Kitchenability Blog

02.25.2015

Pistachio Health Benefits and Recipes

pistachios

Yep, that’s right. Tomorrow, February 26, is National Pistachio Day. Thank you to The Nibble, by the way, for posting such an awesome national food holidays calendar. I like to check it out from time to time to see what upcoming foods or dishes are being honored, so I can help celebrate on Kitchenability. Like, with the pistachio. Seriously.

Pistachios are my favorite nut. And I firmly believe it isn’t possible to eat just one. Have you ever tried? Impossible! They are just too good. And, eating a bunch of pistachios is actually okay — as long as you don’t eat the whole bag — because they contain fewer calories and more potassium and vitamin K per serving than other nuts.

In fact, these little green nuts have quite a few things going for them, besides just tasting great:

  • Pistachios are packed with protein and fiber, which makes them an awesome snack.
  • Natural pistachio nuts are very low in sodium, which can help your blood pressure. Be careful, though, because some pistachios are roasted and salted, which is not as healthy.
  • Pistachios contain heart healthy unsaturated fats.

One of my favorite food blogs, The Kitchn, has a post about their favorite quick uses for the awesome little pistachio nut:

Salad. We love nuts on salads, and pistachios add some beautiful color, too. Lately it’s been mixed greens with slices of peaches or nectarines, pistachios, big shavings of parmesan, and a sweet balsamic vinaigrette.

Sprinkled on roasted squash. Remember our delicata squash from last week? We roasted it, halved, then added salt, pepper, parmesan, and pistachios and scooped it all out together. It was a very satisfying, simple dinner. Since pistachios are a bit chewier than other nuts, they added another texture but weren’t too hard with the soft squash.

Stirred into pasta. Again, pistachios are pretty meaty and a little chewy. We think they’re good in hot dishes with other strong flavors, like sausage. They’d also be good in a rice salad.

Pesto. We make pesto with walnuts and almonds, why not sub in pistachios for the pine nuts?

On top of fruit. To sweeten them up, try sautéeing some pistachios with butter and brown sugar until they are glazed, then put them over fresh, sliced fruit for dessert.

What are some of your favorite ways to enjoy pistachios? How will you be celebrating National Pistachio Day? I’d love to hear from you.

 

Photo: “Pistachio” by THOR is licensed under CC BY 2.0

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