If you’re a sucker for rich and creamy spreads like me, then this might be a tough choice here.
Hazelnut butter and sunbutter are both delicious options that might have you in a bit of a pickle – on the one hand, hazelnut butter is a tasty nut butter that just seems to melt off your knife everytime you spread it, while sunbutter is a nut-free option with a smoothness that gets your mouth watering.
So, which one should you choose?
Well, you can find that answer in this article! We’ll lay everything out from tastes to textures to culinary uses to storage to nutrition – everything you need to know to make the right decision!
Comparing hazelnut butter vs sunbutter
Hazelnut butter and sunbutter both share a smoothness and creaminess that’ll make them hard to put down. Their delicious textures can both be enjoyed in vegan and paleo diets (if the sunbutter is unsweetened), while hazelnut butter can also be used in keto diets.
The allergens in hazelnut butter include tree nuts due to the hazelnuts, while sunbutter has no allergens at all, making it a great substitute to nut butters in general. They both have a low glycemic index score, making either ideal if you’re worried about your blood sugar spiking – check with your physician first if you have any concerns!
|Taste||Rich, nutty, slightly sweet||Intense, earthy, roasted|
|Texture||Dense, smooth||Smooth, creamy|
|Paleo?||Yes||Yes (if unsweetened)|
|Glycemic index (GI)||Hazelnuts=0||Sunflower seed=35|
What is hazelnut butter?
Hazelnut butter is a dense and creamy spread made by grinding roasted hazelnuts into a delicious paste.
Roasting the hazelnuts enhances the flavor, and the natural oils in them contribute to the velvety and creamy texture. It usually doesn’t have anything added to it – hazelnuts are THAT tasty – but you can buy different types of hazelnut butter that create some new flavors by using some extra sweeteners and ingredients.
Nutella, for example, is a combo of hazelnut and chocolate – and personally one of my favorite variations of the spread (but beware of the extra oils and sugar added…).
What is sunbutter?
Sunbutter, also called sunflower butter, is taking roasted sunflower seeds and grinding them into a creamy paste.
The nut-free and allergen-free qualities make it a great substitute to popular nut butters like peanut butter and almond butter, but sunbutter should also be seen as its own separate option – its earthy roasted flavor is uniquely its own, and the texture does what many other seed butters have trouble doing: resemble nut butter.
Differences between hazelnut butter and sunbutter
The biggest difference between hazelnut butter and sunbutter is the taste.
Hazelnut butter boasts a rich and nutty taste with slightly sweet undertones, while sunbutter has that earthy and roasted flavor that gives aways its main ingredient of roasted sunflower seeds.
Both resemble each other in texture, with hazelnut butter being a bit more dense. It’s also worth mentioning again that hazelnut butter has tree nuts as an allergen, while sunbutter has none at all!
How to use hazelnut butter vs sunbutter
It’s hard to find something that you CAN’T use hazelnut butter or sunbutter for, they’re that versatile!
You can simply spread them on your toasts or waffles, put them into your oatmeal and yogurt, add them to your smoothies, and bake with them! If you want, you can use their unique flavors to enhance your salad or pasta dish through a sauce.
Personally, I like dipping vegetables into them – especially sliced apples!
Hazelnut butter can also be used to make different types of hazelnut butter like I mentioned before – mix in some cocoa and honey, for example.
And while you can use them interchangeably, their differing tastes can heavily change your dish’s flavor profile, so keep that in mind when experimenting!
Nutrition: Hazelnut butter vs sunbutter
Hazelnut butter is great for keto diets due to its low carb content – only 3 net grams per serving! It also has a bunch of iron, providing about 8% of your daily value. You’ll also get a bunch of healthy fats out of it, with some decent protein as well!
Sunbutter also has a bunch of healthy fats, with a good amount of vitamin E and magnesium. It has a solid protein content and doesn’t have too many carbs either – only 1 gram more than hazelnut butter. However, it often has extra sugar added to enhance the texture and flavor, so be sure to check the label before you buy!
|Serving size: 2 tbsp||Hazelnut butter||Sunbutter|
|Total fat (saturated)||20 g (2 g)||17 g (2 g)|
|Total carbs||6 g||6 g|
|Net carbs (fiber)||3 g (3 g)||4 g (2 g)|
|Total sugars (incl. added)||2 g (0 g)||3 g (3 g)|
|Protein||5 g||7 g|
How to store hazelnut butter and sunbutter
Natural hazelnut butter doesn’t have added oils or preservatives, so you should definitely store it in the fridge to prevent it from going rancid too early. It’ll also slow oil separation from happening – quick tip: give your spread a stir before storing it to further slow the separation!
Sunbutter, and any shelf-stable version of hazelnut butter like Nutella, can be stored at room temperature. I recommend a dark place, and preferably cool. Putting it in the fridge is not going to hurt it though, so feel free to chuck it in there – it might even extend the shelf-life!
Always be sure to check the label for the best-before date and any specific storage instructions – they can change from brand-to-brand and type-to-type.
Hazelnut butter vs sunbutter: The ultimate verdict
It all comes down to this: which spread is going to emerge victorious?
They both offer a good nutritional profile and unique tastes that compliment many culinary uses. Sunbutter offers a nut-free and allergen-free spread, while hazelnut butter shows why nut butters are so great!
My vote goes to hazelnut butter – it has a delicious taste and dense, creamy texture that is mouth-watering, with a lot of versatility for vegan, paleo, and keto diets.
That being said, sunbutter is a great decision for anyone wanting a nut-free spread!
Almond butter is generally thought of as the healthiest nut butter. It has a great blend of vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, and protein, making it a great healthy choice. Walnut butter is another great one!
Nutellas is hazelnut butter mixed with a bunch of other things, including chocolate, oils, and sweeteners.
I would recommend seed butter if you have a nut allergy, but otherwise it mainly depends on your preferences – although nut butters have a texture and taste that is very hard to beat!