Is Cashew A Nut? | L’Orenta Nuts
Without a doubt, cashews are extremely popular. And over time, cashews have been classified with other categories of tree nuts. But the question still remains, “Is Cashew a nut?” The simple answer is no. Cashew is not a nut. Several researchers have also linked cashews to seeds and legumes. However, Cashew is a drupe. So what exactly are drupes, and why does Cashew fall into that category?. In this article, you are going to find the answers.
Which Category Does Cashews Fall Into?
Cashews originate from a tropical tree known as Anacardium Occidentale. The cashew tree produces a juicy stalk with a pear-like shape, popularly called the apple tree. However, this part of the tree is not the fruit.
The fruit of the cashew tree is a smaller structure with a kidney-
like shape under the cashew apple. This structure is known as a drupe. Inside the drupe, you will find the consumable seed known as the cashew nut. So, the edible part of cashew is known as a drupe seed because of the plant’s structural formation.
So although cashews are not nuts, people sometimes consider them as such. This is because cashews have similar culinary and nutritional characteristics to several other nuts like chestnuts and hazelnuts. Cashews are a rich source of protein and healthy fats. People worldwide also use cashews with other nuts in numerous culinary applications, including stir-fries, nut butter, trail mix, and granola.
Interestingly, numerous of the famous nuts are not genuinely nuts too. Just like cashews, almonds, pecans, walnuts, and pistachios are also drupes. So when next you wonder, “Is cashew a nut?”, you now know the answer.
Are Cashews Legumes?
People usually confuse cashews with legumes, although they are drupe seeds. Legumes also produce consumable seeds. However, they typically grow with other seeds in one pod. The pod splits after some time as the plant matures. This will end up freeing the seeds inside the pod. Some popular legumes are peas and beans.
However, peanuts are a perfect example of a legume that people consider a nut. Also, cashews can easily split from the middle like peanuts. However, Cashews grow inside a hard shell within a drupe, and legumes grow inside a pod. Because of this, cashews are not part of legumes.
Are Cashews Tree Nuts?
Tree nuts are fruits that grow on trees. From a botanist
perspective, all nuts are tree nuts. However, not all tree nuts are nuts. This might be a little confusing. To better understand, nuts are pods with hard shells that contain both the seed and the fruits of a plant. Some famous examples of nuts include acorns, hazelnuts, chestnuts, etc.
Drupes, on the other hand, are fruits with hard outer shells covering the seeds. Drupes consist of three layers. The outer layer is the exocarp, the juicy middle layer is the mesocarp, and the hard woody layer that encloses the seed is the endocarp. Some common examples of drupes are mangoes, peaches, cashews, pistachios, almonds, coconuts, etc.
And most of these drupes are also tree nuts, including cashews. So, Yes!. Cashews are tree nuts.
What is a Cashew?
Cashew is a drupe with a delightful and soft, consistent flavor. It is native to South America, particularly Brazil. Colonists also introduced it to India and Africa. Presently, these regions are the largest producer of cashew. People make cashews in different delicious forms raw, roasted, unsalted, salted, etc. Click here to enjoy our roasted and salted cashews. You will fall in love at the first bite.
People also use cashew to make numerous dairy replacements such as sour cream, cashew milk, cashew-based cheese, etc. It also offers countless nutritional and health benefits.
Where Are Cashews Grown?
Cashews originate from Northeastern Brazil. They grow in
tropical areas with a yearly rainfall of 400 to 4000 mm. They also grow from sea level to a maximum height of 1000 mm. Today, numerous countries cultivate cashews, including Vietnam, Guinea-Bissau, Brazil, India, Côte d’Ivoire, Tanzania, and other Southeast Asia and East and West Africa countries. Some countries, including Australia and South Africa, are also increasingly cultivating cashews.
Currently, India is the largest producer of Cashew with 170,000 to 195,000 metric tons yearly, Côte d’Ivoire comes second with 149,000 metric tons of annual production, and Vietnam is in the third position with 82,000 metric tons annually. Cashews can also be used for different purposes. People use cashews in various dishes because of their buttery texture, satisfying crunch, and delicious flavor. You can try out our wasabi soy cashews to savor and enjoy the delightful taste of cashews.
In this article, the question ” is cashew a nut?” has been succinctly answered. However, cashews offer similar health and nutritional benefits. They also have a delightful flavor that will excite your taste buds in whatever form they come in. Our butter toffee cashews are a perfect cashew snack to start with. One bite is all it takes to get hooked on this incredibly delicious snack. Please get it here.