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Praline is the most amazing sweet condiment one can have on hand. It’s basically caramelized nuts processed into a paste. It’s dangerously addictive and requires just 4 ingredients! Learn how to make praline paste with this simple recipe!

How to Make Praline Paste

📔 What is Praline?

Praline first appeared in France around 1600. It consists of nuts, usually almonds and/or hazelnuts, coated with caramelized sugar. It results in sweet and crunchy nuts.

Pralines is the name of the whole caramelized nuts, but also the name of the paste prepared from ground nuts. Here, we will prepare the paste that can be used in a multitude of desserts!

How to Make Praline Paste

🌰 How to Make Praline Paste

You will need just 4 ingredients to make the praline:

  • Almonds – Use unblanched raw almonds. Make sure the almonds are not already roasted.
  • Hazelnuts – Go with raw hazelnuts as well. You can use blanched hazelnuts or the ones with the skin on. If using hazelnuts that still have the skin on, rub them in a clean towel after roasting to remove the skin.
  • Sugar – White sugar works best for this recipe. Coconut sugar or brown sugar would burn when making caramel.
  • Vanilla – While you could use vanilla extract, I truly believe using a real vanilla bean brings the flavor to another level.

Making praline is a 3-step process: roasting the nuts, making the caramel, and blending.

First, you want to roast the nuts. To do so, place raw hazelnuts and raw almonds on a baking sheet and roast for 17-18 minutes.

Note: I went with half hazelnuts and half almonds for a more traditional praline, but you can use just hazelnuts, almonds, or other nuts like pecans, cashews, or peanuts!

How to Make Praline Paste

Next, melt sugar with water and heat until it turns into a golden brown caramel. As soon as the sugar has turned brown, add the roasted nuts, half of a vanilla bean and stir to coat. The caramel will harden and coat the nuts.

Transfer the nuts and the remaining caramel to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a Silpat and let it cool completely. Be careful; it will be very hot!

How to Make Praline Paste

Finally, transfer the caramelized nuts to a food processor or blender and process until it forms a paste. Your praline is now done!

🧁 Where to Use Praline Paste

Praline paste is extremely versatile; it can be used in the following ways:

  • Tarts: Spread some praline in the bottom of your pear, banana, or chocolate tarts. You can also use it to flavor vanilla pastry cream!
  • Yule log: Combined with chocolate cream, it makes a rich and nutty filling.
  • Chocolate cakes: For extra sweetness and to add a delicious caramel flavor.
  • Truffles: Replace half of the cream with praline paste to take your truffles to the next level!
  • Chocolate Spread: Combine praline paste with melted chocolate for an amazing chocolate spread. We recommend using 1 part of melted chocolate for 3 parts of praline.
  • Cookies: Either mixed into the batter or simply swirled into chocolate chip cookies, both ways are equally delicious!
How to Make Praline Paste

💬 FAQ

Can I make praline paste refined sugar-free?

It is possible but a little bit more tricky. I have a recipe for maple praline paste here.

Which one is best, a food processor or a blender?

Both work great. However, I find that a blender processes the nuts faster.

Can I make praline paste with other nuts?

Yes! Pecan praline, peanut praline, or even pistachio praline are also delicious!

Should the texture be smooth or crunchy?

That is up to you! Crunchy praline (“Praliné à l’ancienne” in French, meaning old-fashioned) is great if you want to add texture and crunchiness to your desserts. A very smooth praline is best for making chocolate spreads, yule logs, or entremets.

How long does praline paste keep?

Praline paste will keep for months at room temperature. It might separate after a while, so make sure to stir it well.

How to Make Praline Paste

The flavor of this praline paste is simply amazing. It’s a magical blend of caramel, roasted nuts, and fresh vanilla!

I do not recommend dipping a spoon into the praline, as you might not be able to stop once you have started!

🍫 More Praline Recipes

Let me know in the comments if you try this recipe!

How to Make Praline Paste
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Recipe
How to Make Praline Paste

How to Make Praline Paste

5 from 1 vote
Author: Thomas Pagot
Caramelized almonds and hazelnuts turned into the most delicious paste! Use in desserts, chocolate spread, cookies, and more!
Prep Time : 25 minutes
Cook Time : 20 minutes
Total Time : 45 minutes
Servings 650 g
Calories 104 kcal

Ingredients
 

  • 1 and 2/3 cup raw hazelnuts
  • 1 and 1/2 cup raw almonds
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 vanilla bean

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Spread the almonds and hazelnuts into a single layer on the baking sheet and roast the nuts for 17-18 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool for at least 10 minutes.
  • If using hazelnuts that are not blanched, transfer them to a clean towel and rub them to remove most of the skins.
  • Add the white sugar and water to a large skillet or saucepan (preferably with a light bottom to see the color of the caramel). Heat over medium heat to melt the sugar. Once it starts to bubble, keep heating until it turns golden brown. You can use a wooden spatula to stir from time to time until the caramel has a light brown color.
  • Add the roasted nuts and the vanilla bean to the caramel and stir to coat. Heat for another minute, stirring frequently to coat the nuts with the caramel.
  • Transfer to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a slipat, and use a spatula to spread it into an even layer. If there is still melted caramel in the skillet, transfer it over the nuts as well.
  • Let cool completely, about 1 hour. Next, break the praline into small chunks to fit it into a food processor or blender. Be careful not to cut yourself with the hard caramel.
  • Process for 3-5 minutes, or until the praline nuts turn into a smooth and almost liquid paste. Scrape down the sides if needed. You can stop once it has turned liquid but still has a crunchy texture or process it longer for a very smooth paste.
  • Transfer to a clean jar and store at room temperature. Praline will keep for months. If it separates, give it a good stir.

Nutrition

Serving: 1 tbsp | Calories: 104 kcal | Carbohydrates: 11.4 g | Protein: 2 g | Fat: 6.3 g | Fiber: 1.3 g | Sugar: 9.7 g
Course : Condiment, Snack, Sweets
Cuisine : French
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About the Author

Thomas Pagot is the founder, photographer, and recipe developer behind Full of Plants. He created the blog in 2016 as a personal cookbook for vegan recipes. Through years of recipe development, Thomas has successfully grown Full of Plants into a trusted resource for plant-based recipes.

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8 Comments

  1. Your recipes look interesting but they call for refined sugar which is not a good choice for a whole food plant based diet.

    1. Over 90% of our recipes are refined sugar-free. If you check the FAQ on this post, you should notice we also have a recipe for a maple praline, which is refined sugar-free.
      We try to publish recipes for everyone, and to each its own convictions and diet. For most recipes, it’s very easy to simply use coconut sugar instead of white sugar, however for some recipes that is a bit more tricky, especially when caramel is involved.

      Hope you will enjoy the recipes!

  2. 5 stars
    I was inspired to try this but couldn’t find hazelnuts, so I substituted pecans. The paste is rich and delicious, and it was fun and easy to make. I folded it into pumpkin rolls; the flavor overpowers the pumpkin a bit, but it’s still a delicious treat. Thank you for sharing, Thomas!

    1. I’m afraid I have never used splenda so I’m not sure if it can caramelize. Regarding the coconut sugar, you have to be careful with this one as it can burn very easily.

  3. Is it possible to add the caramel after processing the nuts? I made the paste before and have a lot left over, so I was wondering if it will make any difference if the caramel comes last!