Take several handfuls of nuts, throw them into a blender and whirr until smooth. Grab that goop and slop it onto your favorite slab of toast and you get the most people’s blueprint for peanut butter use. It’s this simplicity and delicious taste that’s seen peanut butter become the world’s most beloved spread. Follow the same process with other nuts, like almonds, and you’d be forgiven to believing you should only ever do the same.
Except, other nuts are not only nutritionally superior to the humble peanut, but they also offer a lot of more culinary touch points for you to diversify your diet. Use the following guide to expand your edible repertoire so you can get more protein, elevate your health, and inject a little more enjoyment into almost every meal. Nut butters deserve more than the garden variety slice of toast, here’s how to them the right way.
- Make the spread into a dip
Dips usually roll with an unsavory crowd, even the ones that taste savory. You’re probably reaching for the highly processed crackers, but there are better options. Sliced carrots. Cucumbers. Celery. Snow peas. Bell peppers. All of these are excellent health elixirs and when you dip them into a whip made from nut butters, you get the right balance of protein and fats to accompany them. Take some almond butter, even the kind with a little chocolate flavor added, and mix with an equal quantity of Greek yoghurt, honey and salt and you get a perfect dip that’ll turn even the veggies you hate into something you crave.
- Whip up a soup
Nut butters like almonds have all the healthy fats you could ever want in your diet. You can hide these fats, and their accompanying protein, in soups and it will add a level of creaminess that leaves you feeling satisfied.
- Make a smoothie
Chocolate protein shakes are the staple of any hard training exerciser, but it’s worth doing experiment for yourself. Try mixing up a regular chocolate protein shake and let it sit on the kitchen counter. Now, make a smoothie where you add chocolate almond butter (a banana, a few dollops of Greek Yoghurt, a whole egg and a few chai seeds. Take a sip of each one, both will be similar in protein content, but there will be a very clear winner. The smoothie. You may never look at your protein tub in the same way again.
- Create a dessert
Fruit is naturally sweet and is the perfect thing to eat if you’re craving a chocolate bar. By slicing up something like strawberries, pear, or apples you have a great desert dip that you can easily create with a premade chocolate almond butter. To create the dip, add some Greek yoghurt, a splash of honey and a little coconut oil. If you don’t have ready-made chocolate almond butter, then add a tablespoon of cocoa powder. Blend or mix then dip your fruit into it for a delicious alternative to dessert that’ll give you all the health you could ever dream of.
- Add it to oatmeal
Oats are a blank canvas, which gives you the perfect opportunity to add flavors that enhance your morning. Add a nut butter, flavored or unflavored, into your bowl while the oats are still hot, so the nut butter melts. Not only will the melting process be supremely satisfying, but you’ll have a new flavor option in the morning that gets you up and read.
Try adding these little adaptations to your daily meal plan and you’ll give your body all the goodness of the nuts you probably don’t eat enough of each day. You’ll be rewarded with more muscle, a better ability to fight off hunger pangs and a new perspective on the epic taste options you can fill your day with.