- A plant, Arachis hypogaea, from South America whose fertilized flowers send shoot-like structures into the soil where the immature fruits develop as two to four nuts in a light brown, dry and soft shell or pod, each nut being covered by a thin papery skin. The Spanish type has 2 light brown seeds per pod, the Valencia type up to 4 dark red seeds per pod and the Virginia type 2 dark brown seeds per pod. They are eaten raw or roasted as a snack food and are a major source of oil and protein. Peanuts are made into peanut butter and are used to thicken and flavour many sauces and stews.
- noun a nut which grows in the ground in pods like a pea.