“Black Walnuts are the new pistachios” – Eater

The wild Black Walnut has forever been a natural treasure people across the country, largely in the Midwest, have harvested by hand to use in their families’ recipes that have been passed down through generations. So it’s no surprise that the distinct flavor and outstanding nutrition of the Black Walnut have attracted the attention of chefs all over the world, making Black Walnuts the (not-so) up-and-coming ingredient in food trends today.

What chefs are saying about Black Walnuts:

“When you make this cake, be sure to use the American Black Walnut, not the larger, less assertive English walnut.”
—Chef Sean Brock, Heritage, Black Walnut Pound Cake with chocolate gravy

“...this super earthy sweetness, something you’d get out of a really nice Burgandy truffle. It’s got this real round, almost umami sweetness.”
—Chef Chris Davies, Homestead in Chicago, Chicago Reader

“The earthy character of Black Walnuts gives this pesto a depth of flavor that stands out from what folks might be used to.That richness plays well with the brightness of the lemon zest in the pillowy dunderi.”
—Chef Mark Richardson, Dudley’s on Short, Lexington, KY

“Black walnuts are to English walnuts what blood oranges are to Valencias: similar in appearance but punchier and headier in flavor.”
—Bill Addison, Eater

Menu Items

The complex flavor of Black Walnuts is the secret ingredient many chefs use to add depth to their menus. The versatility of Black Walnuts allows chefs to push their boundaries and explore the possibilities of their culinary techniques and flavor combinations. Here’s just a little taste of some restaurants across the country where their chefs are using Black Walnuts.

Roister, Chicago, IL

Foie Gras Candy Bar
INGREDIENTS: Black Walnuts, pretzel, caramel

“My favorite is the foie gras, topped with black walnuts and pretzel bits and enrobed in chocolate — the most luxurious chocolate bar you’ve likely ever seen.” – Phil Vettel, Contact Report, Chicago Tribune

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True Foods Kitchen, Multiple US Locations

Miso Glazed Eggplant
INGREDIENTS: Lentil, roasted pepper, almond, truffle, tahini yogurt, Black Walnut pesto

Grilled Artichoke & Pesto Pizza
INGREDIENTS: Artichoke, spinach, summer squash, Black Walnut pesto, lemon, aleppo chili, vegan almond ricotta

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The Kindred Restaurant, Davidson, NC

Chef David Levi

Paccheri Pasta*
*As seen in Our State Magazine
INGREDIENTS: spicy ’nduja, a spreadable Italian salami, earthy kale and black walnut pesto

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Ascarienoteca, Toronto, Canada

Antipasto Special*
*As seen on the Ascari Instagram account
INGREDIENTS: Prosciutto, whipped ricotta, grapes, Black Walnuts, truffled honey

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Intrigued and want to learn more?

If you are a chef looking to add a Black Walnut dish to your menu, please fill out the form below and a Hammons representative will be in touch!