Walnut Community

WB&J sandwich, anyone? No matter how you spread it, walnut butter is a creamy and tasty food. It offers versatility in a market trending toward nutritious products that have unique flavor profiles, clean labels, all-natural ingredients, and convenience.

Walnut butter can be used as a standalone spread or dip, or as a filler in food bars, cookies or confections. It also shines in other areas such as soups, smoothies, entrees, oatmeal, desserts, and sandwiches.

There are several consumer trends popping up in the nut butter category, varying from flavor demands to nutritional needs to diet-friendly allowances, that make walnuts the perfect nut butter of choice.

Trend No. 1 Chocolate + Walnut Flavor Combination

The sweet combination of dark chocolate and walnuts was highlighted in Butterfly Superfoods’ Chocolate Reishi Nut Butter, which was a New Hope Network Editors’ Pick. Unique ingredients shine in this nut butter, which includes reishi mushroom powder, walnuts, cacao, cinnamon, vanilla extract, and monk fruit. This nut butter pairs great with fruits, on toast or rice cakes or in a smoothie.

Walnut butters combined with chocolate are trending. Dark chocolate was named the number one flavor pairing with walnuts in a Davis Sensory Institute study, while vanilla also made the top five.

Made with California walnuts, Crazy Go Nuts’ Chocolate Espresso Walnut Butter is a fun way to get your morning ‘Grande Mocha Frappuccino’ with ingredients that are all-natural. The gluten-free walnut butter’s flavor profile provides a balance of ground cocoa and espresso — a blend that’s a great way to boost your mood.

Trend No. 2: Mood Booster + Team Good Fat

Food manufacturers are using more mood-boosting ingredients in their packaged snack offerings, and nut butters have made their mark. According to Bakery & Snacks, nut butters as mood boosters “will become particularly prevalent as consumers move away from the three-square-meals-a-day custom and dive headlong into snacking throughout the day.”

Walnuts are the only nut that supplies a rich source of the plant-based omega-3 alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), a “good fat” that provides 2.5 grams per one ounce serving. Eating walnut butter is a great way to snack, as increasing intake of walnuts by 0.5 servings per day is associated with a lower risk of obesity — a win-win for good fats.

Released at the 2019 Winter Fancy Food Show, Wellnut Farms‘ three varieties of walnut butters — Original, Maple and Salted Caramel — feature label promotions touting the walnut butters’ omega-3 content. The Maple variety won the 2019 Sofi Silver Award from the Specialty Food Association.

Nutty Gourmet’s line of walnut butters come in a variety of flavors: Praline, Roasted, Sea Salt, Honey, Maple Cinnamon, and Pistachio. They contain plant-based omega-3, fiber, and protein. The gluten- and preservative-free line is packaged in convenient 10 oz. jars, amounting to about nine servings per container.

Trend No. 3: Paleo + Keto

In Whole Foods Market’s Top 10 Food Trends for 2020, “alternative nut butters” were named as one of the most anticipated and innovative predictions for the year. The ever-growing variety of nut butters on the market is booming. This is due in part to consumer demand for high-end offerings, and the paleo- and keto-friendly bonus that nut butters bring to the table. Consumers want transparency on their labels, and these two diets are “key players in this trend.” Those following a paleo-centered diet generally avoid processed foods, sugar, most dairy products, artificial sweeteners, and vegetable oils. But nuts and healthy fats are allowed in this diet, making walnuts a great inclusion. Consumers on the keto diet follow a high-fat, low-carb diet with moderate protein in the mix. Foods on the “do eat” keto list include walnuts and healthy oils.

Artisana Organics’ Raw Walnut-Cashew Butter only uses two ingredients: walnuts and cashews. This makes the product both paleo and keto friendly. There are no added sugars, oils or salt. The California-based company says that this nut butter is perfect with apples, celery, or crackers as a mid-afternoon snack.

Trend No. 4: Consumers Want Protein

Plant-based proteins aren’t just for vegans and vegetarians anymore. More than 60% of Americans want more protein in their diets, according to a poll from data analytics company NPD. Walnuts provide four grams of protein in one ounce, making walnut butter a functional plant-based food.

For example, Vor’s Walnut Butter contains five grams of protein per serving, and it’s gluten-, soy- and preservative free. And the best part? This creamy, smooth walnut butter contains just one ingredient: walnuts.

No matter how you spread it, the walnut butter industry is booming. Contact kseiz@walnuts.org if you are ready to compete for space on the nut butter shelf.

No matter how you spread it, the walnut butter industry is booming. Contact kseiz@walnuts.org if you are ready to compete for space on the nut butter shelf.

Generated with Avocode.Generated with Avocode.