Food & Fitness

Product Reviews: MaraNatha No-Stir Creamy Almond Butter and Red Espresso Tea

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MaraNatha No-Stir Creamy Almond Butter

What can I say about this nut butter? It is perfection. Case and point: the day that I received it, I polished off 1/3 of the jar. And that was with a spoon.

The rest of the jar barely made it a week.

I’m still working on the second jar that the MaraNatha company was good enough to send me, but that’s only because I resisted the temptation of unsealing the jar for as long as possible.

I think what makes this almond butter so delicious is the addition of organic unrefined cane sugar, palm oil, and sea salt to the dry roasted almonds. Now, I do prefer my nut butter to be strictly nuts with no other additions of sugar/oil/salt (because frankly, nut butter is delicious enough that it doesn’t need any of those extras), but I’m willing to make a few exceptions. My beloved powdered peanut butter, PB2, contains a little bit of both added sugar and salt, for example.

What I like about this nut butter, health-wise, is that there isn’t that much added oil/sugar/salt to make it a perfectly creamy, no-need-to-stir nut butter. Compared to MaraNatha’s regular Natural Almond Butter (nothing but dry roasted almonds in the ingredient list), this Creamy No-Stir variety only contains a very little bit more energy per serving: the difference is 10 calories, 1 gram fat, 1 gram carbohydrates, 1 gram extra sugar, and minus 1 gram fiber (but you’re not eating almond butter for its fiber content, anyways). So really, that’s pretty darn good: it does include extra sugar/oil/salt, but it doesn’t make that much of a difference to the nutritional stats (assuming you’re eating regular portions and not 1/3 of the jar at a time, of course ;)).

Would I buy MaraNatha No-Stir Creamy Almond Butter at the grocery store? No way, because if I’m liable to eat it all in one sitting. But seriously, people. This stuff is fan-freaking-tastic. And it doesn’t need to be stored upside down or to be stirred every time you want to use it! I like it best straight off the spoon, but it’s also excellent with banana bread/muffins, mixed into oatmeal, or smeared on a banana or an apple. I was the only taste-tester for this product because I didn’t want to share it with anyone. Yum.

P.S. You can enter to win MaraNatha prizes by clicking here.

Red Espresso Tea

I was eager to try this tea when the company sent it to me. Red Espresso tea is made from rooibos tea and according to the chart on the press release that I received, Red Espresso has ten times more the antioxidants than regular rooibos tea (and almost six times more the antioxidants than regular green tea), due to the preparation method of grinding the tea. The rhetorician in me is curious if the comparison is to loose-leaf teas or bagged teas, but regardless, the idea behind Red Espresso is that it is mega-healthy.

I’m not sure how sold I am on this tea being so much healthier than any other teas, because I’m skeptical of most of the scientific research around branded foods. However, tea in general does contain plenty of antioxidants and is healthy for us, so I’m confident that this tea really does have an abundance of healthy properties, even if the research might potentially be a little bit skewed.

This tea is promoted as a replacement for coffee; you can make it in a coffee maker and there are many different ways to serve it (as espresso, as a latte, as cappuccino, as iced… the list goes on). So I figured I’d get two taste-testers. A devoted tea drinker and a devoted coffee drinker: me and the boyfriend, respectively.

The boyfriend loves his coffee, but not so much for the caffeine; he drinks it for the taste of coffee. So he didn’t think much of Red Espresso as a coffee replacement. But he did enjoy it and said that he would drink it again. When I tasted this tea, I liked how you can taste the quality of the tea. Part of that is likely because it is ground rather than bagged; the flavours are more rich in this form (I think I should become a tea connoisseur. Is there such a thing?). I’ve had Red Espresso Tea a few times now and it’s delicious; normally I prefer lighter-tasting teas, but this is still really good.

I don’t drink coffee- I don’t like the taste at all- so I never use the coffee maker in my apartment (it’s my sister’s, but since she’s traveling, I’m holding onto it for her). And honestly, it’s a pain to clean out. Much more work to clean the coffee maker than to clean a mug after drinking regular tea. That’s the only reason why I’d be hesitant to drink this tea: because I’m lazy and don’t want to always clean out the coffee maker. But Red Espresso is good enough that I’m willing to brew up a pot!

In other news…

I am going away for the weekend on a mini-break holiday with the mother dear (hurray!). We are leaving later on this morning for a weekend in Riding Mountain for skiing, skating, and reading in front of a fireplace (although I think it’s going to be more of the latter than the former, at the rate that the snow is melting… not that I’m complaining about the glorious warm temperatures!). We will return sometime in the afternoon on Monday, but I already have a post scheduled for Monday morning- so be sure to come back on Monday morning to read about disordered eating and to answer my question about emotional eating! Have a lovely weekend 🙂


  1. Holly

    MaraNatha….it is a GOOD thing it’s so expensive, otherwise I’d be going through a jar a week! I just bought some on sale and have managed to “save” it. It is my FAVORITE AB, hands down!

    Have a fun mini-break with your mom! Reading in front of the fireplace sounds like heaven right now. 🙂

  2. Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman

    I love MaraNatha nut butters, but as someone said, it’s pretty expensive. For me, it’s a treat purchase since I don’t love it *that* much. Roobis tea is so good. I love it hot with steamed milk. It’s like a latte. Starbucks makes it like that, too, but I do my own. Happy mini vacation! Sounds so fun!

  3. Pubsgal

    While I’m a fan of natural nut butters, I do like the convenience of the “no stir” varieties whose nutritional stats aren’t far off from natural. I bought some lately and made an almond butter fan of my son. 🙂 Which, given the expense, might not be the ideal, but I like that he’s enjoying healthy stuff.

    Hope you have a wonderful time on your holiday, Sagan!

  4. Peter vartan

    We have been a nut butter family for many generations, using them on pancakes, waffles and toast just about every morning. Of the eight of us no one liked the additives of sugar etc and everyone felt than the no stir products have an inferior taste to the original. The no stir does not have the character of the regular variety. Another neutralized by the food processors. Add sugar and oil – yuk.

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