Last updated: August 10, 2021

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Walnut oil is a popular and versatile vegetable oil. It can be used both in the kitchen, for preparing food, and as a cosmetic product. In addition, walnut oil can be used for oil painting. Due to its comparatively low viscosity, quick drying and low risk of yellowing despite a lasting gloss, it is indispensable nowadays.

Walnut oil is considered to be of particularly high quality, noble and very aromatic. The nutty taste comes from the kernels of the partly roasted walnuts. The walnut grows on the walnut tree, also known as Juglans regia, of which there are about 20 species and is said to have originated between 2.6 million and 65 million years ago.




Summary

  • Walnut oil is versatile. It is not only used in cooking, but also for hair and skin care or even for oil painting.
  • Walnut oils can be produced in two different ways. One is by cold pressing and the other is by hot pressing.
  • Walnut oil contains a lot of good and high-quality ingredients. In addition to vitamins, it is particularly characterised by its high content of unsaturated fatty acids.

The Best Walnut Oil: Our Picks

In the following, we have selected and summarised the most popular walnut oils. There is something for all tastes and users. You are sure to find the right walnut oil for you among this variety.

Buying and evaluation criteria for walnut oils

In order to be able to choose the right walnut oil, some criteria should be taken into account.

In order to explain the points mentioned and what is meant by them, we have a more detailed explanation for you.

Filling quantity

Walnut oil is available in different containers and therefore also in different filling quantities. From 40 millilitres to one litre, there are various sizes. The most common and popular fill quantities are 250 or 500 millilitres.

In some cases, you can also buy a value pack. Then, for example, you get three 250 millilitres, a 6-pack with one litre or similar at a lower price.

Country of production

Walnuts have spread from Asia to Europe and the rest of the world via trade routes. Meanwhile, the largest walnut plantations can be found in France, Italy, Chile, China and the USA (East Coast).
The oil is often produced in this country, but the walnuts are mostly imported from the USA.

Since it is not quite as environmentally friendly, you can look for an ecological seal or a country of production that is located in Europe, such as France or Italy. Walnuts can also be grown in Germany, but this is rare as they need a subtropical or temperate climate to thrive.

Taste

Walnut oil generally has a very nutty taste. In most cases, it is virgin walnut oil, where the walnuts are not treated before the production process.

However, there are also roasted walnut oils. In this case, the walnuts have already been roasted before pressing. This not only affects the consistency, which is much thicker, but also the taste. The tart taste of the walnut is eliminated and a sweet note is created alongside the nutty one.

Production

Olive oils, sesame oils, rapeseed oils and also walnut oils can be produced in two different ways. Both processes start by removing the walnut from the shell and drying it over a longer period of time. Once the desired drying has been achieved, the walnuts can be pressed. This is done either by cold pressing or hot pressing.

In cold pressing, the kernels are pressed without added heat at a maximum of 40 degrees. This means that no important ingredients and aromas are lost during pressing. Warm pressing is carried out at high temperatures, as this allows more oil to be extracted from the kernels. The resulting oil is then refined to make it more durable and heat-resistant. Due to the high temperatures, many ingredients and flavours are lost.

Guide: Frequently asked questions about walnut oils answered in detail

Now we would like to answer some frequently asked questions about walnut oils. On the one hand, to support your purchase decision, on the other hand, to facilitate the application.

How much can walnut oil be heated?

As soon as an oil produces smoke when heated, we speak of a smoke point. This is relatively different for all oils. The smoke point is significantly higher in refined oils. Refined walnut oil can be heated to over 200 degrees. Unrefined walnut oil has a comparatively low smoke point and should therefore be heated slowly, but only up to 160 degrees or not at all.

What can walnut oil be used for?

Walnut oil can be used in many ways. It can be used for food as well as for cosmetics. Since it must not be heated strongly, it is not suitable for use with deep fryers or for frying. Rather for cold dishes such as dressings, which can be refined with some spices, for example oregano.

(Image source: The Lazy DanaTentis / Pixabay) Walnut oil is very healthy because it contains many unsaturated fatty acids and vitamins. One to two tablespoons can cover your daily needs. You can use it as a dressing on salads, for example.

Walnut oil also makes the skin more supple if it is previously chapped or dry. It is quickly absorbed and can prevent wrinkles. This oil can also have a positive effect on hair care. If a little walnut oil is used when washing the hair, the hair can appear shinier and softer.

What does walnut oil contain?

Walnut oil has very good nutritional values compared to other oils. It has a calorie value of about 884 per 100 grams and a fat content of 100 grams. It consists of about 73 percent unsaturated, 18 percent monounsaturated and 9 percent saturated fatty acids. In addition to omega-3 fatty acids, walnut oil also contains many vitamins, such as vitamin B and E.

What can walnut oil do in the body?

The walnut or walnut oil contains a lot of vitamin E, which stimulates the fat metabolism and thus blood fat levels can be reduced. Biotin is also an ingredient that is needed for the formation of keratin so that skin, hair and nails can grow healthily. A lot of omega-3 fatty acids can promote blood circulation or also lower cholesterol levels.

Conclusion

As you can see, due to the many uses, it is always worthwhile to have walnut oil at home. Whether it is used for salads, dressings and other dishes or for cosmetic applications, it is versatile and definitely fulfils its purpose.

Besides the high benefit, it is very healthy due to the unsaturated fatty acids and vitamins. However, if a healthy diet plays an important role, care should be taken to buy cold-pressed walnut oils. These do not lose their ingredients during production. For cosmetic use, it plays a rather secondary role.

(Cover picture: yuliaff / 123rf)

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