I don’t really need to write a Nutella article, I mean, everyone knows it’s bad for them right? Right? No? Okay, here goes.
Nutella is a sweet, sugary, blood spiking disaster of a breakfast spread. It was marketed as healthy for years as a “nutritional part of a complete breakfast”. Incorrect.
Nutella is mostly just sugar and processed fats. I mean it, check out the ingredients list. I can wait. Yeah, see what I mean? A handful of ingredients and the first two are sugar and modified vegetable oil.
Three Good Reasons to Stay Away from Nutella
First sugar. Yes, that’s exactly what you and your kids need before you bounce out the door in the morning. That way, by the time you get to wherever it is you’re going, you can experience the crabby-inducing sugar crash from breakfast earlier.
Second. Modified vegetable oil. Veggies don’t make oil naturally, they have to be processed and refined and altered and then heated, processed and refined again before being served to you in the package you got it in.
Modified oils, which food makers use to give food the same texture and taste as trans fats, are found in everything from cookies to protein bars. Healthy, unsaturated fats aren’t used in packaged or baked goods because they are liquid at room temperature and don’t provide the same taste or “mouth feel” as a solid fat. While modified oils are better for you than trans fats, they’re still not good for you. They are typically saturated fats, which means they’re not great for you because saturated fats still elevate bad cholesterol.
Third: This chart which sort of speaks for itself.
So What Can You Do?
I know, I’ve ruined a yummy treat for you and the kids. But I can also give it right back. Complete with good, whole ingredients so you don’t need to worry about where your food is coming from (because you made it!)
- 3 cups unsalted hazelnuts (raw or roasted, no matter)
- 2/3 cup dairy free dark chocolate, chopped
- OR 3 Tbsp. of cocoa powder and a sweetener to taste
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- Warm your hazelnuts in the oven at 350° for 12-15 minutes (raw) or 8-10 minutes (roasted).
- Free them from the oven, put them on paper towel and roll them to shake the skins off. (This is going to make it creamier, if you don’t mind the texture, leave them in for more fiber).
- Get the newly naked nuts and put them in a food-processor or high speed blender. Blend them on slow, scraping the sides every two minutes, for ten minutes.
- Melt your chocolate on a double boiler, be very careful not to burn it.
- Now add the melted chocolate (or powder) to the hazelnut butter and add your vanilla and salt. Blend for a minute.
- If it’s not sweet enough, or you went the cacao powder route, add a liquid sweetener of your choice a teaspoon at a time (the more you use the less spready it will be)
- Transfer to a clean jar and store in a dark, cool place for up to a month.
By using whole ingredients you’re getting the health benefits of cacao powder and hazelnuts.
Hazelnuts: are rich in mono-unsaturated fatty acids like oleic as well as essential fatty acid, linoleic acid that helps lower LDL or bad cholesterol and rise HDL or good cholesterol. They are rich in dietary fiber, vitamins, and minerals and packed with numerous health promoting phyto-chemicals. Altogether, they help protect from diseases and cancers. They contain high concentrations of folate, Vitamin E, B-complex vitamins, and are a source of minerals like manganese, potassium, calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, zinc, and selenium.
Cocoa powder: A 2 tbsp. serving of cocoa contains just 25 calories and 1.5 g of fat. It also provides you with 3.6 g of fiber, which is 14 percent of the daily value, and 8 percent of the daily value of iron and 14 percent of the daily value of magnesium. It’s also been attributed with anti-depressant properties.
Have you tried this recipe? Do you have another one I should try? Tell me in the comments!