Peanut butter is an easy snack you'll find in almost every pantry or fridge, and today on The Perfect Bite, host Andrea Jenna and nutritionist/acupuncturist Melissa Ramos of Sexy Food Therapy test five brands of peanut butter to find out which is the healthiest and most delicious.
The peanut butter line-up:
PC Blue Menu - Just Peanuts Smooth
Kraft - Smooth Peanut Butter
Nuts to You - Organic Peanut Butter
Skippy - Smooth Peanut Butter
No Name - Smooth Peanut Butter
As Melissa points out, peanut butter is a nutritious snack, rich in fibre and protein. Because it's high in fat, most people should limit their intake to one to two tablespoons a day, but some individuals, like those focused on building muscle mass, may want to eat more.
Of the five contenders, Melissa and Andrea have the same favourite, and it's no big surprise that it's Nuts to You Organic Peanut Butter.
"It tastes the most natural out of all of them to me," says Melissa.
Conventionally grown peanuts absorb a lot of pesticides because of their soft shells.
"This is helping to guarantee pesticides won't be in there," says Melissa of the peanut butter's organic status. "The others can't guarantee that."
Andrea finds that the PC Blue Menu peanut butter also seems natural.
"It feels just like peanuts, like when you crunch up a bunch of peanuts," she says. "It's like that without the crunch."
The Kraft peanut butter has a slightly thicker consistency and is definitely on the sweet side.
The No Name sample is the sweetest of the lot, and according to Andrea, looks "a little bit like ice cream" in the dish.
Melissa finds that the Skippy peanut butter is greasy and has a different consistency than the rest.
So what are some of key things to look for in the search for a healthy peanut butter?
As with any packaged food, look for items with the least amount of ingredients on the label. It's especially important with peanut butter to avoid hydrogenated oils — they make it creamer and increase shelf life, but are big health no-nos. Also steer clear of sugars, which are frequently added to peanut butter, and beware of unpronounceable ingredients — you want to know what you're eating.
Now go make yourself a snack, and look for another episode of The Perfect Bite in another couple weeks.