Peanut butter has been a food staple for over a century but it isn’t necessarily a dietary option for everyone. Other nut butters have become popular over the years in response to health and allergy concerns like almond, cashew and sunflower butter.
Of these options almond butter has become the most popular.
So which butter is the best option for both your diet and taste buds?
The answer depends on some important factors, specifically as they pertain to your health needs. Let’s look at a four factors of the two most popular nut butters for a comparison.
Peanut Butter Vs. Almond Butter
Factor #1 Nutritional Value
First off, both almond butter and peanut butter have the same amount of carbs, fat and calories per tablespoon.
There are about ninety five calories per tablespoon in each.
Peanut butter is made by grinding dry, roasted peanuts. It is high in magnesium, folate, vitamin B3 & E. Peanut butter is more commercially available than almond butter, but frequently includes preservatives to give it a long shelf life and better flavor.
Almond butter, which is made from crushing almonds into a paste, has more vitamin E, more iron, more calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and antioxidants than peanut butter.
Both are excellent sources of fiber and protein and are high in monounsaturated (healthy) fats.
Even though, peanut butter is packed with nutrients, almond butter just has more of them per serving.
Winner: Almond Butter 1 Peanut Butter 0
Factor #2 Fat
The defining separation here is the type of fats contained in the two spreads.
Almond butter has 50% more mono-unsaturated fat than peanut butter and 25% less saturated fat.
Monounsaturated fats are commonly thought of as “healthy” fats. There is evidence that they may lower our risk of heart disease and stroke. It also contains zero trans-fats. So if you are worried about cholesterol clearly opt for almond butter.
You can definitely get organic all natural peanut butters without trans-fat as well but if you’re spreading Skippy and Jif on your apple for a snack you’re out of luck.
Winner: Almond butter 2 Peanut Butter 0
Factor #3 Alkaline Vs. Acidic foods
Many people these days have adopted an alkaline diet and drink alkaline water.
The facts and benefits of going alkaline are enough for another entire post. But, to sum it up, alkaline foods affect the ph level in your body in a good way while acidic foods do the opposite.
Many believe consuming alkaline food and water prevent many diseases and sicknesses as well as increase energy and a boost your metabolism.
A high acidic intake has been attributed to certain types of cancer and other bodily ailments.
Almonds are the only nut that are considered VERY alkaline. Peanuts on the other hand are highly acidic.
Winner: Almond butter 3 Peanut Butter 0
Factor #4 Cost
Because of the growing number of people with peanut allergies (1.5% of people in the U.S. alone), many people find almond butter to be a delicious and safe alternative.
You’re less likely to find additives or preservatives in almond butter than you are with peanut butter, but since almond butter is less commercially available, it tends to be more expensive than peanut butter.
Almond butter should cost around $6 per jar while you can get peanut butter in the $2 to $3 range.
Of course organic butters hike up in cost and shopping at a Ms. Greens or Whole Foods you can find yourself paying as high as $13 for certain types of almond butter.
Winner: Peanut Butter 1 Almond Butter 3
Almond butter is the clear winner with more nutrients per serving, more of the healthy fats and less of the bad fats, it is alkaline rather than acidic and thus more expensive.
So, if you don’t mind paying a little more for better quality, almond butter is by far the better choice.
Whichever kind of butter you ultimately decide on, make sure to read the labels. More popular brand names (such as the ones I mentioned earlier) tend to be made with unhealthy ingredients that are used to enhance and preserve flavor and ensure a long shelf life.
A good rule of thumb is that if you can’t pronounce the ingredient, you probably shouldn’t be eating it.
Look for nut butters with a minimal amount of ingredients (like organic butters, which typically contain just the nuts and a touch of salt).
For a healthy snack slice an apple or pear and spread on some almond butter. It tastes delicious and adding the almond butter will fill you up more than eating just the fruit alone giving you a more satisfied feeling until your next meal.