Versatile and Delicious
Don't let the name fool you, peanuts aren't actually nuts at all! They're members of the Fabaceae family (legumes), making them close relatives to peas, chickpeas, and lentils.
Once peanuts are processed for consumption, they can be found in many formats including natural, roasted, toasted, or fried, without the shell, bleached, or in halves. They can also be granulated, chopped, made into flour or as peanut butter, paste, oil, or extract. The culinary uses for peanuts are endless.
One of the most common uses is peanut butter, which can be included in everything from sauces to pastries. Peanut flour is a great, gluten-free alternative with a pleasant taste and aroma that can be used to thicken smoothies and sauces or in baked goods. With a high smoke point, peanut oil can be used to fry, sauté or add flavor to dishes.
Find Your Type
Texas is the only state to grow all four types of peanuts, but each variety has their own shape, flavor profile, and use.
Runner Peanuts are the most widely used peanuts with an attractive, uniform kernel. Their delicious flavor, great roasting characteristics and high yields make them ideal for peanut butter.
Spanish Peanuts have small kernels with a copper jacket (or red-brown skin). They have a nutty flavor profile and a high oil content, making them perfect for extracting oil. Spanish peanuts are ideal for peanuts candies, snacks, and peanut butter.
Valencia Peanuts are the most widely used and are known as the "gourmet" peanut. They have a sweet flavor and contain three or more kernels with bright, red skin. These peanuts are usually sold in the shell as they are ideal for roasting or boiling.
Virginia Peanuts are the largest type and are often called "cocktail nuts." They're great for processing, particularly for salting, confections, and in-shell roasting.