Marcona almonds are to Spain what San Marzano tomatoes are to Italy, and what Turkish apricots are to Turkey. These Spanish almonds are one of Spain’s best food products and I have seen them explode in popularity across the US in the past few years, and for good reason!

Marcona Almonds - Fried in Olive Oil and Rosemary and Served in Brown Bowl

When I first arrived in Spain ten years ago to study abroad for 4 months, the first thing my host mom did was hand me a paper napkin cradling a small handful of Marcona almonds freshly toasted in Spanish olive oil, and sprinkled with sea salt.

My first thought was, uh…what are these? What’s up with these rounded chubby almonds?! They were Spanish almonds! That was the first time I discovered the Marcona variety, and I fell in love with them. If you see them at your grocery store (I get mine at Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s), snatch them up and make this recipe. You’ll love them toasted in rosemary olive oil!

Spanish Almonds with Rosemary and Olive Oil in Brown Bowl

What are Marcona Almonds?

If you’ve never had one before, they’re more flavorful, a little sweeter, and have a different kind of crunch to them than conventional almonds. The crunch has more of a macadamia nut-like texture to it.

I often enjoy these on their own, but also like to serve them at parties and for holidays as an appetizer alongside Bacon Wrapped Water ChestnutsPuff Pastry Cheese Straws, and an Antipasto Platter.

Step by Step Overview:

To start, add some extra virgin olive oil to a skillet:

Pouring Olive Oil Into Skillet

Add just enough to coat the bottom, usually a couple tablespoons. Then add a sprig of fresh rosemary:

Olive oil and Rosemary in Skillet

Add enough Marcona almonds to form a single layer, and place the skillet over medium low heat for about 15 minutes.

Marcona Almonds Cooking in Olive Oil and Rosemary Sprig

When you take the almonds off the heat, they should be golden brown and toasted, and the olive oil should be bubbling:

Marcona Almonds Recipe - Toasting in Rosemary Olive Oil in Skillet

Remove the toasted almonds with a slotted spoon and toss them with crunchy sea salt and extra minced fresh rosemary:

Rosemary Marcona Almonds with Sea Salt in Brown Bowl

The leftover rosemary infused olive oil is wonderful to use for cooking vegetables or chicken, or you can do multiple batches of nuts.

Romesco is a wonderful sauce made with almonds, and you can make it extra amazing by using these Spanish nuts. You can also use them in these Raspberry Energy Bites, this Granola Recipe, and Maple Brown Butter Glazed Carrots. Enjoy!

Recipe Tips and FAQ

How do you store leftover Rosemary Marcona Almonds?

Keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

Can you freeze Rosemary Marcona Almonds?

Yes, in an airtight container for up to 3 months. To thaw, leave at room temperature for 2 hours.

Did you enjoy the recipe? Please leave a 5-star rating in the recipe card below and/or a review in the comments section further down the page.

Marcona Almonds Fried in Olive Oil and Rosemary and Served in Brown Bowl

Rosemary Marcona Almonds

Marcona Almonds are toasted in a rosemary-infused olive oil for a delicious Spanish snack!
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Ingredients

  • extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup marcona almonds raw
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • crunchy coarse sea salt for sprinkling

Instructions 

  • Pour enough olive oil to coat the bottom of a skillet, usually a couple tablespoons, then add a rosemary sprig to the oil. Add the nuts to the oil, and make sure they are all in a single layer.
  • Place the skillet over medium low heat for 10 minutes, then give it a stir. The almonds should be starting to turn golden brown. Cook for an additional five minutes, stirring halfway through, then remove the almonds with a slotted spoon.
  • Toss the almonds with a good pinch of crunchy sea salt, and if desired, you can mince some rosemary leaves from the second sprig and toss them with the almonds for extra rosemary flavor. Let the almonds cool, then serve and enjoy!

Notes

Storing leftovers: Keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.
Freezing: Store in an airtight container for up to 3 months. To thaw, leave at room temperature for 2 hours.

Nutrition

Calories: 205kcal, Carbohydrates: 7g, Protein: 7g, Fat: 17g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Potassium: 252mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 1g, Calcium: 94mg, Iron: 1.3mg

Nutrition is estimated using a food database and is only intended to be used as a guideline for informational purposes.

Post updated in July 2019. Originally published August 2013.