Peanuts are delicious, and you can eat and prepare them in a variety of ways. Some people prefer to eat soft peanuts, while others prefer to soften peanuts to make peanut butter. If you’re looking to make peanut butter but are short of time, you may want to know how you can soften peanuts quickly. 

The quickest way to soften peanuts is to boil them in a pressure cooker. Typically, it takes over 3 hours to boil peanuts, but the process is cut down with a pressure cooker. You can soften your peanuts in about 1.5 to 2 hours using a pressure cooker just as you would with an instant pot.

This article will look at whether or not you need to soften peanuts in order to eat them safely, the various methods of softening peanuts, and how cooking time differs depending on which method you use to soften peanuts. Keep reading.

Do You Need To Soften Peanuts To Eat Them?

Some people like a peanut’s crunchy texture more than its soft texture. This leads many to wonder if they need to soften peanuts to eat them. 

You don’t need to soften peanuts to eat them, but many people prefer to eat them this way. It’s best that you cook the peanuts rather than eat them raw to avoid any potential mold or bacteria living on the raw peanuts.

Because there are many ways of cooking peanuts, you could choose your method based on how soft you want your peanut to be and how much time you want to spend cooking. Let’s look at a variety of ways you can cook peanuts and how soft each method makes them.  

Different Cooking Methods for Peanuts

There are several ways to prepare peanuts. The following discusses how you can prepare your peanuts for consumption.

Roast the Peanuts

While there are a few ways of cooking peanuts, many people prefer to roast them. You will get an excellent flavor and texture from roasting peanuts, but one thing to keep in mind is that they will not be as soft as some other methods of cooking them.

Roasting your peanuts is best suited for peanuts that have already been dried. So make sure to keep that in mind. While roasting peanuts is a relatively quick way to cook dried peanuts, it is not the best method for softening. Peanuts remain crunchy when you cook them in this manner. 

Boil the Peanuts

Boiling peanuts is a very popular method of cooking peanuts. It is convenient because you can boil raw peanuts and make them very soft.

Whether the peanuts are raw or previously dried, boiling will soften them. But the peanuts will require a longer cook time if they have been dried. The cook time is longer than roasting or frying, but you get a much softer consistency than either of those methods.

Boiled peanuts have long been a tradition in various countries and cultures. Cooking raw peanuts this way can take approximately 2 to 3 hours. It can take up to 24 hours to cook the peanuts if they’re dried.  

So while boiling is a fantastic method of making peanuts softer, it also requires a little patience as they take some time to get to the desired softness. 

Soak the Peanuts

Many people will recommend soaking peanuts prior to cooking them. Doing so ensures that the peanuts will become as soft as possible. It’s also is a good way to get maximum flavor out of your peanuts. You can add salt or seasoning to the soak for that extra layer of flavor.  

There are also some health benefits that some people associate with soaking peanuts. However, this isn’t necessarily proven to be true, as discussed on Parenting.Kars4Kids.Org. Some people think you can get a better flavor from soaking peanuts, but that’s  also open to interpretation.

It is unnecessary to soak your peanuts before cooking, so if you are short on time, it’s best to skip this step. 

Pressure Cook the Peanuts

Pressure cooking peanuts is a fast method of cooking them and generally takes about 1.5 hours from start to finish. It’s a great way to cook your peanuts and make sure that they are soft and will stay soft when you store them.

While there are various pressure cookers available online, many people prefer the safety and ease of the instant pot.

The instant pot is a great and safe tool for pressure cooking at home. You can even find recipes where you can soften your peanuts in about an hour and a half. While the cooking time is not drastically shorter than boiling peanuts, you will get a softer peanut in a shorter amount of time with pressure cooking. Many recipes for boiling peanuts call for about 3 hours, whereas pressure cooking recipes are generally closer to two hours. 

Fry the Peanuts

Fried peanuts are a delicacy in many cultures, and they are delicious. You can either pan fry or deep fry peanuts, and both methods are extremely quick ways to cook peanuts. 

However, one thing to keep in mind is while peanuts may be relatively soft when they first come out of the oil, they’ll harden when they cool down. 

So frying peanuts may technically be the quickest way to get them a bit softer right before consumption. However, this method does not soften the peanut once it is cooled down. Furthermore, the peanuts become quite crunchy once they have been out of the oil for a few minutes.


If you prefer your peanuts to be cooked instead of raw, you may wonder what the best and fastest method of cooking the peanuts is and which way makes them the softest. 

After looking at various cooking methods, it’s clear that pressure cooking is the fastest way to soften peanuts.

Boiling is also a very efficient way to soften peanuts. However, pressure cooking is faster and could save you up to an hour or two, depending on how old your peanuts are and how much you’re cooking.

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