When you want to add a little something special to your recipe, pecans are just about perfect. Their mild flavor won’t overwhelm the dish whether it’s sweet or savory, but you’ll know they’re in there thanks to the pecan’s unique texture. A garnish of chopped pecans can improve the texture and taste of all kinds of main dishes and desserts, but if you’re having trouble thinking of something to start with you should consider adding it to the following meals.
Chopped pecans are one of the classic garnishes for ice cream, and it’s one of the healthiest things you can add. Other options like chocolate chips and sprinkles are almost pure sugar, but pecans give you valuable nutrients like potassium, dietary fiber, and protein. The pecan crunch goes well with the smooth texture of ice cream, and it works well with a lot more flavors than just vanilla.
Pasta has a stiffer texture than ice cream, but it’s still easy to chew and benefits when you add something with a bit of crunch. One popular recipe uses penne pasta as the base and adds sautéed bell peppers and asparagus. Once you’ve cooked the vegetables to get that perfect crunch, you toss them in with the penne and some toasted pecan halves to get a perfect mix of textures.
You can put all kinds of things on a salad to spruce it up, and if you want to add a source of protein without adding meat, pecans make a decent alternative. Substituting pecans can make any salad vegan-friendly, but they also come in handy if you aren’t a vegetarian. Sweet salads that use berries and apples don’t mix well with salty meats, so pecans are a good way to add those important proteins even when the main flavor comes from peaches or strawberries.
These ideas are just to get you started. Whether it’s pecan halves or chopped pieces, and whether they’re raw, roasted, or candied, pecans make a wonderful and healthy addition to all kinds of meals. With a peculiar crunch and a mild flavor that goes well with anything, a single bag of pecans can enhance any number of meals.