Cajun Mixed Nuts

Hands mixing nuts together with cajun spices on parchment paper.

A Taste of Wild - Gulf Coast

Jon and Aubrey head south to the Gulf Coast to discover the hot, humid bayou country, explore the deep and diverse flavors of Cajun and Creole cooking and share their favorite eats along the way.

Cajun Mixed Nuts

A mile into a wildlife refuge, we’ve stopped at an overlook to take in the view. Over the water, we see a blue heron flying home, and the salty ocean breeze makes the wild grasses ripple. My stomach grumbles, disrupting the quiet. Aubrey just smiles and hands me a bag of our Cajun mixed nuts. With a little bit of protein and a little bit of spice, they’re the perfect snack for our adventure into the marsh.

In the grand ole U.S. of A., peanuts are the king of all nuts. Sure, sure, technically they’re a legume and all that, but Southern history is rich with these little guys who grow underground. But if peanuts are king, mixed nuts are the queen––the second most popular way to eat nuts from coast to coast. 

It’s no great mystery. Mixed nuts are tasty, filling and easy to transport. You can buy them anywhere, whether you’re in a bustling city market or the only gas station for a hundred miles. They’re dense and full of healthy fats, require zero preparation and no special tools. And why limit yourself to one variety of nut when you could have a grab bag of different flavors and textures? Mixed nuts may be the perfect road food. 

But even perfection can get boring from time to time. Which is why we took inspiration from our Southern surroundings and decided to spice them up, literally. Using traditional Cajun seasonings like garlic powder and cayenne pepper, you’ll coat the nuts in a dusting of salty, savory and spicy flavors that will have you reaching for one more handful, over and over again. 

There’s no special preparation or cooking method for this recipe. And you can easily riff on it to make it your own. Add the nuts you love, leave out the ones you don’t like as much, and tweak the seasoning to suit your taste buds. You could even tweak the recipe from Cajun mixed nuts to another cuisine’s typical spice blend, paying homage to the traditional food of wherever you’re headed next. 

One big pro tip for cooking on the road: Some grocery stores or health food stores offer spices in bulk. We love to stock up when we find bulk spices, because you can choose how much or how little you want to buy, you’re not paying for excess glass packaging and the spices are way less expensive than buying from the baking aisle of a traditional grocery store. It’s a brilliant way to try something new in your cooking on the road.

Cajun Mixed Nuts

Cajun Mixed Nuts

Yield: 1 1/2 cups
Prep: 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ½ cup cashews
  • ½ cup peanuts
  • ½ cup pecans
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

Cooking Tools

  • Small bowl
  • Wooden spoon
  • Storage container

Method

  1. Lay out nuts onto parchment paper and drizzle with olive oil.
  2. Combine all seasonings and sprinkle over nuts.
  3. Mix ingredients.
  4. Store in an air-tight container.

Elsewhere in this series, Jon and Aubrey used kitchen tools from Camp Chef, a brand THOR recommends for easy campground cooking.