For those with peanut allergies, the elimination of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches can be a pain. However, you can still create great tasting nut butter and jelly sandwiches if you know the right nut butter to choose and where to find it.
There are several varieties of nut butters that can replace peanut butter in your diet. A word of caution, remember to check the ingredients label. Most nut butters are either manufactured on equipment with peanuts or in a facility that handles peanuts. Here is a list of nut butters recently found at Harvest Health Foods.
(PL) Earth Balance, $9.79
(PL) EastWind, $8.49
(EQ+) Naturally Nutty, $10.49
(PL) Tree of Life, $10.19
Soy Nut Butters
** I.M. Healthy Soy Nut Butter varieties, $5.39
Sunflower Seed butters
** Sunbutter Organic, $8.29
(EQ)(PL) EastWind Cashew Butter varieties $8.19
** Made in a peanut and nut free facility
(PL) manufactured in a plant that processes peanuts
(EQ) made on equipment that process other tree nuts
(EQ+) made on equipment the process peanuts
The taste test
Our taste test included 3 children, one of which has a severe peanut allergy, and two adults. Five nut butters were tested. Each nut butter was spread on bread and tasted without knowledge of the type or brand. Here are the results.
EastWind Cashew Butter Roasted
I.M. Healthy Honey Chunky SoyNut Butter
I.M. Healthy SoyNut Butter Unsweetned Creamy
EastWind Almond Butter
Sunbutter Sunflower Seed Butters
Cashew butter was the clear winner, voted number one by all. It tastes and looks the most like peanut butter. The surprise was the Honey, Crunchy Soy Nut butter. The honey gives this nut butter a slightly sweet taste and the crunch is so satisfying. Better yet, this soy nut butter is the least expensive nut butter and is made in a peanut free facility. The plain soy nut butter and almond butter were liked by all participants, but might benefit from a tasty jelly added to the sandwich. Last and least liked was the sunflower butter. Two of the children spit it out. It definately had a unique taste when compared to the other chosen nut butters.
Where to get nut butter
Most grocery stores only carry peanut butter. Try your local health food store to find the best selection of nut butters. Harvest Health Foods has three locations in the Grand Rapids area, and they carry several varieties of nut butters for you to try.