How To Roast Raw Pistachio Nuts?

There’s no denying that pistachios are delicious. Used in both sweet and savory foods or simply as a delicious snack, these versatile nuts are a sure winner. Store-bought nuts can have additives we don’t necessarily want to eat, so the best solution is to buy raw pistachio nuts and roast them yourself. Learn how to roast raw pistachio nuts at home right here.

How To Roast Pistachios In The Oven?

How To Roast Pistachios In The Oven?

Roasting your pistachios is really simple, provided you don’t burn them or cook them for too long. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Start by preheating your oven to 350°F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with heat-proof parchment and spread your pistachios out in a single layer. Try to leave a little space between each nut if possible.
  3. Place the baking sheet into the hot oven and allow it to cook for about four minutes. 
  4. Take the baking sheet out and turn the nuts over. Return to the oven for a further three to four minutes. You should notice a lovely nutty aroma when the nuts are almost done.
  5. Set them aside to cool for 20 to 30 minutes.
  6. Store the cooled nuts in a container that has an airtight seal. I like to use glass mason jars for this purpose.

Do Raw Pistachios Need To Be Roasted?

You don’t have to roast raw pistachios before eating them, but many people prefer the taste of roasted pistachios as it eliminates the bitter flavor of the tannins which are present in raw nuts.

Other reasons why we roast pistachios include:

Enhancing the flavor and texture

Interestingly, some pistachios are more heat tolerant than others. American pistachios have a lower fat content than those that come from places such as Turkey or Iran and therefore burn more easily.

Gentle roasting is what’s needed with American pistachios to bring out their delicious nutty flavor and a nice crunchy texture.

Improving digestibility

Raw pistachios are not easy for your body to digest, in fact, eating too many will almost certainly give you a stomach ache. By roasting the nuts, they become more readily digestible.

Adding flavor

In many countries, pistachios are cooked with spices to give them even more flavor. Roasting them helps to lock this flavor in and is better than just covering raw nuts with spices and eating them.


Pistachios are known to carry aflatoxins which come from a fungus that sometimes grows on the nuts. By roasting the nuts, it is supposed that this risk is reduced, along with possible risks of contamination with other microbes such as salmonella. 

Studies have shown that, in reality, there is very little difference between eating the nuts raw or roasted when it comes to safety from microbial contamination, probably because the nuts are not roasted for long and at a relatively low temperature. 

This doesn’t mean we should cook them for longer or in a hotter oven though, as this can turn the nut oils into unhealthy, potentially carcinogenic fats.

Do I Need To Soak Raw Pistachio Nuts Before Roasting?

Although it is not strictly necessary to soak your raw pistachio nuts before roasting them, it may slightly increase digestibility. 

If you are going to eat them raw, then soaking is a good idea, as it helps to break down a small amount of the phytic acid contained in the nuts. This chemical prevents your body from being able to absorb important minerals such as magnesium, zinc, calcium, copper, and iron. 

Scientists say that phytic acid in grains and legumes can be effectively removed by soaking, but the evidence suggests that this is not as true for nuts. So it’s best to make up your own mind about this.

Roasting your nuts without soaking will, to some degree, also help eliminate the malabsorption problems, but soaking the nuts first also has another action, it can help activate the germination process, which is said to make the nuts more nutritious.

This is one way to soak nuts:

  1. Take the number of nuts you want to use for the next couple of days. Don’t soak more than that, as they can turn rancid.
  2. Place the nuts into a small glass bowl (avoid plastic due to potential toxins) and add enough bottled or filtered water to cover them.
  3. Cover the bowl with a saucepan lid or kitchen towel and set them to one side, preferably somewhere warm, as this helps the germination process.
  4. Allow them to soak for 12 hours or overnight before turning them into a strainer and rinsing them thoroughly under cold water from the tap.
  5. Some people like to do a final soak for just a few minutes in water that has two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar added. This helps remove any fungus or bacteria. 
  6. Again, rinse under the tap, then allow the nuts to dry.

If you’re going to use them immediately, then there’s no need to dry them, but if you want to store them for any length of time, then you will need to dry them in a dehydrator or in a very low-heat oven for several hours. 

Rinsed nuts can be kept in the refrigerator in a sealed container for up to three days. While dried nuts will keep safely for up to a month on the shelf in an airtight jar.

In this video, find out why soaking nuts and seeds is important before eating them:

How Do I Roast Pistachios In An Air Fryer?

Roasting your pistachios in a conventional oven can be time-consuming and costly. Many people now have air fryers which save time, electricity, and money.

It’s easy to roast your pistachio nuts in an air fryer, and if you want to give them a salty coating, you can do that too – here’s how:

  1. Place a cup of pistachios into a glass bowl.
  2. In another glass bowl or cup, add a little water and salt to make a small amount of saline solution. Mix well until the salt has dissolved. You only need a few teaspoons!
  3. Drizzle four teaspoons of the salt water over the nuts, and with clean hands, mélange the nuts and salt water together until the nuts are really well covered. Allow this to stand for 10 minutes.
  4. Tip the nuts into the air fryer and set it to 320°F (160°C) for 10 minutes.
  5. Every few minutes, give the nuts a quick shake before returning to continue cooking.
  6. Once the 10 minutes is up, you should have beautiful crunchy, salty pistachio nuts.
  7. Allow to cool for at least 20 minutes. You can then transfer the nuts into an airtight jar for storage. They should keep for up to a month. 

If you don’t want to make salty nuts, just omit that part.

How Do I Make Flavored Roast Pistachios?

As we saw above, making your roasted pistachio nuts salty is easy to do by mixing them well in a little salt water just before you roast them. But the flavor enhancement doesn’t need to end there, there are lots of ways to add additional flavor.

Even just drizzling a little olive oil can make pistachios even more delicious, but how about adding garlic powder, ground rosemary, cayenne pepper, chili powder, or even some cinnamon?

Here are some more ideas for you:

In a glass bowl, put two cups of raw, shelled pistachios, then mix one of the following mixtures in with them and combine thoroughly before roasting –

1. Honey Roast Pistachios

  • One tbs. of salted butter warmed just enough until it liquefies
  • One tbs. of honey
  • An extra pinch of sea salt

2. Roasted Rosemary Pistachios

  • One tbsp. olive oil
  • One tsp. dried ground rosemary – you can also grind fresh rosemary in a pestle and mortar or in a coffee grinder
  • Half a tsp. sea salt
  • A quarter of a tsp. ground black pepper

3. Spicy & Sweet Pistachios

  • Two tbsp. of brown sugar dissolved in a tablespoon of water
  • Half a tsp. cayenne pepper
  • Half a tsp. smoked paprika
  • Half a tsp. cinnamon
  • Half a tsp. sea salt

4. Roast Chili Pistachios

  • One tbsp. olive oil
  • One tsp. brown sugar 
  • One tsp. chili powder
  • Half a tsp. garlic powder
  • Half a tsp. cayenne pepper
  • Half a tsp. sea salt

5. Curried Pistachios

  • One tbsp. olive oil
  • Two tbsp. brown sugar
  • One tsp. curry powder
  • Half a tsp. cumin powder
  • Half a tsp. sea salt
  • A quarter of a tsp. cayenne pepper

6. Roast BBQ Pistachios

  • One tbsp. olive oil
  • One tbsp. brown sugar
  • One tsp. chili powder
  • One tsp. smoked paprika
  • Half a tsp. onion powder
  • Half a tsp. sea salt
  • A quarter of a tsp. ground black pepper

Whichever flavor mix you choose to use, once your nuts are coated, place them into an air fryer at 320°F (160°C) for 10 minutes, giving them a quick shake every few minutes. Or into a conventional, pre-heated oven at 375°F (190°C) for 10 to 12 minutes, turning them once during the cooking process.

Once cooked, remove the nuts from the cooking device, spread them out on some parchment paper, and allow them to cool for at least an hour.

Ensure they are completely dry before storing them in an airtight container, where they should keep for up to a week.

Ideas for these recipes were taken from deliciouseveryday

What Is The Best Way To Toast Pistachios?

An alternative to roasting pistachios is to toast them in a skillet on the stovetop. 

To do this, place one teaspoon of olive oil into a non-stick skillet. Warm this gently on medium-high heat for a minute, then add half a cup of raw pistachio nuts.

Turn the heat down to medium, and with a wooden spatula, keep moving the pistachios around in the pan, turning them over frequently for several minutes until you get a deliciously nutty aroma and the nuts have an even golden coloring.

Take care not to put the heat on too high, and keep moving the nuts around, so they don’t burn.

If you like your pistachios salty, you can add a couple of pinches of sea salt into the skillet towards the end of the cooking time.


Roasting your pistachio nuts is a great way to enhance their flavor and make them more digestible.

There are a couple of ways you can choose to roast them, either in a conventional oven or in an air fryer.

Be careful not to let the heat get too high or to roast them for too long, especially with American pistachios, as they have less oil than other kinds and burn more easily.

You can choose to add lots of tasty additional flavorings to your pistachios before roasting to make them even more delicious!

Take a closer look at our other useful articles on pistachios and learn how you can grow your own trees or make delicious pistachio butter!

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