Technique: Soaked Nuts (aka Crunchy Nuts)

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Especially for parents who feed their kids a lot of peanut butter (which should be made from soaked nuts) or dieters who are frequently snacking on nuts for a high-protein snack. Raw nuts, not properly treated, can actually be quite harmful.  Here’s the basic philosophy: Our good friend, the “nut” requires soaking for 12 hours in sea-salt/water, rinsing and then low-temperature drying, in order for us to properly digest them. And why must we take this extra step? Raw nuts contain “enzyme inhibitors.” Our body produces enzymes to help us break down our food. Enzyme inhibitors are molecules that bind to these enzymes, rendering them useless. By clogging the delicate balance of digestion, nuts can give us a belly ache. Or, in my case, an itchy head. Yup. I began soaking my nuts and dehydrating them regularly because I noticed that when I ate raw nuts, my head itched. When I ate soaked & dehydrated nuts, it didn’t. Not being a scientist myself, I use my annoying head itchiness as a personal barometer!  Not only does this process turn nuts into a truly healthy snack, but the finished product is so much more delicious. Raw nuts actually taste bitter to me now.

nuts, as much or as little as you’d like
sea salt, approx 1 tbsp per 4 cups of nuts
filtered water, to generously cover nuts

Before bed
– In a large glass bowl, combine nuts, sea salt and water. Stir. Cover and set in a warm place overnight, or for 12 hours. I use the lid of a pot to cover my bowl. I find a tea towel inches it’s way into the bowl, gets wet and leaks on the table!

In the AM (Oven Directions) – Preheat the oven to 150˚. Remove the lid to the nuts (no need to wash the lid!), rinse nuts well in a colander and spread onto a regular sheet pan in a single layer. Place in the oven for 12-24 hours, stirring occasionally. Remove. Cool completely before storage.

In the AM (Dehydrator Directions) – Remove the lid to the nuts (no need to wash the lid!), rinse nuts well in a colander and spread in a single layer onto a dehydrator tray lined with the mesh insert. Place into the dehydrator. Set the temperature to 150˚ for 12-24 hours. Remove. Cool completely before storage.

To Store – Store nuts in an airtight container. I store my nuts in the freezer to preserve their delicate oils and retain freshness.


  • Marija

    I have the same experience with raw nuts and I LOVE soaked and dehydrated nuts. I have been buying mine but want to save money by making my own. Do you have a good source for bulk organic raw nuts? Also, how long do you think these can stay in the freezer? (Mine will get eaten too quickly to worry about, but I am going to make some with a friend and he wanted to know how long they will store.) Thanks!

    March 14, 2011
    • Molly Chester

      I buy mine from a family farm at the Santa Monica Sunday market. If you are in CA, I recommend them… their name is escaping me right now. As for the freezer, I would say at least 2 months, but I bet much, much longer. Mine always go, too!

      March 15, 2011
    • Don

      I purchase Pumpkin seeds in bulk from the Superior Nut Store.

      So far I find that Trader Joe is competitive in small quantities for other type nuts.

      May 23, 2011
      • Molly Chester

        Yes Don, and I like to get my nuts from a nearby farmers’ market. They sell nuts that are grown organically, but without the certification, so I can get them a bit cheaper with the quality still intact. Thanks for sharing!

        May 30, 2011
    • Free ground shipping on all bulk orders.

      August 17, 2011
    • Peggy

      I buy my nuts from Jaffe Bros in Valley Center, CA. they ship. Organic and raw, good price.

      October 23, 2014
  • Jennifer Brown

    I was reading that “raw” does not necessarily mean unpasteurized. (this boggles my mind)

    So, being new to this, if I buy raw nuts from or something until I find a more local or better source, and if they are pasteurized, will the soaking/dehydrating method make them dangerous to consume? (i.e. cause mold?)

    And how do you find a raw nut that is not pasteurized if the label does not have to specify?

    July 24, 2011
    • Molly Chester

      Geez… it’s so confusing sometimes, isn’t it. I am guessing a little on this answer, but here are my thoughts: I believe that when you soak a pasteurized almond, you will still help in removing the enzyme inhibitors and sometimes they will even sprout, however you would get more action from a truly raw almond. I don’t believe that you will have a problem with mold, as long as you dehydrate them property as you normally would. I am not familiar with, but a local farmer’s market is always a great place to find them, when you get a chance to seek them out. And as for “raw” not being regulated, I don’t have a great guideline for you, other than knowing your farmer. Good luck! Keep looking. I know you’ll be happy when you find that perfect source.

      July 24, 2011
    • Doug Grissom

      So when you dehydrated fresh nuts what does it exactly do to them?

      December 15, 2014
    • Larry Weinberg

      Hi all, I know of 2 places you can get organic, raw, unpasteurized Almonds. As long as you buy under 100 lbs. from the grower it’s raw, over 100 lbs. they have to pasteurize it by law. That’s why at the big stores like whole foods they’re probably not raw. The nut growers are both in Calif. One is Bremner Farms and the other is Brewer Farms. enjoy!

      December 15, 2015
  • Chelsea

    Quick question: Do you think I could dehydrate almonds in the oven for 6 hrs one evening, let them linger on a plate overnight, and do the rest of the baking the following day? 12-24 hours of the oven on wouldn’t fly in this household (24 for almonds, yes?). Thanks!!

    August 24, 2011
    • Molly Chester

      Yes, you can, however, you will lose some of the texture. They won’t be quite as snappy and puffed up. They will kind of shrink a bit.

      August 24, 2011
  • Verity

    My oven does not go to such a low temperature and I don’t have a dehydrator – is there any other method for dehydrating the nuts that you would recommend? Thank you!!

    August 28, 2011
    • Karen

      My oven only goes down to 170 and they came out perfect. Don’t adjust the time, continue to cook for at least 12 hours, I shortened the time (8 hours) this last time and I was a bit disappointed. They weren’t quite as crisp.

      Also, I recommend if soaking pecans, soak them separately, they have a color that blead into the cashews, my son didn’t think they were very appealing. I’m very new at this, no expert, just trial and error. Good luck! :o)

      September 13, 2011
      • Molly Chester

        Love your feedback Karen – thanks! I’ve never soaked Pecans with Cashews, so that is a great tip to know. Thanks for jumping in!

        September 14, 2011
    • Molly Chester

      Hi Verity – Sorry for the delay, but I see you’ve already gotten the great answer from a reader! Yes, you can use the oven on the lowest setting.

      September 14, 2011
    • Julie

      I use my toaster oven, it has a “warm” setting in two areas. I use the little pan that came with it and a mini broiler top to have a bottom and top area to place almonds. Then I leave them overnight and check in the a.m. IF they arene’t crunchy to my liking I will set another hr. and then check again.
      Don’t really like the metal pans SO I have used small glass pans also.. but can’t stack with them SO thus I have to do two batches.
      : )

      January 30, 2014
  • sheila

    So glad to read this. I’ve had problems with an itchy head as well and I’ve recently started eating raw nuts as I’ve focused on a whole foods diet. Will definitely start soaking/dehydrating to see if this makes a difference for me.

    October 2, 2011
  • Jennifer Brown

    I’m embarrassed for even asking this- like I can’t deduce the process myself, but, if you gut a fresh pumpkin and clean the seeds…then do you go ahead and soak them and dehydrate them, or do you have to dry them, soak them, then dehydrate them?

    November 9, 2011
  • Mendee Chance

    Can you give some explanation about the itchy head? We’ve been experiencing this in my household and I would love to know the reason behind it if you know. It can be maddening and torturous and I would love to get rid of it. Thanks for any insight you may have. (it’s not lice, we’ve been checked) Oh, and also, doesn’t any heat over 115 degrees kill the enzymes?

    November 16, 2011
    • Ged

      Two things; 1st the itchy head. My daughter (and father, and brother) has psoriasis on the scalp which itches quite a bit, esp at night. Also, shampoos and other hair products can be harsh and cause itching (esp hairsprays) so try switching to something natural like Aubrey Organics products, which I personally swear by. The 2nd thing was about the oven temp. If your oven doesn’t set below 150 degrees Fahrenheit, YES the enzymes will be destroyed (that temp is for dry heat; wet temp is 118 degrees). The way to get around this if your oven starts at 170 degrees is to set it at the lowest setting and then prop the door open about 1-2 inches with a metal utensil or an empty aluminum can (take off the label). This should keep it at the right temp for your needs.
      Good luck!

      June 24, 2012
    • Laura

      You might also consider candida overgrowth if you have other symptoms. Just goggle if you’re not familiar. I’ve had tons of allergies (with itching) but my head didn’t start itching until my adrenal fatigue (cause of my allergies) then started causing candida to go crazy.

      April 18, 2013
  • nicola

    Thank you Karen. That was what is was looking for. My oven only goes down to 170.

    May 23, 2012
  • Tj

    Question…do just nuts have to be soaked? Or seeds too? I noticed the recipe here for crackers calls for sunflower seeds and you are soaking them too. So, I can assume both nuts AND seeds should be soaked?

    July 2, 2012
    • Molly Chester

      Seeds, too! And grain!

      July 14, 2012
  • Ronita Lussier

    Great source for raw nuts is Azure standard.

    July 30, 2012
  • Samantha Harris

    If I dont have time to do this myself, where can I get nuts that have already been soaked and dehyrdrated? Does it say on the package?

    August 17, 2012
    • Molly Chester

      I have seen soaked & dehydrated nuts at health food stores from time to time. They would definitely say so on the package, as the extra effort is worth promoting! Hopefully these kinds of nuts will become more and more prevalent.

      October 16, 2012
  • Kaylene Cahill

    is the temp you are advocating in celsius or fahrenheit. In Australia we are celsius and 150 is quite a high temp….

    September 8, 2012
    • Molly Chester

      It is Fahrenheit. About 65 Celsius.

      October 16, 2012
  • sam

    “natural” almonds will mold when you soak them unfortunately. I buy natural, unroasted, unsalted and have had tried soaking them but the skin gets black spots on it and I have to throw them out. I’m in Canada so I can’t find local almonds. I’ve taken to buying blanched skinless almonds, soaking and dehydrating them as the next best thing.

    September 22, 2012
  • Alicia

    Thanks for the tips! Does it decrease the nutritional benefit to soak them too long? And are there nutrients left in the water that would make it worth reusing it in some other way?

    October 29, 2012
    • Molly Chester

      Not sure, but I don’t think so. And as for the water, I discard, but I’m guessing plants would like the drink…

      December 22, 2012
  • Ivan

    Do I have to dehydrate almonds sfter soaking. Can I make almond butter directly after soaking for 12hrs?

    November 8, 2012
    • Molly Chester

      Ivan – I haven’t ever tried it. Let me know if you do. Seems like you might be able to…

      December 22, 2012
  • bhealthy

    DON’T REUSE THE WATER! The water contains the phytates that you are soaking the nuts to remove. In fact, you need to rinse the nuts before you dehydrate them.

    The longer you soak them, the more phytates you remove. I soak ours for 24 hours changing the water every 8 hours or so.

    Irradiated nuts will not sprout. They’re dead.

    If you search Google for “truly raw almonds” you will find them.

    November 8, 2012
  • Rachel

    This is all so interesting to me. I just bought dry roasted hazelnuts at trader joe’s – do I need to soak & dehydrate these or does the roasting process take care of it?

    November 30, 2012
    • Marisa

      I have the same question- I bought the same dry roasted hazelnuts at Trader Joe’s. I’d like to avoid having to dehydrate them, if possible, as our oven doesn’t go down that low and I don’t want it on for that long anyway. What if I soak nuts without dehydrating them?

      December 18, 2012
      • Molly Chester

        Marisa, Soaking without dehydrating will make your nuts spoil really quickly, and they will be soggy, so unless you are making a recipe that will immediately put the soaked nuts into action, I would not suggest soaking without dehydrating in some way.

        December 22, 2012
    • Molly Chester

      I hear the roasting diminishes the phytic acid, but soaking, I believe, is always best, and i find they just taste so darned good soaked!

      December 22, 2012
  • Stephanie

    I can’t have raw cashew, i get a really bad soar troat and cough, I’ve read that they are in the poison Ivy family. Yikes!! Wondering if soaking and dehidrating them would help!?!

    December 7, 2012
    • Molly Chester

      Possibly, but that one sounds like an allergy that might not be soaking related? Not a doctor (obviously!); just a gut feeling that should be taken for a grain of salt. However, if you’re up for risking a scratchy throat for an evening, I often experiment on myself. :) Soaking often helps people that get a stomach ache from eating nuts, in my experience.

      December 22, 2012
  • truly raw almonds from CA available from Brewers Farms

    he sells 5, 10 & 25 lb bags and they are true raw unpasteurized almonds

    January 8, 2013
  • Michelle

    Directions for my dehydrator say ‘Nuts and Seeds’ at 105 degress F. Should i bring it up to 150? And how do you know the almonds are done? I mean 12-24 hours is a significant time difference! Thanks!

    January 14, 2013
  • Daniel

    Isn’t 150 for 12 hours going to kill the almonds?

    February 11, 2013
    • Seva

      “The confusion seems to rest with the difference between wet heat and dry heat. When a liquid food like milk is heated, you will find that you burn your finger at a temperature of 118F. If the milk is heated only to 117F, you will not burn yourself and this is nature’s magical way of letting us know that the food still has all of its enzymes intact.

      Food enzymes withstand dry heat much better than wet heat. According to Dr. Mary Enig, Board Member Emeritus of the Weston A. Price Foundation in an article about food enzymes:

      “All enzymes are deactivated at a wet-heat temperature of 118 degrees Fahrenheit, and a dry-heat temperature of about 150 degrees.

      It is one of those happy designs of nature that foods and liquids at 117 degrees can be touched without pain, but liquids over 118 degrees will burn. Thus we have a built-in mechanism for determining whether or not the food we are eating still contains its enzyme content”.

      I hope this information clears up the confusion about drying raw nuts in the oven and whether or not the food enzymes are still intact. It is especially important to harness the convenience of drying large batches of raw food in the oven as not everyone has access to or can afford a large dehydrator.

      If you are still unconvinced, dry out a batch of soaked nuts in a 150F oven and then eat a handful straight out of the oven. You will be delighted to see that the nuts are not hot and that you do not burn your hand or mouth, an indication that the food enzymes are indeed preserved.”

      March 8, 2013
  • Rebecca

    This info on soaking and dehydrating nuts has been so helpful for me as I have been making my own almond butter and almond milk!
    I have another question about the skins of the almonds. I have read that the skins are poisonous or inhibit the body’s ability to use the nutrients in the almonds. Anyone else know more about this? This would mean I’d have to soak, then dehydrate, then blanche and wriggle off the skins….yikes, it’s a lot of work! (Oh yes, and then make the almond butter, which is my goal in all of this).

    March 5, 2013
  • Seva

    My Maytag oven has a “keep warm ” button which goes down to 145 degrees. Better than nothing!

    March 8, 2013
  • Martin Wolff

    What about this for drying nuts. My Samsung clothes dryer has a removable stationary platform for drying things you don’t want tumbled, like sneakers, etc. Set at the “extra low” heat setting, this would seem the ideal hot air, moisture extracting, way to dry nuts. Just pop your pan of nuts on the platform and set the drying level you want, ore use the “time dry” setting. Not sure of the actual temp. achieved, but a simple oven thermometer would tell you.

    May 11, 2013
  • Martin Wolff

    Question: Wouldn’t buying sprouted nuts or seeds at Whole Foods or any similar source, mean those sprouted nuts were soaked to start the sprouting process and therefore just as beneficial, health wise, to soaked nuts? My problem is I want All the Benefits without having to do any of the work. Please advise!

    May 11, 2013
    • Molly Chester

      Yes, buying sprouted nuts will get you what you want!

      July 4, 2013
  • Stacy

    I was buying sprouted walnuts and almonds at Whole Foods and they were crispy and delicious! They are also very costly! Near 20.00 per pound. I just received for Mother’s Day a Nesco dehydrator and am at this moment using it to dry a big batch of nuts. I must say just buying them at Whole Foods was quicker and easier!

    May 19, 2013
    • sandy olick

      Hi I just bought a Nesco hydrater, and there are no instructions for nuts and seeds other that the temp should be between 90-100F, but for how long do you dehydrate them? I just called Nesco and they knew nothing more than the temp, really helpful ;( so I am hoping that you might be able to help me! Thanks, Sandy ps. Im planning on buying raw organic almonds, walnuts, cashews, pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds.

      August 11, 2014
      • Molly Chester

        I like to use 150˚. Depends on the nuts to determine how long, anywhere from 12 – 24 hours.

        December 11, 2014
  • Courtney

    I am new to soaking nuts and seeds and am trying to figure it all out. If I am going to be cooking the nuts, ie to make granola bars, can I just soak and then dry/cook the nuts in the oven with the other ingredients or do I need to dehydrate them first? Thanks.

    June 6, 2013
    • Molly Chester

      You’re probably going to have to dehydrate first to get the result you want.

      July 4, 2013
  • Jothi

    can we drink the water in which almond was soaked

    July 5, 2013
    • Molly Chester

      I do not. I’d toss it.

      July 18, 2013
  • my3papies

    This is such good information. If I’m making almond butter or Nutella from hazelnuts do I need to dehydrate them first and then resoak them again to make these items?

    July 22, 2013
  • Richard

    As usual, there are many views on an issue. My method is cover the nuts with mineral water, keep lidded for 8 hours, then loosely pat with a paper towel. (Some sites don’t even advise drying or dehydration as a necessary step provided the nuts are eaten within several days.) Then store in fridge.

    I do have a question: I don’t like salt (and I don’t use salt in the soak process). But is most store salt removed during the soak process? I suspect so. I bought salted almonds (not by choice), soaked them 8 hours and I can hardly taste salt; but I’m not sure if all the salt has been removed.

    August 2, 2013
  • Michelle

    Is the sea salt necessary in the soaking process or is it just for flavor?

    October 9, 2013
    • Isaac

      The salt is not just for flavor. It helps the soaking process remove the things you do not want from the nut and activate those which you do.

      October 30, 2013
  • April

    I’ve been soaking and dehydrating nuts for several years, and have not heard of the addition of salt to the soaking water until today. What is the purpose of the salt?

    October 25, 2013
  • Isaac

    According to Sally Fallon, author of Nourishing Traditions:

    “The salt helps activate enzymes that de-activate the enzyme inhibitors. For grains, we soak in an acidic solution to get rid of phytic acid. Nuts do not contain much phytic acid but do contain high levels of enzyme inhibitors. The method imitates the way the native peoples in Central America treated their nuts and seeds–by soaking them in seawater and then dehydrating them”

    So traditionally (and now with science), we can intuitively and scientifically observe that anti-nutrients are best handled effectively with salt for nuts/seeds, and acids (i.e. Apple Cider Vinegar) for grains, and bases (Baking soda) for some legumes.

    October 30, 2013
    • earthgirl

      Cashews are poisonous.To render them safe for consumption they are no longer ‘raw’ (That would mean they cannot be sprouted?) For e.g.

      May 31, 2014
      • Molly Chester

        Cashews don’t really get sprouted in the process. It is more about addressing the phytic acid.

        June 9, 2014
    • earthgirl

      please explain use of acids e.g. ACV to denature bases (baking soda)

      June 1, 2014
  • Alicia Martinez

    Hi Everyone, I’m new to this whole concept of not eating the nuts directly from the bag! I hava a few questions:

    A) Does this apply to rice, and if so, how long should I soak it for? Am I ok to then just rinse and boil?
    B) What about fruit seeds (apples, watermelons, etc)? I find that I very often eat them even when I don’t mean to.
    C) My oven doesn’t have a 12hr option. How do you guys deal with having to be by your nuts for so long?

    December 1, 2013
    • Alicia Martinez

      Also, from comments above it seems that some people be just soaking and then eating the nuts without dehydration, can I do this?

      December 1, 2013
      • Molly Chester

        You can. You’d have to keep them in the fridge, and eat them in about a week, so they don’t get moldy. I prefer to dehydrate though and have shelf life.

        February 9, 2014
    • Molly Chester

      A) Yes. My book has a whole description on soaking grains –
      B) I am guessing you aren’t eating enough quantity to have much effect.
      C) Anybody that uses an oven have suggestions for Alicia?

      February 9, 2014
  • Lynnette Feusner

    Is it ok to use a stainless steel bowl for soaking nuts and seeds?

    January 12, 2014
  • I just bought raw, organic walnuts and almonds and put them in the fridge. I need to freeze them so my question is: Should I soak & dehydrate first and then freeze them or freeze them and then soak & dehydrate when I am ready to eat?

    January 30, 2014
    • earthgirl

      My logic is: If U are freezing them for purpose of preserving/storage, it does not matter which option used, u still would end up preserving them for storage! So option 1. Short Cut the Processing_Prepare them now and freeze for immediate later use. (Soak> dehydrate>Freeze.)
      Option 2. If u just have o/supply and no time to prepare them first, freeze until ready to prepare then soak>dehydrate>freeze again/or use as appropriate.
      Maybe your Q. reflects the Q does it harm the the nut or soak process if it is frozen beforehand (?) ?????? No! Rationale: Freezing extends the ‘freshness/ usefulness somewhat whether the product is cooked/processed or not!

      June 1, 2014
  • Suzy

    i just bought some “raw” almonds to make almond milk. i’ve soaked them for two days and they do not seem to be absorbing any of the water or becoming squishy in any way, which i’ve heard is supposed to happen. is this normal? and what does it say about the almonds i’m using (other than the fact that they’ve likely been pasteurized in some way)?

    February 16, 2014
    • Molly Chester

      I wouldn’t say that they become squishy. They do plump up a slight bit, and they definitely should not be still shriveled in any way, but not squishy. Did you buy CA almonds? Or truly raw almonds? All almonds in CA are pasteurized, unless you buy them directly from a farm. They are also sold at the Opportunity in Santa Monica, if you are in SoCal.

      February 17, 2014
  • Court

    I soaked almonds overnight with the intention of roasting in the oven. This morning I stuck them in a preheated 300 degree oven while I researched soaking nuts online. I came across dehydrating and I grabbed them out of the oven after 15 minutes and threw them back in cold water. Did I kill them? I am planning to use a dehydrator now as described but hope I didn’t ruin them.

    February 21, 2014
    • Molly Chester

      You’re probably alright. Even if it affected some enzyme content, the soaking reducing the phytic acid, which is a really important reason for soaking. Eat up! :)

      February 22, 2014
  • Did anyone try making almond or nut butter only after soaking (without dry roasting at low temp)?

    March 19, 2014
  • Jefugi

    I don’t see the need for dehydrating the nuts if I am making daily batches. I tend to buy gadgets and then stop using them after the first month. I guess the advantages to dehydrating are the texture and longer shelf life. Nutritionally, they are the same after just soaking, right?

    March 20, 2014
    • Molly Chester

      Yes, you are correct. However, I am not a fan of gadgets, either, and I love my dehydrator! :)

      March 20, 2014
    • earthgirl

      # Kara(mar 20 2014) Yes without dehydrating nut butter becomes nut milk! dehydrating removes the liquid to be able to blend to a paste

      May 31, 2014
  • Janie

    I’m wondering if I can soak nuts/grains in a stainless steel pot? One source I found says it’s okay, but I need to know from other reputable sources such as yours that this technique is not harmful in any way. Thanks for any help!

    August 1, 2014
    • Molly Chester

      I use Stainless pots from time to time. I haven’t had a problem.

      December 11, 2014
  • Meilssa Bilbrey

    Some one told me that freezing nuts did the same thing to them that soaking and dehydrating them. Is that at all true? IT sure would help this busy momma out if so!

    August 6, 2014
    • Molly Chester

      I haven’t ever heard that… let me know if you learn more!

      December 11, 2014
  • Sandy

    Hi. For all those that are concerned about their oven temperature, just turning on the oven light will hear up my oven enough to dehydrate things. I never get around to dehydrating my soaked almonds because I like them wet. As do my girls, so they’re gone before I have a chance to dehydrate them. They do store in the fridge for 3-4 days without getting moldy, too.

    October 16, 2014
  • Pam Barragan

    Hi Molly, I just happened upon your web site while looking to see what temperature I should use to dehydrate pumpkin seeds to grind into flower. I tried doing this once before but just used the seeds right from the bag. I use a vitamix to grind my flours,and as you can probably guess I didn’t get four (I got a paste). So, my question is by doing the soaking and dehydrating will I then be able to make flour?
    Also, the almonds and walnuts that I buy at Sam’s Club don’t say raw, does that mean they have been processed and are ready to use to make flour? As far as the sea salt plain or iodized?

    November 3, 2014
    • Molly Chester

      I use a food processor to make flours, and you just can’t process to the point of paste. The soaking and dehydrating will help b/c they are a bit more crispy, but you still have to watch it closely, so you don’t hit the paste point. If almonds and walnuts don’t say raw, they are likely roasted or pasteurized. All almonds sold in CA are pasteurized now, unless bought from a farm directly. You ultimately want to buy nuts that are raw and only with sea salt, if anything. Then, it is best to soak them at home. If you find soaked nuts from a health food store, that is different, but they will be labeled as such and expensive!

      December 11, 2014
  • Lourdes

    Does all the nuts need to be soaked for the same time? I have read many articles about soaking nuts and most of them have different hours depending on what nut im soaking….for example cashews they say no more than 2 other say no more than 6hrs, almonds over night, pecans and walnuts from 7-24 hours….does this depend if the nuts are bought raw or roasted..? I need some help please.
    thank you,

    November 27, 2014
    • Molly Chester

      Hi Lourdes, I soak all nuts between 12 – 24 hours, except for cashews, only up to 6.

      December 11, 2014
  • Carole

    I have made walnut butter before. Just wondering if the oils in the nuts still remain after being dehydrated? What I am really wondering is, will there be enough oils left in the walnuts after they have been dehydrated?

    December 2, 2014
    • Molly Chester

      Yes, there will be.

      December 11, 2014
  • michellw

    Why would my pecans pop while I dried them in the oven

    December 3, 2014
    • Molly Chester

      Sounds like the temp is a little high?

      December 11, 2014
  • A Nap

    After I soak my nuts overnight can I just let them air dry in fridge for a day and then freeze then, skipping the dehydration proceess altogether?

    December 24, 2014
    • Molly Chester

      I think you will want to try them out. Seems they would be frozen with ice crystals and defrost soggy the other way, though I have never done it.

      February 12, 2015
  • love the website!! I roast almonds and walnuts but dont seem to be crispy enough?? If i soak and dehydrate will they be crunchier after roasting??

    Thank you

    January 5, 2015
    • Molly Chester

      Yes, I find that helps a great deal.

      February 12, 2015
  • Paige

    This may be a silly question… But, on the top of my dehydrator it has a “chart” for suggested temperatures when dehydrating given foods, and for nuts and seeds it specs 105. Is the 150 you’re suggesting what makes them “crunchy” vs. them being just dehydrated and not having that extra crunch to them?

    January 6, 2015
    • Molly Chester

      Yes, exactly. 105 supposedly preserves more enzymes, but I like the crunch!

      February 12, 2015
  • Rosalyn

    I read somewhere that lemon juice can be used instead of salt, what is your opinion?

    January 7, 2015
    • Molly Chester

      I believe lemon juice would assist with neutralizing phytic acid, but I honestly don’t know…

      February 12, 2015
  • Paige Petersen

    If i soak my seed/nuts to make crackers, do I have to dehydrate before I mix with seasonings(water, braggs, etc..) If i am dehydrating anyway. Do they have to be done 2X? make sense? ;/ I have always soaked seeds overnight then mixed them with everything in am and then stick in dehydrator 24 hrs..

    February 8, 2015
    • Molly Chester

      You do not have to dry before mixing in seasoning.

      February 12, 2015
  • ysil

    can i make almond flour directly after soaking, without the oven thing? thank u so much

    February 10, 2015
    • Molly Chester

      You would need to dry it out or it would be a paste.

      February 12, 2015
  • Leslie

    You mentioned that at 150 degrees dehydrating makes them crunchy, but what happens to the texture at 105 degrees. I have crowns that I don’t want compromised.

    February 23, 2015
    • Molly Chester

      They are less crunchy, so that might be a good option for your situation.

      March 22, 2015
  • cleusa

    I wonder if I can use the top stove at minimum temperature to dehydrate nuts. Thanks!

    February 28, 2015
    • Molly Chester

      Not sure what a top stove is? Do you mean on the stove top? If so, I would not advise that to dehydrate nuts. In the oven at the lowest temp works.

      March 22, 2015
  • Angelica

    So I just soaked some raw almonds overnight (about 12 hours) but my oven’ slowest setting is 170 degrees. How long would you suggest at that temp? I don’t have a dehydrator so that’s not an option for me. Thanks

    March 30, 2015
    • Molly Chester

      I’d check at about 4 hours, but I’m really not sure. To slow it down, you could crack the door.

      March 31, 2015
  • Niki

    I dehydrated my Almond nuts in my convection oven at 40 degC (it’s the only lowest setting available) for 17 hours and notice my almonds look like it has shrunk although it felt feel like it is still moist. I split open in half and notice water in the almonds. Prior to 17 hours, at 15 hours, I assume the almonds are still not yet dry because I feel like it is still moist and the middle of the almonds are still very white in colour, (I read somewhere if you split the almonds in half after dehydrating, to know that it was successfully dehydrated, the almonds shouldn’t be very white in color) and so I continue another additional 2 hours. That’s when at 17 hours I notice some of the almonds shrunk although still feel like it is moist. I wonder where I go wrong. Am I suppose to dehydrate till it is 24 hours ? Will that not shrunk the almonds further ?

    July 30, 2015
    • Molly Chester

      Keep dehydrating! They aren’t dry. Some do shrink a bit, but no big deal.

      October 7, 2015
  • sonia

    Hi Molly!
    Like a lot of people, I really want to be able to skip dehydration – can you not simply wring them with some towels and air dry in fridge or freezer for a bit? even blow dry for a few minutes or something? I want to make nut/seed butters that last long. Just seems like an awful lot just to get cheaper nut butter than fresh ground at whole foods..

    August 22, 2015
    • Molly Chester

      I have never tried those techniques, but if one works for you, I would love to hear! Especially the hair dryer! ;)

      October 7, 2015
  • Kelly

    I soaked my almonds overnight but found them this morning all covered in a furry mould substance?! What did I do wrong, I used cling film to cover it and it was placed in a warm room?

    September 26, 2015
    • Molly Chester

      So odd! This has not happened to me before…

      October 7, 2015
  • Adrienne

    I just soaked some almonds overnight without salt. The water is murky and gray, and it almost looks like something is growing on the almonds. Is this normal?

    September 28, 2015
    • Molly Chester

      Odd! That has not happened to me. Salt inhibits bad bacteria growth, so maybe add salt next time?

      October 7, 2015
  • I just found this site by google. I soaked some almonds, walnuts, cashews and macadamia nuts overnight. Like Karen said, one of the nuts bled their colour into the other nuts & they all look brown as if burnt. LOL. I baked them but only for about 4 hours. They’re a bit moist but still taste fine. I think I’ll have to invest in a dehydrator.

    September 29, 2015
  • Pea Green

    Soaked my almonds overnight with sea salt, rinsed them off, put them in my beloved dehydrator for 24 hours. . . . perfect. Crisp little morsels of pure joy. Sooooo worth it. Thank you :-)

    October 15, 2015
  • betsy

    I air dried pumpkin seeds I planned to roast, and now they have some gray blotches. Inedible?

    November 16, 2015
    • Molly Chester

      Hmmm… not sure without seeing them. I have never had those. Is it salt?

      November 23, 2015
  • Lily Cheam

    I soaked my nuts overnight, split them into halves before oven roasting at 65 degrees celcius. This helps shorten roasting time and reduce storage space. But will the nutrients be compromised?

    December 19, 2015
    • Molly Chester

      I wouldn’t think so.

      December 29, 2015
  • Richard

    Nuts should be dried at 41C or 105F….150F as in the article destroys some of the benefits of nuts…

    December 22, 2015
    • Molly Chester

      If you want maximum health, you are right. I like the crunch, so I just focus on neutralizing the phytic acid, and I lose a bit of enzymes.

      December 29, 2015
  • Not sure how often you’re checking in on emails, but here goes — I have your book, Back to Butter. And I notice in the book that you call for soaking most nuts and seeds for 24 hours, and for always using an “activator” like whey or lemon juice in the soaking water.

    That’s a bit different from what you say here on the blog.

    Anyhow, I just tried doing almonds for the longer time period (24 hrs) and using both salt and apple-cider vinegar in the soak water, then dehydrating for 24 hrs at 150.

    What a difference! The nuts are waaaay crunchier and they’re much plumper. Before I was soaking for only 12 hrs with no activator and dehydrating at 135 degrees.

    So thanks for that — much better technique. Now here’s my question — what about sunflower seeds? Should they get soaked for 24 hours as well, with an activator?

    many thanks.

    December 27, 2015
    • Molly Chester

      Hi! I believe the crunchiness is coming from the 150. You can soak from anywhere between 12 – 24. 24, if you can. And, I did add in the activator for the book, which I do believe is a more effective technique without doing a science experiment on it. Sunflower seeds are the same process.

      December 29, 2015

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