Enhance your summertime eats with walnuts – 3 easy recipes to try this season

Posted: May 29, 2024 | Word Count: 572

Days are getting longer, weather is getting warmer and the anticipation of fun, freedom and frivolity grows. Just like there are 99 days from Memorial Day to Labor Day, there are at least 99 ways to elevate your summer dishes with walnuts. Whether it’s cookouts, picnics, festive celebrations or on-the-go, walnuts can add to just about any dish or treat with their subtle nuttiness, gentle crunch and buttery texture.

From ice cream toppings, smoothies, parfaits, trail mix, avocado toast and much more, the possibilities are endless. Not only do California walnuts provide great flavor and texture, but they also deliver a plant-based nutritional punch. They provide protein (4g/oz), fiber (2g/oz) and are a good source of magnesium (10% DV).* Walnuts are also the only nut with an excellent source of the essential plant-based omega-3 ALA (2.5g/oz).*

Here are a few ideas and tasty recipes to inspire more ways to enjoy:

Sweet additions

Keep a bag of California walnuts in your fridge to top all of your favorite desserts — like ice cream sundaes and yogurt parfaits, muffins and cakes. You can also add them to breakfast favorites like pancakes, waffles and smoothies.

Savory enhancements

Use walnuts to develop extra flavor and texture in a wide variety of meals and snacks. From fresh summer salads and avocado toast, to using them to create turmeric-spiced walnuts or kid-friendly trail mix, the choices are many for how to enjoy.

Boost walnut flavor and texture

California walnuts are perfect to eat just as they are, but you can boost their distinctive nuttiness and level up their crunch factor by giving them a quick toast on your stovetop or in the oven.

  • Stovetop: Heat a large frying pan, with no oil or butter added, at medium high. Add walnuts only in a single layer in the dry pan, stirring frequently as they start to brown, for approximately 5 minutes.
  • Oven: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Walnuts should be arranged on a baking sheet in a single layer and toasted for about 8 minutes, until lightly browned.

Make sure to let the walnuts cool before using them in your favorite recipe or just enjoying them as a snack.

Must-try summer recipes featuring walnuts

If you're looking for new recipes to experience these tasty nuts, you're in luck. Here are three easy ways to add more walnuts into dishes your friends and family will love.

Air Fryer Buffalo Cauliflower with Walnuts

Who wouldn't love a quick and easy starter you can cook up without heating up the house during hot summer days? This spicy, plant-based app is made in the air fryer and is perfect to serve for family get-togethers, festive gatherings or outdoor movie nights.

Three Bean Salad with Walnut Chimichurri

Three bean salad with walnut chimichurri

This tasty, crowd-pleasing side dish is the perfect contribution to any summer barbecue, picnic or potluck.

Strawberry Walnut Shortcake Trifle

Strawberry Walnut Shortcake.

For a dessert that's as pretty to look at as it is yummy to eat, this easy recipe combines everything you love about summer desserts — fresh fruit, hints of sweetness and fluffy cake — heightened with the satisfying crunch of California walnuts.

To ensure your California walnuts keep their great taste and freshness longer, store them in an air-tight container in the fridge — not the pantry. For more recipe inspiration and ideas to help you just add walnuts visit Walnuts.org.


* U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service. FoodData Central, 2019. fdc.nal.usda.gov.

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