HOME > Chowhound > Los Angeles Area >
Do you create unique foods? Share your adventure

Inexpensive but good pine nuts?

kauma Oct 16, 2010 11:07 AM

I'm in the Miracle Mile district (Olympic/Hauser), but I'll travel!

Thanks, y'all!

  1. perk Oct 16, 2010 02:47 PM

    Just found some toasted ones at trader's. Don't remember the price, but i do remember thinking they were reasonable....after reading about how prices have gone up lately.

    3 Replies
    1. re: perk
      kauma Oct 16, 2010 04:19 PM

      Excellent idea, perk - I should have thought of that myself! Thank you!

      1. re: kauma
        wanderlustre Oct 16, 2010 08:04 PM

        I advise against the pine nuts from Trader Joes. I recently got a bag to make pesto and made pine nut butter from the leftover ones. They left a strange bitter taste in my mouth for days. Same thing with all the friends that tried the pine nut butter. http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/654197

      2. re: perk
        aching Oct 19, 2010 01:29 PM

        I always get mine at Trader Joe's and I've never had an issue with bitterness. I keep them in the freezer and they last forever.

      3. b
        Breezychow Oct 16, 2010 08:21 PM

        I only buy pine nuts online these days. Way too often supermarket pine nuts are already rancid or on their way. High-quality pine nuts from online purveyors last FOREVER if kept in the fridge. I used to use "Penny's", but "she's" recently started carrying only unshelled pine nuts, which isn't my thing. So I just recently ordered from a new purveyor, but haven't tried the nuts yet. Will revisit here when I do.

        1. goodhealthgourmet Oct 16, 2010 08:25 PM

          i'm waiting for the harvest from Nevada to become available - even the SM co-op only has the packaged ones from China. if you're willing to take a chance with the quality, Sprouts in Culver City has them in bulk (from China) for around $22/lb.

          2 Replies
          1. re: goodhealthgourmet
            bulavinaka Oct 16, 2010 11:45 PM

            I picked some up from the Culver City Sprouts when they first opened up. Unfortunately, they seemed to already be headed south...

            1. re: bulavinaka
              goodhealthgourmet Oct 17, 2010 03:43 PM

              i figured - the only bulk item i buy there is the roasted in-shell pumpkin seeds. i don't eat roasted nuts or any of the sugary junk they sell, and the couple of times i tried their raw nuts, they were either rancid or on the verge...that's why i said the OP would have to take a chance with the quality :)

          2. h
            happybaker Oct 16, 2010 09:22 PM

            Costco used to have them at a good price, and with enough turnover that they stayed fresh.

            It's been a while for me but, have you checked them out?

            14 Replies
            1. re: happybaker
              bulavinaka Oct 16, 2010 11:51 PM

              I think they're selling for $25-30/bag. They do hold up pretty well. Prices have really gone up on this commodity - didn't want you to have shell-shock. :)

              1. re: bulavinaka
                paprkutr Oct 17, 2010 10:22 AM

                I just bought a bag from Costco and it was about $14.00

                1. re: paprkutr
                  bulavinaka Oct 17, 2010 01:09 PM

                  My mind is slipping...

                  1. re: paprkutr
                    goodhealthgourmet Oct 17, 2010 03:44 PM

                    paprkutr, what's the size/weight of the Costco bag? 1 lb?

                    1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                      paprkutr Oct 17, 2010 06:37 PM

                      I don't think so, I think it was less. I am not sure.

                      1. re: paprkutr
                        goodhealthgourmet Oct 17, 2010 07:39 PM

                        thanks - i'll check my store tomorrow.

                        1. re: paprkutr
                          goodhealthgourmet Oct 18, 2010 04:14 PM

                          just got back from my local Costco here in LA. they're out of stock, but the price on the Kirkland Signature pine nuts is $28.99 for a 24-oz package.

                          1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                            bulavinaka Oct 18, 2010 06:34 PM

                            Okay, so my mind is slipping - just not on the pine nuts...

                            1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                              c oliver Oct 19, 2010 04:53 PM

                              So they're just out of stock and not discontinued? Good. Mine didn't have a few days ago and I figured that they weren't going to. SaveMart/Albertsons up here isn't carrying them this year because of the price.

                              1. re: c oliver
                                goodhealthgourmet Oct 19, 2010 05:07 PM

                                the guy i spoke to was a little clueless so i'm not positive, but the item did still appear in the system when he looked it up, so i guess that's a good sign.

                    2. re: happybaker
                      Funwithfood Oct 17, 2010 08:06 PM

                      Costco, hands down. Freeze what you don't use.

                      1. re: Funwithfood
                        c oliver Oct 17, 2010 08:08 PM

                        It seems like most Costcos no longer have them, both East and West Coasts.

                        1. re: c oliver
                          Funwithfood Oct 17, 2010 08:22 PM

                          Maybe they didn't turn them over fast enough...out of fashion?

                          (Mine are still in the freezer from a while back.)

                          1. re: Funwithfood
                            c oliver Oct 17, 2010 08:23 PM

                            They got up to $30/# and I'm guessing that was a deal breaker.

                    3. k
                      kauma Oct 17, 2010 08:55 AM

                      Thanks, everyone! I'm going to try your recs!

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: kauma
                        bulavinaka Oct 17, 2010 09:50 AM

                        A lot of pine nuts found by major retailers are coming from Asia - seems China is the main source. As poster wanderlustre mentions, some have experienced a strange bitter taste that lingered in their mouths for days. The source seems to point back to China's harvest which may have been incidentally adulterated by the seeds of a species of conifer that produces this effect (I think). Costco's Kirkland brand pine nuts (at least the last bag I bought) indicated that these were from China. However, I haven't run into this issue (yet).

                      2. c
                        condiment Oct 17, 2010 01:31 PM

                        Cube on La Brea has the best pine nuts by far, from Tuscany, but man, are they not inexpensive.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: condiment
                          goodhealthgourmet Oct 17, 2010 07:54 PM



                          $36 for an 8.8-oz package calculates to over *sixty-five* bucks per pound!

                        2. h
                          happybaker Oct 17, 2010 08:45 PM

                          This looks interesting. $20 for 18 oz. of pine nuts from amazon. Harvested from Italy...


                          1. k
                            kauma Oct 19, 2010 11:02 AM

                            Thanks again, everyone, for the great suggestions!

                            6 Replies
                            1. re: kauma
                              Harry Niletti Oct 19, 2010 01:26 PM

                              kauma, what do you plan to make with your pine nuts? -Harry

                              1. re: Harry Niletti
                                kauma Oct 19, 2010 03:18 PM


                                I have a wonderful recipe from Bon Appétit called Pig in a Haystack: Pasta, parmesan, cream, Canadian bacon, green onions, mushrooms, capers, pine nuts. I've made it before and it's smashing. The last time I bought pine nuts they were good, but frightfully expensive.

                                The recipe's available on Epicurious: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                                Best to you!

                                1. re: kauma
                                  goodhealthgourmet Oct 19, 2010 04:37 PM

                                  FYI, if it makes any difference, i checked the label on a bag of the toasted pine nuts at TJ's today and it said "Product of Korea or Russia" - so at least they're not from China. if they're Siberian, i think the quality will be a safer bet than any of the Chinese products.

                                  1. re: kauma
                                    Harry Niletti Oct 20, 2010 08:37 AM

                                    Mmm, that does sound good, kauma, and with your enthusiasm, I imagine it's even better. I'm glad you're insisting on a key ingredient. I die laughing whenever I see posts at epicurious with something like, "What a lousy recipe, and I followed it exactly. Except I was out of pine nuts and used a little leftover pineapple. Also, the dog ate the cheese, so I substituted half a can of dog food. Terrible recipe!" ;-) -Harry

                                    1. re: Harry Niletti
                                      kauma Oct 20, 2010 08:49 AM

                                      That's a scream - and it's so true!

                                      So if I don't have the pine nuts, I'll just substitute chocolate chips...

                                      1. re: Harry Niletti
                                        aching Oct 20, 2010 09:48 AM

                                        That cracks me up too! But it also makes me laugh when someone says, "I thought 1/2 tsp. of salt would be too much, so I used 1/4 tsp. instead" and then some Recipe Nazi jumps in and says, "You shouldn't review this recipe when you drastically altered it! No one wants to hear what you think if you aren't going to follow the recipe!"

                                2. s
                                  Sam D. Oct 20, 2010 01:50 AM

                                  Super King has shelled pine nuts @ $19.99/lb.

                                  There must be a global shortage driving prices like these.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: Sam D.
                                    Tripeler Oct 20, 2010 04:02 AM

                                    Huge boom in pesto worldwide these days...

                                  2. s
                                    sushigirlie Oct 20, 2010 08:26 AM

                                    Whole Foods carries pine nuts.

                                    2 Replies
                                    1. re: sushigirlie
                                      c oliver Oct 20, 2010 08:28 AM

                                      Saw them there the other day but can't remember the price. Bob says $24/#; I thought they were more than that.

                                      1. re: c oliver
                                        goodhealthgourmet Oct 20, 2010 09:16 AM

                                        last time i was in one of their stores here in SoCal (in September) they were $35/lb. i told the bulk guy there was no excuse for that price considering that they were from China. they may have come down since then, but i imagine they're still hovering around $30/lb or so. someone else will have to check/confirm, because i'm sure as heck not going into one of their stores to look.

                                    2. c oliver Oct 20, 2010 09:06 AM

                                      Would someone do me a favor please? I've bought a # of raw in the shell pine nuts. Would someone measure out a tablespoon and then count how many nuts that is????? I'm planning on FoodSaver-ing them and would like to get some idea of how they measure out. Probably should have waited :) TIA.

                                      7 Replies
                                      1. re: c oliver
                                        goodhealthgourmet Oct 20, 2010 09:23 AM

                                        based on nutritional calculations from several sources, i'd estimate 40-45 nuts...but hopefully someone who actually has some on hand will measure for you :)

                                        also, if it helps, according to what i've read the shell accounts for about 25% of the weight...

                                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                          c oliver Oct 20, 2010 09:26 AM

                                          Ya know, it's discussions of minutiae like this that drives home why Bob loathed our first (and his last) Chowdown last week :)

                                          1. re: c oliver
                                            goodhealthgourmet Oct 20, 2010 09:49 AM

                                            ha! that's okay, don't they say that relationships fare better when each person has at least some of their own interests that don't involve the other one? helps avoid co-dependency ;) Bob can do his own thing, and we can discuss the minutiae all you want here!

                                            1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                              c oliver Oct 20, 2010 09:56 AM

                                              I've already divorced him once so we tend to work out those things --- with lots of yelling and finger pointing. But he's very happy to be the recipient of my MG (minutiae gathering). And being a native Nevadan he kinda enjoyed our getting local pine nuts.

                                          2. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                            c oliver Oct 20, 2010 10:05 AM

                                            I found about 2T in the freezer and a not-quite-rounded T was 70 nuts. I never measure them. It suprised me there were that many. And, yes, I felt a tad silly standing there counting them :)

                                            1. re: c oliver
                                              toodie jane Oct 20, 2010 10:12 AM

                                              where do you get your nevada nuts? do you shell them yourself??

                                              1. re: toodie jane
                                                c oliver Oct 20, 2010 10:25 AM

                                                Here's the link. You can buy them in or out of the shell.


                                        Show Hidden Posts