Types of Nuts Commonly Consumed

The Mediterranean diet, rich in its variety, includes an array of nuts, each bringing its unique nutritional profile and flavor.

  1. Almonds: Revered for their versatility, almonds are a staple in Mediterranean cuisine. They are a great source of vitamin E, magnesium, and protein. Almonds can be enjoyed raw, toasted, or as almond milk and butter. They’re used in everything from desserts to savory dishes for added crunch.
  2. Walnuts: Known for their omega-3 fatty acids, walnuts are excellent for brain health and add a rich, earthy flavor to salads, baked goods, and grain dishes.
  3. Pistachios: With their eye-catching green color and slightly sweet flavor, pistachios are packed with antioxidants, enhancing both sweet and savory dishes.
  4. Hazelnuts: Rich in monounsaturated fats, they are an excellent source of vitamins and minerals like vitamin E and manganese. They are commonly used in pastries and chocolates.
  5. Pine Nuts: Essential in pesto, these nuts add a buttery richness to dishes, and are excellent when toasted over salads or pasta.
  6. Cashews: Though not native to the Mediterranean region, cashews have found their way into modern Mediterranean cuisine. They are rich in iron, magnesium, and zinc, and their creamy texture makes them ideal for vegan recipes as a dairy substitute.
  7. Pecans: Similar to walnuts in shape and texture, pecans are often used in baking and desserts. They have a sweet, buttery flavor and are a good source of fiber and antioxidants.

Each of these nuts contributes its unique flavor and nutritional profile to the Mediterranean diet, adding to the diet’s overall diversity and healthfulness.