Spicy Pepita Brittle

This homemade spicy pepita brittle is the equivalent of a homemade red hot. Spicy, sweet, and totally addictive!




  1. Lightly butter a large jelly-roll pan and set aside.
  2. In a small bowl combine the cayenne and Kosher salt. Set aside.
  3. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, stir together the sugar, water, and corn syrup. Heat the mixture over medium heat, stirring frequently until the sugar is completely dissolved. This should take about 5 minutes. Once the sugar is melted increase the heat and bring the syrup to a boil. Boil until the syrup reaches 335° F on a candy thermometer and is a beautiful golden brown, about 15 minutes. Do not stir the sugar syrup at all during this process! When the caramel reaches the desired color quickly remove the pan from the heat and stir in the pepitas and spice mixture. The mixture will pop and bubble up a bit, so be careful that you don’t get burnt in the process.
  4. Immediately pour the caramel into the prepared pan. If necessary, use a spatula to spread the pepitas into a single layer. Let stand at room temperature for an hour until cool and hardened.
  5. To release the brittle from the pan, gently run a spatula underneath the brittle to separate it from the pan. If the brittle is still sticking you can gently bend the opposite ends of the pan a little and it should pop free. If for some reason those two options fail simply chop the brittle into little chunks on the pan with your knife.
  6. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.


To toast raw pepitas: Preheat the oven to 325°F. Toss the pepitas with 1 teaspoon olive oil and spread into an even layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast in the oven for 10-12 minutes, stirring frequently.

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