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13 Different Types of Nut Butter

Nut Butter layout

Quicklist: Nut Butters

  1. Acorn Butter
  2. Almond Butter
  3. Brazil Nut Butter
  4. Cashew Butter
  5. Chestnut Butter
  6. Coconut Butter
  7. Hazelnut Butter
  8. Macadamia Nut Butter
  9. Peanut Butter
  10. Pecan Butter
  11. Pine Nut Butter
  12. Pistachio Butter
  13. Walnut Butter

Despite the name, nut butter is not actually made from nuts, nor does it contain any butter. Most of the main ingredients of nut butter are botanically classified as fruits and seeds — such as peanuts, almonds, cashews, pecans, pistachios and macadamias. The only exception is the hazelnut.

Culinarily speaking, though, all the above-mentioned components are considered “nuts” the world over. Aside from using them as a spread, nut butter can also be added to a dish to replace animal fat or cheese, or simply just as an added “oomph” to the taste for a nutty flavor or protein punch.

Making nut butter can be a simple two-step process: grab some nuts, throw them in a food processor, and puree away.

Related: Peanuts | Pine Nuts | Chestnuts | Macadamia Nuts | Types of Nuts

1. Acorn Butter

Any nut that belongs to the oak tree can be used for acorn butter, and they usually consist of a single seed inside of a tough shell that is approximately 2.5 inches long and 1.5 inches broad.

Depending on the species of the nut, the acorn can take up to 24 months to mature, and after this, it is ripe for any number of uses.

Acorns are extremely nutritious and usually come from either white, red or black oak trees. They have large amounts of carbs, fiber, and protein, to name a few, and nut butter is very simple to make. 

2. Almond Butter

A bowl of almond butter topped and surrounded by almonds on a rustic background.

Almond butter is a very versatile food and has been gaining in popularity over the past few decades. It is high in calcium, potassium, iron, and vitamin E — one of its many benefits is that allergy-sufferers can substitute almonds for peanut butter, and in some cases, will barely notice a taste difference.

Peanuts are considered legumes but almonds are not. Almonds have a higher fat content than other types of nuts, but only about half the saturated fat, so they are a very healthy option. 

3. Brazil Nut Butter

Brazil nut butter

These large, oval-shaped seeds come from trees located in Central and South America, and the butter made with the nuts is usually made organically without any additional ingredients.

Brazil nuts have a high amount of selenium, which is good for your heart and has also been proven to repair your DNA and the immune system. Brazil nuts have a high amount of the “good” type of fat, and contain an antioxidant that is good for the brain.

They are beneficial for problems associated with your thyroid, asthma, weight, skin and digestion. Brazil nuts also have a lot of fiber and can help you control your cholesterol levels.

4. Cashew Butter

Top view of a bowl of cashew butter on cashews.

Cashew nut butter offers a lot of nutritional advantages, and if you like the taste of cashews, you’ll love the taste of the butter. More often than not, the cashews are either roasted or baked first, making the final result very creamy and rich.

Cashew butter is high in vitamin B, protein, and unsaturated fats. You can use cashew butter as a dip for apple slices, as an addition to oatmeal or smoothies, and of course, spread over biscuits or toast. In fact, you can even use it as a base for some very tasty vegan cashew nut cheese.

5. Chestnut Butter

Chestnut Butter.

Chestnuts are the fruit of a species of beech tree native to the Northern Hemisphere. Usually, when one thinks about chestnuts, the Christmas song comes to mind and roasting them over an open fire.

These nuts are different from other nuts in that they are mostly carbohydrates, with very little protein or fat, but their culinary uses abound.

Chestnut butter is a pureed mixture of chestnuts and water. Sugar can be added to the puree to make a dessert topping. The fiber in chestnuts makes them a good way to slow digestion, and the lower fat content may make them healthier than other nut types.

6. Coconut Butter

Coconut Butter.

Coconut butter is made from the entire coconut fruit, giving it a rich coconut flavor and making it a great alternative to coconut oil.

Coconuts are high in potassium, magnesium, and phosphorus, which are minerals that the body needs, but are difficult to find in foods. Additionally, coconut butter is high in lauric acid, which boosts immunity, and can help boost your metabolism.

Coconut butter can be used as a substitute for regular butter in baking, leading to some outstanding cookie recipe options, or it can be used for cooking as an oil alternative, or even just eaten straight out of the jar for all of the natural health benefits and great taste.

7. Hazelnut Butter

A bowl of hazelnut butter surrounded by hazelnuts.

Hazelnut butter is made by crushing and blending the hazelnuts. Although more common in Europe than in the United States, you can still experience the taste of hazelnut butter when you consume products such as Nutella.

The hazelnuts are usually roasted or baked first, and you can purchase both smooth and crunchy versions of the butter. Whether it’s store-bought or homemade, you should always stir hazelnut butter before you eat it, as well as refrigerate it after you open the jar.

Raw-food enthusiasts love to eat unroasted hazelnut butter, claiming the nutritional value is even higher. Any recipes that call for peanut butter, can substitute hazelnut butter instead, which is a good option for those with peanut allergies.

8. Macadamia Nut Butter

 Macadamia Nut Butter

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Nut butter made with macadamia nuts is very simple to make, as most of the time, the only ingredient is the nuts themselves. Macadamia nuts are high in fiber, vitamin B6, fiber, protein, and iron — however, they do tend to have higher amounts of fat and lower amounts of protein than many other nuts.

This doesn’t mean the nuts are not good for you, because they are. It just means that it may not be the only type of nut butter you want to include in your daily diet.

In fact, macadamia nuts have been shown to lower blood pressure, control blood sugar, and improve irregularity and other gut problems, so they truly have a lot of health benefits.

9. Peanut Butter

Top view of a bowl of peanut butter surrounded by peanuts.

Peanut butter is the most well-known type of nut butter, and if you visit any grocery store or supermarket, you’ll immediately notice that there are far more jars of peanut butter than there are any other types of nut butter. 

Peanut butter has a lot of fiber, protein, and vitamins E and B6. It is usually made from ground dry-roasted peanuts and can be either smooth or crunchy in texture. In the U.S. alone, people consume extraordinary amounts of peanut butter – more than $800 million, annually.

10. Pecan Butter

Pecan Butter

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James McWilliams’ The Pecan: A History of America’s Native Nut shows how America’s native nut became one of its favorite nuts after the Second World War. That success with consumers includes the nut butter version found in brands such as Purely Pecans and Artisana Organics.

Pecans, native to northern Mexico and the southern United States, have a lot of fiber, protein, iron, and several B vitamins.

In addition, they improve cardiovascular health, help you lose weight, get rid of inflammation, reduce the risk of stroke and high blood pressure, and strengthen the immune system.

11. Pine Nut Butter

Pine Nut Butter.

Pine nuts are the seeds of pine trees, found inside pine cones. They are very high in protein, iron, and magnesium, giving them tremendous energy-boosting power.

Their high levels of vitamins and antioxidants are good for your skin, and they may even have benefits for reducing the risk of diabetes or heart disease.

Pine nut butter, made from pureed pine nuts, boasts all of these outstanding health benefits in something you can cook with or enjoy on your toast. The natural sweetness of pine nut butter goes well with a variety of recipes or eating options, making this a versatile and nutritious option.

12. Pistachio Nut Butter

Pistachio nut butter

Pistachios are members of the cashew family, and they are used in thousands of recipes for dozens of different food items. Pistachios are chock full of nutrition, and they contain fiber, protein, B vitamins, calcium, and vitamins E and K.

Their other benefits include high amounts of antioxidants, promoting the healthy bacteria that should be found in your gut, improving the condition of your blood vessels, and helping you lose weight.

13. Walnut Butter

A small jar of walnut butter surrounded by pieces and a bowl of walnuts.

Although walnuts are not true botanical nuts, they are still considered nuts for most practical purposes. They usually consist of both English and Black walnuts, and are great sources of Omega-3 fatty acids.

If you choose to make your own walnut butter, all you have to do is mix the nuts and the right amount of oil in a food processor until it is the consistency that you like.

Walnuts have been shown to help with Type 2 diabetes, reduce tummy troubles, decrease inflammation, and even reduce the chance of getting certain cancers. They are also extremely tasty, whether salty, roasted or plain

Best Type of Nut Butters for . . .

Protein Boost – Peanut Butter

Peanut butter on bowl.

If you are looking to boost your protein intake with nut butter, peanut butter would be your best friend. It is the nut butter with the most protein — about 4g protein per 1 tablespoon serving. Ideally, peanut butter is just peanuts, roasted or ground into a paste.

However, some commercial brands add other ingredients like sugar, trans fat, and vegetable oils. Therefore, ensuring that the peanut butter you pick does not have additives is essential. 

Since peanut butter is a good source of protein, it can be a good option for someone following a plant-based diet. Besides, it is also rich in vitamins and minerals like vitamin E, folate, magnesium and copper.

It also contains antioxidants like p-coumaric acid and resveratrol, which are associated with a lower risk of heart disease and other chronic diseases.

Nutrition – Almond Butter

Almond Butter on jar.

As the name suggests, almond butter is made from ground almonds. Incredibly versatile, you can use it in savory recipes, spreads and sandwiches.

Nutritionally, almond butter has a good balance of monosaturated and polyunsaturated fats. These are healthy fats that help lower blood pressure and cholesterol. Almond butter can also help you control your blood sugar and weight, factors that play an essential role in cardiovascular health. It is more nutrient-dense than peanut butter thanks to its fiber, vitamins and minerals.

Baking – Macadamia Butter

Macadamia Butter on small bowl.

Macadamia butter is known for being delicious and versatile in the kitchen. Made from crushed macadamia nuts the slightly runny texture makes the nut butter perfect for baking — consider trying it the next time you are baking cookies or fudge.

Besides adding character to your baked goods, macadamia butter also has a wide range of health benefits. Like other nuts, macadamia nuts contain healthy fats, vitamins and minerals. They are also loaded with antioxidants that fight inflammation and lower cholesterol. Since they are rich in monounsaturated fats, they can help reduce risk factors for metabolic syndrome.

Environmental Impact – Pistachio Butter

Pistachio Butter on bread.

You might wonder which nut butter is the friendliest to our planet. Pistachio butter easily takes the day as its very sustainable and requires little water compared to other nuts.

Originating in Central Asia and the Middle East, pistachios are accustomed to desert climates. They are extremely low maintenance. Besides requiring little water, pistachio shells can also be burned to create energy.

Pistachio butter has a smooth and creamy texture, making it easy to incorporate into many dishes. You can use it in both sweet and savory meals. The nut butter contains two carotenoids, lutein and zeaxanthin, which give pistachios a green hue and play a role in improving the immune system. It is also rich in protein, healthy fats, vitamins and minerals.

Smoothies – Tahini

Tahini on small bowl.

Tahini has got to be the most under-appreciated nut butter of all time. Other nut kinds of butter, like peanut butter and almond butter, seem to get all the hype, while very few people appreciate this gem.

If you want to make a tasty, nutrient-packed smoothie, you can never go wrong with tahini. It will give your smoothie thickness and creaminess. And, of course, you will get extra fiber and protein. It is also rich in calcium, iron and magnesium.

The good thing about using tahini in your smoothies is that you don’t need much of it. One or two tablespoons is enough. Run the blender for a couple of minutes so that the tahini mixes perfectly with everything else. Favorite tahini smoothie recipes include blueberry tahini smoothie, dreamy banana tahini smoothie, and chocolate tahini smoothie.

Top Brands of Nut Butters

Ground Up

GROUND UP PDX Salted Eggnog Cashew and Coconut Butter, 12 OZ

Ground Up makes healthy and delicious nut butter without a lot of excess sugar. The brand’s flavor combos are amazing, and the best part is that they’re all completely sugar-free. Some are sweetened with just a bit of honey (no more than a full tablespoon per jar).

Each nut butter is made in a safe peanut-, gluten-, and dairy-free facility and contains up to five grams of protein and three grams of healthy fiber per serving. Try their vegan, Whole30-friendly roasted almond and roasted cashew butter. It contains unsweetened roasted coconut, vanilla bean, and sea salt to give it a delicious and pleasant depth of flavor. The texture is also smooth and fluffy, which makes it a great choice to spread on toast or bread, or to eat right out of the jar. 

NuttZo

Natural Power Fuel Smooth Nut Butter by NuttZo | 7 Nuts & Seeds Blend, Paleo, Non-GMO, Gluten-Free, Vegan, Kosher | Peanut-Free, 1g Sugar, 6g Protein | 12oz Jar

This nut butter brand has a wide range of options, including keto-friendly flavors. The NuttZo Power Fuel Smooth 7 Seed & Nut Butter is a blend of seven different nuts and seeds like almonds, cashews, Brazil nuts, flax seeds, hazelnuts, chia seeds and pumpkin seeds.

There are no sugar, palm oil, or GMO ingredients in this nut butter, and it contains an impressive six grams of protein per serving. It’s peanut-free, vegan, kosher, gluten-free, and keto-friendly. You can eat this delicious stuff right out of the jar or drizzle it onto pancakes and desserts.

It’s also a great additive for a smoothie if you want a little extra protein and a rich, nutty flavor. You can also spread it on fruit or crackers and toast.

The brand makes a wide range of other options, too including keto dark chocolate, traditional peanut butter, and seasonal flavors like pumpkin spice. You can find the products on Amazon with free shipping if you have a Prime membership.

Once Again

Once Again Organic Creamy Peanut Butter, 16oz - Lightly Salted, Unsweetened - USDA Organic, Gluten Free Certified, Vegan, Kosher - Glass Jar

The Once Again nut butter brand makes certified-organic peanut butter, and the company claims that it won’t separate like some other organic brands. It’s packed with delicious dry roasted organic peanuts and organic, sustainably sourced palm fruit oil and absolutely no preservatives.

A sprinkle of organic sugar and salt gives this delicious peanut butter its delightful flavor. The brand also makes an unsweetened version if that’s something you prefer.

They roast and grind blanched, dry-roasted peanuts until they’re creamy and then put the product inside durable, recyclable glass jars. The unsweetened option contains just a hint of salt to bring out the rich flavor.

Everything is ethically sourced from the US, Argentina, and Nicaragua for a fabulous nut butter you will feel good about buying. The adorable logo with a curious raccoon doesn’t hurt, either. The brand also branched out and now makes a variety of delicious, organic snacks, as well.

Crazy Richard’s

Crazy Richard’s - 100% All-Natural Crunchy Peanut Butter, No Added Sugar Peanut Butter Non-GMO Vegan (1 Pound (Pack of 6))

If you’re looking for exceptionally hearty, crunchy, but spreadable peanut butter, look no further than Crazy Richard’s. This peanut butter brand uses 100 percent American-grown, non-GMO peanuts.

Each batch is ground to a perfect consistency and every jar is free of additional sugar, salt, hydrogenated oil aor palm oil. It’s also gluten-free and vegan with up to eight grams of protein and three grams of fiber per serving.

It’s also quite affordable considering the quality of ingredients the brand uses to make its line of nut butters. Crazy Richard’s also makes a creamy version, too, and you can find the products on Amazon and other retailers online.

The brand also offers peanut powders, which are a great addition to smoothies and desserts if you’re looking for a little extra protein with a subtle nutty flavor.

Check out the alternative Crazy Richard’s almond and cashew butter products if you’re looking for a quality nut butter that’s made without peanuts.

RX

RX Nut Butter Peanut Butter, Chocolate, Delicious Flavor (2 Count)

RX is an energy bar company that’s popular among the calorie-conscious crowd, but now the company has branched out and is making a terrific variety of nut butter products. You can find them in a jar or in individual packets so you can take some with you when you’re on the go.

There’s nothing fancy about these nut butters but they’re certainly healthy and delicious. They combine egg whites, nuts, coconut oil, and half a date to give the products just the right amount of subtle sweetness.

The nine grams of serving per pouch makes them a great snack for athletes and anyone looking for a healthy and satisfying treat. Check out the other flavors from RX including honey cinnamon peanut butter, chocolate, and vanilla almond butter.

Where to Buy Nut Butters

A man buying nut butter at store.

You are probably familiar with the varieties of peanut butter that are found on the shelves of every grocery store in the country. But what if you want something other than peanut butter?

While many grocery stores are beginning to carry other types of nut butter, usually almond, there is a multitude of nut butters that are often not easy to find on your local shelves. Here are some suggestions for where you can find them:

Specialty Grocery Stores

A good place to find a variety of nut butters is a specialty grocery store. These stores often cater to unique cuisines or regional foods. For example, many larger cities have stores that provide Asian foods or European foods.

These stores often have different types of nut butters that are common to other parts of the world.

Natural Grocery Stores

Natural grocery stores have become common throughout the country. There are nation-wide stores, such as Whole Foods, more regional stores, such as Sprouts or Natural Grocers, and local stores.

Club Stores

If you have a membership to a club store like Sam’s Club or Costco, you can find bulk quantities of different types of nut butter on the shelves.

While the available varieties will vary from store to store and some stores may not carry any, if you find a store that has something other than peanut butter on its shelves and you feel confident in your ability to consume several pounds of nut butter, purchasing from a club store can be a great option.

Online Stores

With the proliferation of e-commerce, you can find anything online. And of course, that includes nut butters. From everyday webstores, like Amazon, to specialty stores selling nothing but nut butter varieties, there are hundreds of options for purchasing every nut butter under the sun from the internet.

A simple online search will yield page after page of webstores that will sell you any nut butter you could hope to try. If you are interested in trying something other than peanut butter on your sandwich or you want to try a recipe that calls for cashew butter, finding different types of nut butters is becoming easier.

However, knowing where to begin looking can sometimes be daunting. Hopefully, this list has given you an idea of places to look for these healthy and delicious varieties of nut butter, from your local grocery store to the internet.

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