Nut butter is exploding in popularity these days: from your basic peanut to sunflower seed, to hazelnut, to almond. High in protein and healthy fats, it serves as the perfect snack. The high fiber content in nut butter is found to quell hunger and aid in weight loss, and studies show people who consistently eat nuts or nut butter lessen their chances of developing type 2 diabetes or heart disease, compared to those who do not.1
However, it is important to avoid the nut butters with added oils and sugar and to find the ones with the fewest ingredients.
Justin’s Nut Butter, a Boulder, CO-based company, uses natural and organic ingredients, and strives to source ingredients as locally as possible (all of their nuts are sourced domestically). The company practices ways to reduce their carbon footprint, as well as working on sustainability. For example, all nut butter jars are made with 100% Post-Consumer-Recycled plastic and the headquarters is solar-powered.2
Justin’s Nut Butters come in jars, as well as single-serving size packs and 80-calorie packs. Most of the company’s products are made simply with nuts and organic palm fruit oil, and include variable ingredients, like organic cocoa butter, natural vanilla, sea salt, honey powder, and maple sugar. All of the nut butters are dairy-free and almost all are vegan.
Chocolate Almond Butter: made with premium chocolate and California almonds. One serving size (2 tbsps.) contains 180 calories, 14 g fat, 7 g sugar, and 5 g protein. Vanilla almond butter is a combination of organic cocoa butter, almonds, and natural vanilla. It has the same nutritional facts as its brother, chocolate.
Chocolate Hazelnut Butter: made with premium hazelnuts and homemade chocolate. It has 180 calories, 15 g fat, 7 g sugar, and 5 g protein, per serving.
Honey Almond Butter and Honey Peanut Butter: both have 190 calories, with 17 g fat, 3 g sugars, and 6 g protein, per serving. They are the only non-vegan nut butters in the company’s line, because they contain honey powder.
Classic Almond Butter: my favorite. It’s the most pure-tasting nut butter out there, in my opinion—probably because it only has three ingredients and very little sugar. Each serving size contains 200 calories, 18 g fat, 2 g sugar, and 7 g protein.
Classic Peanut Butter: also only contains three ingredients, and has 200 calories, 17 g fat, 1 g sugar, and 7 g protein, per serving.
Maple Almond Butter: also has 200 calories, 17 g fat, 3 g sugar, and 6 g protein.
Justin’s Nut Butter products can be found at Target, Walmart, Whole Foods, and other major grocery stores. They can also be ordered online through Amazon.com.
I like to eat my almond butter with bananas, alone for a snack, or on top of whole-wheat waffles, drizzled with a bit of honey for breakfast. And ever since I ran cross-country in college, I have religiously eaten a peanut butter banana sandwich about 2.5 to 3 hours before running in a race. It keeps me satisfied and full of energy, no matter how long I’m running that day. Plus, it’s downright tasty.
Incorporating nut butter into everyday snacks is simple. If you’re craving something sweet, put a tablespoon of nut butter on top of a square of dark chocolate. Before a work out, have a tablespoon of nut butter with a half of a banana. Try it on rice cakes or on whole-wheat crackers when you need a snack. It’s also delicious in oatmeal- just top your oatmeal with a tablespoon or 2 of nut butter, stir it up and add some fruit, and a little cinnamon.
If you’d like to try using Justin’s Nut Butter as part of your dinner, try Chicken with Savory Almond Butter Sauce:
Ingredients: 4 oz. Chicken Breasts, 8 oz. Sliced Mushrooms, ½ cup peas, ¼ cup sliced shallots, 3 tablespoons Justin’s Classic Almond Butter, whole wheat pasta, and 1/3 cup water and salt and pepper.
Directions: Put salt and pepper on chicken and sauté in a skillet for 3 to 4 minutes on each side. Remove chicken from the pan and keep it warm. Then, mix almond butter and water until combined well. Sauté the mushrooms, shallots and peas until tender. Add the almond butter sauce and simmer for five minutes. Serve over whole-wheat pasta.
Have you tried out Justin’s Nut Butters before? What do you think?