If you have long been accustomed to buying sunflower seeds already roasted, then you should know that making roasted sunflower seeds gives you a much tastier result. You can control the desired level of roast, salt, and spices. You can also rinse the seeds at home before frying, which cannot be said with certainty about purchased seeds.

How to choose sunflower seeds for roasting?

To make roasted sunflower seeds at home, you need to buy raw sunflower seeds first. I like black sunflower seeds that have a more round shape. The ideal seed should be medium in size, “pot-bellied”, that is as if puffed up, with a thin shell. However, striped sunflower seeds are crispier because they have a thicker shell. But you can choose your favorite type for roasting.

Try buying sunflower seeds on the market. There you can take a seed, peel it and see the kernel before making a purchase. You will see if the skin is thin, the shape of the seed, how oily it is. Try to rub the kernel with your fingers. If the seed is good then it will be hard for you to crumble it. Inspect your future purchase for plant debris, the presence of crumpled and sticking seeds.

How to prepare sunflower seeds for roasting?

To get the best-roasted result, you need to clean raw sunflower seeds first. Get rid of all the big debris that can be handpicked. Take a colander or a sieve and rinse the seeds under cool running water. Stir them constantly in the sieve while rinsing to get rid of the coloring enzyme and unnecessary dust.

Spread out sunflower seeds on the flat surface covered with a kitchen towel or paper towels. Leave for some time to get dry or pat them with the additional towel.

How to salt sunflower seeds while roasting?

I prefer sunflower seeds without any added spices and, especially, salt. Only this way, I can taste the unique aroma and flavor of sunflower seeds and enjoy their oily texture. However, for those who prefer added salt in roasted sunflower seeds, I will share 3 easy ways to roast salted sunflower seeds:

  • Dissolve salt in boiling water and soak the seeds in brine for 10 minutes before roasting. For 250 grams of seeds, you will need 1 tablespoon of salt.
  • Dissolve salt in water. You need 1 teaspoon of salt and 50 milliliters of water for 1 cup of seeds. Add brine to the seeds in the pan at the very beginning of roasting. The water will evaporate, and seeds will absorb salt in the process of roasting.
  • And the easiest method. Put seeds while they are still wet after rinsing into a frying pan and add half of a teaspoon of salt (for each cup of sunflower seeds in the shell). Stir constantly.

Do you need to roast sunflower seeds with oil or not?

Oil gives sunflower seeds a somewhat unique aroma and makes them crispier while roasting. However, you do not need to add oil to the pan if you do not want to. Roasting seeds without oil will give you a bit drier result. Sometimes sunflower seeds can be oily by themselves. Therefore, you do not need to add extra oil to the pan. Simply sprinkle a few drops of oil at the end of frying, purely for some extra flavor. When you use oil, sunflower seeds in shells are roasted at a higher temperature. That results in crisper, fattier, and more aromatic seeds. In general, you should add 1 tablespoon of oil for 250 grams of sunflower seeds in the shell.

Salted Roasted Sunflower Seeds Recipe

Learn how to roast sunflower seeds in the shell at home!
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Resting TIme10 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Snack
Cuisine: International
Keyword: how to make roasted sunflower seeds, how to roast sunflower seeds, how to roast sunflower seeds with oil, pan-roasted sunflower seeds recipe, salty sunflower seeds recipe
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 200kcal


  • 1 cup black sunflower seeds in the shell
  • 2 tsp vegetable oil
  • ½ tsp salt


  • Nicely rinse sunflower seeds in a colander under cold running water. Let them dry out a bit, or pat them with a paper towel, to get rid of the moisture.
  • Heat a pan on the stove on medium heat. Sunflower seeds are immediately fried over high heat. Add your rinsed sunflower seeds and spread them out evenly on the surface. Stir constantly to roast seeds evenly.
  • If you see that they are still wet and moisture is still evaporating, and then proceed roasting seeds without adding any other ingredients for several minutes.
  • Add vegetable oil and salt, and mix them with the seeds. I would highly advise you against adding extra sunflower seeds while roasting. You won't get an even result. Making a new bunch is a better option.
  • Stir sunflower seeds with a wooden spatula. You will need 12 to 15 minutes to get them roasted. Make sure to lower the heat to a minimum after popping sounds start. Watch out for the smoke, too. A light smoke indicates that the seeds are ready. However, if the smoke is strong, then your seeds are starting to burn.
  • If you doubt whether sunflower seeds are ready, you simply taste them. The kernel in a roasted seed should be pale yellow in color and crisp in taste.
  • When you are sure that seeds are roasted, cover the pan with a lid. Take it from the heat and set it aside for extra 10 minutes to get the best result. Serve cooled down!


*calories per serving (1/4 cup)

If you tried my recipe for the Pan-roasted sunflower seeds and you liked it make sure to share it with your friends or leave feedback in the comment section. I would highly appreciate it if you did.

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