Coroner Fiona Gingell found that Maqsood Begum, 71, of Rock Street, died from inhaling products of combustion following a fire at her home.
Mrs Begum, who lived in an annex at the house, is thought to have accidentally dropped the tealight while walking back to her bedroom after lighting it by using a gas hob in the kitchen.
Crews from Stockhill and Arnold were called at 6.49pm on April 13 to the scene of a fire which was out when they arrived.
Returning her conclusion of accidental death in the coroners' court on Friday, Mrs Gingell said: "Mrs Begum was an independent, well-loved and cared for member of the family.
"My condolences go out to all of the family after this tragic case."
Station manager Tom Clark, who led the fire investigation in this case, said: "I speak for all of Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service when I send my deepest condolences to the family of Mrs Begum.
"This case is an unfortunate reminder that a naked flame, whether it be from candles, tealights or lanterns, can cause a fire that could harm you or your family.
"Always ensure candles and other naked flames are housed in a proper and secure holder and never light a naked flame within the reach of children or pets.
"For more information about fire safety, go to www.notts-fire.gov.uk/YourSafety/Pages/Safety-in-Your-Home.aspx"You can also book a Safe and Well visit, which take approximately an hour, and involve firefighters or members of our prevention team visiting your home to offer advice on how to make your home safer and what to do if you're trapped by fire.
"They will also fit free smoke alarms if required and give advice and offer referrals to other services.
"I would urge you to get in touch with us for a free Safe and Well Check by calling 0800 022 3235 or through our website - www.notts-fire.gov.uk."