Peanut butter, almond butter, and cashew butter are all popular additions to protein shakes. They make adding essential fats, vitamins, minerals, and flavor to your daily shake or smoothie easy. However, what options do you have if you are unable to consume peanuts or tree nuts? Do you simply skip the valuable nutrition nut butter contains?
With a growing love for protein shakes as part of a healthy and active lifestyle, there has thankfully been an emergence of nut-free alternatives. Let’s investigate 5 peanut Butter alternatives you can use in your protein shakes.
Why Are Protein Shakes So Popular?
As fitness and muscle gain have become more in vogue in the last few years, protein shakes have grown steadily in popularity. Gone are the days when only seasoned gym junkies, elite sportspeople, and competitive bodybuilders consumed protein shakes. Now, protein shakes are marketed to ordinary people as somewhat of a ‘healthier milkshake’.
Rather than eat your calories, you can simply drink them and tick the boxes for daily intakes of protein, vitamins, minerals, and more. Not always used in conjunction with a workout, protein shakes also make for an easy snack or breakfast on the go.
Do Protein Shakes Actually Do Anything?
The idea behind protein shakes is that they help your body prepare for or recover from intense physical activity. Whey, a common ingredient in protein shakes was said to help repair muscles damaged during intense workouts. The massive calorie load and protein hit that protein shakes contain helps to boost energy and make huge gains in muscle mass.
While this may be true for athletic people, there is not a huge amount of research to suggest that protein shakes are particularly beneficial for ordinary people. They absolutely can form a healthy meal replacement and help to keep you full and avoid snacking.
They may also aid in weight loss and help some individuals to meet their daily nutrition targets. Keep in mind that when made using high sugar or high-fat ingredients and not coupled with regular exercise, protein shakes can have the opposite effect and encourage weight gain.
The key to a nutritious and beneficial protein shake is all about the ingredients.
Common Ingredients In Protein Shakes
Aside from your chosen protein powder, numerous added ingredients make up a nutritious and delicious protein shake. The most common additions are:
- Fruit, such as berries and bananas provide added flavor and sweetness without an excess of calories.
- Milk for added fat and creaminess, you may like to try soy or almond milk if you are lactose intolerant.
- Yogurt for enhanced gut health (provides prebiotics and probiotics.)
- Cocoa powder for chocolate flavor without the sugar content.
- Peanut and other types of nut butter. Both nutritionally and calorie-dense they help to bolster your protein shakes impact.
5 Peanut Butter Alternatives For Use In Protein Shakes
If you cannot consume peanuts or tree nuts, there are still some delicious and nutritious alternatives available to add to your daily shake.
Made from roasted soybeans blended till smooth with oil and salt, soynut butter is similar to peanut butter in consistency and color. Soynut butter is high in healthy fats, protein, and carbohydrates. It does not have a comparable vitamin or mineral profile to peanut butter, with the latter offering more benefits.
The major downside of soynut butter, however, is that soy is another common allergen alongside peanuts. Both soy and peanuts come from the same family and are legumes. This makes it unsuitable for many people as an alternative to peanut butter.
Made from smoothly ground and hulled sesame seeds, tahini butter has quite a strong taste that pairs well with more savory dishes. Sesame seeds are full of powerful antioxidants, as well as good fats and oils, however, sesame is also an allergen. A large proportion of people who have tree nut allergies will also be allergic to sesame. So this may also be unsuitable as an alternative to peanut butter in your protein shake.
Made from the whole coconut, not just the oil, coconut butter is made by pureeing the meat and oil of coconuts into a smooth paste. It is high in fiber, fat, and minerals such as iron and magnesium and has a strong coconut taste and sweet flavor.
Coconut is known to be high in saturated fat which can contribute to heart disease, the leading cause of heart attack and stroke. It is best consumed in only small amounts and while rare, can also trigger an allergic reaction in some people.
Not the healthiest alternative, it’s true! However, cookie butter has a crunchy, creamy consistency similar to peanut butter. Perhaps the least obvious downside when considering the sugar and fat content is in fact that cookie butter offers virtually zero protein. So while it may make your shake taste delicious, it is offering very little in the way of nutritional benefits.
Arguably the best alternative to peanut butter for protein shakes, seed butter offers a dense nutritional profile. At Beyond The Equator, our 5 Seed Butter is packed with essential vitamins and minerals, is high in protein, and is free of the top 8 allergens. It is also much lower in carbohydrates, making it an excellent choice for a keto-friendly protein shake.
Our seed butter is made from 5 roasted and finely ground seeds, namely; pumpkin, chia, hemp, flax, and sunflower seeds. All of these offer great nutritional and health benefits, which you can read more about here.
Take Your Protein Shake To The Next Level
With 8 grams of protein and around half the carbohydrates of peanut butter per two tablespoons serving, 5 Seed Butter is the winning swap you need. Non-GMO, vegan, made in an environment free of the top 8 allergens, packed with nutrition, and seriously delicious, you can’t go wrong!
Next time you make your protein shake or favorite breakfast smoothie, just add two tablespoons of 5 Seed Butter and enjoy! Shop our range today.