Homemade nut butters taste great, but can be hard going on your blender. So instead we got the Runner’s World Lab to test drive 19 of the best shop bought nut butters for 2022.
Are nut butters good for runners?
Unlike gels and bars, which are heavily processed, natural nut butters contain nothing but heart-healthy nuts, and sometimes a pinch of salt.
Whether you’re scooping straight from the jar, adding to smoothies with your favourite dairy-free milk or topping toast, nut butter is a healthy and convenient plant-based, high-protein hit.
Which butter is best for runners?
We looked at hazelnut, peanut, almond and cashew butter to see which offered the best benefits for runners.
Consultant Dietician Ro Huntriss (@dietitianro) rates almond butter above them all: “This type of nut contains more vitamin E, iron, calcium and fibre than peanut butter.” Many female athletes can find themselves deficient in these nutrients, which can lead to injuries and slower run times.
Peanut butter is still very nutrient dense, although per serving it also contains more calories and saturated fats. Long runs tend to deplete your glycogen stores, so using fat for fuel can help minimise the impact.
Suffering from injury? Antioxidant-rich cashews may help to reduce inflammation and chronic disease risk. While hazelnuts are a rich source of the mineral manganese, described as a miracle mineral for runners.
How we test
The Runner’s World Lab sampled spoonfuls from 19 jars of nut butter. From classic peanut to chocolatey hazelnut to vitamin-packed almond and sweet cashew, each was rated for taste and appraised by an expert nutritionist.
We’ve chosen five of the best for optimum nutrition, taste and value for money.