Look out world. The PB&J is coming—and bringing some outrageous friends. Scientists are increasingly touting the benefits of nut consumption, including nut butters. A study at Loma Linda University in Southern California found that eating a handful of nuts four to five times per week was associated with a nearly 50 percent reduction in heart-attack risk (Archives of Internal Medicine, 1992, vol. 152, no. 7). Nut butters are “a good source of monounsaturated fat, so they can help keep blood sugar balanced better than snacks that are straight carbs, such as muffins or sweets,” says Jennifer Workman, a Boulder, Colorado nutritionist. Below are a few original options for spreadable nuts to enjoy the next time you feel like getting a little nutty.



Nutrition Notes
(approximately 2 tablespoons)

Indulge factor

Kettle Foods Roaster Fresh Cashew Butter

A sweeter, less nutty flavor. Has a bit thicker texture than peanut.

165 cal (126 from fat), 14g total fat, 3g sat fat, 0mg chol, 5mg sodium, 9g carb, 0g fiber, 4g protein

This is a great peanut substitute if you’re looking to branch out.

Kettle Foods Roaster Fresh Hazelnut Butter

Extremely nutty and rich and just a touch sweet.

188 cal (171 from fat), 19g total fat, 2g sat fat, 0mg chol, 1mg sodium, 5g carb, 0g fiber, 4g protein

The powerful flavor begs to be had straight but also makes a great HB&J sandwich.

Maranatha Natural Foods Macadamia Butter

Macadamia has a subtler nuttiness and a lighter texture than peanut.

230 cal (220 from fat), 24g total fat, 4g sat fat, 0mg chol, 0mg sodium, 5g carb, 3g fiber, 3g protein

The subtleties of macadamia can get lost if combined. Try it straight up or on a MB&J sandwich with light jelly or jam.

Arrowhead Mills Organic Creamy Valencia Peanut Butter

OK, peanuts are actually legumes, not nuts. This creamy and fairly sweet peanut butter has a roasted edge to it.

190 cal (150 from fat), 17g total fat, 3g sat fat, 0mg chol, 0mg sodium, 6g carb, 2g fiber, 8g protein

Get creative as you move past PB&J—or rediscover its glories. Try it in smoothies, or make a batch of peanut butter cookies.

Justin’s Peanut Butter Pumpkin Pie

There’s a spicy heartiness with a distinct nutmeg, cinnamon, and clove edge. Justin makes several other unconventional flavors.

170 cal (120 from fat), 14g total fat, 2g sat fat, 0mg chol, 135mg sodium, 8g carb, 3g fiber, 7g protein

The full, rich flavor stands alone on toast or makes an interesting PB&J variant.

Purely Organic Stramondo Pistachio Cream

Sweet, sweet, sweet. In fact, the pistachio hit is somewhat hidden by the sweetness.

Nutrition information isn’t available because of a small-business exemption.

Pour it over ice cream. If you have a serious sweet tooth, use it instead of jam or butter on a scone, biscuit, or piece of toast.

The SoyNut Butter Co. I.M. Healthy SoyNut Butter

The soy flavor is a bit blander and chalkier than peanut butter.

170 cal (100 from fat), 11g total fat, 2g sat fat, 0mg chol, 140mg sodium, 10g carb, 3g fiber, 7g protein

Use anywhere you would spread peanut butter. To cut down on the soy taste, try the chocolate or honey flavors.