How to Roast Chestnuts

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How to Roast Chestnuts

What would a crisp winter day be without the wonderful aroma of roasted chestnuts? If you're enchanted by the smell of roasting, you can do it at home. You won't even need an open fire, because you'll be roasting these in the oven!


  1. Carefully cut an X into the flat side of each nut with a sharp, pointy knife, cutting through the shell.This will allow steam to escape, otherwise the chestnuts can explode! Alternatively, you can stab them with a fork, making sure it goes through the shell.
  2. Spread the nuts on a rimmed baking sheet for the oven or directly on the grill, cut side up.Sprinkle lightly with water. If roasting over an open flame, including a , put them in a pan with a long handle and cover.
    • Some people prefer to lay the chestnuts slit side down so that the shell is cooked, dried and separated from the nut for optimal crispiness.
  3. Roast for 15 to 20 minutes or until they're tender and the shell comes off easily.Move them around frequently so they don't burn.
  4. Wrap the hot chestnuts in a towel and squeeze them to crush the skins.Leave them wrapped in the towel for five minutes afterwards.
  5. Peel while nuts are warm.Remove the inner skin along with the shell. Reheat briefly if the nuts become hard to peel.
  6. Enjoy!

Community Q&A

  • Question
    Can any type of chestnut be eaten?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Yes, as long as they are not rotten.
  • Question
    What is the best way to store chestnuts?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    As nuts go, they don't keep very long, and mold is a real problem with chestnuts. Fresh, unshelled chestnuts last about a week in the pantry, up to a month if you store them in a perforated bag in the crisper drawer of your refrigerator, or four months if you freeze them in an airtight container. Cooked, peeled chestnuts must be used within a few days, or they can be frozen in an airtight container for up to 9 months. It doesn't matter if they're chopped, pureed or whole.
  • Question
    What degree do you roast the chestnuts at if using an oven?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Preheat the oven to 400ºF (200ºC). Then continue to roast at this temperature. See the article's steps for more details.
  • Question
    What can I do if my chestnut shells are almost impossible to remove even after soaking them overnight?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Try putting them in between two hardy plates; and push the two plates together; then turn one of the plates over so and hold the ends of the two plates and shake a bunch.
  • Question
    How many minutes do I keep them in the oven if I use broil?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Broil them at 400F for 20 minutes. I've been doing this for years, they turn out great.
  • Question
    Can I cook chestnuts in a pan?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Definitely! Just pop the pan in the oven and heat 'em up till 400 degrees.
  • Question
    Can I start roasting fresh off the ground (tree), or should I let them cure?
    John DeMelas
    Community Answer
    When they turn brown and hit the ground, they are ready to eat. If you intend to harvest your own, be sure you have permission from the tree's owner. Be very careful with the spiny shell; it is brutal on fingers, so wear puncture-resistant gloves. I find a set of long-handle adjustable pliers and a pocket knife with a short, strong, sharp blade indispensable.
  • Question
    Can I refrigerate and reheat roasted chestnuts?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    They only last a few days in the refrigerator. If you want them to last longer, you can wrap them in foil so that they are air tight and put them in the freezer. They should last for several months this way.
  • Question
    How many calories in a roasted chestnut?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    There are 145 calories per serving.
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  • Soak the chestnuts in cold water after you've pierced the shell for about 30 minutes to make them easier to peel.
  • Cover chestnuts with a towel after they come out of oven to let them cool off.
  • Nonstick pans usually don't fare well over an open flame.
  • Your fingers might turn black while shelling, so be sure to wash them as soon as you're done.
  • Choose chestnuts with a nice, brown shine and a firm feel. Avoid any chestnuts with blemishes, mottling or pinholes.


  • Watch carefully. The nuts can turn from crispy to burned within a minute.
  • Use caution when making score marks into nuts with the sharp knife.
  • Use even more caution when slicing through the tough shell.

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Views: 1,034,163

Rebecca Lee Perkins

Jan 10, 2019

"Recently we've been blessed with chestnuts. Having been a while since having any to cook, and temporarily lackingfamily heirloom cookbooks due to displacement, I was looking for a refresher on roasting temperature and length of time. Both found herein."

Robert Rowe

Nov 24, 2019

"We purchased Italian chestnuts recently from our local Weis supermarket and I wanted to prepare them right. I willscore them soak them in water and grill them with some Mesquite wood chips. Thank You wikiHow!"

Denise Maher

Nov 27, 2019

"Extremely detailed with a few "learned by doing" tips. I've learned something new, and I've been cookingthem for over 30 years! Thanks!"

Frank Lally

Nov 22, 2019

"I had roasted chestnuts a long time ago. These steps reminded me of all the steps to do. Thanks, the tips werevery helpful."

Ed Zeile

Nov 14, 2019

"I did not know how to do it at all and now I have a very good idea of how it's done. Thank you."

Annamay G.

Nov 25, 2019

"I found exactly what I was looking for and put that info to immediate use. Perfect. "

Norma Wilson

Aug 22, 2019

"Beautifully detailed with video making information simple to follow. Thumbs up !"

Leah Blake

Nov 26, 2019

"Bought some chestnuts and needed a refresher course on how to cook them."

Donna Frintzilas

Nov 22, 2019

"Very good, just what I needed. I put them in my turkey dressing.

Video: How to Roast Chestnuts in Oven: How to Cook Chestnuts in Oven

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