How to Toast Walnuts

Walnuts really benefit from toasting—they become buttery, sweet, and lose some bitterness. Here are two ways to toast walnuts.

Toasted Walnuts on a Baking Pan

Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

A tender loaf of homemade banana bread is hard to improve upon, but here’s one simple idea: Add walnuts. I’m not talking just any walnuts, but ones that have been toasted until deeply fragrant with a pleasing snap when you break them in half. Toasting walnuts is one of those easy tricks that can elevate whatever you’ve got cooking, from your best baked goods to your brightest salads. 

Toasted Walnuts on a Baking Pan

Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

Two Ways to Toast Walnuts

Below you’ll find all the details for two terrific methods for toasting walnuts: One uses a skillet on the stove, the other a sheet pan in the oven. Whichever approach you choose is based on personal preference, but I find the oven method best for bigger batches with more even results. When I need just a handful and don’t want to fire up the oven, I opt for the skillet method.

How to Store Walnuts

Once your walnuts are toasted and cooled, store them in a jar or tightly covered container. Walnuts keep best in the fridge or freezer.

It’s worth noting that toasted nuts are a bit more perishable than raw. Shelf life varies considerably, so it’s best to judge freshness by taste and smell. If they lose their sweetness and begin to smell “off,” they’re likely rancid and should be thrown out. 

Simple Tip!

Tip from a Nutritionist (Me!): Toasted walnuts make a very nutritious snack that offers fiber, protein, and healthy omega-3 fats. Make yourself grab-and-go snacks by putting 1/4-cup portions into small reusable containers or wax paper bags. Easy!

Toasted Walnuts in a Jar

Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

Recipes Featuring Toasted Walnuts

How to Toast Walnuts

Prep Time 1 mins
Cook Time 8 mins
Total Time 9 mins
Servings 4
Yield 1 cup

Cook time ranges from 6 to 8 minutes.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup whole raw walnuts

Method

Oven (Preferred Method)

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. Bake the walnuts:

    Spread walnuts on a large baking sheet—the size doesn’t matter as long as they are spread out without overlapping. Bake until the nuts are deeply golden brown, 7 to 8 minutes. Stir the walnuts with a spatula about halfway through baking. Keep a close eye on them, since they can easily burn.

    Toasted Walnuts on a Baking Pan

    Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

  3. Cool: 

    Leave walnuts on the baking sheet until completely cooled.

Stove Top

  1. Toast in a skillet:

    Set a medium skillet on the stove over medium-high heat. When the skillet is hot, add the walnuts, spreading them out into an even layer. After 1 minute, use a spatula to stir them every 30 seconds or so until they’re fragrant and a deeper shade of brown, 6 to 7 minutes. Keep a close eye on the nuts, since they are quick to burn if left unattended.

    If the walnuts brown too quickly, pull the skillet off the heat or reduce the heat.

  2. Cool:

    Transfer the walnuts to a plate to cool.

Storing Walnuts

  1. Transfer to a container:

    Transfer the cooled walnuts into a jar or lidded other container with a tight seal and store in the fridge for up to 3 months or freezer for up to 6 months.

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Nutrition Facts (per serving)
170 Calories
17g Fat
4g Carbs
4g Protein
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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.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.