If you’re looking for a very quick and delicious last minute Christmas gift this holiday season then this easy Christmas walnuts recipe (with maple syrup) is for you.

Maple Walnuts via www.clairekcreations.com

Maple walnuts

This super easy candied walnuts recipe takes just a few minutes to make with just two simple ingredients. 

What are maple walnuts?

Maple walnuts are just like a candied or sugar nut. They’re vegan and vegetarian if that’s something that’s important (not like some sugared nuts that have egg whites in the recipe). 

Technically, it’s a pretty healthy snack (no white sugar!) if you’re looking for a little sweet treat but they also make great Christmas gifts. 

Why choose this recipe

  • It’s super quick – just 5 minutes plus cooling time (great for if you forgot to plan a hostess gift)
  • No sugar – this recipe uses maple syrup instead of a sugar mixture like most other recipes
  • Vegan/vegetarian – no egg whites so they’re pretty allergy friendly – they’re dairy and gluten free too
  • They make a delicious snack
  • They make great gifts

Possibly the only reason I would caution against making them is if you have lack of self control like me. They’re a very moorish sweet snack and very easy to eat! 

Delicious easy to make maple walnuts

How to make candy walnuts

These sugared walnuts take just 5 minutes to make and has only two ingredients (with the option of adding flavour with different spices).

Ingredients in maple walnuts

These candied nuts need just two ingredients: 

  • Maple syrup – make sure it’s the real stuff 100% pure maple syrup not maple ‘flavoured’ syrup
  • Walnuts – whole look much prettier but you can use walnut halves or even smaller pieces (they’re much less expensive)

How to make maple walnuts

There are so many different ways to make candied nuts but this delicious recipe is so simple to make. 

No candy thermometer or special equipment needed. It’s a great recipe for last minute!

  1. Line a baking sheet or cookie sheet with a sheet of parchment paper.
  2. In a medium saucepan add the walnuts & maple syrup and stir with a wooden spoon over medium low heat until all the maple syrup absorbs and gets sticky.
  3. When they’re done, there will be no more maple syrup on the bottom of the pan. 
  4. Spread the maple coated walnuts in a single layer not touching on the baking sheet leave to dry. They’re dry when you can touch them and they’re no longer sticky.
  5. Store in an airtight container.

I have only made the delicious recipe in a saucepan but you could also use a medium non-stick skillet. 

Maple walnuts

One year, I made a giant batch of 11 jars for all the daycare teachers and as hostess gifts for the holidays.

Just a warning… package them up straight away because they are waaay too easy to eat. 

The first time I made them I may have eaten the entire jar. Oops.

Can you add flavour? 

You can absolutely add flavours to the candied walnut recipe. Spices are the best way to add flavour. Some suggestions: 

  • cinnamon
  • ginger
  • mixed spice
  • pumpkin pie spice
  • if you really wanted to spice it up you could use cayenne pepper

You can also add a pinch of salt for a little flavour hit. 

Can you make a double batch? 

I’ve tried it with up to 3 cups of walnuts at a time and it still worked really well.

You just need to make sure your pot is big enough to let you stir them constantly so they’re nice and evenly coated.

Can you use nuts other than walnuts? 

This easy recipe can be made using a different type of nut too. 

Pecans are best as they’re also a soft nut that toasts well enough in a saucepan. 

If you wanted to use a harder nut like macadamia or almonds, I would roast them first. 

What to package Christmas walnuts in

Packaged maple walnuts make perfect holiday gifts. Here are a few ideas to package them: 

  • In a small mason jar or recycled jars
  • Cellophane bags

How to serve Christmas walnuts

Caramelized walnuts make a pretty perfect snack just on their own but some other ideas: 

  • Add to a charcuterie board or cheese plate (they’d be so good with brie or feta cheese)
  • Sprinkle on top of icecream
  • They make a great addition to your favourite salad recipe

If you make them I’d love to hear from you. 

Happy gift-making (or snack making, I won’t judge).

More edible holiday gift recipe ideas: 

Maple walnuts

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Maple walnuts

Maple walnuts

Yield: 1 cup
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes


  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup


  1. In a medium sauce pan add the walnuts & maple syrup and stir over medium heat until all the maple syrup absorbs and gets sticky.
  2. Spread the maple coated walnuts on a lined baking tray and leave to dry then package up.

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