You’ve probably tasted peanut butter on sandwiches or with apples, but tahini might be new to you.
These spreads are both creamy and tasty, and people use them in different ways, like on bread or in desserts.
We’ll take a closer look at their flavors, nutrition benefits, and how you can use them. Let’s find out which one comes out on top!
Comparing tahini vs peanut butter
|Tahini (sesame seed butter)||Peanut butter||Reduced-fat peanut butter (Jif brand)|
|Taste||Mildly nutty, toasty, slightly bitter||Nutty, slightly sweet||Mild peanut flavor, slightly sweet|
|Texture||Thin, creamy||Thick, smooth & creamy (or crunchy)||Thick, smooth & creamy (or crunchy)|
|Keto?||Yes||Maybe (4 g net carbs)||No|
|Glycemic index||40||Peanuts=14||Unknown; likely low like regular peanut butter|
What is tahini?
Tahini is a rich and creamy paste made from toasted and ground sesame seeds. These tiny seeds are transformed into a smooth, velvety spread that boasts a nutty and slightly bitter flavor profile.
Tahini is nut-free, vegan, and paleo and keto-friendly!
What is peanut butter?
Ah, peanut butter, the classic American favorite! This spread is a product of roasted and ground peanuts, often combined with a touch of salt and sweeteners. The result is a rich, smooth, and slightly sweet spread.
You can get different types of peanut butter including reduced-fat, natural, chunky, smooth, salted/unsalted, and even flavored!
Differences between tahini and peanut butter
Taste: Tahini has a mild, nutty taste with a subtle bitterness. It’s not too overpowering, making it great for blending with other flavors. On the other hand, peanut butter boasts a rich, roasted peanut flavor with a hint of sweetness, delivering a more robust taste that peanut lovers adore.
Texture: Tahini has a smooth and runny consistency, almost like a liquid nut butter. It’s easy to drizzle or blend into various dishes. Peanut butter, on the contrary, offers a creamy and thick texture that’s perfect for spreading on bread or crackers, creating a satisfying and indulgent mouthfeel.
Color: Tahini typically presents a lighter hue, ranging from off-white to pale beige, while peanut butter displays a deeper, appealing brown color due to the roasted peanuts.
They also differ in their nutrition and uses, which I’ll explain next…
How to use tahini vs peanut butter
Tahini is commonly used in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisines. It’s an essential ingredient in dishes like hummus, baba ganoush, and halva. Tahini can also be used for cooking meats, as a dressing for salads or as a dip.
You can also use tahini for baking like you would with other nut butters. I love making tahini carrot cookies with oats, tahini, carrots, cinnamon, and maple syrup – they are so chewy and delicious.
Peanut butter’s sweetness shines in desserts, smoothies, and baked goods. It can also add depth to savory dishes like Thai-inspired peanut sauce or peanut butter chicken. And let’s not forget the classic PB&J sandwich!
Can you substitute tahini for peanut butter?
While tahini and peanut butter have distinct flavors, in some recipes, they can be interchanged with delicious results. For instance, if you have a peanut allergy or simply prefer a different flavor, tahini can be an excellent substitute for peanut butter in recipes like cookies or energy bars. However, if you’re making hummus, I would stick with tahini!
Nutrition: Tahini vs peanut butter
Tahini and peanut butter are good sources of healthy fats – with around 16 grams per serving each, but peanut butter tends to have more calories and protein compared to tahini.
But tahini contains zero grams of sugar, whereas peanut butter tends to have more natural and added sugar – especially reduced-fat kinds!
|Serving size: 2 tbsp.||Calories||Total fat (saturated)||Total carbs||Net carbs (fiber)||Total sugars (incl. added)||Protein|
|Tahini (sesame seed butter)||176||16 g (2 g)||6 g||3 g (3 g)||0 g||5 g|
|Peanut butter (Adams natural)||200||16 g (3 g)||7 g||4 g (3 g)||2 g (0 g)||8 g|
|Reduced-fat peanut butter (Jif)||190||12 g (2.5 g)||15 g||13 g (2 g)||4 g (3 g)||7 g|
How to store tahini and peanut butter
In my experience, I like refrigerating tahini to thicken it up, making it easier to handle and spread. As for peanut butter, it depends on the type. For natural peanut butter with no additives, the fridge is your friend, preventing oil separation and keeping it fresh. However, if you’ve got the shelf-stable version with preservatives, it’s perfectly fine to store it in the pantry. Whatever you choose, just remember to enjoy them within around 2-3 months, or within the “best-before” date on the container.
Tahini vs peanut butter: The ultimate verdict
In conclusion, both tahini and peanut butter have their own special qualities and can be used in sweet or savory dishes. I personally love that tahini has zero sugar and healthy fats, and its mild flavor is delightful. However, natural peanut butter is still great with its rich taste and versatility. Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide which one you prefer. Either way, these nutty spreads will add something special to your meals and snacks!
Both tahini and peanut butter are nutritious and offer health benefits. Tahini is an excellent source of healthy fats and essential minerals, while peanut butter provides protein and heart-healthy monounsaturated fats. The choice depends on your dietary needs and preferences.
No, tahini and peanut butter have distinct flavor profiles. Tahini has a nutty and slightly bitter taste, while peanut butter is sweet and nutty.
Tahini is considered healthy because it’s a good source of healthy fats, protein, and essential minerals. It’s also rich in antioxidants and vitamin E, which support overall health.
No, tahini is not a peanut. Tahini is made from sesame seeds, whereas peanuts are the main ingredient in peanut butter.