Almond Butter Vs Almond Paste What's The Difference

Almond Butter vs. Almond Paste – What’s The Difference?

This post contains affiliate links, and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links, at no cost to you.

Despite being finger-lickin’ good, peanut butter use in the long term can cause health problems due to the presence of saturated fats. So, more and more people are turning to Almond paste and Almond butter to meet their needs. But we have seen that many people are confused regarding the difference between Almond paste and Almond butter.

This confusion is totally understandable as Almond butter and Almond paste sound almost the same. How different can they both be different, right? The answer is that they are a lot different. In fact, you cannot use Almond paste instead of Almond butter in most recipes because the heat from cooking can damage the texture of Almond butter.

Why is that the case, you ask? Or what can be used instead of Almond paste? Well, we will explore questions like that and many more in this article. So, stick around till the end to find out all you need to know about Almond butter and Almond paste.

Other Nut Butters vs. Almond Butter

Before we go into detail about Almond butter and Almond paste, let’s take a quick look at what the other nut butters have to offer. 

The closest relatives to Almond butter are cashew butter, walnut butter, and peanut butter. These butter have different nutritional compositions, advantages, and slightly different tastes. Cashew butter, for instance, provides the highest amount of carbohydrates and protein compared with other nut Butters.

Similarly, peanut butter usually has the highest amount of added sugar and fiber. You can find all of this on the back of the butter packaging. But what you won’t find is that is peanut butter is susceptible to mold contamination. 

The fungus that infects peanut butter is called Aspergillus flavus and is responsible for producing a toxin called aflatoxin. Even though you won’t be able to see this fungus, it can have a detrimental effect on your health. Moreover, Peanut butter has large amounts of Potassium, which can compete with other micronutrients for absorption. 

Almond Butter

Now, let’s talk about Almond butter. Almond butter is made completely from Almonds without any additional ingredients. The almonds used are usually roasted but not peeled. 

Despite being a simple thing, Almond butter can have a lot of varieties depending on what ingredients the producer or manufacturer uses. Some manufacturers add oil, sugar, and other chemicals that can alter Almond butter’s taste, feel, and texture. 

Other ingredients may include honey, maltodextrin, salt, wheat germ, cane syrup, and vanilla. You may also find that the Almond butter you picked has stabilizers and emulsifiers added to it. These chemicals are added to increase the butter’s shelf life and ensure all the ingredients are held together. 

How to Make Almond Butter at Home

Making Almond butter at home sounds pretty simple, but that’s not the case. Making high-quality and A-Grade Almond butter is not about the ingredients you use but more about the equipment used to process the almonds. This is because it’s incredibly difficult to process Almonds.

It would be best to have a durable food processor that can process food for long periods without overheating or getting damaged. If you have something like that in your kitchen, then all you need is some almonds. 

But in case your food processor is a bit worn out, or you think that it might not be able to work through thick pastes, then you can try adding oil. The oil acts as a lubricant and ensures that the paste doesn’t get too thick. As a rule of thumb, add a quarter cup of oil when using 1 lb. almonds. 

Almond Paste

Almond paste is different from Almond butter because of one key ingredient: sugar. Most manufacturers in the US use sugar and ground Almonds in 1:1. But it’s not just the sugar that separates Almond paste from Almond butter; other ingredients like almond extract and eggs are often used when making Almond paste. 

Even though it sounds simple, but the addition of sugar has a drastic effect. Sugar entraps the fats in the paste and prevents it from becoming too smooth (forming butter). 

The almonds used in making Almond paste are blanched, which means that they undergo heat treatment to remove their skin. Almond paste is a popular ingredient when making pastries because of the stiff texture, which helps in holding up against higher temperatures. So, that is the reason why most recipes recommend using Almond paste, not Almond butter. 

How to Make Almond Paste at Home

Making Almond Paste is different from making Almond butter. You might have to put in a little more effort and use more ingredients. Here is the list of ingredients that you’re going to need: 

  • 1 full cup of blanched Almonds 
  • 1 cup of powdered and stiffed sugar 
  • 1 egg 

Directions: 

  • Use a fork or a mixer to beat the egg white. 
  • Add the almonds and 50% of the sugar into a food processor and blend it until a paste is formed. 
  • Stop the food processor in between to check if the paste is sticking to the sides; if it is, then scrape it off. 
  • Now add the rest of the sugar slowly.
  • Finally, add the beaten egg and blend till a paste is formed.
  • You may also add almond or cherry extract for a richer flavor. 

Almond Butter and Almond Paste Nutritional Information

Almonds are an excellent source of poly and monounsaturated fats. These facts are called good fats as they are required by our body for various functions and protect us against Cardiovascular or heart diseases. 

According to the Cleveland clinic, Unsaturated fats can reduce joint stiffness, lower inflammation, and protect against chronic diseases like arthritis. Moreover, Almonds also contain a good amount of Vitamin E, which acts as an anti-oxidant and helps us fight against free radicals that cause cancer and aging-related changes in our body. 

So What’s the Difference Between Almond Butter and Almond Paste

  • Almond Paste has a larger quantity of sugar added while Almond butter has almost no sugar added to it.
  • Almond butter has almost no added ingredients except for Almonds, but Almond paste usually has a couple of ingredients added.
  • Almond butter is more difficult to make in comparison with Almond paste.
  • Almond paste is usually used as a filling in pastries while Almond butter is usually eaten as a substitute for peanut butter.

Sources