Brazil Nut, the edible seed of a tropical American evergreen tree. Among its other names are Para nut, cream nut, and castana. The nuts are eaten as snacks and are also used in candies and pastries. They yield a fine oil used in salad dressings, in paint, and as a lubricant for watches.

The fruit consists of 12 to 30 seeds, or nuts, clustered tightly together within a round, hard outer shell. The shell is covered by a thick husk and is about the size and shape of a small coconut. The three-edged nut has a hard dark-brown outer coating and an oily white kernel.

Brazil nutsBrazil nuts are clustered tightly together within a round, hard outer shell.

The Orinoco and Amazon rain forests abound in Brazil-nut trees, which may attain a height of 150 feet (45 m). The trunks reach a diameter of 6 to 10 feet (1.8 to 3 m). The leaves are about six inches (15 cm) wide and up to two feet (60 cm) long.

The Brazil-nut tree is Bertholletia excelsa of the family Lecythidaceae.