Makes about 8 (1-ounce) servings
Total carbohydrates: 4 grams per serving
Hands-on time: 5 minutes
Total time: 20 minutes
Nuts are my family’s main snack. We eat tons of them right out the bag: bittersweet walnuts, classic roasted peanuts, extra-crunchy marcona almonds, bacon-y smoked almonds, decadent macadamia nuts, and fun-to-shell sunflower seeds (okay, those aren’t nuts, but still). These are special, though, and, considering how special they are, incredibly easy. They’re great make-ahead snacks, of course – perfect for popping into a school bag or briefcase – but they’re crazily good when they’re still warm from the oven, so plan to eat some then too.
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1/8-1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (if you like spicy things)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary (or 2 teaspoons dried)
8 ounces raw pecan halves (or walnut halves, if you prefer)
½ teaspoon kosher salt (or half as much table salt)
Heat the oven to 350 and line a rimmed baking sheet with foil or parchment for easy cleanup.
In a medium-sized bowl, stir together the butter, cayenne, and rosemary, then add the pecans and stir to coat.
Arrange the pecans on the baking sheet, sprinkle with salt, and bake 10-15 minutes, until they’re very fragrant and a shade darker (they’ll crisp as they cool).
Store the cooled nuts in an airtight container at room temperature.
Sidebar: Nuts About Nuts
For high-protein, low-carb snacking, there is pretty much no better choice than nuts. They’re filling and full of nutrients, and if you roast and salt them (or buy them roasted and salted), they offer all of that same crunchy satisfaction as chip-based snacks.
That said, nuts vary in carb content.
Pecans, macadamia nuts, and Brazil nuts are super-low-carb, with 3 or fewer grams of carbs in a 1/8 cup serving.
Hazelnuts, walnuts, peanuts, and almonds are still a great choice, with 6 grams of carbs or less in a 1/8 cup serving.
Pistachios and cashews are higher up there, with 8 and 9 grams of carbs, respectively, in a 1/8 cup serving.