Macadamias are the ideal go-to nut for people looking to embark on a plant-based diet, or just simply improve their overall nutrition. Macadamias are healthy, delicious and incredibly versatile in the kitchen!
Although experimenting with a new ingredient can sometimes seem daunting, with Australian macadamias it needn’t be. They are an easy to use ingredient with so many uses in the kitchen (and so many health benefits) that it’s possible to include them in almost every type of meal.
There are several different varieties available in stores, so make sure you choose the right variety for your culinary purposes and then store them appropriately to protect the antioxidants and good oils that are key to their heart and brain-health benefits.
Nut in shell: Some grocers sell macadamias still in their shells. Keeping macadamias in their shells – their natural packaging – can help them keep a little longer, but be warned: macadamias are tough nuts to crack! Their super-hard shells require a specialist nutcracker and it’s best to buy the shelled kernels if you are going to use them a lot in cooking.
Raw macadamia kernels: This is the best choice if you are planning to use the nuts in cooking or simply want to roast them yourself, incorporating your own flavours as you go. The texture of raw macadamia kernels is slightly more buttery than when roasted, but the flavour is both subtle and versatile.
Roasted macadamias: Roasting nuts intensifies their flavour and, though the texture of their crunch is still distinct, it is noticeably crispier. Roasting them gently will not decrease their health-giving properties.
Roasted, salted nuts: These are usually bought for snacking, but they can still be used in cooking. Check the seasoning of your food if you use them in a recipe, as they will add additional salt to your cooking.
No matter what variety you buy, macadamias benefit from being stored in an airtight container in the fridge. Stored this way, they will keep in the fridge for 3 months and in the freezer for 6 months.
Many people prefer to snack on roasted macadamias. They make a satisfying, moorish snack straight from the packet. Eating them on their own is the most delicious way to enjoy the benefits of a healthy handful every day. However, roasting them yourself also allows you to incorporate additional flavours and control the amount of salt you eat with them. There are several ways to roast your own macadamias depending on the way you like to enjoy them and the flavours you want to include. Read our online guide to decide which method is best for you.
Macadamias can add so much to your cooking. They not only boost the flavour of your food and add a unique, textural crunch, they are a tasty way to bump up the health benefits of any dish. Keeping some in the pantry, fridge or freezer means you can always impress family and friends.
With such a delicious ingredient on hand, it can be hard to know where to begin. Here are our recipe recommendations to help beginner cooks gain confidence when cooking with macadamias.