RECIPE: Easy Air-Fried Clean Keto Candied Pecans

Easy Air-Fried Clean Keto Candied Pecans


This recipe is one of my family's favorites, and I’m sure you've figured out that delicious food is my love language. To me, there is nothing better than having my husband steal these nuts before they are done and ready to be served, and, when my fussy 21-year-old and his sister, who is now 26 walk in the front door, and say, "Ummmmmm, that smells good; when can we have some?"

'Tis the season for delicious recipes to indulge our taste buds in. As a clinical nutrition and fitness expert, I’m always asked about what to eat over the holidays and what do I feed my family. Full disclosure, I chuckle when I hear this because I’m all in when it comes to delicious traditions. But, I will also admit that I’m usually the one who ends up eating most of whatever I make as I like to nibble when cooking and cleaning up, which is something I've had to unlearn in order to lose that 40 pounds and keep it off.

Bottom line... healthy habits work, and habits are more than just not eating certain food. For me, it’s about having health food boundaries, and one of them is enjoy traditions once a year, and these Clean Keto Candied Pecans are on the top of my list!

It makes my heart happy ♥️ and I should warn you that this nut recipe is addicting. The good news is that if you're following my Metabolic Lose 1 Pound Per Day Plan (which means you're replacing two meals daily with a Metabolic Boosting Complete Protein Shake instead, and taking your nutritional supplements, Keto Carb Edge and Cutting Edge), you have nothing to fear when you indulge your taste buds with these crunchy nuts. You’ll go broke (nuts are very expensive these days) before you gain weight ;)

I make these in the air fryer to save time. It also keeps me from sticking my fingers in to taste them. You can substitute any kind of nut or spice them up if you like things spicy. 

I specifically chose pecans for the holidays, but if you want to keep this even cleaner and leaner, you can use cashews, which are one of the lowest calorie nuts (behind pistachios, of course). Pistachios don't work with this recipe, so choose from one or all of the following:

  • Pecans
  • Walnuts (great source of omega 3)
  • Cashews
  • Almonds
  • Hazelnuts
  • Brazil nuts (great for teens or people that can't gain weight)

The one nut I wouldn’t use is peanuts (which aren't nuts at all). If you do use peanuts, do all peanuts for the best taste and texture.

Candied nuts are normally extremely high in sugar. This recipe uses Complete Protein mixed with sugar to reduce the amount of sugar, making it healthier. But, that's not why I add the Complete Protein Powder. I use it because the protein powder is delicious and makes it easier to add flavor and give them that candied coating texture, without the excess calories, carbs, sugars, and bad fats. 


  • Complete Protein Powder: For this I like Salted Caramel. You're going to be amazed at how the addition of this protein makes the nuts taste great and add that candy texture that makes them taste decadent, which will bring you back to your favorite childhood memories.

  • Brown Sugar: Light brown sugar is used to sweeten these nuts and create that perfect candied look. Feel free to use dark brown sugar or your favorite sugar-free granulated dark sugar.

  • Cinnamon: Ground cinnamon is used to give these nuts warm and spicy aromas and to balance the sweetness of the sugars. If you only have cinnamon sticks, then grate those on a boxed grater.

  • Water: Purified water is used to create the base for the sugar mixture.

  • Pecans: You will want to make sure the raw pecans are halved. Use freshly picked pecans or some from the store.

  • Salt: A little bit of salt is used to give this spiced nut recipe a hint of savor that doesn’t allow these nuts to be too sweet. I use Himalayan, which has a few minerals too.


Candied nuts made in the air fryer take way less time than cooking them in the oven. This recipe is fast, easy, and a great way to satisfy your craving for candied nuts without wrecking your diet.

  • Step One: Line the air fryer basket with parchment paper or aluminum foil.

  • Step Two: In a medium bowl, toss the protein powder, brown sugar, cinnamon, water, pecans, and salt. Stir until combined.

  • Step Three: Pour the mixture inside the air fryer basket and air fry at 330 degrees Fahrenheit for eight minutes. Shake the basket halfway through. Cook the nuts until they are shiny and fragrant.

*NOTE: Air fryers are all different, so temperature and timing will most likely vary. Don't be afraid of making these, just be aware and adjust accordingly. That includes how much or how little spices you use. They are re your NUTZ!

Remove the nuts from the air fryer and transfer them to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Spread the air fryer candied pecans in a single layer onto the sheet and allow them to cool for at least ten minutes before serving. Good luck with that waiting;)




Lisa Lynn, Clinical Metabolic Nutrition & Fitness Expert. Best known for her 18+ years as Martha Stewart’s trainer, who was responsible for Martha’s over-50 amazing physical transformation that caught the attention of Dr. Oz, leading to her many appearances on the Dr. Oz Show. Lisa is not just another trainer; she herself lost 40 pounds and has kept it off, even with a sluggish thyroid and menopause.

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