Sara Kate Gillingham-Ryan's Maple-Bacon Spiced Nuts

Sara Kate Gillingham-Ryan's Maple-Bacon Spiced Nuts

[Photograph: Ray Kachatorian]

When it comes to hosting a dinner party, a selection of pre-dinner snacks are a must. Greeting your guests with a selection of tasty snacks (think simple: olives, cheese, and nuts) along with a cocktail or glass of wine not only makes for a warm welcome but this mini cocktail hour gives you, the host, a bit of extra time to put the finishing touches on anything that needs finishing while your guests are busy chatting it up.

These Maple-Bacon Spiced Nuts from Sara Kate Gillingham-Ryan's Good Food to Share are a great way to get any party started. A bowl of mixed nuts is one of the world's greatest accompaniments for drinks and adding warm spices like cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, and ginger makes them even more snack worthy.

And throwing bites of maple-glazed bacon into the mix? Well, let's just say that you might want to double, or even triple this recipe to be safe.

As always with our Cook the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of Serious Eats to give away this week.

Adapted from Good Food to Share by Sara Kate Gillingham-Ryan. Copyright © 2011. Published by Weldon Owen. Available wherever books are sold. All Rights Reserved

  • Yield:makes 2 cups
  • Active time: 15 minutes
  • Total time:30 minutes


  • 2 cups mixed raw nuts
  • 1 large egg white, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons firmly-packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 4 slices bacon
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup 


  1. 1.

    Preheat the oven to 350°F. 

  2. 2.

    Put the nuts in a bowl and add the egg white. Toss to coat the nuts evenly. 

  3. 3.

    In another bowl, stir together the brown sugar, salt, cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, and ginger. Add the spice mixture to the nuts and toss again to coat evenly. 

  4. 4.

    Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Scrape the nuts onto the prepared pan and spread in a single layer. Bake, stirring often to break up any clumps, until the nuts are lightly toasted, 15–20 minutes. Using a spatula, transfer the nuts to a plate and spread them in a single layer to cool. Leave the oven on and reserve the parchment-lined baking sheet. 

  5. 5.

    Brush the bacon slices with the maple syrup and arrange in a single layer on the reserved baking sheet. Bake, turning once, until crisp on both sides, about 20 minutes total. 

  6. 6.

    Transfer the bacon to paper towels to drain. Let cool, then break into small pieces. In a serving bowl, toss together the bacon and the toasted nuts, then serve.