Food Alternatives: Powdered Nut Butters & Their Health Benefits
| 3 min read
When you’re on a low-calorie diet, you typically look for creative ways to eat your favorite foods without suffering from the same caloric consequences.
Switching from peanut and almond butter to powdered nut butter alternatives may be one way for you to find such a cheat code.
Powdered nut butter is made when whole, roasted nuts have most of their natural oils pressed out before being grinded into a fine powder. This process is done so that the fat from the nut is eliminated but the taste is mostly preserved.
What are the benefits of powdered nut butters?
They’re not as fatty: Powdered nut butters – which mostly come in peanut and almond varieties – are low-calorie, low-fat alternatives to traditional nut butter pastes.
Most powdered peanut butter brands contain about 65 to 70% fewer calories and 85 to 90% less fat per serving than a spoonful of the traditional stuff. Most peanut butters have 15 to 16 grams of fat in one serving whereas most powdered nut butter brands boast less than two grams per serving.
Despite the huge disparity in fat and calories, the protein and fiber content per serving is almost identical.
They’re versatile: Another benefit to this powdery substitute is all the possibilities it presents as an ingredient. The powder can be reconstituted by adding water to make it a spreadable paste. Or you can take the dry, powdered version and use it in the following ways:
- Mix with flour to dredge meats
- Sprinkle onto oatmeal or into yogurt
- Stir into batters
- Use to flavor sauces
Are there any drawbacks to powdered nut butters?
They lack some nutrients: When nuts are stripped of their oils to make powdered nut butter, all that nutrient-rich vitamin D is stripped along with it.
Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin that’s important to vision and the health of your blood, brain, and skin. It’s also filled with antioxidant properties that protect cells against scavenging loose electrons — known as “free radicals”— which can damage cells and cause inflammation.
Peanuts and peanut butter are some of the most Vitamin E-rich foods out there. So, if you’re making the switch to powder, just be sure to get your Vitamin E from other food sources such as avocados, spinach, collard greens, asparagus, and mangoes.
They’re processed: To make the texture and taste a little more comparable to nut butter, powdered products contain small amounts of added sugar and salt. They are unlikely to mark a significant source of either salt or sugar, unless you eat powdered nut butter in large quantities. Some brands also offer salt-free and sugar-free versions.
They’re pricier: Keep in mind that for a fraction of those calories and that fat, you’ll be paying about double the price.
The standard peanut butter jar size is 16 ounces. Leading brands of peanut butter can be had for $3-5, while most 16-ounce jars of powdered peanut butter cost between $8-10.
Photo credit: Getty Images