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Scandinavian Spiced Cocktail Nuts

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This Scandinavian Spiced Cocktail Nut mix is sweet & savory with just the right amount of spice. It is a perfect pairing with a variety of cocktails or as a snack on its own!

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I love nuts and always have. My family growing up were all big nut eaters and nuts found their way into so many of our recipes. I always have some kind of nut mix for parties or get-togethers and love experimenting with different seasonings, herbs and sweet or savory flavors. This Scandinavian Spiced Cocktail Nut mix has a collection of my favorite nuts and seeds: hazelnuts, walnuts, pecans, Brazil nuts and pumpkin seeds. Hazelnuts add an earthy richness while the walnuts and Brazil nuts have a nice meaty quality. The pecans add sweetness and the raw pumpkin seeds have great texture and visual appeal.

What makes this nut mix special is the combination of spices which have a very Scandinavian flair: caraway, mustard seeds, cumin and cardamom. These are all essential spices in Scandinavian cuisine. Rather than using ground cardamom, I prefer to buy the whole pods and crack them open to remove the seeds. These can then easily be crushed with the other flavorings.

Kosher salt, butter and good maple syrup create a sweet and savory glaze. I like adding the cayenne for just a bit of kick to balance out the sweetness. The butter and maple syrup take me back to my childhood days of my grandparents putting these two rich ingredients in and on just about everything! The seasoning mix is cooked together before being added to the nuts. The whole batch then gets a nice toasting in the oven, creating a wonderful glazed and umami-rich mix! I think you will find that once you start eating these, it is hard to stop! I love this mix paired with The Festive Pear cocktail. Skål!

Scandinavian Spiced Cocktail Nuts

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This Scandinavian Spiced Cocktail Nut mix is sweet & savory with just the right amount of spice and is a perfect pairing with a variety of cocktails or as a snack on its own!
Prep Time:10 minutes
Cook Time:20 minutes
Total Time:30 minutes


  • ½ cup raw green pumpkin seeds
  • ½ cup raw walnut halves
  • ½ cup raw Brazil nuts
  • ½ cup hazelnuts, roasted and skins removed
  • ½ cup raw pecans
  • 1 teaspoon caraway seeds
  • 1 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ½ teaspoon cardamom seeds, removed from pods and slightly crushed
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup


  • Preheat oven to 325°. Combine nuts in a large bowl and set aside.
  • In a smaller bowl, combine all seeds, cayenne and salt. Crush mixture lightly with pestle or other heavy kitchen tool.
  • In a large, heavy skillet melt butter and maple syrup together.
  • Add crushed seed mixture and cook, stirring, until fragrant (about 5 minutes).
  • Scrape the mixture into the bowl of nuts and stir well to coat.
  • Transfer the nuts to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake the nuts for 15-20 minutes, stirring a few times. Remove from oven and cool completely.


Tips for Success:

  • Any mixture of your favorite nuts can be used with this recipe.  Best to start out with raw nuts, as they are roasted in the process.
  • I find that the pumpkin seeds, walnuts, hazelnuts, Brazil nuts and pecans work well with the selected spices.  
  • Almonds, cashews or peanuts would be tasty, as well!

Cocktail Pairing:

  • Try The Festive Pear using Norden Aquavit!
  • These would also be delicious with sparking wine or a dry Riesling or Gewürtztraminer.
Course: Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine: Swedish
Keyword: Scandinavian Spiced Cocktail Nuts

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