Step into any supermarket and you’ll find shelves full of nut butters, not to mention the creations many of us are whipping up at home in our food processor.

How do nut butters stack up?

The good news is that nut butters (or nut pastes, as they’re sometimes called) provide many of the benefits of whole nuts. Pure nut butters – those without added oil, sugar, salt, or other flavours – are full of protein, fibre, and all the nutrients you find in whole nuts.

The main difference is that your body will absorb more fat from nut butter than whole nuts.  This is because fat is trapped in the fibrous structure of whole nuts, meaning a lot of it passes straight through our system. When the nut becomes a butter (or even finely chopped), the fat is no longer trapped, meaning your body can more easily absorb it.

Look for pure nut butters – those without added oil, sugar, salt, or other flavours.

As well as opening up a whole new world of nut consumption (have you tried nut butter stirred through your porridge?), nut butters are a great alternative for infants or younger children at risk of choking, or the elderly and those who have difficulty chewing.

How to make nut butter

Interested in making your own nut butter? Simply grab your food processer and some nuts, and get blending.  Keep in mind it may take 10-20 minutes for your nuts to become a smooth butter – it will likely look like dry sand for a while before becoming a creamy, delicious paste.

Remember, there’s no need to add oil, sugar or salt to your homemade nut butter.  Pop it into a jar and store in the fridge to keep it fresh.

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