The cones that hold the nut are 1 1/2 to 2 inches long, irregular roundish shape. The edible seeds are contained inside a reddish to yellow-brown, oval shaped shell.
The cones begin to open around late August to early September. If the squirrels, birds and deer to get them before you do, other people will. Pinon nuts are harvested every year.
Some years the Pinon may not produce a nut inside the seed shell. So don't be surprised when you open one and it is empty. Mother Nature's little joke I guess.
The pinon nuts can be eaten raw or roasted. Pinon nuts are also made into gourmet coffee.
Pinon pitch is also used as antiseptic or antibiotic daub for sores, scrapes, cuts, scratches, and abrasions. Pinon is also used for wool dye. The pinon will produce black dye.
Pinyon Nut Update
Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!