5 Benefits of Nuts and Seeds:

  • Best plant sources of protein.
  • Filled with heart healthy fat.
  • High Energy foods.
  • Powerful Minerals.
  • Needed Vitamins.
Read about all the benefits here: Nutritional Benefits of NUTS & SEEDS

Raw nuts or seeds can have a bitter taste; this is due to enzyme inhibitors. These inhibitors can affect the digestion of the nuts and seeds. Soaking or roasting the nuts and seeds remove the enzyme inhibitors.

The high heat from roasting will remove the enzyme inhibitors but will destroy many of the nutrients.  Soaking them will keep them more nutritious and bring out the natural sweet flavor of the nuts and seeds.

The enzyme inhibitors are washed away when the nuts and seed are soaked; also the digestion of the of the proteins and carbohydrates begins.  Bonus is that the soaking removes 30% of the oil content making nuts and seeds easier on the liver and digestion and of course less calories.

They are not actually sprouted just soaked (3 to 12 hours) which starts the process of sprouting process. Best not to soak for more then the recommended time as  as the sweetness leaves them.

Directions on How to Sprout Nuts & Seeds:

  1. Look over nuts and seeds; remove stones, brown or yellow and broken nuts or seeds.
  2. Rinse nuts or seeds.
  3. Put each type of seed or nut in individual jars then cover with purified water, leave the lid off and soak for right amount of time (see below).
  4. Best to change the water 2 or 3 times while soaking if you can.
  5. Once they have been soaked long enough; drain, put lid on and store in the refrigerator. Use them up in two to three days.
  6. When ready to eat, rinse nuts or seeds.
  7. Nuts and seeds should be rinsed every 24 hours and kept in the refrigerator.
  8. Best to eat as soon as possible, as freshness is what makes sprouts special!
  9. If  you want, you can dehydrate your soaked nuts and seeds at 105 degrees until they are completely dry. Then store in the refrigerator or freezer to keep them fresh.

Almonds: Soak 10 – 12 hours. Use only unblanched raw almonds. If refrigerated will last up to 4 days or sprouts may turn rancid. These are my favorite! Note: All US almonds have been heated so make sure the ones you buy are from Europe.  Make Almond Milk with these soaked almonds.

Pumpkin Seeds: Soak 6 – 8 hours. Eat within 2 days. Use hulled pumpkin seeds.

Sunflower Seeds: Soak 2 – 3 hours. Use hulled sunflower. Skim off seed skins when rinsing as they will make your sprouts spoil quickly. Best to eat them the same day or within 1 or 2 days.

Walnuts: Soak for 4 hours.  Eat within 2 – 3 days. They don’t really sprout because they are not a whole seed but soaking does make them more digestible; even Dr. Oz is a great fan of them.

Cashews: Soak for 2 – 3 hours.  They don’t sprout because they are not a whole seed but soaking does makes them better for making puddings with.

By | 2017-10-29T15:42:01+00:00 July 16th, 2011|Nutrition, Recipes|20 Comments

About the Author:

I am the Founder and Author at Real Food For Life. Have been teaching cooking classes worldwide since 1982. Create original, healthy recipes and menus, which are gluten free and white sugar free. Also, the author of the GREEN means LEAN and Balance Your Body e-books. I turned a debilitating health crisis into a passion for helping others with healthy, sugar free, gluten free eating and cooking.


  1. Christine Farrell July 25, 2011 at 4:00 pm

    This sounds really interesting, and goes along with what I have felt for myself – use what works for me!
    Though, I really think there needs to be much more work put into this.
    Soak your seeds then eat them – it’s just a bit to easy for me – I need more info, more hard facts.

  2. Diana Herrington August 2, 2011 at 11:40 pm

    Christine, I am not sure I understand what you are saying.
    There is an explanation above and 8 steps on how to with extra time info on four of the most popular nuts and seeds. What kind of hard facts would you like?

  3. annorson October 5, 2011 at 8:50 pm

    Does it have to be purified water?? If you dry them in the oven, can they be stored for longer than 2-3 days?

  4. Diana Herrington October 5, 2011 at 9:48 pm

    Hi Annorson, The water does not have to be purified but for best results use filtered water. Yes they will last for weeks once they are dried. I have to say I never dry them; I like the fresh taste of the nuts soaked. Let us know how it works for you.

  5. pierre trudel December 1, 2011 at 6:27 am

    Great video Diana.
    Education is the key.
    When Pierrette & I learned why squirrels buried nuts we said,”What”.
    Teaching comes from the heart and giving people all the information prevents them from making incredibly stupid eating mistakes.
    Thanks for sharing truths most people have never heard of.
    Squirrels do bury nuts to let them sprout. Wow.
    Pierre & Pierrette
    Thee Quest

  6. Maija January 19, 2012 at 9:30 am

    Thank you for the nutty information!

    I didn’t know you should not soak nuts for only a certain amount of time. I’d better get my butt into the kitchen and rinse off my almonds! (I’m trying a recipe for raw hummus)

    I had to pipe in on the squirrel thing. Yesterday I threw a handful of peanuts out for the two squirrels racing around my yard. I came back in, stood in the window and watched. I saw that one of the squirrels became quite aggressive over those peanuts. He/she’d pick up a peanut, shift it around in his mouth til it was just right; run off to another area of my yard and dig it into the snow! He kept doing that over and over again ~ between his attempts to chase off the other guy! I thought he was just being a pig and hiding as many as he could get. Now I have a deeper understanding!

    Thank you so much!

  7. Diana Herrington January 22, 2012 at 12:28 pm

    Thank you Maija for your sweet story. I used to say that I must have been a bird but maybe I was a squirrel. 🙂
    Let us know how your raw hummus works out and love to see your recipe.

  8. Diana Walker February 25, 2012 at 12:51 pm

    Hi Diana! It was great talking with you the other evening.
    What a terrific video. I do know about soaking nuts, but learned even more from your wonderful video and explanation above.
    Thank you!

  9. Diana Herrington March 18, 2012 at 9:09 pm

    Hi Diana! Yes always great to have a chat on the phone with you.
    Happy to hear that you like the video; coming from you that is a huge compliment.
    Thank you,

  10. Diana Herrington September 21, 2012 at 11:10 pm

    Here is a question I just got:
    One question: i’ve heard you can’t get “raw” almonds …. that now they are all heated in some way…. ?? do you know a way to get them?

    Answer: In Canada there are lots of sources of raw almonds that we get from Europe.
    If you are in the US; there are places you can get raw almonds from Europe. You will have to ask your suppliers.
    Here is a very interesting article about it: http://renegadehealth.com/blog/2011/03/30/yes-raw-almonds-still-arent-raw

  11. Judy October 21, 2012 at 8:01 pm

    Hey Diana – can you give me a couple examples of where I can get the Europe almonds here in Edmonton? I would like to start following this process as I have incorporated almonds into my afternoon snack. Thanks 😉

  12. Diana Herrington October 21, 2012 at 8:23 pm

    I get mine at SaveOn or the Italian Center. Planet Organic also sells them as do many places.

  13. ROBIN ITTIGSON March 3, 2013 at 7:52 pm


  14. Diana Herrington March 7, 2013 at 10:15 pm

    Robin, raw nuts and seeds such as flax seeds, chia seeds, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, almonds, and walnuts, are high in omega 3.
    Walnuts, Macadamias, Brazil nuts and Pine nuts are high in Omega 6.

  15. Patricia ANderson June 9, 2013 at 9:04 pm

    I received a gift of roasted, unsalted pumpkin seeds in their shells. I don’t know if the shells are edible, if they should be ground and cooked with oatmeal or thrown away. I tried removing the shell but the pumpkin seeds were very thin and very stubborn. Do you have any suggestions?

  16. Satya Prakash October 4, 2013 at 1:46 am

    Hey Diana,
    really nice article, very short and precise. I do take soaked almonds everyday but wasn’t aware of the other 3. Now I will make it a point to have all of them daily either directly like almond(straight out of water) or mix them with whatever breakfast I would be having. But I have 3 queries to make-
    1) What’s the ideal quantity of each to be soaked daily? Like i soak 4 almonds every night, similarly how much sunflower, pumpkin seeds and walnuts to be soaked daily?
    2) Walnuts shall i soak it as it is or remove the outer tough wall(don’t know the exact term for the outer layer 😀 )
    3) My exact schedule is i soak almonds just before i sleep and then have them during next day’s breakfast. So the soaking time is usually 12 hours which as mentioned by you is far more than what is required for the remaining 3. Is it still ok if I soak the remaining 3 also for 12 hours or I need to strictly adhere to the time period mentioned here?

  17. Stella June 11, 2014 at 5:13 am

    Hi Diana, Some one just introduced Almond nut to me that I should be eating,that it help to build my body because I’m slim. I have gone through your articles and the benefits of the Almond so I want to start taking the nut. Thank you.

  18. Tricia April 16, 2015 at 2:09 pm

    There is a great company in Canada where you can order unpasteurized almonds and hundreds of other raw, healthy foods. https://www.upayanaturals.com/?Click=37231

  19. Randy Fritz April 21, 2015 at 2:42 pm

    Thanks Trish. You are on top of things as usual!

  20. Saroj Dhongadi January 19, 2016 at 1:14 am

    Great information on nuts, sprouts, cooking, recipes. It really helped me in method and process of eating and serving.

    Saroj Dhongadi

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