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(FREE) Walnuts, Soaking and Drying

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soaked and dehydrated walnut for optimal nutrition and absorption of nutrientsDo we have to soak and dehydrate nuts and seeds?  I get asked that question a lot. It takes time and energy and who really have an excess of that?  But the answer is yes, I personally feel, through research and my own experience that it is an important step that will lead us to better health.

Ever head of Tannins?

The best advice I can give is to do a little test study for yourself to see.  You will see especially in walnuts and almonds that they have a much more appealing taste after they are soaked and dehydrated.

In as little as 20 minutes the soak water is brown.  After a couple of hours,  the dust, residue, and tannins from the skins are released into the water, and the nut emerges with a smoother, more palatable flavor.

Astringent, mouth-puckering taste…

Walnuts are known for their astringent, mouth-puckering taste. By soaking and dehydrating them, this will be greatly reduced.  This is because when soaking walnuts, the tannins are rinsed away, leaving behind a softer, more buttery nut. The soak water from nuts and seeds should always be discarded and never used as water in a recipe.  Be sure to rinse the nuts well after soaking them.


Why must we go through all this trouble? I find soaking nuts a very important step when it comes to my digestion. When nuts/seeds are soaked and/or sprouted in water, the germination process begins, in which the active and readily available amounts of enzymes, vitamins, minerals, proteins and essential fatty acids begins to be activated. 
Nuts and seeds contain phytic acid and enzymes inhibitors which make it quite hard on the stomach and digestion. This simple process can make all the difference in how you feel after consuming them and how your body assimilates them. To read more about the importance of why our bodies benefit from soaking nuts and seeds, click (here).
Did you know that you can make walnut flour? If interested in learning how; click (here) and I will guide you through the process.


  • 4 cups raw walnuts
  • 1 Tbsp Himalayan pink salt
  • 8 cups water



  1. Place the walnuts and salt in a large glass or stainless steel bowl along with 8 cups of water.
    • The on will swell during the soaking process, so you want enough water to keep them covered.
  2. Leave them on the counter to soak for 4-8 hours.
    • Loosely cover with a clean cloth, this allows the contents of the bowl to breathe.
    • If you think that it will be longer than 8 hours before you can get to them, place the bowl in the fridge, making sure to change the water every so often.
  3. After they are done soaking, drain and rinse them in a colander.
Dehydrator method:
  1. Spread the walnuts on the mesh sheet that comes with the dehydrator.
    • Keep them in a single layer and dry them at 115 degrees (F) until they are thoroughly dry and crisp.  Make sure they are completely dry.  If not, they could mold, plus they won’t have that crunchy, yummy texture you expect from nuts and seeds.
    • The dry time will vary due to the machine you own, the type of climate you live in and how full your dehydrator is when drying them.
    • Expect anywhere from 6 + hours.
  2. Allow them to cool to room temperature before storing.
  3. Store in airtight containers such as mason jars.
    • Use within a month – store in the pantry.
    • Use within 3-6 months – store in the fridge
    • Use within 6-12 months – store in the freezer.

Oven method: (no longer raw)

  1. Preheat the oven to 325-350 degrees (F).
  2. Spread the walnuts on an ungreased cookie sheet in a single layer.
    • Roasting nuts with a touch of oil is a nice way to add flavor and crispness.  This approach is great when using them as a snack or sprinkled on top of salads. Totally optional.
    • Dry roast the walnuts if you plan on using them in recipes where they take the place of  “flour.”
  3. Bake for 10-12 minutes.
    • Don’t leave them unattended, due to their high oil content; they will continue to roast after you remove them from the oven.
    • When toasted correctly they taste toasted, not bitter or burnt.
    • Good idea to stir them around a bit throughout the process.
  4. Cool for about 1 hour.   Make sure that they are cool before storing.
  5. Note ~ You can also attempt to dry the walnuts in the oven and keep them raw, but this is tricky.  You will need to set the oven on the lowest setting, keep the door ajar and hang a thermometer in the oven to watch the temperature.  Nothing is impossible.  With this method… good luck and do your best.

Do soaked nuts and seeds have to be dehydrated?

If you are unable to dry the nuts or seeds, it is best only to soak an amount that you can be sure will used within two or three days.  As with any live food, mold tends to set in within days if you’re not careful. They will need to be stored in water, sealed tight and placed in the fridge.  It is important to rinse them twice a day with fresh water.

Below, I shared a photo of a walnut that is in the raw stage, soaked and dehydrated.  Though the true test is doing it yourself and tasting each stage side by side so you can really learn the difference in how the taste and texture changes.    Visually, you can see the change.  The nut becomes lighter, crunchier, and has a milder taste.

a picture showing walnuts at three different stages; raw, soaked, and dehydrated

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29 thoughts on “(FREE) Walnuts, Soaking and Drying

  1. p says:

    Soaking nuts… How long is too long?
    With the best of intentions, I started soaking the nuts for your Salted Carmel and Chocolate Bars… then things at my home took a turn. They actually soaked for about 24 hours… I emptied the water and put them into the refrigerator… Should I move along and make them today as planned?
    Thank you

    • amie-sue says:

      Hello P. You will have to use your nose, eyes, and taste to determine if they are still good. Chances are, they are fine but if the room temp has been really warm, they could have spoiled. Drain and rinse them very well and then try one. I hope they are still good! Have a wonderful day, amie sue

  2. Jessi says:

    When drying walnuts or cashews In the oven at low temp with door ajar how long do joy dry them for?

    • amie-sue says:

      I can’t really answer that Jessi. Too many variables; how loaded is the baking sheet? how much water was left on the nuts? What is the actual temperature of the oven? How warm and humid is your house? It could take hours. My best advice is to make sure you shake as much water off of the nuts as possible (even blot with a towel), spread in a single layer, then proceed with baking them as indicated. Then check on them every 15 minutes until done. Be sure to document the time for your next round. I hope this helps. Let me know. Blessings, amie sue

  3. aj says:

    Use within a month – store in the panty. ???? lol

  4. […] the dates and walnuts beforehand. Soak walnuts for the content of tannins and dates for making them softer to […]

  5. Abbie says:

    Hi. Thanks for the helpful information :)
    If you don’t mind, can I translate this contents for Korean?

  6. Angela says:

    Hi Amie Sue!

    Thank you for this guide. I was curious what happens if you forget to let the walnuts cool to room temp before putting in the freezer. :) I was very tired when they were done dehydrating and was eager to get them stored and forgot about the cooling part…!

    Thank you so much.

    • amie-sue says:

      Good day Angela,

      I am sure they are just fine. The purpose of allowing them cool is just to cut down on the possibility of condensation building up in the sealed container (warmth introduced with freezing cold). Don’t worry about it. :) I have had moments like that myself. :) Blessings, amie sue

  7. Tom says:

    Hi, what type of oil for baking nuts in oven, and I assume that’s after they’re dried in oven? Thanks, Tom

    • amie-sue says:

      Good day Tom,

      Adding the oil is totally optional. I would use avocado oil since it has a high heat threshold. But again, you can skip adding it. I find that if I add the oil, it works best for nuts that you are flavoring or salting, to help it stick… otherwise, I go al’ natural :) Blessings, amie sue

  8. Alice says:

    Hi, I bout a bag of raw walnut pieces and am wondering does it do any good to soak those?? Thank you for the helpful instruction.

  9. irenic says:

    Is it necessary to take the skin off from walnuts, hazel nuts ans almonds before soaking them or after soakong?

    • amie-sue says:

      Good morning Irenic,

      No, it isn’t. It would be next to impossible to get the skins off of walnuts and difficult on Hazelnuts. Almonds are fairly easy to pop the skins off after they have been soaking in water. The only time I remove the skins off of almonds is when I want to make a recipe that is light in color, such as an almond based cream, cheese, or cookie batter. Some people remove their skins for better digestion.

      I hope this helps, blessings. amie sue

  10. I pick up walnuts was told to let the green turn to black then I removed most of the black put in outside building left there for weeks as the remaining black wasn’t drying and still isn’t so going to wash them in the sink to hope I can remove the black and let them sit on the counter till the outside look s dry .do I dry in the oven before or after I remove them from shell and that’s another problem best tech for removeing shell these are black walnut s and I live in West Virginia

    • amie-sue says:

      Hello Debbie. I am afraid that I don’t know the answer to this. I haven’t had the pleasure of harvesting walnuts from the tree. My uncle has walnut trees and I know he had to store his in an outbuilding to get them to dry further. He uses pliers to shell them. But then he may be “old school” haha Sorry that I don’t have experience with this. amie sue

  11. Drini says:

    Is it healthy/dangerous to drink the water that walnuts has been soaked. I have been drinking that water for 3 days now twice a day( I was told it reduces cholesterol significantly if you drink that water) and I am not feeling well. Just wanted to check should i stop drinking that water

    • amie-sue says:

      I have never heard of such a think Drini. Do you have a link to the source as to where you read this? Personally, I pour it down the drain. Part of the reason for soaking nuts and seeds to draw out some of the phytic acid and enzyme inhibitors… seems only obvious that you are just ingesting them through drinking the water. I find other ways to reduce your cholesterol. Just my opinion… amie sue

  12. Ramkyz says:

    I have couple of questions on soaking nuts, I am soaking nuts with out salt as i do not like with salt, how good is this method of soaking nuts with out water?

    2) I will soak almond nuts in batches every day and eat on the same day after removing the skin, what am i going to loose eating without skin

    3) Can i soak Walnuts with out salt and eat?

    • amie-sue says:

      Good morning Ramkyz,

      Question 1 answer – You can skip the salt if you have an issue with it. The salt isn’t detected in the end flavor though. After soaking, rinse the nuts/seeds before dehydrating.

      Question 2 answer – I already touched basis on your last post comment regarding the skins, please see that.

      Question 3 answer – See answer #1 :)

  13. Ramkyz says:

    I have a question on almonds, since couple of years i am soaking almonds without salt, is salt mandatory?

    I am also eating almonds with out skin? does the skin have any minerals,protiens etc..?

    Can we take walnuts with out soaking in salt water, but in purified water?

    • amie-sue says:

      Hello Ramkyz,

      It is mandatory… just suggested/recommended. I can’t really comment regarding if there are minerals or proteins in the skins of the almonds. I can’t find any research that breaks the nutrients down between the skin and flesh of the almond. A lot of people remove the skins because they find it easier on their digestion so I would continue as is.

      Your last question about walnuts is unclear to me. Are you just asking if you can skip the salt and soak in purified water? If that is the case… I recommend adding the salt to all nuts and seeds… and soaking in purified water is fine. I hope this answers your questions. blessings, amie sue

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