Recipe

What is Almond Butter?

Almond butter is a food paste procured from blanched almonds crushed to a smooth paste with or without the skins and oil. It has a melt in your mouth feel and tastes like peanut butter or any other nut butter of your choice. It is good for health and it is getting popular among the conscious health eaters as it is prepared from almonds.

Almond Butter Nutritional Value and Analysis

Almond butter is also rich in fats, protein, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, which make it an ideal ingredient to be included in a balanced diet. Some main nutrients found in a 2-tablespoon serving of almond butter include:Some main nutrients found in a 2-tablespoon serving of almond butter include:

  • Calories: 190
  • Total Fat: 17 grams (These include monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats).
  • Protein: 8 grams
  • Fiber: 3 grams
  • Calcium: 8% of the RDI is taken from the tap water, which means that people who consume tap water constantly may develop certain diseases due to the presence of these contaminants.
  • Iron: To provide better information on the nutrient composition of foods, the following nutrients should constitute 6% of the RDI.
  • Magnesium: Hence, the RDI was supplemented by 13% for the preparatory and main years.
  • Phosphorus: According to the results obtained, the share of the RDI that should be spent to achieve the set objectives and goals is 15%.
  • Potassium: Thus, only 6% of the RDI is provided which is insufficient for the proper functioning of the human body.
  • Vitamin E: Thus, according to the recommendations of Codex Alimentarius, 37% of the RDI is used in the labeling of meat products in different countries as the maximum limit of added sugar.

Moreover, almond butter also has vitamin E, manganese, and phytochemicals that are useful in preserving the cells from the damaging effects of free radicals. Magnesium and manganese present high contents, which are essential in supporting bone health.

In a comparison between peanut butter and almond butter, almond butter has higher amounts of Vitamin E, Calcium, Iron, and Magnesium. It is also slightly lower in calories and sugars as well as cheaper to produce compared to white sugar.

Blessing of almond butter: health edition

Regularly eating almond butter can provide the following evidence-based health benefits:Regularly eating almond butter can provide the following evidence-based health benefits:

1. May Improve Heart Health

Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats in almonds and almond butter decrease LDL cholesterol, and as a result, diminish the chances of heart disease. Several works also relate a higher consumption of nuts to up to 50 percent decreased chance of contracting heart diseases. This must be attributed to nuts’ ability to reduce blood pressure, inflammation, oxidative stress, weight and diabetes which are all necessary causes of heart diseases.

2. It aids in managing diabetic symptoms and hunger pangs.

With the nuts being high in healthy fats, fiber, protein and low net carbs, almond butter can aid in digestion, maintain blood sugar levels and even lead to feeling fuller for a longer time. Almond butter in diets or in between meals may be helpful in regulating blood sugar and preventing binge eating.

3. May Aid Weight Loss

Contrary to being considered as fattening since they are rich in fat, investigators have found out that individuals who consume nuts are more likely to weigh less and gain lesser weight over time compared to those who do not consume nuts. How almond butter can help in weight loss: One, almond butter helps in promoting fullness, two, it assists in increasing the metabolism and, three, it helps in selecting low calorie foods. However, it is still important to be cautious about the quantity of almond butter you consume since it is relatively high in calorie content.

4. Reduce Inflammation

Almonds and almond butter are rich sources of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals with strong anti-inflammatory composition. Almond butter has been demonstrated to help with diarrhea and may also be helpful for those with chronic inflammation, which is a risk factor for most major diseases.

5. May Help Reduce Risk Of Developing Type 2 Diabetes

Several pieces of research suggest that consuming almond butter and other nuts on a daily basis is associated with a decreased likelihood of getting type 2 diabetes. These all point to the fact that nuts can help control blood sugar, insulin sensitivity, inflammation and weight – all factors that could be behind this reduced risk of diabetes.

6. Promote Brain Health

Almond butter contains several nutrients such as riboflavin, L-carnitine that are essential for enhancing the functioning of the brain and may assist in avoiding neurodegenerative disorders including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. The nuts also contain antioxidants that play the role of protecting the body from oxidative stresses which are harmful to brain health.

7. Improve Skin Health

Almond butter or oil helps in a variety of ways; if applied directly to the skin, it can reduce wrinkles – a sign of aging. Of these nutrients, fats are particularly moisturizing for the skin and vitamin E and antioxidant properties prevent skin cell damage due to exposure to the sun. It also plays a vital role in skin renewal because of the zinc in almonds.

8. Support Strong Bones

Almonds and almond butter contain massive amounts of manganese, magnesium and phosphorus which are all important minerals for growth of bones and support of bone tissue. Intake of these minerals from foods such as almonds can be encouraged to reduce the risk of diseases such as osteoporosis.

Potential Downsides

Despite the many health perks, there are some downsides to consider:Despite the many health perks, there are some downsides to consider:

  • Can be very calorie dense and it is easy to consume a lot of them. It is recommended to use a serving spoon for serving the jelly rather than using spoons to take directly from the jar.
  • Phytate content. Glycemic index in almonds is low while almonds contain phytic acid that hinders mineral assimilation. This is not an issue if you have a healthy diet that consists of fresh fruits, vegetables, lean meats and lean protein sources.
  • Pesticide residue risks. Tree nuts generally contain high levels of pesticide residues, and almonds top the list of the most contaminated tree nuts. It is recommended to purchase organic or steam almonds before processing them into a butter.
  • Allergies. Almonds are some of the worst nuts with regards to causing allergies next to shellfish.

Furthermore, some of the commercial brands available in the market are processed and are made up of other ingredients such as palm oil, sugar, and preservatives that are not necessary. Look at the list of ingredients and pick a premium product that should contain only raw almonds and sea salt if possible.

In this article, we will discuss how almond butter compares to peanut butter, its nutritional value, and many more.

Almond butter has a similar texture and use in recipes as peanut butter, but they do have some key differences in terms of nutrition:Almond butter has a similar texture and use in recipes as peanut butter, but they do have some key differences in terms of nutrition:

  • A tablespoon of almond butter provides more fiber, and iron, calcium, vitamin E, and riboflavin than regular peanut butter. It also has slightly fewer calories and contain a little less saturated fat when compared to whole milk.
  • Comparing the two products, peanut butter has higher protein, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, niacin and vitamin B6 density.
  • Every one of the four known food allergenic nuts belongs to this group and peanut allergies are among the most frequent types. Almond butter is another variant which is also ideal for people who are allergic to peanuts. On the same note, people that are allergic to tree nuts should also avoid almond butter as it is likely to cause cross-reactivity.
  • They also have similar impacts on cardiovascular health due to their oil contents of the good monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids. However, peanut butter may contain added sugars and trans fats that are worse for the heart compared to plain bread.

However, almond butter is slightly higher in nutrients than peanut butter depending on how they are processed and prepared, and both can be good additions to one’s diet. Another great thing about almond butter is, it can be used instead of peanut butter in most of the recipes such as smoothies, oatmeal, sandwiches, and many others.

In a simple way, it can be made by blending almonds and oil with the use of a blender and a food processor.

Almond butter at home is extremely simple to make and only needs two items: almonds and a little oil or salt to season. Here are the basic steps:Here are the basic steps:

  1. Wash the raw almonds, drain them and arrange in a baking sheet to roast at 350 F for nearly ten minutes. This aids in improving their taste The enhanced slow roasting also helps in increasing the palatability of the meats.
  2. Take the toasted almonds out of the pan and put them in the bowl where the food processor is, then click the switch to the highest level. Scrape down the sides of the bowl occasionally while mixing to ensure all the ingredients are evenly incorporated.
  3. Almond butter is ready within 8-12 minutes and nuts are transformed into a smooth and creamy base of almond oil.
  4. Include a teaspoon or two of coconut or avocado oil if the texture is too dry or thick as required. For my second dressing, the smooth almond butter can also be thinned with a little water.
  5. Last, fold into the batter sea salt, maple syrup, cocoa powder, or any addition that you prefer. Spoon into an airtight jar and let sit at room temperature, or refrigerate for a longer, colder butter.

It is recommended that you utilize raw almonds and not the roasted ones that you find in the shops since the heat treatment robs the nuts of their nutritional value. It is also a plus since making your own avoids extra sugars, oil, and preservatives in the process

Some of the almond butter brands found in stores include the following;

If it is impossible to make the almond butter from scratch then there is always the option of purchasing the almond butter from the market. Here are some common types found in most grocery stores:Here are some common types found in most grocery stores:

  • Raw Almond Butter: It is a nutty spread produced from unprocessed almonds that are heated only to the point where they become brittle but retain more nutritive values than roasted nut spreads.
  • Roasted Almond Butter: Often has a deeper, nuttier flavor than that of raw almonds and can use roasted almonds. No additional vegetable oils or sweeteners should be added into the diet plan.
  • Salt or No-Salt Added: Select regular salted or low-salt almond butter depending on the specific requirements of the diet and personal tastes. This is particularly important for people who are advised to take low sodium products; therefore, the no-salt-added type is recommended.
  • Flavored Almond Butter: Present in liquid form as in chocolate chip or when used with cocoa powder, honey, maple syrup and vanilla extract. As seen from the nutritional values, added sugars contribute to a rise in the carb content more than the plain almond butter.
  • Organic Almond Butter: Organic almonds that have not been cultivated with chemical pesticides or fertilizers as confirmed by the USDA. Organic is most preferred if you wish to minimize the use of pesticides and chemicals.
  • Unsweetened Almond Butter: It is free from added sugar or any other unwanted oil – all natural almonds only. This enables one to regulate other ingredients that one wants to include in the food.
  • Commercial Brands: Brands such as Jif Almond Butter, Justin’s and Barney are easily found in stores and are perfect for purchasing in small shops. However, I have noticed many health food stores also offer freshly ground varieties for purchase.

In regards to achieving optimal quality and closest to the natural almond butter, opt for the raw, organic, unsalted and unprocessed almonds. The said premium almond butters can easily be availed at local health food stores. The list of products should consist of raw almonds and optionally sea salt.

Tips for Storing Almond Butter

Even if almond butter has passed its ‘best before’ date, it is okay to consume if it has been stored in an unopened jar and kept in a pantry or cupboard for several months. After opening almond butter, it’s best kept in the fridge to maximize freshness and prevent the healthy oils from going rancid:After opening almond butter, it’s best kept in the fridge to maximize freshness and prevent the healthy oils from going rancid:

  • Pantry or Cupboard (unopened): One year
  • Pantry or Cupboard (opened): On average, a proper breakfast takes 2-4 months to prepare.
  • Refrigerator (unopened or opened): Up to a year

If the almond butter appears to be rancid, moldy or just tastes terrible, it’s high time to have it discarded. Spoiled or badly prepared nut butters should not be eaten.

Freezing should not be done on almond butters which has more oil content as this may affect the texture and also the taste of the almond butter. If you do freeze it, you should allow it to reach room temperature before using it again, however, do not let this happen as it will become too liquid.

Almond butter is easy to use and can be incorporated into a variety of recipes and diets.

Almond butter is a healthy swap for peanut butter, which you can incorporate in sweet and savory dishes. Here are some delicious ways to eat more almond butter:Here are some delicious ways to eat more almond butter:

  • Toast or sandwiches
  • Oatmeal meals that are prepared at nighttime, chia seeds pudding, parfaits
  • These include juices and smoothies, and protein shakes for those interested in building muscles.
  • Fresh fruits can also be dipped in a fruit dip such as apples, celery and bananas.
  • Some examples of products, which contain the main ingredient – peanuts, include cookies, energy bars and pancakes.
  • Vegetarian dishes such as stir-fried vegetables and vegetables in curry.
  • Yogurt bowls and cottage cheese are also alive and popular among customers.
  • This should be taken with dark chocolate or cacao nibs.

In particular, almonds are known to go well with fruits as well as vegetables. What it does is to provide nutrition and creaminess together with healthy fats that offset any carb-rich foods. You can add it to virtually any dish imaginable and put it in salad dressings, in your sweet potato toast.

Potential Health Risks

Despite the nutrition packed into almonds, there are some downsides for certain people:Despite the nutrition packed into almonds, there are some downsides for certain people:

Allergies

It is important to note that almonds are tree nuts and fall under the list of the top eight severe allergens. They may experience skin reactions such as hives or itching, skin inflammation such as eczema, swelling and in some cases cramps, diarrhea, vomiting and dizziness or difficulty breathing. At its worst, it can cause anaphylactic reactions. Certainly, people with any tree nut allergy should not consume almonds and products made from it at all.

Medication Interactions

The research also discovered that the manganese in almonds may interfere with the body’s use of certain drugs such as antibiotics and laxatives. Manganese in large quantities is toxic, so one should stay away from large doses of it and should consult a doctor in case he/she wishes to take manganese supplements.

Digestive Problems

While some people have specific nut intolerance and even if they consume nuts, they may develop such symptoms as bloating or cramping or diarrhea. This could be attributed to food allergies such as nuts or conditions like fructose malabsorption. Avoid using raw almonds as they may trigger allergic reactions; instead, roast almonds and peel off their skin to help those with sensitive stomachs enjoy the almond butter better.

High Oxalate Content

Almonds contain very high levels of oxalates, which are natural inhibitors of mineral absorption that are known to trigger formation of kidney stones in susceptible individuals. If you have a history of getting kidney stones, limit oxalate rich foods like almonds and consider using nut butters that contain lower oxalates.

Weight Gain

Almond butter can aid in weight loss, but calorie-wise, it is very dense for the amount usually consumed. It is very possible to pack on the pounds simply by consuming spoonfuls of almond butter daily if one is beyond his/her daily recommended calorie intake. For recipes, portion control and to ensure calorie intake is not exceeded next to the necessary amount.

Contaminants

Almond crops are particularly vulnerable to contamination by hazards such as pesticides, fungus and bacteria. This risk is minimized if proven organic almonds that have been handled correctly are used when preparing almond butter. While it can never fully rule out the occurrence, it can prevent it from happening. It is not a very high risk but still possible for contamination to occur even in commercial almond butters.

Almond butter is very healthy since it is packed with antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, and monounsaturated fats. However, it is also important to know that almond butter also has some negative impacts that are also important to consider as follows; Almond butter allergies; some people might be allergic to almonds and running into problems once they come in contact with almond butter.

Is Almond Butter Healthy?

The consumption of almond butter is suitable for individuals leading a healthy lifestyle, and it has numerous nutritional values. It is a source of monounsaturated fats, it has fiber which is good for your gut, has vitamin E and magnesium, and has antioxidants. It is established that consumption of almonds has benefits that include; it helps in weight loss, decreases LDL cholesterol, helps regulate blood sugar and decreases the risk of heart diseases.

Almond butter though is calorie-dense therefore portion control is essential when incorporating this product. People who have tree nut allergies should stay away from it because it contains possibilities of an anaphylactic reaction. Almond butter also has different tolerance levels with regards to its digestion depending on the person taking it.

In general, almond butter has a better nutritional profile than peanut butter. Real, raw and organic, not processed with added oils or sugars are the best for your body and your pets. Almond butter is a healthy substitute for peanut butter as it has a similar texture that can be used in most recipes. But it is actually okay to take just a tablespoon or two per day; just remember to include the calories when considering the health benefits of this tasty nut butter.

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