Paiute Indian Culture

Cultural Resources Contact Information:
Paiute Tribe Cultural Resources
440 North Paiute Drive
Cedar City, UT 84721

Phone: (435)-586-1112 x107
Fax: (435)-586-7388

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PAIUTE EATING AND DIET
Historically, the Southern Paiutes ate a large variety of food and, depending on the season, there was more food available at different times. It was common for several bands to camp together to share the natural animal or plant harvest. Southern Paiutes harvested and processed nuts, grass seeds, cactus fruits, berries, teas, and other plants. Some foods that are still used today include the piƱon nuts and scrub oat acorns, Indian rice grass seeds, wild rhubarb, and a variety of teas. Seed plants that are gathered include the spiny hop sage, Fremont goosefoot, herringbill, stickleaf or desert corsage, and tumbling mustard. Roots and bulbs such as the sego lily and the bitter root are used in cooking. Leafy plants are often eaten today as greens or added to other foods. These include Fremont goosefoot, Pahute beardtongue, and Indian spinach. Southern Paiute also eat some flowers like the globe mallow, wild rose, paintbrush, and Pahute beardtongue. Fruits of various species of cacti are also part of the diet and included prickly pear cactus and yucca. Edible berries come from juniper berries, desert gooseberry, wild grapes, chokecherries, sumac, and skunkbush. Meat products come from the deer, rabbit, elk, fish, antelope, chuckwalla, Gila monster, horse, duck eggs, quail, muskrat, grasshopper (insects and bugs), snakes, frogs, turtles, mountain sheep, prairie dogs, porcupine, and wild turkey. Today, in addition to these foods, Southern Paiutes shop in the local grocery stores and eat food common to most people in the United States.

Pine Nuts