Do pine nuts actually come from pine trees, or is the name utterly misleading?
The Short Answer
Yes, pine nuts do in fact come from pine trees!
The Long Answer
Pine trees produce pine cones, which in turn contain pine nuts. If you’ve never had a pine nut, it’s a super small white nut, about a half inch long. Pine nuts are one of the main ingredients used in most pesto sauce recipes.
The art of extracting pine nuts from pine cones can be laborious, so it’s a good thing that we are able to buy them pre-packaged and already extracted.
Another common name from pine nuts is pignoli nuts. I first encountered these as a child when my Aunt Lina actually used them in meatballs alongside raisins, if you can believe that!
Because they come from pine trees, pine nuts should be avoided by anyone with an allergy to tree nuts. If you’re wondering just what nuts count as a tree nut, check out our article that answers this question along with what family peanuts belong to – legume or nut.
Looking for ways to add pine nuts to your life? Try this Farro Salad with Roasted Cauliflower or Flat Bread with Turnip Greens and Pine Nuts. And, of course, one of our favorite uses is in our Homemade Pesto Sauce!
Do you enjoy pine nuts? What is your favorite pine nut recipe? Sound off and let us know!