Pros: Fresh-tasting, crunchy assortment. Combination of promotions brought price down to $2.99.
Cons: Fifty-percent peanuts (though they're tasty ones). One lone walnut (amidst some minor rubble).
How does one explain the sudden rash of nut bargains out there? The frequent (and often drastic) price reductions on premium brands include top-shelf assortments such as found in the Planters NUT•rition line. Has the worldwide nut crop exploded, or has Mr. Peanut simply gone nutty?
As a “loss-leader”, my local CVS pharmacy uses a different brand each week to draw customers in for impulse-shopping sessions that they hope will range beyond the nut aisle. Aside from dishwasher and laundry soap bargains, this shopper is a tough nut when it comes to maintaining budget-busting discipline.
How Heart Healthy is it?
According to the product label, “scientific evidence suggests but does not prove” that a diet rich in a variety of nuts may help prevent coronary artery disease. The suggested daily intake is 1.5 ounces (approximately 45 whole nuts). These numbers would indicate that a 9.75 ounce (276g) can of Planters NUT•rition Heart Healthy Mix will last a week. Not in this house.
The envelope, please . . .
In my particular container, the participants in order of quantity:
Almonds - Fresh, crunchy and tender would best describe the alleged nutritional “wonder nut”. Plentiful would also apply – 73½ appear, weighing-in at 3.5 ounces.
Peanuts - Often referred to as “filler”, this subterranean super-food is best (or better) as butter. A full cup (4.8 ounces) accounts for nearly half the assortment's net weight. These are good-quality legumes from the peanut-master himself. We would expect nothing less.
Pistachios - My favorite nut of all time. When fresh and unsalted, they have no equal. Best when added to premium ice cream (the kind without the icky green dye), or sprinkled on a hot fudge sundae. Here, these 68 individual examples of tasty nut nirvana equal 1.8 total ounces.
Filberts - The only known nut with an alias (hazelnut), these chick pea-shaped pebbles are my least-favorite members of the nut world. For whatever reason, their woody texture is always accompanied by an unappetizing hint of mold. Also used to flavor coffee; though not in my world. 10 of these nuts (0.6 ounces) put them in the minority – though not as much of one as the . . .
Walnuts - The act of including a ¾ walnut and some minor shrapnel is just pitiful. It was, however, a crunchy and mighty-fine tasting example of what a walnut can aspire to when left alone.
Pecans - 7 pecans in various stages of dis-assembly were successful at hiding behind all those peanuts and almonds. Not enough for a pie, but their presence was noted, crunched and appreciated.
Some may also appreciate the addition of sea salt to the mix. This would account for less than 50 percent of the amount of sodium found in a standard can of Planters mixed nuts. I'm more of a no-salt guy, myself – but the amount found here is tolerable. Cottonseed oil is also added for processing; though poses no detrimental distraction to the assortment's deliciousness.
A one-ounce serving (approximately 30 nuts) contains 170 Calories and 15g of Total Fat - 8 of which are Monounsaturated. Each serving also contains Potassium (200mg [6%]), Vitamin E (15%), Niacin (10%) and Manganese (a whopping 35% of RDA).
The pad of $1-off manufacturer's coupons found at the Planters display, along with a CVS sale price of $3.99 (US), made the NUT•rition Heart Healthy Mix a great value. I would stock-up on several cans, but, when it comes to nuts, there's just none of that old-fashioned snacking discipline found in this house.
A box of Cracker Jacks contains a prize. Despite the above appearance of a portable hard drive, not one of these marvels of technology was found in my can of nuts.
Planters NUT•rition Antioxidant Mix
Planters NUT•rition Digestive Health Mix
Kraft Foods Global, Inc.
Northfield, IL 60093