Chestnuts: Properties, Nutritional Values, Calories

Chestnuts, a symbol of the autumn season, should never be missing on our tables. They are, in fact, very rich in properties and, as the peasant tradition teaches, they can replace a source of carbohydrates. The chestnut period runs from late October to the whole of November. The chestnut ( Castanea sativa ) are fruits rich in fiber, minerals, and folic acid, which are helpful during pregnancy and in cases of anemia and fatigue. Let’s find out better.

Chestnuts Description

Chestnuts are the fruit of the wild Castanea sativa tree, from which, following grafting and pruning, actual cultivation was born, from which chestnuts originate. What are the differences between chestnuts and marroni?

  1. Chestnuts are smaller, have a flattened shape, and are a dark color.
  2. Browns are more prominent, have a rounded shape, and are a lighter color.

In addition, compared to chestnuts, they have a sweeter flavor and greater crunchiness. The fruit is contained in a complex structure called a hedgehog.

What Chestnuts Contain

Chestnuts are packed with nutrients and energy. In particular, they contain:

  1. Complex carbohydrates.
  2. Fibers.
  3. B group vitamins.
  4. Iron, potassium, phosphorus, calcium, and magnesium.
  5. Antioxidants.

Properties And Benefits Of Chestnuts

Thanks to the high fiber content, chestnuts have high satiating power and can be eaten at the end of a meal to promote a sense of satiety. Additionally, fiber slows down the absorption of nutrients and helps regulate blood sugar and cholesterol levels. They are rich in complex carbohydrates. Therefore they can replace a portion of cereals or bread: a valid alternative in case of gluten intolerance!

The presence of simple starches and sugars makes them an excellent source of energy. They are rich in folate and B vitamins that must never be lacking in pregnancy. They are essential in preventing congenital malformations and the synthesis of DNA, proteins, and hemoglobin. Therefore, the consumption of chestnuts during pregnancy is excellent!

A 100g serving of chestnuts covers 15% of the folate requirement of an average adult. The proteins of the chestnuts are 3.7 g per 100 g of product. Vitamins of the chestnut? Chestnuts are rich in vitamin B6, which is:

  1. Involved in metabolism ;
  2. in the production of hormones ;
  3. in the production of red blood cells and white blood cells ;
  4. in the prevention of aging;
  5. useful in preserving the functionality of the immune system.

A 100g serving of chestnuts covers 26% of the vitamin B6 requirement of an average adult.

Finally, as mentioned, they contain a fair amount of mineral salts, including:

  1. Iron ;
  2. potassium ; 
  3. phosphorus ; 
  4. zinc ;
  5. magnesium ;
  6. football. 

Calories And Nutritional Values ​​Of Chestnuts

100 g of roasted chestnuts contain

  1. 193/821 kcal/kg;
  2. water 42.4 g;
  3. carbohydrates 41.8 g;
  4. sugars 10.7 g;
  5. protein 3.7 g;
  6. fats 2.4 g;
  7. saturated fat 0.4 g;
  8. total fiber 8.3 g. 

Chestnuts, Allies Of

  1. Intestine
  2. Metabolism
  3. Nervous system
  4. Immune system
  5. Muscles
  6. Bone
  7. Blood circulation.


There are no particular contraindications to the consumption of chestnuts in healthy subjects if consumed in adequate quantities. Due to the high fiber content, they may not be recommended in irritable bowel syndrome or gastrointestinal disorders. They are not recommended in allergic subjects, for which it is recommended to consult your doctor.

Who Can Not Eat Chestnuts

If consumed in adequate quantities, everyone can consume chestnuts regularly. For example, there is no correlation between chestnuts and diabetes. Therefore, even those who have diabetes can include them in their diet by balancing the meal in the best possible way with proteins and fats. In case of allergy or particular health conditions, it is always recommended to ask for the doctor’s opinion.

Curiosities About Chestnuts

The chestnut was known in the Middle Ages as “the bread tree. ” From this name, we can understand the nutritional importance of its precious fruits, which, rich in starch, were consumed by the poorest in place of bread.From chestnuts, a versatile flour was obtained. Chestnut flour, very nutritious, is still used today in various preparations in the kitchen. They can be eaten roasted, steamed, or boiled. The caloric intake of boiled chestnuts is lower due to the water content.

You Use Chestnuts In Cooking

With a sweet taste, chestnuts are excellent if eaten alone but perfect to combine with some hot dishes such as soups and soups of cereals, legumes, and vegetables. Toasted and crunchy, they can flavor salads and main courses. You can prepare delicious desserts with chestnuts, such as castagnaccio, a traditional Tuscan dessert made with chestnut flour. 

How To Peel Chestnuts

Peeling chestnuts can be tricky, but here are some tips to be able to do it more conveniently: Before cooking the chestnuts, make a longitudinal cut. If you intend to cook them in boiling water, let them soak for a few hours first. If you intend to steam them, add oil to the cooking water, which will favor the detachment of the skin. If you intend to cook them in a pan, after having cut them, boil them for about two minutes and then put them in a pan with a lid, they will tend to open by themselves.

How To Cook Chestnuts

Chestnuts can be cooked in different ways, and the cooking time varies according to the mode:

  1. The roasted chestnuts are prepared by boiling them directly on the fire, inside a special pan with holes.
  2. Baked chestnuts can be baked in a pan at 200 ° C for about 30 minutes.
  3. The boiled chestnuts are cooked in boiling water for about 30 minutes.
  4. Steamed for about 30 minutes.

In all cases, it will be necessary to cut the peel of the chestnuts with the help of a knife to facilitate cooking.

A Recipe With Chestnuts

A traditional Tuscan recipe based on the typical autumn “jewels”: the castagnaccio.


  1. 300 g of chestnut flour;
  2. 30 g of sugar ;
  3. Two tablespoons of pine nuts ;
  4. Two tablespoons of raisins ;
  5. Five nuts ;
  6. Three tablespoons of olive oil ;
  7. One pinch of salt ;
  8. One sprig of rosemary. 


Soak the raisins in warm water to soften them. In the meantime, sift the flour and work it with 1 liter of water, sugar, and a pinch of salt to obtain a thick and homogeneous mixture. Grease a mold and pour the dough into it, distributing it evenly. Sprinkle the surface with pine nuts, rosemary needles, chopped walnut kernels, and squeezed raisins. Bake in a scorching oven at 200 degrees for about 1 hour.


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