Our team ate approximately one and a half of these glass tubs of sacha inchi seeds before we actually stopped to wonder what they were. That’s a good sign, right? We reached out to the most sustainable producer of these superfood seeds we could find, Imlak’esh Organics, to find out what all the buzz is about on these strangely addictive, protein-rich seeds. This is also the brand we keep seeing in every healthy grocery store lately, including here! Here’s why you should be taking notice…

What You Should Know: Growing on thick jungle vines, the sacha inchi seed thrives in the pristine, mountainous rainforests of Southeast Asia. Also known as Inca peanuts, these extremely nutrient-dense superseeds have been consumed by indigenous peoples as part of a healthy, nourishing diet for thousands of years.

With high protein content – higher than almonds and walnuts at 8.5 grams per ounce – sacha inchi is an excellent source of fuel. It contains all nine essential amino acids, as well as a spectrum of non-essential aminos – making it a digestible and bioavailable superfood. It also boasts a powerful combination of vitamins, minerals, omegas and nutrients.

Sacha inchi is thought to have ancient medicinal and ceremonial significance, and has been depicted in pottery found in burial sites dating back to 800 CE. Today, different cultures around the world recognize its nutritional value and have begun to incorporate these seeds into their diets.

Why You Should Try Them: Sacha inchi seeds are sometimes considered ‘vegan landfish’ because of their high protein and omega oils content. The human body cannot produce omega-3s; that’s why it’s important we get it from our food sources. It is vital for supporting heart health, boosting cognitive function and reducing inflammation, which is the source of many chronic diseases including arthritis, fatigue and even cancer. One ounce of sacha inchi seeds contains 17 times the amount of omega-3 fatty acids found in salmon. That’s 350% the daily value of ALA per ounce. Sacha inchi is one of the most sustainable sources of plant-based omega 3s on the planet – something vegans, vegetarians and omnivores alike will enjoy.

In addition to the healthy fats, sacha inchi also has an incredible amount of fiber – 5 grams in each serving, which is more than many nuts and seeds. Fiber has been shown to normalize bowel movements, lower cholesterol, promote feelings of fullness and manage blood sugar. This, combined with the benefits of its high protein composition, make it especially effective at enhancing weight loss, building lean muscle and maintaining high energy levels. This superseed also contains calcium, iodine, iron, vitamin A and vitamin C.

Let’s Get Together: Sacha inchi has a unique, yet somehow familiar flavor that makes it easy to incorporate into a variety of dishes and desserts. It is deliciously nutty, with a rich umami-ness that comes from the omega oils. These seeds are lightly toasted to unlock their full nutritional value, giving them a savory profile. You can enjoy them by the handful, take them with you on adventurous treks, sprinkle them on smoothies, add them to salads or grain bowls, throw them into stir fries, create a foundation for desserts and more! Try them in any recipe that calls for nuts or seeds.

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  1. I think the Sacha Inchi is native to the Amazon jungle in South America. It has been cultivated for centuries in the Amazon Rainforest of Peru, and that’s why it’s called “Inca Peanut”. Now it is also being cultivated commercially in South East Asia, but it is originally from South America.

    Monica | 09.01.2016 | Reply
  2. Agree with Monica above. I would also like to point out that a small segment of the population can have a serious allergic reaction to Sacha inchi seeds. I for one, in 2013 after eating just a handful of sacha inchi seeds from Vega suffered terribly within 20 minutes . The most violent illness of my life. The sickness included vomiting for the next 6/7 hours and diarrhea at the same time accompanied but a burning aching sensation all over my skin. It was awful. Not thinking that is was the seeds, I had a couple seeds a few days later and had the east same reaction. Arghhh. I contacted Vega at that time, but found them less than helpful or empathetic. Be forewarned……

    Brigitte | 09.01.2016 | Reply
  3. Sacha Inchi originated from Peru, but grows in many tropical rainforests today — including Southeast Asia, Costa Rica, and Hawaii. Different environments create variations in the seed because of climate, altitude, weather, humidity, etc. Sacha Inchi from the pristine Southeast Asian rainforests are our favorite because they produce a smaller, crunchier seed. Maybe you can try one from Imlak’esh Organics. Vega has stopped producing Sacha Inchi seeds, maybe there was something off about the say they produced it?

    Kathleen | 09.12.2016 | Reply
  4. Brigitte! Thank you for posting!! I am not allergic to anything. I can eat any and all foods without an issue. The first time I ate Sachi Inchi seeds I was violently ill as well. A second time I was eating a trail mix from Trader Joes and I ate a handful of something odd that tasted familiar and thought a strange familiar taste so I read the ingredients and uugghh, threw away the bag thinking about the last time I had eaten the seeds, thought I would be fine but within an hour the same thing happened. Just recently I ordered Mid Day Square Bars and seeing their website I did not notice with all the different ingredient photos, etc…that they added “sachi inchi protein concentrate” until after eating one of the two bars in the package yesterday, I was again violently sick. I looked at the ingredients on the package and shocked that I had not noticed before ordering that it had sachi inchi in it. I am researching this seed again today after such a horrible reaction last evening. Again, I found several benefits and only one recall from a powder that had been contaminated. However, like the powder I have a feeling this seed is not what it’s cracked up to be. I wish more people would post if they’ve had a reaction because I’m with you, BE FOREWARNED….this is a horrible reaction I have had now 3 times with more companies sneaking this seed into foods, making them chocolate covered or now that I am seeing “sachi inchi protein concentrate”. This seed causes violent throwing up and major gas and diarrhea, I fear this is not the superfood it boosts!

    Meghan | 05.15.2021 | Reply
  5. I had the same experience as Kathleen, I got violently ill after eating just a handful.

    Loretta | 03.02.2022 | Reply

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