Looking for a healthy alternative to peanut butter? Allergic to peanuts and wondering if sunflower seed butter could be a good alternative? Just curious what sunflower seed butter is and how it compares to peanut butter?
Well, you’re in the right place. In this article, I describe exactly what each of sunflower seed butter and peanut butter are and then have a full sunflower seed butter vs peanut butter showdown including how they compare nutritionally, with how they taste, texture and how they are used.
I also discuss whether you can substitute sunflower seed butter for peanut butter in recipes.
While peanut butter has been popular and in many pantries for a long time, sunflower seed butter is far less known, so let’s draw back the curtain and work out which would win a peanut butter vs sunflower seed butter competition!
What Is Sunflower Seed Butter?
It wasn’t that long ago I hadn’t heard of sunflower seed butter (also called sunflower butter), but it’s a great spread that should be talked about more often.
So, what is it?
Sunflower seed butter is a paste made from sunflower seeds. In its purest form, it’s made only with roasted sunflower seeds which are ground until they form a paste to a similar consistency to peanut butter.
Commercial sunflower seed butter can have other ingredients as well such as sugar and salt. Sunflower oil is often added to help create a smoother, more spreadable texture to make it more like peanut butter.
What Is Peanut Butter?
Peanut butter doesn’t need an introduction – it’s very popular, and I’m sure you’ve probably tasted it before.
But do you know exactly what it is?
Peanut butter, unsurprisingly, is made from peanuts. In its purest, most nutritious form, it’s roasted peanuts which have been ground to form a paste.
Commercial peanut butter often has other ingredients as well, like sugar, salt, oils and other additives designed to stop the separation of the natural peanut oils.
Exactly what has been added can make a difference to how good it is for you with generally pure peanut butter (just made from peanuts) being the best option.
Sunflower Seed Butter Vs Peanut Butter
So when it comes to a peanut butter vs sunflower butter comparison, which wins? What are the differences?
Since these butters are made from different ingredients, they have different nutritional qualities. Here’s an overview of two tablespoons of some typical peanut and sunflower seed butters.
Note, exact values will vary depending on the brands and what is added.
|Peanut Butter||Sunflower Seed Butter|
They are both protein-rich plant-based spreads so there are some similarities including that they are both packed with healthy fats. There is more to the story than this, however.
Sunflower seed butter wins when it comes to Vitamin E content. It has about four times the Vitamin E of peanut butter. Vitamin E is beneficial as it’s a strong anti-aging antioxidant which helps preserve cell membranes. It can also act as an anti-inflammatory.
Peanut butter wins with vitamin B3 (niacin) content. It has nearly twice as much as sunflower seed butter. Vitamin B3 helps supply the body with energy.
When it comes to mineral content, both are good sources of potassium but sunflower seed butter wins with being a great source of more iron, magnesium, phosphorous, copper, manganese, selenium and zinc than peanut butter.
Peanut butter generally has fewer calories than sunflower seed butter although not by much.
Sunflower seed butter has less saturated fat and is generally healthier fat-wise because often palm oil is added to commercial peanut butter. A pure peanut butter (without additives) can be similar to sunflower seed oil in this respect, however. Sunflower seed butter is high in monounsaturated fats (the good kind).
Both peanut butter and sunflower seed butter are spreads and have a somewhat similar texture. However, sunflower seed butter is thicker than peanut butter. Often, sunflower oil is mixed in which makes the difference in texture less noticeable.
Peanut butter, which has palm oil added, will appear oilier.
Does Sunflower Seed Butter Taste Like Peanut Butter?
For many of you reading this, this may be the most important comparison. Does sunflower seed butter taste like peanut butter? Does it taste good?
They have different tastes thanks to their different ingredients.
Peanut butter has a strong, peanut flavor. Commercial peanut butters are usually quite sweet as well thanks to the added sugar.
Sunflower seed butter is a milder taste which has earthy, toasted tones added to the sunflower seed taste thanks to the roasting process of the sunflower seeds before making the butter.
While peanuts are roasted to make peanut butter too, this tends to bring out a stronger peanut taste rather than adding an earthy tone.
Which tastes better really comes to personal taste and does vary depending on what is added to the butter when it is made.
There’s not really much difference in how you can use peanut butter or sunflower seed butter. You can use them both as spread on bread whether toasted or for a sandwich. You can use them as dips or as an ingredient in items such as cakes and cookies.
They can also be added to salad dressings, yoghurt – really anything you want.
Can I Substitute Sunflower Seed Butter For Peanut Butter?
Yes, you can substitute sunflower seed butter for peanut butter anywhere you want. It will lead to a different taste, however, so be sure you are happy with this.
This can be a great way to go if you are trying to avoid peanut butter due to allergies.
So who’s the winner? Sunflower seed butter or peanut butter?
Really, it comes down to personal preference. So the winner is whichever you prefer. While sunflower seed butter does win overall when it comes to nutritional content, peanut butter isn’t bad if you buy one without additives.
If you are looking for an alternate to peanut butter, sunflower seed butter is an excellent choice. It’s a great option for anyone looking to avoid peanuts because of allergies or who want a healthier spread.