Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or foil for easy cleanup.
Toss walnuts in oil and salt if desired. Arrange in a single layer on prepared baking sheet. Toast until browned and fragrant, stirring occasionally, about 7 to 10 minutes.
Remove from oven and chop or use as desired. Or, store in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
To toast walnuts on the stove:
Toss walnuts in oil and salt if desired. In a medium skillet over medium heat, heat walnuts until browned and fragrant, stirring occasionally, about 2 to 5 minutes.
Remove from skillet and chop or use as desired. Or, store in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
Walnuts: Cooking times vary depending on which method you choose. And keep an eye on your walnuts! They can go from zero to burnt in under a minute. Don’t walk away.
Oil or butter: Roasting in fat is optional for plain walnuts and helpful when you want to add spices and seasonings.
Yield: The recipe as written makes 1 cup of toasted walnuts (enough for 4 servings, 1/4 cup each). It can easily be doubled or tripled as needed.
Storage: Store raw and roasted walnuts for a year or more in the refrigerator or the freezer (not the pantry). They spoil easily, especially when roasted. If they smell like paint, throw them away immediately.