Pine nuts are good for health—pine nuts contribute to supporting the weight loss process, strengthening the body’s bones, and improving vision. Pine nuts are a healthy snack and also an attractive food topping. So let’s find out what pine nuts are and where do you find pine nuts in the grocery store.
What are pine nuts?
Pine nuts are seeds of the pine trees from the Pinaceae family, genus Pinus. Currently, there are 29 species of pine trees, of which 20 species of pine nuts are valuable for harvesting and gaining economic benefits. Pine nuts refer to edible nuts, which have high applications in the F&B industry.
Because pine nuts are rich in protein and carbs, they bring many health benefits to those following a diet, vegetarians, and gym people. This kind of product has many beneficial substances for the body physically and mentally, so pine nuts are prevalent in daily routine dishes.
After harvesting, pine nuts could be stocked and used for a long time, and each species could have a different taste and size.
Pine nuts have been popular since 300 BC. The pine nuts don’t look alike regionally. The seeds grown in Asia are shorter and fatter, while the nuts from Europe are longer in shape.
What are pine nuts used for?
For fresh pine nuts, you need to roast in a pan or grill in the oven (at 195 degrees Celsius for about 10 minutes) until the pine nuts are fragrant and turn light brown.
You can also buy roasted pine nuts for more convenience, and you can use them directly without roasting.
Or, you can add fresh pine nuts to the recipe. Pine nuts are used by many culinary cultures worldwide with many different names. In the United States, pine nuts are added to pesto popularly or sprinkled on top of salads. They are also often cooked, then spread in desserts like a topping in ice cream, cookies, etc.
Where do you find pine nuts in the grocery store, Supermarket
Pine nuts are classified as nuts items. When you are in a grocery store, try searching for this product in the baked goods section. Pine nuts are often placed in the same category as walnuts, almonds, macadamia, or similar nuts. If you can’t find them in that section, take a look around and try in the snack area.
Because pine nuts sold at grocery stores are often cooked and ready to use directly, they are sometimes considered a snack, like dried fruit.
And finally, since it’s still commonly used as a topping to enhance the flavor of desserts and cakes, it’s also very likely that it’s placed in the spice counter, similar to thyme, basils, etc.
Another suggestion for you is to go to the bulk items counter. There are a few select stores that sell pine nuts in bulk for the convenience of customers. And often, you can buy a cheaper unit if you buy in bulk.
What Grocery Store Sells Pine Nuts?
In big cities, you can easily purchase pine nuts at large-scale supermarkets. If you are in remote regions, you should also try searching in the casual local stores. Or, if you still can’t find them, you can order pine nuts via online stores.
Some popular stores selling pine nuts are Amazon, Trader Joe’s, Safeway and Whole Foods. You can buy pine nuts raw or toasted, salted or unsalted, shelled or shell-free, and in various sizes. And there are also many kinds of pine nuts from different regions like California, Kirkland, etc. All types are packaged in vacuum-sealed bags to help preserve them for a long time without losing quality and to avoid spoilage.
Popular brands are Tesco, 365, Aurora, Barukas, squirrel, etc.
You can also buy goods online through reputable e-commerce sites such as Amazon, eBay, etc. Although online shopping has an obstacle that you can’t directly see the product, you can read reviews of previous buyers to learn for yourself.
For example, out of the many options to buy pine nuts, you may feel more secure choosing the nuts that have been purchased by many people and have many good reviews. In addition, Amazon also often labels Amazon’s Choice for trusted products on their website. It is a very good recommendation and helps a lot for buyers.
What can I use as a substitute for pine nuts?
Because the process of harvesting pine nuts takes a lot of time, steps, and workforce, the price of this kind of nuts is relatively high. It is considered one of the most costly granular foods in the world. So, usually, to add to the dish, people can choose substitute nuts but still ensure nutrients and flavor for the dish.
Here are a few suggestions for food in case you can’t afford pine nuts or you want to save money:
Cashew nut is the Number One candidate for a substitute. Cashew nuts are pretty similar in both color and taste. They can be used in pesto, salads as alternative ingredients of pine nuts. Since cashews are 2-3 times bigger than pine nuts, you should bake and chop them until they are about the same size as pine nuts before using them.
Sunflower seeds: Sunflower seeds still serve as a substitute for pine nuts even though they are not nuts. They can offer a similar taste. However, if your dish needs a beautiful look, you should not use flower seeds because of their natural gray-brown color. The advice is not to use sunflower seeds in pesto. You can use sunflower seeds instead of pine nuts topping for ice cream and desserts.
Walnuts: Walnuts are suitable for replacing pine nuts in salads, pasta, and desserts. There is a small note that removing the brown outer shell of walnuts will help the dish look more beautiful and not bitter.
Exciting ways Of using pine nuts?
There are many ways to use pine nuts in cooking. However, pine nuts are almost irreplaceable in a pesto recipe. Today, let us show you how to make a classic pesto sauce with the indispensable ingredient of pine nuts.
We recommend buying fresh pine nuts to bring out the full flavor of the dish. The pine nuts harvested from July to November from pine trees grown in Italy, Turkey, Spain, and Portugal are best.
Step 01: Preheat the oven to 325° F. Spread the fresh pine nuts evenly on a tray. Put the tray in the oven for 3-4 minutes until golden brown, then take out of the oven and let cool. There is a trick that if you want the pine nuts to be more crispy, you can wrap the hot roasted pine nuts in a few minutes before using.
Step 02: Puree the basil and garlic.
Step 03: Add paprika, parmesan cheese, pine nuts, and lemon zest to the mixture.
Step 04: Keep the blender at a low-speed level, slowly add a little olive oil, and blend well. Finally, add salt and pepper to complete the sauce.
And here we have pesto sauce. You can put it in bulk in an ice tray for long-term storage if you make it in bulk. Pesto sauce can be stored in the freezer for 1-2 months. Pesto can be spread on sandwiches or as a dipping sauce with appetizers. Also, spaghetti can combine perfectly with pesto. The beautiful garlic, basil, and cheese flavors make a great Italian dish.
FAQs about pine nuts
Pine nuts are incredibly beneficial for health. They provide nutrients for the body such as iron, zinc, magnesium, phosphorus, vitamin K, etc. Pine nuts also help reduce cravings, which is helpful for people on a diet.
Certain nutrients in pine nuts like monounsaturated fats, iron, and protein can help you get more energy without eating too much. Reduce the risk of heart disease. Studies have shown that adding nuts into daily meals can reduce the risk of sudden death from a heart attack.
Pine nuts contain monounsaturated fats, vitamins E and K, magnesium, and manganese that help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. Besides, the pinolenic acid in pine nuts helps to increase healthy cholesterol and reduce harmful cholesterol levels. It is also rich in iron, which is very important for brain health.
Research shows that other nutrients in pine nuts like magnesium can help treat anxiety, depression, and stress. Not only that, pine nuts contain a lot of lutein, an antioxidant that is very good for the eyes. When you get enough lutein, you will better protect your eyesight.
But it’s also important to remind you that some people can also be allergic to pine nuts.
Storage time for pine nuts: Unshelled pine nuts: Pine nuts can be kept for nearly 3-4 months. Shelled Pine Nuts: Unshelled varieties are more susceptible to spoilage than shelled nuts, especially if stored in a hot, humid place. Therefore, you should keep this seed in a cool, dry place for about 1-2 months.
Thus, the above article has provided you with a lot of interesting knowledge about pine nuts. I hope you can find where do you find pine nuts in the grocery store in your area. We are also happy to hear your suggestions.
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