Pine nuts facts

The pine trees produce the edible seeds which are called pine nuts. It is small, elongated and ivory colored which measures about ½ inches long. The raw seeds has sweet and buttery flavor with a soft texture. Since Paleolithic times, Pine nuts are considered as a great source of nutrients. It is also called pinon nuts, pingoli, pinyon nuts and cedar nuts. Pine nuts contain high content of Vitamin K, Vitamin E, iron, copper and manganese that helps to maintain the cardiovascular health. It helps to enhance the level of energy and is essential for the body in order to build and repair the tissues. It grows well in the dry and cold areas.

Name Pine nuts
Scientific Name Pinus pinea
Native Native to Mediterranean region existing in Israel, Southern Europe, Syria and Lebanon. It got naturalized in North Africa, South Africa, the Canary Islands and New South Wales.
Common/English Name European Stone Pine, Mediterranean Stone Pine, Italian Stone Pine, Parasol Pine, Stone Pine, Pignolia- Nut Pine, Umbrella Pine
Name in Other Languages Arabic: Sanawbar;
Argentina: Pino Domestic;
Basque: Belorita;
Catalan: Pi Campaner;
Chinese: Shi Song;
Czech: Pinie;
Danish: Ponje;
Dutch: Parasolpijn;
Esperanto: Pinio;
Finnish: Hopeapinja, Pinja;
French: Pinier;
Galician: Pino Manso;
German: Schirmpinie;
Greek: Koukounaria;
Italian: Pinocchio;
Japanese: Kasa Matsu;
Portuguese: Pinheiro-Manso;
Russian: Piniia;
Slovašcina: Bor Pinija, Pinija;
Slovencina: Borovica Pínia;
Spanish: Pino Real;
Swedish: Pinja;
Taiwan: Li Song;
Turkish: Çam Fıstık Ağacı;
Hindi: Chilgoza;
Kannada: Pain kāyi;
Marathi: Chilgoza;
Tamil: Ellu;
Telugu: Pine Kayalu;
Urdu: Chilgoza
Plant Growth Habit An erect, ornamental, evergreen, slender, monoecious tree
Growing Climate Dry
Soil Well-drained soil
Plant Size Height: 20-25 m; Diameter of single trunk: 1 m
Lifespan 100-1000 years
Bark Thick, plated, fissured, red to brown to orange along with black edges
Fruit shape & size Oval, rounded cone
Cones Broad, ovoid, Length: 8-15 cm (3.1-5.9 inch)
Pollen cones Yellow, short, cylindrical
Seed cones Flat, ovoid, Length: 8-15 cm; Width: 13 cm; symmetrical, reddish-brown or shiny brown, smooth
Seed Egg shaped, two, pale brown, large, Length: 15-20 mm; Width: 8-10 mm
Leaf Length: 10-18(-28) cm; Thick: 1.5 mm, blue to green, glossy
Flowering Season May- June
Buds Length: 1 cm long with brown scales
Flower Monoecious
Fruit color Brown
Flavor/aroma Distinct nutty
Varieties/Types
  • Chinese pine nuts
  • European stone pine nuts
  • Himalayan or Chilgoza pine nuts
  • Siberian pine nuts
  • Pinon or pinyon pine nuts
Fruit Season Summer, Spring
Major Nutritions Manganese, Mn 11.883 mg (516.65%)
Total Fat (lipid) 92.3 g (263.71%)
Copper, Cu 1.787 mg (198.56%)
Phosphorus, P 776 mg (110.86%)
Iron, Fe 7.47 mg (93.38%)
Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol) 12.6 mg (84.00%)
Magnesium, Mg 339 mg (80.71%)
Zinc, Zn 8.71 mg (79.18%)
Vitamin K (phylloquinone) 72.8 µg (60.67%)
Valine 0.927 g (43.89%)
Health Benefits
  • Lose weight
  • Enhance energy
  • Reduce heart ailments
  • Anti-aging
  • Vision
  • Bone health
  • Level of sugar
  • Treats epilepsy
  • Lower inflammation
  • Thyroid ailments
Calories in 1 cup (135 gm) 909 Kcal.
Traditional uses
  • The turpentine is an antiseptic, rubefacient, diuretic and vermifuge.
  • It is used to treat bladder and kidney complaints.
  • It treats the rheumatic affections.
  • It is an aid for respiratory ailments such as colds, coughs, tuberculosis and influenza.
  • It is as an aid for wounds, skin complaints, sores, scald, burns and boils.
  • Pine nuts are used in homeopathic medicine to increase stamina and energy.
Precautions
  • Some might experience allergy with pine nuts.
  • The reactions such as skin itching, anaphylactic manifestations, pain abdomen, breathing difficulty, abdominal cramps, watery eyes, dizziness, runny nose, red rashes, diarrhea and vomiting might occur.
How to Eat
  • The kernels are added to sweet meats, puddings, cakes, stuffings, sauces and soups.
  • A sweet is topped with pine nuts which is painted with egg and then cooked lightly.
  • Pine nuts are used in various cuisines and desserts.
  • Seeds are also added to ice cream, puddings, cakes, etc.
  • Pine nuts are added to sweet desserts.
  • The nuts are sprinkled over vegetable or fruit salads.
  • It is an ingredient in the Italian pesto sauce.
  • The seeds are used to prepare pasta, meat curries and pesto.
  • It is also used in chocolates.
Other Facts
  • It is the seeds produced by pine trees.
  • All species does not produce seeds.
  • The nuts are edible.
  • Pine nuts are consumed raw, cooked or toasted.
  • Pine nuts are added to deserts.
  • It has high content of vitamins, monounsaturated fat and protein.
  • It has scaly and thick bark.