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National Pecan Day – Fun Facts and Recipes for this Tasty Nut Day

Who doesn’t love the crunch of a handful of pecans? If this is one of your favorite nuts, you’ll be happy to know that April 14 is recognized as National Pecan Day.

This is the perfect day to start snacking or to use the nuts in a favorite recipe or two. Today is a fun national day for foodies.

National Pecan Day has been celebrated since 1996. It was first started by the National Pecan Sellers Association.  The nut is so popular that the whole month of April is also know as National Pecan Month.

A bowl of shelled pecans spilling onto a counter above a pile of pecans in their shells with a text overlay that reads "National Pecan Day, April 14".

Many of the national and international days of the year have an association with food in some way. Are you confused about what national days are? Find out more in my national days guide.

For another fun nut inspired national day, be sure to check out National Pistachio Day.

Fun pecan facts

Pecans are a healthy nut. The nut has a lot of antioxidants as well as many vitamins and minerals and heart healthy fats.

Pecans are low in cholesterol and sodium and high in protein. They are known to have many health benefits. Here are some fun facts about pecans.A pecan tree branch with a text overlay referencing fun facts about pecans.

  • Over 80% of the pecans used around the world come from the United States.
  • A pecan tree has both male and female flowers on the same tree and these are wind pollinated.
  • The word pecan comes from an Algonquin Native American word that describes nuts which require a stone to crack them open.
  • San Saba Country in Texas has proclaimed itself as the pecan capital of the world. This might be doubtful, since Georgia is the production leader!
  • The average recipe for pecan pie uses almost 80 pecans.
  • A pecan is not actually a nut. It is a drupe, which is a fruit with a single stone or pit that is surrounded by a husk.
  • Pecan trees can live for 200 years but you only get a heavy crop of nuts every other year. The alternate years are lighter.
  • If you are looking for fiber in your diet, eat pecans. A serving gives you about 11% of your daily fiber requirement. Pecans are also one of the most nutritious nuts and are widely used in baked goods.
  • The handles of the torches for the 1996 Olympic Games were made from the wood of Georgian pecan trees.
  • The pecan tree has been the state tree of Texas since 1919.
  • The calories in pecans is 694 for a cup of pecan halves.
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How to celebrate National Pecan Day

The obvious way to celebrate the day is by snacking on a handful of pecans. Here are some other ideas:
A pile of pecan nuts spilling onto a counter.

  • Plant a pecan tree. Pecan trees grow to a height of 70-100 feet and are hardy in zones 6–9.  You might even be able to sell your pecans one day.
  • Use pecans as counters in a board game. Get nutty by using pecans along with another type of nut as a counter in a Tic Tac Toe game.
  • Wear an “I love pecans” apron while baking up your favorite pecan treat.
  • Crack open your pecans easily with a pecan opener tool.
  • Spread the word on social media with the hashtag #NationalPecanDay. Here is a tweet to get you started.
Celebrate #NationalPecanDay with one of these tasty pecan recipes. Click To Tweet

New recipes with pecans

One of the best ways to celebrate pecan day is to use them in recipes. Pecans can be used to make home made granola, to jazz up your stuffing mix, and make fabulous baked goods. 

Although pecans are thought of for their use  in pies and other baked desserts, they are also a popular ingredient in many savory recipes. A handful of raw pecans makes the perfect healthy snack.

These recipes show that there are lots of ways to incorporate this heart healthy nut into your diet.A greens salad with cheese, mushrooms, carrots and pecans, above a bowl of pecans with a text overlay that reads "10 pecan recipes".

There are closed to 2000 national days in the year. Don’t miss a single one of them. Come often to see which national day we are celebrating here at Always The Holidays. 

Also, be sure to check out the monthly list of days to see what other April national days are celebrated this month. You can also print out my April word search printable if you enjoy doing puzzles.

If you are a foodie by nature, check out the national food days in April, as well.

Admin note: This post first appeared on the blog in April of 2018. I have updated the post to add new photos, additional recipes, a video and more tips for celebrating the day.

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Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are "affiliate links." This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive a small commission from the sale, but the price is the same for you. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."