Peanut and Almond Butters

Lately on Nutrition Friday, I’ve been doing various and sundry nutrient deficiencies, including iron deficiency last week. Then yesterday things got a little dark around here, so to lighten the mood, no deficiencies. Instead, a challenge: peanut butter vs almond butter, which is better? (H/T mindbodygreen)

A pile of peanuts in the shell


Almonds, lots of almonds

First, let’s look at their nutritional profiles per tablespoon (according to the US Dept. of Agriculture)

Peanut Butter    Almond Butter

Calories:                                95.7                        98.2

Fat:                                         8.22 g                    8.88 g

Sodium:                                 68.2 mg                 36.3 mg

Carbohydrates:                     3.57 g                    3.01 g

Sugar:                                     1.68 g                    1 g

Fiber:                                      0.8 g                     1.65 g

Protein:                                  3.55 g                    3.35 g

Calcium:                                 7.84 mg               55.5 mg

Iron:                                        0.278 mg             0.558 mg

Magnesium:                          26.9 mg                44.6 mg

Folate:                                     13.9 µg                 8.48 µg

So, they’re about the same in calories, fat, carbs and protein. Peanut butter wins in folate, almond butter wins in calcium, iron, magnesium and fibre.

If you worry about sugar and salt, peanut butter has more, which I suppose would give almond butter the win there as well.

Outside of that, in spite of being near a wash in protein, almost 70% of the protein in peanut butter is accessible, putting it ahead of almond butter as a protein source.

In addition, almond butter is a better source of vitamin E, and has a better ratio of omega 3:6 fatty acids, beneficial for heart health.

Nutritionally, they’re pretty close. They are also completely unrelated to one another because the almond is a nut, and the peanut (in spite of its name) is not, it’s a legume. If you are allergic to one, you may still be able to eat the other. In point of fact, my oldest is anaphylactically allergic to peanuts, but can eat almonds.

In the end, which is better?

Peanut butter. It tastes better