How Much Do You Know About Peanuts? Put Your Knowledge To The Test

Heart healthy peanuts

What do you know about peanuts? This can seem like a basic question. They’re tasty, right? They’re healthy, available in pretty much any grocery store and can be at home on a sandwich or in a bag of trail mix. But what about the nutritional benefits? How about where this amazing creation comes from and how peanut products have changed over the years? It doesn’t hurt to learn a little more about the food you come into contact with almost every day and the list below will shed some light on common to lesser-known facts.

Quick Facts

Peanuts are just about everywhere. Does that mean you know everything there is to know about them? Dr. George Washington Carver is often credited with creating peanut butter, a mainstay in many an American household, but the fact of the matter is rather different. He invented over 300 different uses for peanuts during his career, including hair products and massage oil, and actually had little to do with peanut butter. Peanut butter must be 90% peanuts or more by law. Lastly…the peanut vs groundnut debacle is a bit of a trick question.

Peanut vs Groundnut

Where do peanuts stand on the old-fashioned peanut vs groundnut debate? Let’s start with a lesser-known fact…peanuts are not actually a true nut. They’re what’s known as a legume (basically a seed in a pod), but for brevity’s sake they’re pushed into the nut family. Unlike walnuts, peanuts are grown above the ground rather than underground. Keep this knowledge tucked away next time the peanut vs groundnut debate crops up in polite company. You might find yourself turning heads.

Health Benefits

Peanuts are chock full of protein. This is especially useful if you’re on a vegan or vegetarian diet that has you eliminating meat and searching for alternatives that can keep you up to speed on all the nutrients needed for a healthy lifestyle. A mere ounce of raw peanuts has over seven grams of protein as well as a strong amount of dietary fiber, meaning you can get back that energy you thought only existed in chicken and pork. Peanuts also boast an impressive healthy cholesterol count and can work as an appetite suppressant.

Widespread Popularity

Who enjoys peanuts? Just about everybody. American residents eat over 700 million pounds of peanuts every year, with peanut purchases exceeding 65% of all nut purchases. That includes even popular staples like walnuts, cashews and pine nuts. Peanuts are very beloved in other parts of the world, with Thailand and Peru being some of the most notable examples on an already long list. When you consider peanuts can be enjoyed as they are or mixed into a variety of recipes, it stands to reason why they’d remain at the top of the food chain.

Usage In Popular Culture

What do you know about peanuts used in the mainstream? Probably more than you think. According to a study provided by Little Brownie Bakers, over 145,000 pounds of peanut butter are used during peak production periods to create some of the Girl’s Scouts most popular selections. One of America’s most iconic candy bars is the Pay Day, made out of peanuts and caramel, though it’s not the only treat that uses peanuts as part of the base.

Enjoying Everything Peanuts Have To Offer

Peanuts come in nearly every form you can think of. You can eat them raw and have a great snack to supplement your busy schedule. Organic peanut oil is perfect for the gluten intolerant, while the health benefits of peanuts can supplement any diet low on calories. Peanut butter benefits can also be rather interesting in their more creative uses, such as slapped onto celery sticks or used to trim down an overeager appetite. Thinking of reaching for a bag of peanuts?

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Francis Pitt

Francis Pitt has made a name for himself in farm-to-table organics, working at restaurants in Portland, Seattle and Burlington, Vermont. While he has a taste for the extreme, most of his restaurant’s top sellers are much more down-to-earth, regularly featuring mushrooms gathered from the slopes of the Cascades, and fresh wild-caught seafood from the Oregon coast. Inspired by trends in Portland, his latest restaurant offers the ultimate chef’s table: dinner begins in the morning at his island collective farm, and 4 lucky guests every week get to follow the food, literally, from the field to the plate! Francis is a firm believer that you are what you eat — do you really want to be a chemistry set?