Toasted Walnuts (2 Ways)

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Toasted Walnuts are addictively crunchy and slightly sweet – the perfect holiday treat or game day snack! This recipe for maple candied walnuts can be made in an air fryer or in your oven!

titled (shown in bowl): toasted walnuts


Toasted Walnuts

If you love candied nuts, then this toasted walnuts recipe is for you! The natural flavor of the nut shines while the sticky coating adds just the right amount of sweetness.

As the walnuts cool, they become extra crunchy — perfect for snacking! It will be hard to leave them sitting on the sheet pan, but the wait is worth every second.

Try them in our cinnamon walnut sweet bread. They are also amazing on my pear and arugula salad.

Sprinkle some over a spinach strawberry salad or homemade ice cream for a pop of sweetness and crunch.

Or, make a simple trail mix with dried cranberries or raisins and your favorite chocolate chips!

Try these roasted walnuts in our saffron walnut rice pilaf, it is amazing!!!

ingredients for maple candied walnuts

Roast Walnuts In Air Fryer

Air frying is certainly the fastest method, though it will probably require a bit more clean up in the end.

  1. Combine everything together. In a large bowl, toss the nuts with olive oil, maple syrup, cinnamon, and salt until well coated.
  2. Transfer to the basket. Spread the nuts into a single layer so they toast on all sides.
  3. Cook for 8 to 10 minutes. It helps to preheat the air fryer to 320°F first, and be sure to shake the basket halfway through the cooking time.

    It’s VERY important not to overcook them, or the sugar will burn and the toasted walnuts will taste bitter.
  4. Allow to cool completely. Once they appear golden and no longer sticky, scoop the roasted walnuts onto a baking sheet to cool.

Note: Different brands and sizes of air fryers may require different cooking times, so be familiar with your model, and make adjustments as needed.

bowl of walnuts topped with maple syrup and spices

Toasting Walnuts In Oven

The process is similar to air frying, except you will transfer the nuts straight to a baking sheet once coated.

  • Line your baking sheet. Parchment paper or foil makes clean up a breeze!
  • Spread nuts into a single layer. That extra space will ensure that they toast evenly.
  • Bake until golden. It will take about 8 to 10 minutes at 350°F. Check frequently once you hit the 5-minute mark.

    Toasted walnuts can go from perfect to burnt in under a minute!
  • Don’t forget to cool! Once they are done, transfer the nuts to a new sheet pan or large plate. Don’t worry if they seem soft — they will continue to crisp as they cool.
toasting walnuts in air fryer

Kitchen Tools You Will Need

  • Mixing Bowl – I like to have a variety of sizes on hand, and this set has them all.
  • Silicone Spatula – Use this for stirring everything together and for transferring to and from the sheet pan or fryer basket.
  • Air Fryer or Baking Sheets, depending on which method you will be using for toasting walnuts.

Toasted Walnuts Recipe FAQ

Can I use this recipe for regular toasted walnuts?

Yes! You can roast walnuts plain without any kind of coating, or use just oil if you want to try different spices. It would even work with different varieties of nuts!

Does toasting walnuts make them softer?

It does make them a bit softer and especially mellows out the harsh flavor that’s present when they are raw. Once cooled back to room temperature, the texture becomes crisp again.

How long do maple candied walnuts last?

This toasted walnuts recipe will keep for about 2 weeks when stored in an airtight container at room temperature. If you want to toss them into the freezer, they should be good for up to 1 month!

roasted walnuts and blueberries on yogurt

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close up: toasted maple candied walnuts

oven toasted walnuts in small dish

Toasted Walnuts (2 Ways)

Donna Elick
Toasted Walnuts have the perfect amount of flavor and crunch. This recipe for maple candied walnuts can be made in an air fryer or oven!
5 stars from 1 review
Tried this recipe?Please comment and review!
Prep Time 2 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 12 minutes
Course Snack
Cuisine American
Method Air Fryer, Oven
Servings 6


  • 2 cups walnuts, shelled
  • 4 teaspoons pure maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


  • Preheat air fryer to 320° F. for 3 minutes.
  • In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients. Mix until all nuts are well coated.
  • Transfer all the coated nuts into the basket of the air fryer. Cook for 5 minutes. Shake the basket.
  • Continue air frying for an additional 3 to 5 minutes, until walnuts are golden and look sticky. Don’t overcook, as the sugar will burn.

Donna’s Notes

Toasting Walnuts in Oven
  1. Add all ingredients to a mixing bowl and toss until nuts are all coated.
  2. Line your baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
  3. Spread nuts into a single layer on the pan. 
  4. Bake in oven at 350°F for 8 to 10 minutes. Once you hit the 5-minute mark, check on them often. Toasted walnuts can go from perfect to burnt in under a minute!
  5. Don’t forget to let them cool. Don’t worry if they seem soft, they will continue to crisp as they cool down.


Serving: 0.3 cup | Calories: 282cal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 195mg | Sugar: 4g | Fiber: 3g | Calcium: 47mg | Iron: 1mg

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe’s nutritional value will vary depending on the ingredients used, measuring methods, and portion sizes.

Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
titled collage for toasting walnuts in oven

Originally published March 2022, updated and republished April 2023

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One Comment

  1. 5 stars
    I always buy toasted walnuts from the store, but after making them its so much better to do it yourself. They always come out perfect.

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