[ kash-oo, kuh-shoo ]
/ ˈkæʃ u, kəˈʃu /
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a tree, Anacardium occidentale, native to tropical America, having milky juice, simple, leathery leaves, and yellowish-pink flowers in open clusters.
Also called cashew nut . the small, kidney-shaped, edible nut of this tree.


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Origin of cashew

1695–1705; <Portuguese cajú, aphetic variant of acajú<Tupi akaʾiu
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022


What does cashew mean?

A cashew is an evergreen tree native to the tropical areas of the Americas, as in I took a nap under the shady cashew. 

The kidney-shaped seed found in the fruit of this tree is also called a cashew, or a cashew nut, as in Chang makes a tasty stir-fry using chicken and cashews. 

Because most people aren’t botanists or tropical tree growers, you’ll see cashew usually used to mean the seeds rather than the tree. If both items are being discussed, you’ll see references to “cashew trees” and “cashew nuts.”

Although they are often referred to as nuts, cashews are actually the seeds found inside of the cashew apples that grow on cashew trees.

Example: Roland ate so many cashews as a snack that he didn’t want supper. 

Where does cashew come from?

The first records of the word cashew come from around 1695. It ultimately comes from the Tupi acajú. Cashews are mainly cultivated in the Portuguese-speaking nation of Brazil and have been grown there for hundreds of years.

When eaten in moderation, unsalted cashews are considered a healthy food. They contain Vitamin K and minerals such iron, zinc, copper, and magnesium. Because they naturally come from cashew trees, cashews are a usual part of a vegan or vegetarian diet.

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What are some other forms related to cashew?

  • cashews (plural noun)

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How is cashew used in real life?

Cashew nuts are commonly sold in US grocery stores and are used in a variety of recipes.

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True or False?

A cashew is a fruit that grows on a vine.

How to use cashew in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for cashew

/ (ˈkæʃuː, kæˈʃuː) /

a tropical American anacardiaceous evergreen tree, Anacardium occidentale, bearing kidney-shaped nuts that protrude from a fleshy receptacle
Also called: cashew nut the edible nut of this tree

Word Origin for cashew

C18: from Portuguese cajú, from Tupi acajú
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012