California Walnuts Blog

The California Walnuts blog is where we share Culinary Inspiration, tips for a Balanced Lifestyle, our Orchard Orgins and highlight our Holistic Community. We believe goodness stems from the simple things in life. We want to inspire your creativity and remind you to have fun, get out of your shell, and enjoy life to the fullest.

Holistic Community
November 4, 2019

New Ways to Snack with Walnuts

More than half of Americans snack daily, and snacking is actually the most popular way to eat walnuts.1,2 Simply grabbing a handful, raw or toasted, makes for a smart snacking choice. It’s not the only choice though. Walnuts have cracked into the snack scene with more creative products than ever...
Culinary Inspiration
November 1, 2019

Pep Up Your Pesto Pasta with Walnuts

Need some help in the dinner department? The Pint-Sized Chefs are back again with their Spinach Walnut Pesto Pasta – just the recipe for you to serve up this week. Whether you’re cooking for the family or a potluck, this dish is sure to please everyone. For a new take...
Culinary Inspiration
October 28, 2019

Pasta Potlucks are the New Cookie Swap

You’ve probably attended a cookie swap or a gift swap. But have you ever been to a pasta potluck? Intrigued? Read on! The holiday season can be as hectic as it is fun. The shopping, wrapping presents, celebrations to attend, and so many meals to prepare. If it’s your turn...
Culinary Inspiration
October 24, 2019

11 Hacks to Make Your Life Simpler in the Kitchen

Life isn’t always simple. Kids get sick, cars break down, last-minute meetings are scheduled. With all that life throws at you, wouldn’t it be great if mealtime could be simple? Sometimes you just need a little help — We get it. But unless you have a sous chef at your...
Culinary Inspiration
October 22, 2019

Simple Salmon for a Savory Weeknight Meal

There’s something about a quick and easy, oven-roasted recipe that screams “weeknight meal solution”! But sometimes, those recipes can use a refresh. In order to keep your dinners exciting and easy to prepare, our pint-sized chefs Pia and Coco are here to show you how to make their Oven Roasted...
Holistic Community
October 18, 2019

Camp Walnut 2019 Recap

A select group of industry chefs and foodservice media members were invited to join us at the beginning of the month for the 2019 California Walnut Harvest and the second annual Camp Walnut event. This one-of-a-kind educational chef experience was a replica of a traditional overnight summer camp, allowing the...
Holistic Community
October 16, 2019

What’s On The Supermarket Shelf? Going Wal-nuts for Halloween

The time-honored tradition of knocking on doors for candy provides more treats than tricks these days, and parents get just as much fun out of it as kids do. A 2018 survey of 2,000 American adults (1,000 parents and 1,000 non-parents) conducted by OnePoll suggested an astounding 86% of parents...
Holistic Community
October 15, 2019

Healthy Indulgence, Snacking on Display at IBIE 2019

The largest baking industry show in the United States recently took place in Las Vegas, and the California Walnut Commission was on hand to promote California Walnuts and their use in baking and snack food product development. The International Baking Industry Exposition (IBIE) takes place every three years and attracts...
Culinary Inspiration
October 14, 2019

Fall Meatless Meals

Denisse here from I’m so happy to be working with California Walnuts again to help inspire you to create more meatless meals at home! As a private chef and food blogger, I always encourage my clients and readers to incorporate as many plant-forward recipes into their home cooking as...
Culinary Inspiration
October 7, 2019

This Overnight Oats Recipe Will Make Your Mornings

For many of us, mornings can be hectic. Just getting yourself together, dressed and out the door leaves little time to prepare a well-balanced breakfast. Grabbing a cup of coffee and something from the pantry will not always be enough to power you through the busy day ahead. When it’s...
Orchard Origins
October 2, 2019

5 Crafts to Keep the Kids Busy Through the Holidays

As the weather cools and the kids are indoors, ignite their natural creativity and curiosity with crafts. With Fall being walnut harvest season, they’re plentiful this time of year, so put that bounty to good use by working walnuts and walnut shells into craft time! Halloween Crafts Once the Halloween...
Orchard Origins
September 30, 2019

Walnut Harvest: The Journey to Your Kitchen

Did you know 99% of the walnuts in the United States are grown in California? It’s a long road from planting a walnut orchard to harvest to delivering fresh, delicious walnuts straight to your local grocery store. And it’s quite likely the walnuts you enjoy at home as a snack...
Culinary Inspiration
September 26, 2019

4 Home-gating Snack Hacks for Sports Season

Whether you’re watching the big game with your family or hosting a “home-gating” party with friends, you can’t root for your favorite team on an empty stomach! Instead of reaching for the usual football fare, try thinking outside the goalposts for your game day snacks. The New Nachos Nachos have...
Holistic Community
September 20, 2019

What’s on the Supermarket Shelf?

Welcome to our new blog where we’ll be detailing our favorite products on supermarket shelves that are made with walnuts! Each month, we’ll feature food and beverage items that use walnuts to impart flavor, texture and healthful nutrients. According to a 2019 Consumer Survey, food trends are shifting. Consumers are...
Balanced Lifestyle
September 19, 2019

Diet and Reproductive Health – Is there a link?

With 12% of women and 9% of men in the US experiencing infertility1, or the inability to become pregnant after one year of trying, the interest in the relationship between diet and fertility is on the rise. While there are many factors that may contribute to reproductive health – in...
Culinary Inspiration
September 19, 2019

3 Fall Drinks That Are Better Than a Pumpkin Spice Latte

Denisse here from This fall I teamed up with California Walnuts to create some seasonally-inspired beverages! These three walnut-based drink recipes capture some of the best flavors of the season. From a cozy coffee drink to a lush cocktail to a sweet treat, there’s something for everyone to sip...
Culinary Inspiration
September 18, 2019

Take on Takeout with Homemade Honey Walnut Shrimp

We get it. Whether you’re shuttling the kids around from school to extracurricular activities or trying to do your grocery shopping and a yoga class after work, it can be challenging to prepare a home-cooked dinner on weeknights. When schedules are crazy, takeout is a tempting option, but not always...
Culinary Inspiration
September 12, 2019

Homemade Granola Bars are the Snack You’ve Been Missing

Everyone’s been there: that unfortunate time of the day when hunger creeps up on you, your stomach is growling, but you’re in the middle of something important and between meals. You don’t want to be caught empty-handed and, oftentimes, the easy solution is a pre-packaged goods that can be high...
Balanced Lifestyle
September 11, 2019

How to Pack a Lunch that Fits Your Lifestyle

Have you ever had that kind of lunch break where you’re able to decompress, release the stress of the busy morning, and have some quality time for yourself? By the time the lunch hour is complete, you’re ready for the second half of your day and you’re refueled with energy...
Culinary Inspiration
September 9, 2019

6 Recipes Under-30 Minutes to Conquer Weeknight Dinners

Ever feel like the weeknight struggle is real? Sometimes it’s hard to find the time to put a balanced meal on the table that the whole family will love, and it can be just as hard to think of something to prepare that you didn’t already eat last week! We’re...
Holistic Community
August 28, 2019

Chef Q&A: Eric Ernest

Meet Chef Eric Ernest, Executive Chef and Associate Director of USC Hospitality and the driving force behind its culinary vision and strategy. Prior to entering the university sector where his team prepares almost 30,000 meals a day, Chef Eric held the position of Executive Chef at various high-end restaurants, participated...
Holistic Community
August 28, 2019

Flavor Experience 2019

We just concluded another exciting year at the Flavor Experience conference in Newport Beach, CA with California Walnuts as a Pinnacle Sponsor. This unique industry event showcases trending menu ideas through culinary insights, applications, and menu solutions to a top group of 600 foodservice operators and culinary leaders. We spent...
Balanced Lifestyle
August 19, 2019

Power Up Breakfast with California Walnuts

You’ve probably heard the old saying “breakfast is the most important meal of the day” too many times to count. And while all meals are important, a nutritious breakfast can definitely set you off on the right foot for the day by providing important nutrients, energy to focus, and fuel...
Culinary Inspiration
August 16, 2019

Meal Prep Ideas to Help You Get Back Into Your Routine

The fall is here, which means slower mornings and relaxed evenings have come to an end. Save yourself some sanity by meal prepping. Planning meals in advance can save money, time, and energy, and it doesn’t have to be overly complicated or take hours to complete! Settling back into a...
Culinary Inspiration
August 14, 2019

3 Ways to Snack with Spiced Walnuts

Where will Fall take you? Football games, pumpkin patches, or even just the flurry of daily activities as school starts back up?! No matter what’s on the agenda, one thing’s for sure – you’ll need sustaining snacks to help you power through your day. We’ve got three quick and simple...
Culinary Inspiration
August 7, 2019

Making Your Meals Meatless

There are so many reasons to incorporate meatless meals into your life – increasing the amount of colorful fruits and vegetables in your diet, cooking with more nutrient-dense, plant-based ingredient, or simply reducing your carbon footprint by cutting back on animal products. Swapping out one meal per day, or even...
Culinary Inspiration
August 1, 2019

Walnuts and Peaches: Summer’s Perfect Pairing

The bountiful summer season brings a decadent array of seasonal, farm-fresh fruits and so many ways to enjoy them. While peach season is in full swing, consider pairing this juicy stone fruit with walnuts. Walnuts and peaches make for easy entertaining because there’s so much you can do with these...
Culinary Inspiration
July 30, 2019

7 Simple and Delicious Tips to Make Healthier Family Meals

It can be a daily struggle to keep the whole family eating well, especially with picky eaters in the house. Keep the whole gang happy with these fast and easy tricks to make every meal delicious and nutritious. 1. Set an example. Don’t be a short-order cook. Inspire kids to...
Orchard Origins
July 15, 2019

6 Walnut Crafts to Try with the Kids This Summer

If you’re staring down the days of summer wondering what to do with your kids to keep them off of screens, yet entertained, the answer may already be in your kitchen. It might seem to be an unconventional choice, but walnuts and their shells make the perfect craft supply! That’s...
Culinary Inspiration
July 11, 2019

Walnuts and Berries: A Nutrient-Rich Power Duo

California walnuts and berries may just be most perfect food pairing ever. There, we said it. The berry sweetness and savory crunch of walnuts make a delicious combo and can be added to just about any food group. From breakfast to dessert, and everything in between, it’s easy to see...
Culinary Inspiration
June 28, 2019

The Ultimate 4th of July Celebration

The 4th of July is filled with potlucks, picnics and pool days, so celebrate the day with a spectacular spread all your friends and family will love! But no matter how you’re spending the nation’s birthday, show your patriotic pride with delicious dishes and colorful desserts in good ol’ red,...
Culinary Inspiration
June 25, 2019

2 Ways to Grill with Walnut Romesco Sauce

Fire up the BBQ for grilling season! But before you turn to the standard burgers and brats, we’ve got a new summer grilling idea for you. Our Walnut Romesco Sauce pairs perfectly with both grilled meats and grilled vegetables. That’s right, summer grilling is no longer only for meats. Break...
Holistic Community
June 20, 2019

Walnuts at the Tipping Point in Foodservice: Azar Launches Walnut Crumbles at NRA

New product alert! We are excited to partner with Azar Nuts to debut a brand-new plant-based culinary product, its nature Walnut Crumbles! Launched in Chicago last month at the National Restaurant Association Show, it was a standout on the showroom floor. For the duration of the show, thousands of food...
Culinary Inspiration
June 19, 2019

Walnuts and Avocados: A Winning Combination

Avocado season is upon us! But there’s so much more to this fruit (yes, fruit) than just guacamole. We’re breaking down all the ways to pair walnuts with avocados for delicious dishes around the clock this summer. Whether you’re assembling a quick snack or building a full meal, there’s an...
Culinary Inspiration
June 12, 2019

Spice Up Your Snacks with These Trending Flavors

Walnuts make a fantastic snack. They’re crunchy, filling and go with just about everything. Plus, one ounce of walnuts is a powerhouse of important nutrients, including ALA omega-3 (2.5g), protein (4g), fiber (2g), and magnesium (45mg)! One of our favorite snacks is raw walnuts, plain or sprinkled with sea salt....
Balanced Lifestyle
May 31, 2019

Easy Ways to Train Your Brain Daily

Whether you are 21 or 71 years old, it’s important to actively work towards maintaining your brain health. Keeping your brain in tip-top shape can not only lead to a more fulfilling life, but may also prevent degeneration due to aging. Although there are a variety of daily activities you...
Balanced Lifestyle
May 24, 2019

Food & Mood: Exploring the Link Between Diet and Depression

Since it’s Mental Health Awareness Month, now is the perfect time to think about the many ways we can nourish and support our own mental health. According to CDC, 1 in 6 adults will experience depression in their lifetime.1 And while depression can occur for a multitude of reasons, there...
Culinary Inspiration
May 23, 2019

Your Guide to the Perfect Summer Cheese Board

Summer means picnics, parties and gathering with friends and family—all great reasons to master the art of the perfect cheese board for entertaining! Don’t be intimidated by the elaborate masterpieces you may have seen on Pinterest, though. Our easy-to-follow guide will help you craft an effortless party appetizer array that...
Culinary Inspiration
May 15, 2019

Shake up your Shakshuka with Walnut Muhammara

You might have seen shakshuka popping up on brunch menus everywhere lately and wondered what it is. For those who haven’t been curious enough to order it yet, we’re here to clue you in to your soon-to-be new foodie favorite. Because shakshuka is here to stay! Finding its roots in...
Culinary Inspiration
May 10, 2019

The Beginner’s Guide to the Mediterranean Diet

You’ve probably heard of the Mediterranean diet, named the top diet of 2019. In fact, according to US News and World report it has been ranked at the top of the list consistently for the past several years. A Mediterranean diet is based on foods that are commonly eaten in...
Culinary Inspiration
April 29, 2019

Pint Size Chef: Mother’s Day Donut Magic

Can you name a job that requires you to work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for no pay and no days off? It’s one of the hardest jobs out there. That’s why we have one special day a year dedicated to celebrating these people. You guessed it....
Holistic Community
April 15, 2019

The Future of Product Development on Display at Natural Products Expo West

Natural Product Expo West, the largest natural and organic products event in the world, hosted 86,000 people from 136 countries last month. They all came to Anaheim, California to check out the latest in food and beverage products. We were there, too, walking the crowded floors and checking out the...
Orchard Origins
March 29, 2019

How to Compost at Home

California Walnuts is a huge fan of the environment, and if you’re someone who cares about the environment too, loves to garden, or has a fridge full of old leftovers, this article is for you. So why compost? When it comes to growing quality walnuts, nutrient-rich soil is of utmost...
Culinary Inspiration
March 29, 2019

How to Plan an Eggstraordinary Easter Feast

Easter is almost here! So if you haven’t planned your big brunch or dinner yet, it’s time to hop to it! After the Easter baskets have been given and the colorfully dyed eggs have been found, it’ll be time for the family’s Easter feast. Whether you’re serving the traditional ham...
Holistic Community
March 25, 2019

Exploring Walnuts & Mental Health

More and more, consumers are looking for foods beneficial to overall wellness, including both body and mind.1 This comes at a time when the CDC recognizes that almost one in twelve adults have suffered from depression in a given two-week period,2 making it imperative to find accessible strategies, like dietary...
Holistic Community
March 20, 2019

Dramatic Changes in the Eating Habits of American Millennials

According to the Department of Agriculture, in 2016, for the first time, Americans spent more of their food budget (50.2%) eating out than at home. The trend has continued to grow, with the latest study from 2017 showing 53.8% of the typical American family’s food budget is spent eating out....
Balanced Lifestyle
March 1, 2019

6 Ways to Incorporate More Exercise Into Your Day

How often do you exercise? Exercising your body is one of the best things you can do to keep your health in top shape. The American Health Organization recommends at least 2.5 hours per week of moderate intensity aerobic activity or more than an hour per week of vigorous aerobic...
Balanced Lifestyle
February 28, 2019

5 Songs You Need to Add to Your Cooking Playlist

Every culinary adventure begins in a similar fashion. You find the perfect recipe, go to the store to get all the necessary ingredients, and you’re ready to create the dish of a lifetime. Before you begin, you’ll need the right tunes to set the mood. Creating the perfect soundtrack can...
Culinary Inspiration
February 27, 2019

3 Meals Under 500 Calories

When it comes to fueling your body during a busy week, we’re often tempted to blindly reach for quick and convenient meals for lunch or dinner. Unfortunately, this type of meal isn’t always the healthiest. Below are three recipes you can make featuring a variety of grains, vegetables, good fats,...
Culinary Inspiration
February 26, 2019

Power Pairing: Walnuts + Mushrooms

Looking for a match made in culinary heaven? How about the amazing power-pair that is walnuts and mushrooms? Both are probably staples in your grocery rotation, but you might not have thought to make this dynamic duo the star of your favorite meals. If you enjoy walnuts and mushrooms on...
Culinary Inspiration
February 1, 2019

Heart-Healthy Recipes for American Heart Month

February is famous for its emphasis on everything hearts. So this month, we’re celebrating Valentine’s Day and American Heart Month! It’s the perfect time to commit to a healthier lifestyle and make small changes to benefit your heart for a lifetime. California walnuts are a heart-healthy1 food, certified through the...
Holistic Community
January 31, 2019

Good Fats are Back!

January will always mean the start of New Year’s resolutions, the most popular of which are losing weight and eating healthier. While this may pose a challenge when it comes to menu ideation, it’s not as daunting as it seems, thanks to 2019’s diet of the year, the Mediterranean Diet...
Holistic Community
January 31, 2019

Chef Q&A: Grant Morgan

Meet Chef Grant. As the Director of F&B for Velvet Taco, he is overseeing the aggressive expansion from 9 open restaurants to 40 over the next three years. But Chef Grant hasn’t always been on the corporate side. As a chef, he has worked at multiple AAA 4 and 5...
Culinary Inspiration
January 30, 2019

3 Simple Ways to Surprise Your Sweetheart

How do you show your love for your sweetheart when Valentine’s Day rolls around? Let us count the ways! We believe the perfect Valentine’s gift for your true love is a special culinary creation, lovingly prepared by your own hands. Whether you’re head over heels in love, or still checking...
Culinary Inspiration
January 30, 2019

4 Must-Try Breakfast in Bed Recipes

Valentine’s Day is a fun time to celebrate with the people you love – whether it’s a romantic partner, a family member or a best friend. Candy and flowers are a classic go-to, but if you’re still feeling gift-shopping burnout from the holiday season, a really special way to say...
Orchard Origins
January 22, 2019

The Walnut Growing Process

Have you ever wondered how walnuts are grown? It’s a long road from planting a walnut orchard to delivering fresh, delicious walnuts straight to your local grocery store. Each step is handled with great care and attention. Growing walnuts is a time-consuming process that takes a lot of care and...
Orchard Origins
January 16, 2019

Starting Your Own Herb Garden is Easier Than You Think

Have you ever wanted to start your own herb garden at home, but thought it might be too difficult? Don’t worry, you don’t need a green thumb or a huge backyard to do this. Even if you live in a small space, you can still utilize any empty windowsill space....
Balanced Lifestyle
December 21, 2018

New Year, New You? Why You Don’t Have to Reinvent Yourself in 2019

The beginning of a new year is meant to symbolize rebirth, fresh starts and reinvention, but honestly, that’s a lot of pressure to put on one person. Here’s why you don’t need to completely reinvent yourself in 2019: Self-Improvement Has No Time Stamp Logically speaking, one day of the year...
Orchard Origins
December 19, 2018

California Walnut Grower Stories – Carl Cilker, Cilker Orchards

Let’s start with talking about how you became a California walnut grower. I kind of grew up with it, as our family’s been in the farming business with orchards for years. We decided to plant walnut trees in 1983 when my brother Bill graduated from Cal Poly. Part of his...
Balanced Lifestyle
December 15, 2018

Why Vision Boards are “In” in 2019

As 2018 draws to a close, many people are reviewing the past year in preparation for the one ahead. January is famous for resolutions. But as we’ve all experienced, sometimes resolutions don’t last very long. Deciding what you want to accomplish – in the short and long term – and...
Culinary Inspiration
December 11, 2018

Pint Size Chef: Risotto for Rookies

Risotto is an Italian rice dish that exudes decadence with its velvety texture, and known as much for its exquisite taste as it is difficult to prepare. You have to go slow, add a little bit of broth at a time, and just keep stirring. It’s been described as the...
Balanced Lifestyle
December 11, 2018

How to Stay Healthy During the Holidays

‘Tis the season for whipping up famed family holiday recipes and serving special, homemade holiday desserts. With so many treats surrounding us this time of year, it’s easy to accidentally overindulge. Combine the loads of delicious food with cold weather and a lack of regular sleep and exercise, and you...
Balanced Lifestyle
December 10, 2018

Tips for a Stress-Free Holiday

A study examining people’s stress levels during the holiday season found that 31% of Americans describe the most wonderful time of the year as “frantic.” It can be challenging to be full of good cheer if you feel as though your holiday season has become too much to handle. Between buying gifts,...
Culinary Inspiration
November 5, 2018

6 Types of Dessert Lovers

During the holidays, most people tend to steer towards traditional dessert recipes. Pumpkin pie, fudge, gingerbread houses, and sugar cookies are all popular standbys. However, some people like to think outside of the box when it comes to making their delicious holiday treats. Whether you’re the adventurous baker, the chocoholic,...
Culinary Inspiration
November 4, 2018

Plant-Based Eating Made Simple

As the name implies, plant-based diets simply feature more plant foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and nuts, rather than foods from animals, such as meat and dairy. Although both meat and dairy might seem like staple ingredients in your dishes, moving to a healthy, plant-based diet doesn’t mean you...
Culinary Inspiration
October 24, 2018

Trick-Or-Treat Yourself

This Halloween, trick-or-treat yourself to the savory flavors of spooky season! We’re going to show you how you can turn your everyday appetizers into hauntingly delicious dishes without all the double, double toil and trouble. Butternut Squash and Walnut Soup Butternut squash soup is a fall staple for festive gatherings;...
Culinary Inspiration
October 22, 2018

Meal Prep for Beginners

There are many benefits to meal prep. Planning meals in advance saves you valuable time throughout the week, but also allows you to carefully consider your eating habits. To make better choices when you’re in a hurry, consider planning your meals ahead of time. Making use of California walnuts –...
Culinary Inspiration
October 12, 2018

Power Pair: Walnuts + Pears

Walnuts and pears make great partners for sweet and savory recipes alike. They complement each other beautifully due to their opposing, yet balancing features. Whether you’re looking to make an appetizer, entrée, or dessert, make sure to try this winning combination. Check out these five simple recipes showcasing this fabulous...
Culinary Inspiration
September 23, 2018

Getting Creative with Fall Flavors

September is arguably one of the most beautiful months of the year, especially as the sun-soaked days of summer give way to fall. From Labor Day weekend to back-to-school week to the beginning of football season, there are so many great reasons to gather with friends and families to share...
Culinary Inspiration
August 26, 2018

Why The Food Bowl Trend is Here to Stay

From grain to buddha to macro, poke and acai, meals in bowls are all the rage. Quick, versatile and packed with nutrients, there are endless possibilities when it comes to tossing a food bowl together. Bowls are typically heartier than your average salad, and they’re easy to prep in advance....
Culinary Inspiration
August 23, 2018

3 More Reasons to Break Out the BBQ this Summer

Summer is here and that means BBQ season! There’s something about cooking food outdoors that makes it taste better. But, grilling isn’t limited to meat-based dishes. Pour a cold, tall glass of lemonade, grab a pair of tongs, and get ready to fire up the BBQ. We’ll be serving up...
Culinary Inspiration
July 14, 2018

Sweet Summer Treats to Help Beat the Heat

During these sweltering summer days, we’re all about anything that will help us stay cool. And since it’s plenty hot outside, we prefer to keep oven usage to a minimum and treat ourselves to something on the refreshing side. From fun-flavored ice creams to fruity frozen popsicles, here are a...
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