What Nut Butters Are Paleo?

What Nut Butters Are Paleo?

Is nut butter paleo friendly?

Nut butter is a tasty way to get an extra dose of healthy fats and protein in your meals and snacks - but is nut butter allowed on a Paleo diet? In short, it depends.

The basic premise of the paleo diet is to eat foods that prehistoric humans would have eaten during the Paleolithic era. That means lean meats and fish, vegetables and fruits, nuts and seeds, and anything else that our early ancestors could have hunted or gathered. While your great-great-great-great-great grandma probably wasn't grinding up almonds on a rock to spread on her paleo pancakes, the paleo diet does encourage consumption of nuts and seeds with one caveat - no peanuts. Peanuts are technically legumes, which are not paleo compliant, and that means peanut butter is off limits for paleo eaters. All other nuts and seeds are fair game, so if nuts and seeds are the only ingredients, snack away!

However, many big name nut butters you find on grocery store shelves include other ingredients that may or may not be paleo, so you'll have to take a closer look at the ingredient label.

Paleo Compliant Nut Butter Ingredients

Many nut butters include extra ingredients like sweeteners, oils, and flavors that can make shopping for a suitable nut butter more confusing. While it's not an exhaustive list, here are some common nut butter ingredients that are paleo approved:

Approved Nuts & Seeds

  • Almonds
  • Cashews
  • Hazelnuts
  • Pistachios
  • Macadamia nuts
  • Pecans
  • Brazil nuts
  • Hazelnuts
  • Coconut
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Chia seeds
  • Hemp seeds
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Flax seeds

Approved Oils

  • Coconut oil
  • Palm oil
  • Almond oil
  • MCT oil
  • Pumpkin seed oil
  • Macadamia nut oil
  • Walnut oil
  • Flaxseed oil

Approved Sweeteners

  • Coconut sugar
  • Honey
  • Maple syrup
  • Monk fruit
  • Lucuma
  • Stevia
  • Erythritol
  • Xylitol (but it's hotly debated, so many paleo eaters choose to avoid it)

Other Ingredients

  • Salt
  • Cinnamon
  • Flavorings from natural sources (like real vanilla extract, unsweetened cocoa powder, cacao, or berries)

Nut Butter Ingredients to Avoid on a Paleo Diet

While there are many paleo nut butter options out there, most conventional nut butters you see on store shelves include ingredients that are not allowed on a paleo diet. Steer clear of these non-paleo nut butter ingredients:

Non-Compliant Oils

  • Anything hydrogenated
  • Canola oil
  • Sunflower seed oil (the seeds themselves are fine, but not the oil on its own)
  • Peanut oil
  • Soybean oil
  • Rapeseed oil
  • Vegetable oil
  • Cottonseed oil

Non-Compliant Sweeteners

  • Sugar
  • High fructose corn syrup
  • Corn syrup solids
  • Artificial sweeteners (aspartame, sucralose, etc.)
  • Brown rice syrup
  • Agave

Other Non-Paleo Ingredients

  • Artificial flavors of any kind
  • Artificial preservatives
  • Dairy, including in chocolate ingredients

Which nut butters are paleo friendly?

If you're a nut butter lover, you're in luck! If approved nuts and seeds are the only ingredients, or if the ingredients are on the approved list above, you're ready to get snackin'.

Most Yumbutter flavors (excluding our Peanut Butter and Peanut Keto) include paleo friendly ingredients, so all these options are safe:

  1. Creamy Almond Butter, Superfood Almond Butter, Inergy Almond Butter Minis, No Sugar Added Almond Butter, and Plant Protein + Probiotic Almond Butter
  2. Cashew Butter
  3. Sunflower Seed Butter
  4. Keto Nut Butters - Pecan, Chocolate Almond, and Macadamia


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