Tiger Nut: Simple Facts, Uses and Benefits to Know

I look like a nut but am actually a tuber what am I? TIGER NUT

We begin a new series looking at tiger nuts

In this series we’ll cover:

  • General knowledge on tiger nut,
  • How to plant,
  • Tiger nut milk,
  • Tiger nut flour and some recipes.

I admonish you follow through the whole series,

If you have anything on the subject you would like us to write about do share on the comment box below

So what’s tiger nut;

Description of the Nut

The nut is a small rounded crop, the outer skin is yellow with brown or black stripes. it’s white on the inside when cut into half. The size of the nut ranges from 7mm – 20mm in diameter.

It has a sweet nutty like taste.

Its botanical name is Cyperus Esculentus and it belongs to the Sedge family

The crop has been in existence since ancient Egypt and it is grown much in West Africa

In different countries around the world the tuber is present,

In Nigeria it is available all year round.

It is grown in commercial quantity in northern Nigeria,

But it thrives well in other parts of the country and it’s something you can grow at home in your garden.

See how to grow tiger nuts at home.

In Nigeria tiger nut can be found in malls, open market, and street kiosk.

The nut is sometimes referred to as a superfood.

The Many Names of Tiger Nut

The crop known with various names, some location specific

Some of the names by which the crop is called are:

In Nigeria

  • Igbo – Aki Hausa
  • Hausa – Aya
  • Yoruba – Ofio
  • Efik – Isipaccara

Other Countries

  • Spain- Chufa
  • Germany – Chew-Fa
  • South Africa – Zulu Nuts
  • Egypt – Habel-Aziz

Other names are

  • Yellow Nut Grass,
  • Ground Almond
  • Yellow Nutsedge
  • Earth Almond
  • Rush Nut


Proximate Composition (100g of Fresh Tiger Nut)

  • Moisture content – 42.40%
  • Protein – 8.51%
  • Fiber – 13.10%
  • Fat – 17%
  • Carbohydrate – 17.82%

Minerals and Vitamin

  • Magnesium – 118.14 mg
  • Potassium – 267.18 mg
  • Phosphorus – 158.86 mg
  • Calcium – 43.36mg
  • Sodium – 17.02mg
  • Copper – 0.54mg
  • Iron – 2.82 mg
  • Zinc – 1.39mg
  • Vitamin A – 0.87 Mg
  • Vitamin C – 30.70mg

(source: Research Article – Clinical Investigation (2018) Volume 8, Issue 4)

Uses of Tiger Nut

Tiger nut used for different purposes in various industries

Food (Home and Industrial) Use:

For cooking, baking, roasting, grilling and taken fresh as a snack or processed snacks like Tiger nut sticks, Dakuwa

Further processing of the nut into

Milk: Tiger nut milk is a plant based milk, a healthy replacement of diary milk

Flour: Tiger nut flour is also produced from the tuber

The flour is an alternative to baking flour in some recipes to make cookies, bread etc.

The flour serves as thickener.

Oil: The oil used for cooking, baking and also used for other industrial uses.

It is further processed to make other meals like tiger nut pap, beverages, drink (Kunu Aya), juice.

Confectionary: used for flavour and sweetener in ice cream, fruit juice and biscuit

Starch is make from the tuber as well,

Used to make Tiger nut Yoghurt.

Cosmetics: Used in soap making and other skin care products.

Animal feed: it used to feed live stocks,

Poultry birds are not left out stating from the chaff when making tiger nut milk which you can always feed them with at home. Usually mixed with maize to produce feed for catfish.

Health benefits of tiger nuts

Here are some of the benefits of adding tiger nut a diet


Tiger nut has an energy value of 100cal / 100g this makes it an excellent energy drink when taking the milk.

Cancer risk reduction:

Help reduce the risk of colon cancer.

Helps with a healthy urinary tract:

It helps with urine production, and help in the prevention of urinary tract infection,

Very potent in treating infection.

Beneficial to the digestive system:

The high fibre content helps prevent constipation and promotes bowel movement,

it also produces digestive enzymes that help with flatulence, dysentery and diarrhoea.

Good for the hearts health:

This is how the nut helps your heart and,

helps to reduce bad cholesterol thereby increasing the good cholesterol,

and it also activates blood circulation.

Helps boost immunity:

The tubers ability to fight infection and bacterial makes it good at improving our immune system.

High in nutrients:

From the nutritional facts above you can see the nutritional composition,

Eating the tuber as snacks, drink whichever way it’s consumed, its nutritious and good for the body.

Good for healthy blood sugar level:

The nuts when taken without sweetener is good for diabetics,

The presence of arginine in the nut help improve insulin sensitivity and production this helps to promote healthy blood sugar level.

Promotes healthy reproductive health:

Promotes menstruation, it improves sexual drive, thus known as an aphrodisiac (anything that stimulates sexual desire).

Good for the skin:

The oil contains enough amount of vitamin E which is good for the skin.

Healthy bones and teeth:

It has high calcium content this makes it good for the bones and teeth.

Rate this post

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *