Sweet and Spicy Sriracha Roast Cashews


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spicy cashews in a blue and white bowl

It seems sriracha is everywhere – on popcorn, in salad dressing, as a marinade for chicken, combined with chocolate, and drizzled over pizza. It makes for some really fantastic Sweet and Spicy Sriracha Roast Cashews as well.

Since moving abroad, I’m not always up on the latest “thing”. At a week or so away from turning 32, I don’t expect myself to be all that in-the-know, but thanks to Pinterest and Facebook and blogging, occasionally I notice that I’ve completely missed something has become very popular. I think Gangnam Style had 500 million youtube views before I saw it. Months ago we had visitors from the US (hi Alyssa!) who schooled us on hash tagging and the meaning of YOLO. This week I only just became aware of the obsession with all things zombie.  (What is that about by the way?)

In the Bangkok of 2013, I can’t blame all of my cluelessness on living abroad. Many people here have smartphones, so I could certainly be on Instagram or Twitter or WhatsApp.  (I had to google the spelling on that last one.) Even though it is a choice not to use every social media platform, there’s no avoiding the sense that I’m occasionally missing out. The temptation to always be hitting the “share” button on some social media platform or another seems to have come with my decision to start a blog, but the truth is, that’s not the right thing for me. At least not for now.

adding spicy sauce to cashews

On Saturday, Frank came back from a two-week work trip to Burma. We had the most gloriously quiet few days after his return. We met friends for dinner, watched movies, drank a shocking amount of hot tea on our couch, and spent a night after work lounging in the pool while it turned from dusk to dark. Apart from a Skype call or two with our families and editing a scheduled blog post, for days, all of our communication was done in person.

Weeks like this one remind me how restorative it can be to step away from the computer and, in my case, away from the camera. Today is Frank’s birthday. My amazing husband needs no prompting to appreciate special moments, good conversation, artistic expression, or the value of slowing down. He seeks these things without effort and embraces them fully. It’s simply who he is.  As such, tonight we’ll have a celebratory dinner, without a single thing to distract us.  (Except, perhaps, if you count Frank’s requested birthday dinner of sliders and onion straws.)

sriracha roasted cashews in a white bowl

I’m unlikely to ever get on board with the zombie trend. The jury is still out on Twitter.

But Sriracha? Although this spicy chili sauce is far from new, its super trendy use in all sorts of foods is something I can get behind, like these Sriracha Roast Cashews.

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sriracha roasted cashews
4 from 4 votes

Sweet and Spicy Sriracha Roast Cashews

A simple recipe for roasted cashews, coated in a sweet and spicy glaze.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Servings: 8


  • Saucepan
  • Mixing Bowl
  • Half Sheet Pan
  • Parchment Paper


  • 1/4 cup packed Light Brown Sugar
  • 1 Tbsp Sriracha sauce (such as Huy Fong)
  • 1 inch piece Fresh Ginger, finely grated
  • 3 Makrut Lime Leaves, minced (see note)
  • 1 1/2 cups Raw Cashews
  • 1 Tbsp White Sesame Seeds


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  • In a very small saucepan, combine the brown sugar, Sriracha sauce and ginger. Heat over medium high heat, stirring frequently, until the sugar melts, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add the makrut lime leaves.
  • Pour the cashews into a mixing bowl. Drizzle the sugar mixture over the cashews and stir well to evenly coat them. Add the sesame seeds and stir again to combine.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread the cashews out on the parchment paper and bake until crisp, 15-20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes. Allow to cool completely before transferring to a bowl to serve.


Makrut lime leaves can often be found in the frozen section of Asian grocery stores. They can keep for months in the freezer, and are great in curries and salads. Slice or mince them very thin before using, as the leaves tend to be somewhat tough. If you can't track some down for this recipe, don't worry - it's great even without them!


Serving: 10g | Calories: 174kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 6mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 6g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Author: Jess Smith via Inquiring Chef
Cost: $3.00
Calories: 174
Keyword: easy snack, party and entertaining, spicy snack
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About Jess Smith

Jess is the recipe creator and photographer at InquiringChef.com. She spent nearly a decade as the Chief Recipe Developer for the award-winning meal planning app Cook Smarts. Her colorful, healthyish recipes have been featured in popular online publications including Parade, Hallmark, and HuffPost.

4 from 4 votes (4 ratings without comment)

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  1. Made for hubby – he LOVED them. Then… I tried them… wow – addictive! I highly recommend finding the kaffir leaves – they definitely add that distinctive Thai flavor. I found them at a local international market.

    1. Cherie! Thanks so much for stopping in to let me know! I’m SO glad you tracked down the kaffir lime leaves – I agree that they really do give these that unmistakable Thai flavor.

  2. My husband would absolutely love this! He puts sriracha on a LOT of things … sometimes more like dumps it on top of things haha And happy birthday to your husband!!

  3. I’m a big fan of “shutting off” every once in a while – it does wonders! I’m an even bigger fan of sriracha & these cashews look like a must-try treat! Lovely photos too!

  4. Love this recipe. I am very unhip—-don’t FB or tweet and just started with Pinterest. I guess with the exception of my blog, I like a bit of real face time too (or anonymity)! (I just looked up YOLO, btw.). LOL

  5. Happy Birthday Frank! Hope you enjoy your sliders. From memory, last year’s looked pretty good so I’d be looking forward to them.
    I often need reminding to slow down. Funny that I just read a blog post from someone else about switching off and then read yours. Hmm… is that a sign?
    Maybe I’ll make a batch of nuts and curl up with a book?

  6. #greatpost #thanksforthelinklove #happybirthdaytofrizzy #missyouguys #amyandistilltalkinhashtags 😉

  7. I love these kinds of snacks! I made sriracha soy almonds last year and I literally crave them. I can’t wait to try these!