Review: MaraNatha Dark Chocolate Almond Spread

>> Monday, May 17, 2010

In my A Homemade Life review on Friday, I listed a few new foods I was planning to try over the weekend. I thought I'd start by reviewing the MaraNatha Dark Chocolate Almond Spread that has swiftly made its way to the near-top of my favorite treats list.

How does it taste? Well, the words on the jar describe the texture quite accurately: Velvety. It's sweet, but not too sweet, and just a touch salty (which I must admit is my favorite combination). I would say the texture is really the best part. It just reminds me of brownie batter -- without having to mix all those ingredients together. To me, there are few things better than brownie batter.

Ingredients: Dry Roasted Almonds, Evaporated Cane Juice, Palm Oil, Cocoa Powder (alkalized), Non-Fat Dry Milk, Canola Oil, Soy Lecithin, Natural Vanilla Flavor, Salt. Contains: Almonds, Milk, Soy. May Contain Peanuts and Other Tree Nuts.

Good, bad, and ugly:
  • I love that it's all natural and -- per two tablespoons serving -- this spread has 4 grams of protein (versus 2 in Nutella), only 9 grams of sugar (versus 20 in Nutella), and matches Nutella on its sodium content (15 grams for both).
  • I think we're already established that I absolutely LOVE the taste and texture. It goes well on fruit, in oatmeal, and straight out of the jar on a spoon (or finger -- again, I have no shame).
  • I'm not too thrilled with the list price. Though I purchased my jar (OK, jars -- as in two) on sale for $4.99 at Wegmans. The stuff usually runs between $6.99 and $7.99. So, I dare not develop a strong habit.
  • I'm also not happy it isn't vegan. I'm not vegan, but I'm sure many of you who are don't quite understand why there needs to be milk in the ingredient list. I don't get it either.
To check out the full range of MaraNatha Nut Butters, just visit their website.

Has anyone out there developed a cheap, quick, easy, and delicious (and VEGAN?) recipe for a chocolate nut butter? I'd love to make some of my own . . . but whenever I've tried, I've had mixed results. And usually end up spending the same amount (or more) than I would if I just bought a jar. Just leave a comment or email us at

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