Wednesday, November 20, 2013

MaraNatha No Stir Raw Maple Almond Butter

Smothered between two pieces of bread, spread on an apple slice or eaten straight from the jar, I love nut butters. It is the perfect snack or even small meal when in a pinch. Nut butters also deliver a slew of healthy fats, vitamins and protein. Unfortunately, many common nut butter brands use soybean oil as an ingredient.
At health foods stores, an assortment of nut spreads made without soy are available to purchase. But how do these fare in the Sans Soy test?

Product: MaraNatha No Stir Raw Maple Almond Butter      
Quality: The jar of almond butter looked less than appetizing on the grocery store shelf. The oil had separated from the remaining contents which resulted in a white layer on top. However, I decided to try it because almond butter is healthy, right?! After some vigorous stirring of the contents inside the jar I noticed there was a substantial amount of thick almond paste at the bottom of the jar which was similar to that of crunchy and old flax meal. The almond butter was too liquid like and runny at the top of the jar, but too dry and clumpy at the bottom.

Taste: Surprisingly, the almond butter taste was not bad. The maple syrup gave it a hint of sweetness. Once stirred for a few minutes, there is a mostly uniform consistency that does not require excess chewing or lip-smacking to swallow.

Price: A jar of this almond butter was a bit on the pricey side. At 12 ounces, the same size of an average soda can, the almond butter costs $11.79 from the MaraNatha website. However, in comparison to other almond butters lacking soy, MaraNatha rests on the inexpensive side.

Overall grade: C+. An awful lot of stirring preparation was needed for a brand that maintains ‘no stir’ on its label. Also, the inconsistent texture of contents made the snacks made with the dry butter at the bottom of the jar less tasty. Bonus points for glass jar packaging as this helps limit exposure to harmful BPA and other chemicals, and is environmentally friendly, too. 

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