Kosher, Keto and Gluten-Free… Oh My!
Quick quiz. What food group is loaded with protein, fiber and essential fats, is ultra-portable, and can help reduce weight, promote longevity, and reduce the risk of coronary heart disease? Oh, and did we mention they’re delicious? If you guessed nuts, you’re right!
But while so many people are looking to add nuts into their daily choices, we need to answer a few questions about how they fit into various diets.
Are nuts kosher? Which nuts are or aren’t.
Those following a kosher diet will be glad to know that many nuts do not require special kosher certification, though there are certain specifics to understand.
Where pecans are concerned, pieces require KLP certification while whole and half pecans do not. Additionally, raw nuts, whether chopped, whole or pieces (as well as nutmeal), do not require certification, as long as they are free of preservatives or additives such as BHA or BHT.
Finally, those looking to enjoy peanuts will be glad to know that, being considered kitniyot (legumes), they are also now considered kosher as well.
Are nuts gluten-free?
Whether dealing with celiac disease or just searching for a healthy option, many people are looking to bring gluten-free choices into their diet. So, are nuts an option? Well, there’s good and bad news.
While plain, unprocessed nuts and peanuts are gluten-free by themselves, many brands are not considered gluten free, often because their nuts are processed and packaged on equipment shared with gluten-containing products. As well, often nuts can be sold in mixes including other ingredients containing gluten, such as crackers and pretzels. So, it’s important to verify that specific nuts from a brand are, indeed, labeled as gluten free.
How are nuts being incorporated into popular diet trends?
In the diet world, Keto and Vegan have become increasingly more popular. With more and more options available within these spheres, will nut lovers be able to find something here? Let’s start with Keto.
A ketogenic diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet that dramatically reduces carbohydrate intake and replaces it with fat. That reduction puts a body into a state called ketosis. As far as nuts are concerned, the news here is great. As a nutrient dense food, nuts are a powerful Keto component. As well, they are high in fat and protein, low in carbs and easy to portion out or take with you.
Four top nut choices for a Keto diet are Pecans, Brazil Nuts, Macadamia Nuts and Walnuts. Though all nuts contain carbs, these four have some of the lowest levels and make them a great option. An alternative way to take advantage of nuts in a keto diet is in the form of nut flours, which can easily be used in all sorts of delicious recipes in place of traditional flour.
For vegans, since meat, eggs and dairy are off-limits, nuts can play a powerful role. Because they contain both protein and healthy fats, nuts are a vital part of a plant-based diet. For those watching their calorie intake as well, the best choice is raw or dry roasted nuts.
There are several other vegan-friendly ways to use nuts as well. Nut butters, such as peanut, almond and hazelnut, are easily spread onto breads, crackers or just about anything else and provide a delicious and sweet addition that packs a nutritious punch. Other exciting options, include nut milks, such as almond milk, and even vegan cheeses, which are based on ground cultured nuts.
Finding the right nuts and manufacturer for each of these diets can truly help your customers fill a big need in their diets with just the right, tasty choice. If your business’s recipes call for nuts, you’ll find the right mix of quality and price with CJ Dannemiller. Browse our product selection today.