What a Nutty Idea! How to Eat Acorns

Harvesting acorns unlocks a widely available but under-used food source.

| October/November 2014

Acorns are not often harvested and used for food, even though oak trees grow across the United States. Some large oaks can yield 1 to 2 tons of acorns — more than nearby wildlife could possibly eat.

Even though we don’t eat many acorns in the United States, it’s not a far-fetched idea. Processing acorns does take a decent amount of time because you have to remove the tannic acid, so do a bit of research about how to eat acorns before you dive in. You can roast acorns or grind them for flour or porridge. Koreans make noodles and other products with acorn meal. Algerians and Turks use acorns for oil, and Spaniards make sweets with them. Evidently, they don’t find the processing too cumbersome!

Acorns keep well when refrigerated. In fact, Native Americans kept their acorns in bags submerged in cold streams for up to two years.

Barbara Brooks
La Vernia, Texas

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