How to Shell Fresh Almonds

Shell fresh almonds by soaking them in water.
Shell fresh almonds by soaking them in water. (Image: Thomas Northcut/Photodisc/Getty Images)

If you do not wish to roast your fresh almonds, you can shell them instead. Almonds have thin skins that shed or peel after coming into contact with hot water. Depending on your preference, you may either boil or soak the almonds to remove their shells. Either way, this process will leave you with smooth, white almonds that are free of flaky pieces of shell. Almonds prepared in this manner are ideal for baking purposes or for eating on their own.

Things You'll Need

  • Fresh almonds
  • Cooking pot
  • Colander
  • Knife (optional)

Heat a pot of water until boiling. Place the almonds in the boiling water for 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. Strain the almonds using the colander.

Soak the almonds in water for a few hours instead of boiling them. This process is ideal if you do not want to wait for the water to boil, or if you are not yet ready to peel the almonds.

Break off the tip of the almond at its sharp point. Use your fingernails or a kitchen knife, but cut off as little almond as possible. Your goal is to break the shell to enable peeling.

Squeeze the almond gently between your fingers. The shell should start to break apart in your hands. Peel the shell off the rest of the way and discard any pieces.

Tips & Warnings

  • Try drying the almonds and re-wetting them again if you can't shell them all at once. Ideally, you should soak only as many almonds as you can shell at one time so you don't get bloated or bland almonds.

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