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5 Awesome Nut-Free Butters to Try Instead of Peanut Butter

By Jillian Tuchman, MS, RD
August 29, 2021
Photo Credit: Hannah Guthman

We love peanut butter, but sometimes it’s good to mix things up. When you eat the same thing day in, day out, you start to get bored and your body doesn’t get the broad range of nutrients it needs. So grab a butter knife and read on for some of our favorite nut free spreads.

1. Sunflower Seed Butter

If you’re looking for something that’s pretty similar to peanut butter or almond butter, look no further than sunflower seed butter. Bonus: It’s a great source of vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant.

How to Use It: It’s fantastic on its own, in a smoothie bowl, or with classic PB pairings (like celery and raisins). It’s also a great swap in recipes; just don’t freak out if your baked goods take on a greenish tint after they’ve cooled. It’s a reaction between the chlorophyll in the sunflower seeds and the baking soda/powder.

Buy It: Once Again Sunflower Seed Butter, $11 for 16 ounces

2. Apricot Kernel Butter

Yep, you read that right: This butter is made from grinding the interior seeds of apricots, which are chock-full of vitamin E, fiber, and manganese. It has a satisfying amaretto flavor, a bit like your old friend almond butter.

How to Use It: Spread it on toast as is, or soup it up with some cacao, coconut oil, maple syrup, and cinnamon.

Buy It: Blue Mountain Organic Apricot Kernel Butter, $14 for 16 ounces

coconut butter

Photo Credit: Paleo Running Momma

3. Coconut Butter

Coconut butter is coconut meat that’s been pulverized into a creamy consistency. It’s rich in lauric acid, one of the precious fat-burning MCTs – short for medium-chain triglyceride, MCTs are used more rapidly for energy, so you burn it off before it lands on your hips!

How to Use It: Coconut butter is less of a spread and more of an ingredient. Use it to add cream-free creaminess to everything from coffee to curries. Or try these chocolate coconut butter cups from Paleo Running Momma.

Buy It: Nutiva Organic Coconut Manna, $22 for two 15-ounce jars

4. Pumpkin Seed Butter

This green-hued spread is loaded with zinc, magnesium, and omega-3 fatty acids. It has a thinner consistency than most nut butters and a toasty, nutty flavor.

How to Use It: Slather on sliced apples, whisk into salad dressings, or stir into oatmeal.

 Buy It: Dastony Sprouted Pumpkin Seed Butter, $15 for 8 ounces


Seed and Mill Organic Tahini, $10 for 16 ounces at Seed + Mill

5. Tahini

Tahini, made from sesame seeds, has a unique, distinctive flavor. It’s rich in calcium, iron, phosphorous and magnesium, and it’s also a great source of L-methionine, an essential amino acid that aids in liver detoxification.

How to Use It: Tahini is a rockstar in salad dressings, dips and marinades. Blend together 1/3 cup tahini, 1/3 cup water, juice of one lemon, 2 garlic cloves, and ½ tsp salt for one of the tastiest (and easiest) salad dressings out there. We also love it in these healthier blondies.

Buy It: Seed + Mill, $9 for 16 ounces


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