Pecans, also referred to as hickory nuts, are the edible nuts of the tree Carya illinoinensis. This tree is native to central and southern parts of the USA, but is nowadays grown in many regions all over the world. Pecan nuts are family of walnuts, which is particularly clear to see once peeled. The pecan’s rich, buttery flavour is also much like walnuts, yet pecans are slightly sweeter. For this reason, they are regularly used in deserts. Unpeeled, the pecans smooth spotty cap makes them easily distinguishable from walnuts, which have ribbed shells.

Pecans consist of up to 75 per cent unsaturated fat and about ten per cent protein. Furthermore, they are a rich source of minerals like manganese, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, and selenium. Pecans also contain several important B-complex groups of vitamins such as riboflavin, niacin, thiamin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B-6, and folates. Together, these vitamins work as co-factors for the enzyme metabolism inside the human body.


In the USA alone, there are over five hundred different varieties or types of pecans. They are named after a wide array of things, mostly Native American tribes, the discoverer or the person who grafted it. The majority of pecan production comes from just a handful of varieties. The most popular are: Stuart, Desirable, Moreland, Cape Fear and natives (wild seedling types). In the southwest of the USA, the Western Schley is the most widely planted pecan. It produces a small, high-quality nut and is very productive in its home region. However, its small nut size and extreme susceptibility to scab make it unsuitable for use in the Southeast.


Indications of USA Pecan per LBS:

  • Mammoth Halves: 200-250
  • Junior Mammoth Halves: 250-300
  • Jumbo Halves: 300-350
  • Extra Large Halves: 350-450
  • Large Halves: 450-550
  • Medium Halves: 550-650
  • Topper Halves: 650-800


In processing pecans, the following distinction is made:

  • Extra Large Pieces
  • Large Pieces
  • Large Medium Pieces
  • Medium Pieces
  • Small Pieces
  • Midget Pieces
  • Granules
  • Meal

Pecan nuts can be pressed into pecan oil. Rather than for consumption, this oil is more often used in cosmetics, dyes and soaps. 

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Proximates Units
Energy kcal 691
Protein g 9,17
Carbohydrate g 13,86
Fiber g 9,6

Total fat g 71,97
Saturated fat g 6,18
Monounsaturated fat g 40,801
Polyunsaturated fat g 21,614
Cholesterol mg 0

Calcium mg 70
Iron mg 2,53
Magnesium mg 121
Phosphorus mg 277
Potassium mg 410
Sodium mg 0
Selenium mcg 3,8

Vitamin A IU 56
Vitamin B6 mg 0,21
Vitamin C mg 1,1
Vitamin E mg 1,4
Vitamin K mcg 3,5
Carotene, beta mcg 29
Carotene, alpha mcg 0
Cryptoxanthin, beta mcg 9
Lutein + zeanxanthin mcg 17
* Pecans are unroasted
"Source: USDA National Nutrient Database
for Standard Reference, Release 26 (2013)"
g = gram; mg = miligram ; mcg = microgram; IU = International Units


Pecans are mainly grown in USA, Mexico, South Africa, Israel and Australia.


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