Ideas for Cooking With Walnut Oil

Updated on March 2, 2017

The Culinary Basics of Walnut Oil

When it comes to culinary basics and trying new ingredients, give walnut oil a nod. Once you've used it, you'll see what a delicious addition that it is to your culinary repertoire.

I discovered this magical oil when a recipe I was trying called specifically for walnut oil. I hesitated to buy it, as I thought I could just substitute extra-virgin olive oil as I do so often in my recipes.

However, I'm glad I bought the oil just once because I discovered that it was not only worth sticking to the letter of the law with this particular recipe, but the discovery of this oil was truly a great find.

I have since learned that walnut oil is one of the greatest tools in a rainbow of ingredients!


Cooking With Walnut Oil and Other Specialty Oils

There are a lot of unique oils on the market, along with some old ones that people have forgotten about. These oils are part of a select group that are made from nuts and seeds. They are also called condiment oils.

Some Facts About Walnut Oil

  • Walnut oil is typically made from Persian walnuts and is generally produced in France, Australia, New Zealand, or California.
  • It can be a little on the pricey side, but if you use it correctly, one bottle will last you 6-12 months. You will find many uses for it.
  • Best of all, walnut oil is good for you as it is an omega-3 oil.
  • Walnut oil has a delicate, nutty scent to it.
  • It is excellent when used in salad dressings.
  • It is also an excellent substitute for olive oil for dipping.
  • Walnut oil possesses many antioxidants.
  • Be careful not to get the temperature too high when using it in heating situations because it will kill the antioxidants.
  • The high temperatures used in frying will also remove the walnut oil's flavor and give it a rather bitter taste.
  • It is made from dried nuts - hence its nutty flavor.
  • After opening, remember to refrigerate it to keep it from becoming rancid.

What Recipes or Things Work for Walnut Oil?

There are several very basic things that are great to do with this oil (or other specialty oils). Just make sure you gear them towards the dish that you are making. For instance, with pumpkin seed oil, you would want to make sure you used it with something that pumpkin flavoring would complement.

Ideas That Would Work for Walnut Oil:

  • Mix walnut oil with cream or dry sherry and use to poach chicken or fish.
  • Make a dressing of sherry or champagne vinegar, garlic, and mustard.
  • Use a little bit to toss with pasta noodles that have been cooked or drained—wonderful flavor!
  • Use a dab of walnut oil to grease pans or ramekins.
  • Drizzle some walnut oil on fruits and then grill—add to ice cream.
  • Add a few drops to potatoes, sweet potatoes, parsnips, or carrots.
  • Brush on fish or poultry before grilling, and it will add a wonderful flavor to the entrée.

How to Store Walnut Oil and Other Specialty Oils

The best way to store walnut oil or any specialty oil is in a cool, dark place—anywhere from 6-12 months depending on the oil and temperatures. It is best to store in the refrigerator to be on the safe side once opened.

Check for rancidity, and if it has a rancid smell, toss and buy fresh.

Again, because of the delicate nature of the oil, avoid high temperatures when cooking with it as it will turn bitter.

Other Specialty Oil Varieties:

  • Hazelnut
  • Roasted Peanut
  • Pistachio
  • Pumpkin Seed
  • Truffle
  • Avocado

Another Uses for Walnut Oil

There is another kind of walnut oil, but that is the processed kind that is used on wood. Make sure you purchase the cooking kind for cooking!

The wood version can also be used on cutting boards, wood bowls, and utensils and can also be combined with beeswax in a 1/3 oil, 2/3 beeswax combination to use as a polish.

Walnut oil was used by Renaissance painters to clean their brushes and was also used as a paint thinner!

Summing It Up

Walnut oil is a wonderful start to experimenting with specialty oils as it is so versatile and adds such a wonderful flavor to everything it touches.

Try some of the other specialty oils as well—for instance, avocado oil is excellent on a shrimp salad, and truffle oil is excellent drizzled on peaches before grilling. A dessert can be as simple as that—grilled fruit with a dab of specialty oil topped with a dollop of ice cream or whipped cream.

Improvise with the many recipes you can use walnut oil in as part of the culinary basics we all employ every day. Enjoy!

Questions & Answers


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      • profile image

        edward 13 months ago

        I recently tried fryign with this new oil. It is refined high oleic sunflower oil with 83% monounsaturated fat. It is call sunvella frypure. I got better results that with anything else I tried.

        Did any one else hear about it? Try it? What do you think?

      • profile image

        jkjkjk 17 months ago

        I realize other comments are years old, but thought I'd add my favorite use for walnut oil: place in spray bottle & spray onto air-popped popcorn. I do this as popcorn is coming fresh & hot from the popper, alternating with seasalt. Adds an extra nuttiness & omega 3s.

      • akirchner profile image

        Audrey Kirchner 7 years ago from Washington

        Thanks KoffeeKlatch Gals for stopping by - I am, therefore I cook! I just love it so was happy to discover something else I did not know about.

      • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile image

        Susan Haze 7 years ago from Sunny Florida

        I didn't know there was such a thing as walnut oil. Thanks for the info and tips.

      • akirchner profile image

        Audrey Kirchner 7 years ago from Washington

        Thanks for stopping by, Crewman6! Glad to give oil tips!

      • Crewman6 profile image

        Crewman6 7 years ago

        Never tried Walnut oil before, though I'm fond of Almond oil. Thanks for the great tips!


      • akirchner profile image

        Audrey Kirchner 7 years ago from Washington

        Thanks, Darlene - it is a wonderful oil to use!

      • Darlene Sabella profile image

        Darlene Sabella 7 years ago from Hello, my name is Toast and Jam, I live in the forest with my dog named Sam ...

        Great hub my friend, and so perfect. What a great new world you are showing me and many others. You are blessed, thumbs up

      • akirchner profile image

        Audrey Kirchner 7 years ago from Washington

        Oceansnsunsets - thanks so much for stopping by and give it a whirl - it is really delicious (love your name by the way - 2 of my favorite things).

      • oceansnsunsets profile image

        Paula 7 years ago from The Midwest, USA

        Thank you for this hub, I may just have to give walnut oil a try, as I have never thought to purchase it before. Many uses, thanks.

      • akirchner profile image

        Audrey Kirchner 7 years ago from Washington

        GreenThumbLady - thanks so much for popping in. I love walnuts, too so had to give it a go!

        Shellie - Good deal - sounded like you when I was writing it to be honest! Us 'nutty' girls gotta stick together....nuts and mals - things could be a lot worse!

      • theherbivorehippi profile image

        theherbivorehippi 7 years ago from Holly, MI

        I am definitely putting this on my shopping list! Sounds right up my alley!!

      • GreenThumbLady profile image

        GreenThumbLady 7 years ago from The Beautiful Earth

        ooooh...I will have to try this!! I LOVE walnuts. This sounds perfect! I've never even heard of it!! Thanks for the info!! :)

      • akirchner profile image

        Audrey Kirchner 7 years ago from Washington

        Thanks hello, hello - try it. It actually gives it a very subtle flavor but it is delicious!

      • Hello, hello, profile image

        Hello, hello, 7 years ago from London, UK

        Walnut is my favourite and I can imagine that it give a real flavour to it. Thanks for the tip.

      • akirchner profile image

        Audrey Kirchner 7 years ago from Washington

        Thanks Sandy for stopping by - it really has a wonderful taste and I love using that to flavor ramekins, casseroles, etc.

      • Sandyspider profile image

        Sandy Mertens 7 years ago from Wisconsin, USA

        Haven't tried walnut oil. I should, I do love the way they taste.

      • akirchner profile image

        Audrey Kirchner 7 years ago from Washington

        Drbj - may I call you Drbj - (you have to start giving me your name) - thanks for stopping by and as much as I cook, I did not know they made it either! Lucky for me I just happened to follow the real recipe that day and discover it but it is delicious.

        The bad thing about these oils is that they have to sell them (most of the time) in ginormous quantities and the amount that I use over time is probably pathetic! I wish they would sell them in smaller quantities so that I could experience all of them without having to sell an organ to purchase them!

        Thanks so much for stopping in and really leaving a message! (ha ha)

        Creativeone59 - as always - thank you - hope all is well with you!

      • creativeone59 profile image

        benny Faye Douglass 7 years ago from Gold Canyon, Arizona

        Fhank you Audrey for such valuable information on walnut oil, thank you so much for sharing. Godspeed. crativeone59

      • drbj profile image

        drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

        Hi, Audrey. I'm fond of walnuts and aware of their health-giving effects. Usually eat some every day.

        But I never knew that walnut oil was available (in fact, never even knew there was such a product) so I will round up some and try it on my salads as you suggested.

        Thanks for the tip in this well laid-out hub.