5 Reasons to Make Chestnuts Your Go-To Snack

You can probably hear it now, “Chestnuts roasting on an open fire…” But just because the holidays are over doesn’t mean it’s time to forget about chestnuts! These little legumes are filling, savory and packed with health benefits.

When roasted, they look like tiny yellow brains but have a sweet nutty flavor and potato-type texture. Master a roasting process that works for you, and they’re sure to become your favorite on-the-go healthy snack.

Here are five other things that make chestnuts delicious, nutritious and supportive of the great state of Michigan:

  1. They can be found all over Michigan. Did you know the Great Lakes State leads the nation in total chestnut production? This makes them easy to find through local vendors or at your favorite grocery store. With more and more chestnut farms being planted in the state, buying these nuts locally is also a great way to support the state’s agricultural efforts.
  2. They’re loaded with healthy fatty acids. Chestnuts contain many different fatty acids including linoleic acid (designed to improve heart health and help with young neurological development) and oleic acid, which boosts good cholesterol and fights bad cholesterol.
  3. They don’t require unhealthy seasoning and can cook in a flash.  Unlike seasoned nuts such as almonds or pistachios, chestnuts just need water and a pinch of salt as added ingredients.  At home, the roasting process takes about 20 minutes and can make for easy grab and go snacks.
  4. They’re economical. A half-pound of roasted and peeled chestnuts averages around $3, but they cost even less when bought raw and wholesale from your grocer or local provider.
  5. They contain high concentrations of essential vitamins and nutrients. If you’re struggling to get enough vitamins into your diet, or your family’s, chestnuts are an easy appetizer or finger food that supply tons of Vitamin C, potassium, magnesium and fiber.

Photo credit: Randi Hausken

Already a fan of chestnuts? You may also want to try these easy, healthy snack ideas: 

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