Stir together 1/4 cup sugar and warm water until sugar dissolves. Add pecans, and soak 10 minutes. Drain, discarding syrup.
Combine 2 tablespoons sugar, chili powder, and red pepper. Add pecans, tossing to coat. Place pecans on a lightly greased baking sheet.
Bake at 350° for 10 minutes or until golden brown, stirring once.