Late last summer I read a post from my blogger/nutritionist/whole food advocate crush McKel Hill, over at Nutrition Stripped, about tigernuts. My reaction was probably just like yours – tigerwhaaa?? I’d never heard of these chickpea lookalikes before and was super curious! I order a bag online immediately after reading her post, and when they arrived I popped them in the cupboard. . and never took them out again.
Then, yesterday I was perusing the glorious shelves at Whole Foods and what did I happen upon? TIGERNUTS. I was suddenly on a mission to try these little gems out and to see for myself what all the hype is about. So, what are tigernuts anyway? Well, they’re not, actually, nuts at all – in fact, they’re a part of the tuber family so are grown underground, as a sweet potato or carrot would be. Tigernuts are allergen-free [no gluten, nut, seed, dairy, or soy here], are a great source of monounsaturated fats [like that in olive oil and avocados], and are a fantastic source of resistant starch.
What’s resistant starch, you ask?
Resistant starch is a fiber that stands out amongst other fibers because it is super beneficial in pre-biotics. This essentially means that resistant starches feed the good bacteria in your intestinal tract, keeping your digestive system in tiptop shape. But wait – there’s more! Resistant starches are also keep blood sugar from spiking after meals, which means its a helpful team player in weight loss, fat storage in fat cells, and the prevention of diabetes.
Because your gut flora may take some time to adjust, its best to add tigernuts, or other resistant starch, into your daily diet. Going full-force may result in uncomfortable gas or bloating – and I know y’all don’t want to deal with that. Begin with just a small handful of tigernuts, making sure to soak them beforehand for about 12 – 48 hours. Because I have a sensitive stomach, I soaked mine for about 36 hours before making them into the tasty Tigernut Horchata below. Next recipe to try is NS’s Tigernut Chocolate Chip Cookies [in link above]!
Tigernut Horchata [GF, DF, RSF, Paleo-friendly, Vegan]
Makes 1 – 2 servings.
- 2 cups warm filtered water
- 3 dates, pitted
- 1/2 cup soaked tigernuts
- 1 tbsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
Soak dates in the warm filtered water for about 10 – 15 minutes [do not discard water afterwards]. Combine dates, date-soaking water, tigernuts, and spiced in a high-speed blender, such as a Vitamix or Blendtec. Blend until completely smooth.
NOTE : The finished drink will have a mealy taste and may be a little thick due to the pulp from the tigernuts. If you wish to strain the pulp, simply blend the dates, water, and tigernuts, strain pulp, then blend the liquid with spices.
Serve Tigernut Horchata over ice with a cinnamon stick, or sprinkle of cinnamon on top, for a decorative flair!
I bought my tigernuts from Amazon here, but as I noted above, they’re also now available at Whole Foods Market and possibly other natural food stores.
Made this recipe?? Or have any wacky health foods you’ve discovered? Share below or let me know on Instagram by tagging me @beintheglow & using the hashtag #BITGtigernuthorchata!