Peanut butter is a tasty spread or food paste containing healthy fats, fiber, and other nutrients. Its nutrients can improve one’s heart health and blood sugar levels. But peanut butter, compared to others, is high in calories and fat. Thus, some people find it doubtful to add peanut butter to the menu. Moreover, some people are allergic to peanuts, stopping them from enjoying their delicious taste. Some people’s allergic reactions to peanuts involve itching, hives, vomiting, and in some cases, anaphylaxis and, worst-case scenario, death.
If you are one of those allergic to peanuts, you don’t have to fret because other alternatives are readily made in the market for you to try. These alternatives may contain healthier nutritional contents than peanuts and, most importantly, safer to consume. Most of them promise heart-protective qualities, too.
If you are craving peanut butter but have those allergic reactions, worry no more because here are the best alternatives to peanut butter you can consider.
Almond butter is high in omega-6 fatty acids. When consumed moderately, products rich in omega -6 fatty acids can be good for the heart while protecting the heart from different types of health risks. Almond butter is also a great source of omega-3 fatty acids compared to peanut butter. Omega-3 fatty acids can help lower blood sugar levels and reduce any threat of a heart attack.
Additionally, almond butter is nutritionally dense and contains Vitamin E, potassium, calcium, iron, and magnesium. Also, almond butter helps in lowering bad cholesterol in the body. Therefore, if you can’t enjoy a glass of peanut butter smoothie, try almond butter instead.
Coconut butter is produced from shredded coconut meat and tastes delicious when paired with jam. It has a not-so-sweet taste with a nutty flavor. This peanut butter alternative is rich in fatty acids while supporting the body’s immune system. Coconut butter is also rich in minerals, potassium, phosphorus, and magnesium.
Additionally, coconut butter can help prevent bacterial infections and boost metabolism. However, coconut butter does not contain much protein and high saturated fat content. Eating food with high saturated fat may pose a risk of health problems. Hence, consuming coconut butter in moderation is highly recommended
Pistachio butter is also a great source of omega-6 fatty acids. It is rich in fiber and potassium and contains more protein than other nut varieties. Research shows that pistachio butter aids in heart health, weight management, blood sugar level management, and anti-aging properties and promotes a healthy nervous system.
Pistachio butter also contains components that can boost antioxidant levels in the body and can lower cholesterol. You can buy pistachio butter in the market or make one for your consumption.
To make pistachio butter, you need to boil almonds and pistachios together. Then add some sugar and blend the mixture. You can also get creative by adding pistachio butter with dried cherries to make an Italian twist on the classic PB&J.
Macadamia Nut Butter
Macadamia nut butter has a creamy, tasteful flavor loaded with protein, omega-3, and omega-6 fatty acids but does not have as many fatty acids as peanut butter. This type of nut has a higher concentration of monosaturated fat, which is good for the heart. Overall, mac nut is a better butter option compared to peanut due to the higher fat content, but remember to have this nut butter in moderation.
Further, macadamia nut butter contains more minerals, such as magnesium, crucial for many body functions, such as supporting muscles and nerves.
Sunflower Seed Butter
Sunflower seed butter is the closest alternative to peanut butter. It has almost the same texture and flavor. Ideally, sunflower seed butter is also typical in the market. Its nutty flavor can achieve the same density as peanut butter and can easily be used as a spread on bread.
One tablespoon of sunflower seed supplies nearly a quarter of Vitamin E needed by the body for daily function. It is an excellent source of nutrients: proteins, healthy fats, and magnesium.
Sesame Seed Butter
One tablespoon of sesame seed butter contains calories, protein, and fiber and is cholesterol and sugar-free. Most fats come from the healthy unsaturated fat called omega-3, which helps reduce inflammation and the risk of a heart attack. Sesame seed butter is also a great source of other nutrients, namely iron, magnesium, calcium, and Vitamin B1. Findings also proved that it could help prevent certain types of cancer. You can use this to replace apples and peanut butter with fresh fruit and sesame seed butter. Some sesame seed butter is making their brands popular in the market.
Hazelnut butter is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids. Additionally, it is rich in oleic acid, a monosaturated fat that may help decrease any chance of heart problems and stroke. Hazelnut butter contains other nutrients such as copper, fiber, Vitamin E, protein, and manganese. Compared to peanut butter, it has a higher fat percentage. The only difference between hazelnut and peanut butter is that the former has half the amount of protein. But it is as delicious as peanut butter and a good spread alternative.
Pecan butter contains all the good stuff: vitamins, minerals, and a good source of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids compared to peanut butter. Also, nutrients such as fiber, magnesium, and potassium can be found in pecan butter. It can help in lowering cholesterol levels in the body. Compared to peanut butter, it has a higher fat percentage so try to keep your intake in moderation.
Vegans love soy butter. It has a lot of benefits compared to peanut butter. Soy butter is a better source of omega-6 fatty acids and contains half the saturated fats of that peanut butter. Besides, soy butter offers a healthy dosage of protein. Isoflavone is another nutrient in soy butter and helps prevent cancer and heart disease. Among other alternatives, soy butter is probably the best substitute for peanut butter. Also, it has a similar taste and texture to peanut butter.
Of all the nut butter products, walnut butter contains the most omega-3 fatty acids. Antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals are also present in this nut butter. It can help reduce inflammation and also improves blood vessels. But remember, walnut butter is lower in protein and fiber than other nut butter.
Although cashew butter doesn’t contain omega-3 fatty acids compared to other nut kinds of butter, it is a good source of monosaturated fatty acids, essential amino acids, and magnesium. Cashew butter is also a popular alternative to peanut butter as it is less fat and rich in folate, phosphorous, and iron. This type of butter is good for the heart. In cooking curry, rather than using peanut butter, cashew butter can be a good substitute. You can also use this nut butter in baking, making sauces and dips.
Pumpkin butter is a good source of protein, potassium, fiber, and beta-carotene, which can help increase your immune system’s function. Also, pumpkin butter is high in magnesium crucial for strong bones and healthy blood sugar levels. To make the perfect peanut butter substitute, you can grind dome pumpkin seeds in a food processor and add salt, olive oil, and honey. Mixing pumpkin butter with oats can make a delicious breakfast for anyone opting for a healthier meal.
For those struggling to find better alternatives for peanut butter due to health reasons and allergic reactions, there is plenty of nut butter products good for you in the market. Most of which can be found in your local stores. They are healthier, safer, and delicious to be paired with your sandwiches, smoothies, and other menus. The trick is to ask your nearest stores for more options.