. Stir just to dissolve the sugar, then bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Let the liquefied sugar simmer until it begins to take on a little color, about 5 minutes. Continue to simmer, without stirring, until the caramel turns a reddish brown. Remove immediately from the heat (work carefully and quickly, as the caramel will continue to darken from retained heat), and stir in the almonds, pecans, pistachios, and sesame seeds. Pour the mixture onto the prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle with the sea salt and leave the brittle to firm up.

    When the brittle is cool, invert to remove it from the pan. Break into pieces and store in an airtight container.