Among the many nut butter options on the market, walnut butter is one of the healthiest choices. It’s packed with heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants – but how does it compare to the more common peanut butter? Can they be used interchangeably? Let’s find out!
Comparing walnut butter vs peanut butter
|Reduced-fat peanut butter (Jif brand)
|Earthy, buttery, slightly bitter
|Nutty, slightly sweet
|Mild peanut flavor, slightly sweet
|Smooth & creamy
|Thick, smooth & creamy (or crunchy)
|Thick, smooth & creamy (or crunchy)
|Maybe (4 g net carbs)
|Unknown; likely low like regular peanut butter
What is walnut butter?
First things first, what is walnut butter? Well, it’s exactly what it sounds like – a luscious, creamy spread made from roasted walnuts. So, all you need is walnuts to make walnut butter at home!
And just like other plain nut butters, you can whip up some homemade walnut milk by blending it with water and then straining it.
What is peanut butter?
Peanut butter is a classic spread made primarily from roasted peanuts. The ingredients typically include peanuts, salt, and sometimes additional components like sugar, oils (such as vegetable oil), and emulsifiers to achieve a smooth texture. Some varieties may also contain additives like preservatives or flavor enhancers, depending on the brand and type of peanut butter.
Differences between walnut butter and peanut butter
The main difference between walnut butter and peanut butter lies in their primary ingredients: one is made from walnuts, while the other is made from peanuts.
Made from pure, roasted walnuts, walnut butter boasts a unique earthy flavor that sets it apart from peanut butter, which is more sweet and salty.
The texture of walnut butter can be a bit thicker and grainier compared to peanut butter, which is usually smoother and creamier. The oil content in walnuts is generally lower than that in peanuts, affecting the spread’s texture.
How to use walnut butter vs peanut butter
Walnut butter’s unique flavor pairs well with both sweet and savory dishes. You can spread it on toast, swirl it into oatmeal, or use it as a dip for apple slices. The subtle bitterness also complements salads and pasta dishes, adding a depth of flavor that peanut butter can’t quite match.
Peanut butter, on the other hand, is a master of versatility. From classic PB&Js to decadent peanut butter cookies, this spread can do it all! It adds creaminess to smoothies, gives a nutty punch to sauces, and works wonders in savory stir-fries. There’s hardly a limit to where you can use peanut butter!
Can you substitute walnut butter for peanut butter?
Both spreads can be used in similar ways, such as on sandwiches, toast, or as an ingredient in various recipes. However, substituting one for the other will alter the taste profile of your dish, so it’s best to opt for walnut butter when its earthy undertones complement the overall taste.
For example, walnut butter might not be the ideal replacement for peanut butter in a classic PB&J sandwich. But it could be a fantastic choice if you’re whipping up a walnut-based salad dressing or a walnut butter cookie.
Nutrition: Walnut butter vs peanut butter
Walnut butter is a clear winner when it comes to omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential for heart health and brain function. These healthy fats can help reduce inflammation and promote overall well-being.
Additionally, walnut butter is among the lowest oxalate nut butters, making it a great choice for those concerned about oxalate if you have a history of kidney stones.
On the other hand, peanut butter boasts an impressive protein content and is a valuable source of essential minerals like magnesium, phosphorus, and zinc.
However, it’s worth noting that some commercial peanut butters may contain added sugars and unhealthy fats, so always check the label and opt for natural, unsweetened versions if possible.
|Serving size: 2 tbsp.
|Total fat (saturated)
|Net carbs (fiber)
|Total sugars (incl. added)
|19 g (2 g)
|2 g (2 g)
|1 g (0 g)
|Peanut butter (Adams natural)
|16 g (3 g)
|4 g (3 g)
|2 g (0 g)
|Reduced-fat peanut butter (Jif)
|12 g (2.5 g)
|13 g (2 g)
|4 g (3 g)
How to store walnut butter and peanut butter
Walnut butter, with its higher omega-3 content, is more susceptible to rancidity and should ideally be stored in the refrigerator. On the other hand, peanut butter can be kept at room temperature, but refrigeration can also extend its shelf life and prevent oil separation.
As for the shelf life, nut butters generally stay good for several months when refrigerated. Always check the label for specific storage recommendations, but consuming them within a few months of opening is a good rule of thumb.
Walnut butter vs peanut butter: The ultimate verdict
In conclusion, both walnut butter and peanut butter are delicious and nutritious in their own right. You can’t go wrong with either choice!
However, walnut butter’s high omega-3 content makes it a more nutritious choice. And I must admit that when it comes to taste, peanut butter holds a special place in my heart.
In the end, it’s about finding a balance between health and taste, making walnut butter my top choice, but I won’t deny indulging in the occasional spoonful of peanut butter!
Well, it depends on what you’re looking for. Walnut butter has more omega-3 fatty acids and is lower in carbs and sugar, but peanut butter has more protein.
Walnut butter and almond butter are among the healthiest nut butters due to their high content of beneficial unsaturated fats, essential nutrients, and antioxidants, which can contribute to heart health and overall well-being.
The healthiest peanut or nut butter is one that is made from 100% nuts, without any added oils, sugars, or artificial ingredients. Look for natural, unsweetened, and non-hydrogenated varieties.