Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Peanut Butter vs. PB2 vs. Better'n Peanut Butter

I definitely have a love affair with peanut butter.  When we went on vacation this summer, I gave myself permission to eat what I wanted to for one week.  I was craving peanut butter, avocados and granola.  I know that doesn't seem unhealthy but portion control gets me into trouble.  That's why I do Weight Watchers.  Even before I started Weight Watchers last summer, I felt like I ate relatively healthy.  But portion control has to be a part of your healthy lifestyle too.  So on vacation, I ate as much peanut butter (the good, full fat kind), granola and avocados that I wanted.   I also ate some other things that were less healthy (I don't really need to mention those!)  :)  When I got back, I had gained 6 pounds!  That was with hiking every day in the national parks!  But I got it off in about 2 weeks and started losing again. 

Last week, I ordered some PB2 and got it in the mail yesterday.  I ordered both the regular and chocolate kind.  I was like a kid on Christmas morning, I couldn't wait to open it up and try it!  Nothing compares to the "real deal" (meaning delicious, full fat peanut butter) but I am up for trying the alternatives.  I thought it might be useful to kind of do a pros and cons list of the different types of peanut butter products out there.  I haven't tried all of them (especially since some of the products aren't vegan) but this is what I have tried. 

Regular Peanut Butter
Regular peanut butter is delicious and full of protein.  I also love that you can buy it organic.  I try to buy as many organic products as possible and most of the peanut butter alternatives are not organic.  I don't really think there's an alternative product on the market that gets the taste of true peanut butter just right.  However, real peanut butter is not too Weight Watchers friendly.  You can have 2 TBSP for 4 pts.  That's pretty pointy.  But you can have 2 teaspoons for 1 pt.  If you use peanut butter like a condiment, this can satisfy your craving for peanut butter without costing you a lot of calories, fat or points.  Sometimes I will toast an english muffin (Nature's Own 100 Calorie Multigrain is just 1 pt.) and then put 2 teaspoons of peanut butter on it with a little Organic Zero sweetener or Truvia.  It's a good snack that keeps me full for awhile.  Even though peanut butter is considered a very healthy food, I have to really watch myself with it.  I tend to eat way too much so I have to keep the alternative products on hand for that reason. 

I ordered (from both the regular and chocolate of PB2.  The regular has 45 calories, 1.5 grams of fat and 2 fibers for 2 TBSP.  That means if you do 4 TBSP, it's still going to be just 1 pt!  And the bonus is that when they take out the fat, it doesn't affect the protein.  2 TBSP of PB2 still has 5 grams of protein.  So when I had 4 TBSP of it with my english muffin yesterday, that was a 15 grams of protein snack for 2 pts.  (I also sprinkle a little sugar alternative on this too b/c I like my peanut butter to be a little sweet.)  Another perk is that since it's powder, you can take it on an airplane in your carry on bag!  

Later on last night, I decided to try a smoothie using the PB2.  I took a frozen banana, 1 cup of the Silk Pure Almond milk Original and 4 TBSP of the PB2 (mixed with 2 TBSP water) and put it in the blender.  The smoothie was okay but not spectacular.  I probably won't make it again.  It did have a peanut butter taste though.  I think if I play around with the smoothies a little bit I will be able to get one that I like.  I plan on trying the chocolate kind soon, but the nutritional information is just slightly different for it so I won't be able to have 4 TBSP for 1 pt-just 2 TBSP. 

Better'n Peanut Butter is very sweet.  That can be a good thing or a bad thing.  It's almost like a dessert food for me.  In fact, it's kind of a trigger food.  I have noticed that when I put it on my english muffin, I tend to put way more than the 2 TBSP I set out to use.   I think it's the sugar in it that causes me to do that.  With that aside, I do like the Better'n Peanut Butter.  It doesn't have the same consistency as real peanut butter but I still like the taste.  It also doesn't have quite as much protein.  I have noticed that when I use it for my breakfast, I don't feel full for very long.  I find myself wanting to eat something again right away.  I think that might actually be more of the sugar than the protein that causes that.  

So, my conclusion is that real peanut butter is ALWAYS best.  If you can eat it without worry in your diet, then you should go for it!  However, if you are like me and you need some alternatives, I would definitely recommend the PB2.  I ordered it from and they have a flat rate shipping fee of $4.95.  (That is a better deal than ordering it from Bell Plantation.)  I can't say that I would really recommend the Better'n Peanut Butter.   I think there's a whole lot of ingredients in it and overall it just seems like empty calories to me.  But that's totally my opinion.  :)  I hope this helps you on your quest for delicious, healthy peanut butter!  


  1. Thank you for the review! Very helpful.

  2. Cool to see that you agree that the REAL thing is better than processed crap.

    Seriously, tons of people aver that BnP is better because it has less fat and calories.

    But it has less HEALTHY fat, why would that be a good thing. Also it has less protein.

    When they took all the good-for-you, tasty, filling fat, they stuffed in a bunch of sugar and flour, but since it is lower in calories it is still better for you apparently.