There are all types of nut butters at stores these days. Of course, peanut butter has been around longest but there’s been lots of love building over the last five or so years for another nut butter on the block — almond butter. Because of the popularity of almond butter, we often get asked if it’s a healthier option than peanut butter, or vice versa. So this week we’re addressing that question.
Here are the hard nutrition facts…
Healthy fats: Tie! Both almond and peanut butter are excellent sources of monounsaturated healthy fats.
Calories: Tie! Both types of nut butters contain about 95 calories per 1 tablespoon serving.
Protein: Peanut butter. Almond and peanut butter are also super close when it comes to protein 3.5g and 4g per tablespoon (peanut butter just barely winning this category).
Saturated fat: Almond butter. Almond butter has slightly less saturated fat than peanut butter.
Fiber: Almond butter. Almond butter has a tad more fiber than peanut butter (1.5g vs. 1g), giving it a small advantage in the fiber department.
Vitamins & minerals: Almond butter. A tablespoon of almond butter contains 25% of your daily needs for vitamin E, 11% for magnesium, and 6% of your calcium needs. Vitamin E is a strong antioxidant that helps keep your heart and immune system healthy, and may even prevent the formation of harmful cancer causing compounds in the stomach. Magnesium is a mineral that is important for bone health and so is calcium. Both peanut butter and almond butter are great sources of potassium, which are important for bone health as well as keeping blood pressure in check.
The winner? Well, if we’re basing this solely on comparing nutrition stats, we’ll have to go with almond butter (just a tiny bit better!) because of its slightly higher nutrient levels and lower amounts of saturated fat compared to peanut butter. That said, peanut butter is still an excellent healthy choice and offers lots of nutrition benefits in addition to being so tasty and versatile. Both peanut and almond butter deliver the powerful hunger-fighting combination of fat, protein, and fiber. Since the two are close in nutrition, we recommend eating both since the flavors are so different. For instance, we LOVE almond butter in combination with pears, while we’ll never give up the famous peanut butter apple combo (or Elvis’ choice of peanut butter and banana!).
What type to buy?
While both nut butters are good for you, the benefits can be lessened to an extent by choosing the wrong product. When choosing any nut butter, be sure to pick one that doesn’t have additives like partially hydrogenated oils (trans fats!) or added sugars. The only things in the ingredients you should see are nuts and salt (unless it’s an unsalted variety, which is a great option, too.)
Which is your favorite nut butter? Do you take sides or favor both?