How to Toast Walnuts

How to Toast Walnuts

This 5-Minute Trick Makes Walnuts Irresistible

Prep: 3 mins

Cook: 10 mins

Total: 13 mins

Servings: 4

Yield: 1 cup walnuts

If you've never made toasted nuts before, this cooking tip may change your life. Toasting nuts brings out their deeply nutty flavor and minimizes the bitterness sometimes found in raw nuts — plus you save money by toasting them yourself!

In just a few minutes, nuts will go from pale, somewhat waxy, and mild in flavor to golden brown, intensely nutty, and smelling so good you'll have trouble waiting for them to cool. Toasted walnuts are irresistible on their own, and there are so many ways to sneak them into all your favorite dishes, from hearty dinner salads to batches of granola!

Two Ways to Expertly Toast Walnuts

There are two ways to toast walnuts: in the oven and on the stovetop. Both methods work very well, but they both also require that the cook pays close attention—walnuts go from being toasted to burnt in the blink of an eye! Make sure to stay on task and to set a timer.

Which technique you choose depends on quantity and timing:

  • Oven Toasting: This method is best if you have a larger quantity of nuts to toast (1 cup or more), and it takes a little more time.
  • Stovetop Toasting: Better quickly toasting a smaller amounts of nuts (1 cup or less), though nuts can burn quickly so pay close attention.

How do I know if my walnuts have gone bad?

The toasted walnuts should give off a nutty aroma; whereas, rancid walnuts will smell similar to paint thinner.

Tips for Toasting Success!

  • Make sure to only roast as many walnuts as fit on the pan in a single layer—ideally, a single layer with some space between the walnuts so there's room for hot air to circulate around them evenly.
  • To avoid burning, start checking your walnuts after 5 minutes, then check them every minute until you notice them starting to brown and they smell nutty.
  • Pull the walnuts from the oven as soon as you notice a color change. The residual heat from the pan will continue toasting the walnuts for a few minutes.

Ways to Use Toasted Walnuts

If you're looking to learn how to toast walnuts, you may already have a recipe in mind. But if you are in need of inspiration, consider one of these recipes!

  • Pear Salad with Walnuts and Gorgonzola
  • Homemade Granola
  • Nut Rice Pilaf
  • Brussels Sprouts with Walnuts
  • Broccoli Walnut Pasta
  • Coffee Walnut Snack Cake
  • Kentucky Derby Chocolate Walnut Pie


  • 1 cup (or more) walnuts

Steps to Make It

Oven Method for Toasting Walnuts

  1. Preheat an oven to 375 F. While the oven heats, spread the walnuts on a baking sheet in an even layer (you can line it with foil or parchment paper for easy clean-up).

  2. When the oven is heated, roast the walnuts until they just start to brown and smell toasted, 5 to 10 minutes. Check the walnuts starting at 5 minutes as ovens vary and walnuts can burn easily.

  3. If chopped nuts are needed, transfer to a cutting board and chop while still warm. Either way, let the walnuts cool completely before using.

Stovetop Method for Toasting Walnuts

  1. Heat a large cast iron or stainless steel pan over medium-high. Add the walnuts to the hot, dry pan, only toasting as many walnuts as fit in the pan in a single layer.

  2. Cook, watching constantly and stirring frequently until the walnuts start to brown and they smell toasted, about 5 minutes.

  3. Transfer the walnuts to a plate or baking sheet where they can stay in a single layer to help them cool evenly (and finish toasting from their residual heat). If chopped nuts are needed, transfer to a cutting board and chop while still warm. They will get crunchier as they cool.

How to Store Toasted Walnuts

  • Keep toasted walnuts in an airtight container or sealed bag at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.
  • You can store the walnuts in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 months.
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 170
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 17g 22%
Saturated Fat 2g 8%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 1mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 4g 1%
Dietary Fiber 2g 6%
Total Sugars 1g
Protein 4g
Vitamin C 0mg 2%
Calcium 26mg 2%
Iron 1mg 4%
Potassium 115mg 2%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.


No comments yet. Why don’t you start the discussion?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *