Crispy Nuts Recipe | How to Soak Nuts and Seeds
Today I am going to share with you our recipe for making Delicious Crispy Nuts, which also happens to be an explanation of why and how you should be soaking nuts and seeds.
- heard about soaking nuts and seeds, but you don't why you should do it? or
- do you know it is important but think that you just can't fit it into your schedule? or
- have you heard about Crispy Nuts, but don't know what they are?
Well, I am here to clear all of that up.
Why You Should be Soaking Nuts and Seeds
1. It helps with digestibility
2. It's easier and takes less time than you think
3. You can skip using oils, which are on many store-bought nuts. Some of those oils are canola, etc. which typically are GMO and/or are processed with chemicals.
4. They just plain taste better this way!
Nuts and seeds are a wonderful addition to your diet. They have a bounty of healthy fats, minerals, protein, and vitamins. However, they can also be a bit rough on your stomach. That's because they contain phytic acid and enzyme inhibitors that prevent them from being digested well and that can be detrimental to your health.
The answer to this problem is simple: soak your nuts and seeds
When seeds and nuts are planted in the ground, the warmth and moisture in the soil around them break down their skins so that they can germinate and grow into plants. Likewise, when we soak our nuts and seeds, we break down the encasing on these great sources of energy and make the nutrients more available to us.
I know. You're already busy and this sounds like a lot of extra work.
But it's really not.
Most of the time spent soaking and dehydrating is hands-off time. You just put the seeds or nuts in a bowl, transfer them to the dehydrator (or oven) and then take them out when dry.
For dehydrating, I highly recommend the Excalibur Dehydrator. You can also find them on Amazon.
If you don't have a dehydrator, however, you can start dehydrating with your oven. During the winter months, you'll welcome the added warmth, but in the summer, you'll wish you had the dehydrator :-)!
So...here is how to do it:
How to Use Soaked & Dried Nuts aka "Crispy Nuts"
1. Eat them plain - yum!
2. Make Homemade Nut or Seed Butter
3. Make Nut or Seed Milk - Here's the Easiest Almond Milk Ever!
4. And here's a variation - yummy Chocolate / Carob Nuts.
As I've said before, try not to be "all-or-nothing" in your thinking about soaking, drying, and the raw food issues. My family loves the flavor of the dehydrated nuts, but we don't like hazelnuts (filberts) unless they are roasted. So we roast them after soaking them. They are still lighter and tastier than without soaking, but they've lost some of their nutrition. We also sometimes eat unsoaked nuts and seeds when we're served them, but we sure do notice right away what a difference there is.
The point here is to take steps towards wholeness and to do what you can at the pace that you can handle.
If you're interested in finding out more about an Excalibur Dehydrator (in my mind this is the one to buy if you are serious about dehydrating - and who wouldn't be :-)?),
Notes and Tips
- Cashews have a somewhat toxic coating on them between the nut and the shell. According to most resources that I researched, this coating is removed in processing. (I did find one source saying nothing about it all being removed). Additionally, they are prone to mold and so are not the greatest choice for those sensitive to mold.So I recommend only eating them in moderation or not at all. They also get slimy when soaked longer than 6 hours so if you choose to soak to improve their digestibility, keep an eye on the clock :-).
- Temperature control is one way in which the dehydrator is a much better option than the oven. Typically the lowest temperature for an oven is high enough to destroy the enzymes in the nuts/seeds, therefore diminishing their healthful qualities. However, I still think the oven is the best place for someone new to soaking and drying to start.
- Dehydrator Temperature. There is debate about what temperature to dehydrate at in order to preserve the enzymes in your food. For now I am comfortable with 125. I am not an ardent raw foodist, and after researching this I found that the temperature of the food in most dehydrators is significantly below the temperature of the air around it. Thus, if the setting of the dehydrator is 125, your food temperature is almost certainly in the raw food range--115 or below. Note that this is not the case with the Excalibur Dehydrators which you should set at 115 as their thermostats are set to gauge food temperature and not air temperature.
The How to of Soaking Nuts and Seeds (aka - How to Make Crispy Nuts)Print Pin Rate
- 1. Measure 4-cup amounts of whatever nuts or seeds that you want to soak, depending upon how much dehydrating space you have. With the 9-tray dehydrator, I can dry about 25 cups of nuts/seeds at a time.
- Completely cover the nuts/seeds with purified water. Here is my post on Why You Need to Purify Your Water.
- Add 2 teaspoon quality salt for each 4 cups of nuts/seeds. I recommended Real Salt. In Nourishing Traditions, Sally Fallon has different recommended amounts for each nut/seed. For simplicity's sake, I use the same amount of salt for each seed/ nut, and this has worked well. The salt enhances the soaking procedure and gives your nuts great flavor.
- Soak for 7-12 hours. Soaking nuts and seeds overnight is perfect and that's what we do.
- Spread out in a single layer on dehydrator trays or cookie sheets (for oven drying). You can actually pile up sunflower, pumpkin, or sesame seeds somewhat since they dry much faster than nuts.
- Dry at a low temperature. Use the lowest temperature of your oven. In a dehydrator I opt for about 125 degrees.
- Dry until the nuts/seeds are crispy.
- Store remaining nuts or seeds for future use. Read here about How to Store Nuts and Seeds.
Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and is merely an approximation. Optional ingredients are not included and when there is an alternative, the primary ingredient is typically used. We cannot guarantee the accuracy of the nutritional information given for any recipe on this site. Erythritol carbs are not included in carb counts since they have been shown not to impact blood sugar. Net carbs are the total carbs minus fiber.
You'll find your nuts and seeds are much tastier and lighter than before. You will never go back again!
More Nutrition Boosting Food Preparation Posts
Interested in other nutrition-boosting posts? Try these.
Have you ever tried soaking nuts and/or seeds?
What about soaking seeds and nuts that you bought already roasted and salted? Can or should we soak those?
That wouldn't be a help since roasting addresses phytates, but roasting isn't necessarily a good idea since roasting may alter and damage polyunsaturated fats in nuts that can lead to oxidation.
Thanks for the article. FYI the setting on the Excalibur dehydrator is the food temp with surrounding air temp being warmer. So a 125 setting is what your food is at. This is according to their website.
Thank you so much! I can't believe I never knew this and I could swear I talked to them about it but not 100% sure. Editing the post now!
I only knew because I have recently been researching soaking nuts. I have had an Excalibur for years and used it for garden produce. Soaking nuts is new to me so I am happy to see your crispy nuts recipe. Can't wait to give it a try! Thanks.
I'm sooo happy you shared this. Soaking will change your life LOL. Please do let me know how it turns out for you! Someone told me recently that her excalibur caused her food to mold. I have no idea how. I have been interested in other machines but I don't see how that happened.
Is cashews when soak a good choice for a plant base milk
Actually cashews don't need to be soaked bc they are all heated to remove toxins, but they do make a delicious milk--I think I covered that in the post? They are higher in carbs, though, than other nuts.
What's your take on cashew milk I soak the nuts in refrigerator overnite and then drain and rinse before blending
Hi there - what would you like to know?
Thanks for this post. Since reading an earlier version of this post and another from Dr. Axe which echoed a similar theme I've been soaking and roasting various nuts and seeds. This has coincided nicely with many seeds being a byproduct to my change in diet...lots of squash seeds: pumpkin, butternut, etc. that I salvage and then soak and roast. The cloudiness of the water after an overnight soak is convincing in and of itself. The crud at the bottom of a bowl of cashews soaking for 12 hours was...shall we say...enlighting.
I've found that it takes a good 3 hours to roast cashews in my oven at the minimum 170F.
Another benefit of home soaked & roasted nuts is that you do not need to use oil, or otherwise can avoid the not so good for you sunflower, canola, safflower, etc. oils,
Great point--just added it to the post :).
Can you maybe give an estimate for say a regular size almond that you buy in the store? I have no idea at all for any kind of dehydrator drying time. I would like to try soaking and drying. I do have a 9 drawer excalibur and I will use the 125 degree time. I have a manual timer so I will have to check the time on my own..Thanks for your help!
Hi there. Denser nuts take longer - almonds, macadamias, and brazil nuts take a good amt of time. Some say 12-24 hours but I have never had them done in 12 at 125 degrees. I think it's taken us well over 24 hours each time at that temperature. Hope it works well for you. I would just set the timer for longer and then go and check. This is one reason I don't have a timer on our current dehydrator is that I didn't think it was worth the extra money as things vary so often.
How long should the nuts be in the oven?
I am not sure how long it takes - I always use the dehydrator and it varies by size.
Hi- do you recommend soaking and drying for “raw” nuts or for those labeled as “roasted” or both?
Hi there. It doesn't really make sense to soak roasted nuts b/c roasting technically reduces the anti-nutrients as well. But it can create free radicals so I prefer eating non roasted nuts when possible. Hard to know what to do b/c people bake with almond flour (including me sometimes).