Delight Your Hostess with a Healthy Homemade Gift

Roasted Pecans with Rosemary, Olive Oil, and Sea Salt

December 13, 2017

If you’re staying with friends over the holidays, you know the polite thing is to bring a hostess gift. Instead of picking up yet another scented candle or bottle of wine, give something with a personal touch by making it yourself. We’ve gathered 3 of our favorite easy, healthy recipes, all of which are sure to get you invited back.


Gluten-Free Honey-Almond Granola

  • Serves: 4
Gluten-free honey almond granola


  • 3 cups organic gluten-free rolled oats
  • 1 cup slivered almonds
  • 1/2 cup cashews
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/4 cup bee pollen, optional
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
  • Pinch of ground cloves, optional
  • 1/3 cup plus 2 Tbsp. raw honey
  • 1/4 cup unrefined coconut oil
  • 3/4 tsp. fine sea salt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup dried cranberries or golden berries


  1. Preheat oven to 250ºF; line a large baking sheet with parchment. In a large bowl, combine oats, nuts, coconut, bee pollen (if using), and spices. In a separate bowl, whisk together honey, oil, vanilla and salt. Pour the honey mixture into the oat mixture and stir until well combined.
  2. Spread mixture evenly on baking sheet. Bake for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes, until golden brown. Transfer to a bowl, stir in cranberries and let cool, stirring occasionally. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.
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Coconut Almond Macaroons

  • Serves: 30
  • Prep Time:
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Coconut Almond Macaroons


  • 2 cups/160 g unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 cup/95 g sliced raw almonds, plus more as needed
  • 2/3 cup/100 g coconut palm sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2 large organic, pasture-raised, or antibiotic-free egg whites


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F/160°C. Line two baking sheets with parchment.
  2. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the coconut, almonds, sugar, and salt and pulse until finely chopped. Add the egg whites and pulse until the mixture is evenly moistened and will hold together when you squeeze a handful of dough. (If the mixture is too dry, add water 1 or 2 teaspoons at a time.)
  3. With dampened hands, roll the mixture into 1-inch/2.5 cm balls and arrange about 1 inch apart on the prepared baking sheets. Slightly flatten each ball and garnish with an almond slice. Bake until the bottoms are lightly browned, 15 to 18 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Ways to vary your macaroons

Replace 1/4 cup/25 g of the almonds with cacao nibs or coarsely chopped dried fruit, adding it to the food processor along with the rest of the almonds.

Roasted Pecans with Rosemary and Sea Salt

  • Serves: 6
  • Prep Time:
  • Cook Time:
roasted pecans


  • 3 cups/300 g raw pecan halves
  • 2 tablespoons organic extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • Fine sea salt to taste


  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F/190°C.
  2. Arrange the pecans on a large, rimmed baking sheet and bake until browned and fragrant, about 12 minutes.
  3. While the nuts are still warm, return them to the bowl and add the oil, rosemary, and salt to taste, tossing to evenly coat. Return the mixture to the baking sheet, set the sheet on a wire rack, and let cool to room temperature.
roasted pecans
Photo Credit: Sheela Prakash

The holidays are full of snacking opportunities: There are cookies to be eaten, pretty cheese plates to pick on, and these roasted pecans to snack on by the handful. Pecans have a naturally buttery flavor; roasted, they’re fragrant with fresh rosemary, perfectly salted, and they couldn’t be easier to make. You simply roast pecan halves in the oven until they’re warm and toasty, then toss them with chopped fresh rosemary, a drizzle of olive oil, and a pinch or two of salt. And that’s it. It takes just 15 minutes for them to come together. Whether you snack on them while they’re still warm or let them cool to room temperature, these nuts are surprisingly complex for being so simple.

Since nuts are naturally rich in healthy fats, protein, and fiber, they’re a wholesome choice. Pecans, in particular, are a good source of copper, thiamine, and zinc. Making your own nuts is healthier, too, than the bags of spiced or seasoned nuts at the grocery store. That’s because many store-bought mixes contain added sugar or excess salt. 

A Mix-and-Match Equation for Healthier Spiced Nuts

There are also lots of ways to make this recipe your own. Swap out the pecans for walnuts, almonds, cashews — or a combination. Try another woody herb, such as thyme or sage. If you like spice, try sprinkling the warm nuts with a pinch of cayenne pepper. Or, if you’re a garlic lover, add a little garlic powder. However you make them, these nuts can be stored in an airtight container for about a week. We’ll bet they don’t last that long.