Review: Safe4School WowButter - Soy Butter - Peanut Butter Replacement
The prevalence of peanut butter in America is staggering. It is a staple of our diet. A peanut butter and jelly sandwich is practically synonymous with “bringing a sack lunch from home”. Peanut butter crackers and chocolate peanut butter cups can be found in almost any vending machine. Peanut butter is everywhere, and for good reason. It’s delicious.
Unfortunately, according to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, more than 3 million people in the United States report being allergic to peanuts, tree nuts, or both. For those that are allergic, ingesting or even smelling peanuts or peanut butter can cause life-threatening anaphylactic shock. Because of this, many schools are becoming peanut-free.
When schools become peanut-free, it creates a dilemma for parents who want to send their children off to school with a nutritious lunch but are not sure what to use as an alternative to peanut butter.
A fantastic replacement for peanut butter is soy butter, made from soybeans. Soy butter is more nutritious than peanut butter as it is a complete protein food. While peanut butter provides only six of the nine essential amino acids, soy butter provides all nine. Soy butter also provides Vitamin E, calcium, folic acid, fiber lecithin, and 1300mg of omega 3 essentially fatty acids. Peanut butter does not provide any omega 3 fatty acids. Also, soybeans are grown above ground which helps prevent them from harboring soil contaminants like fertilizer and animal feces. Additionally, by growing above ground, soybeans are much less likely to contain aflatoxin, a carcinogenic toxin that is produced by many species of fungus. Soy beans also contain the isoflavones (Phytoestrogens) daidzein and genistein which may lower blood cholesterol and fight cancer.
Hilton Soy Foods, located in Ontario, Canada, makes a soy butter called Safe4School WowButter. The product used to be called SchoolSafe Soybutter. They source all of their non-GMO (not genetically modified) soy beans from their own farms or neighboring family farms. The WowButter is then produced in a dedicated facility that only manufactures soy products. From the toasting process to the final grinding process, the soy beans are heated up well past 165 degrees Fahrenheit to kill any potential bacteria. The final packaging process then takes place in an oxygen-free system to prevent any bacteria from entering and also to seal in the freshness. The WowButter is peanut free, tree nut free, gluten free and dairy free.
Safe4School WowButter Review:
Looks: WowButter looks similar to peanut butter in terms of texture. As for color, comparing it side by side with Skippy, Smart Balance, and Smuckers brands, the WowButter isn’t as dark. It is more of an orange-brown.
Worth mentioning is that their new jar label (not shown in above photos) features a “100% peanut free” label that can be cut out and then stuck on your child’s lunch box to help indicate to school faculty that the lunch is peanut free.
Smell: The Safe4School Wowbutter smells very similar to peanut butter.
Taste: First, I tried the WowButter directly from the jar. Initially, the mouth feel is just as sticky as peanut butter and the taste is very similar to peanut butter. However, as a peanut butter addict, I can tell the difference. While peanut butter will stay thick if you leave it in your mouth, the WowButter soy butter seems to dissolve apart after a short time. I also noticed that once it dissolves, you have a somewhat powder like texture left behind in the liquid. It is hard to describe. There is no aftertaste though, and the overall flavor is pleasing. For the real test, I then spread some on a slice of toasted Ezekial bread. On bread, the WowButter soy butter tastes remarkably like peanut butter. It’s fantastic!. The stickiness holds up longer, and the mouth feel is exactly like peanut butter. The bread definitely helps keep the WowButter soy butter from breaking down into a liquid in your mouth like it did when I tasted directly from the jar. The crunchy version of WowButter has pieces of soy in it. These pieces of soy disintegrate very easily under the very slightest pressure, unlike similar size pieces of peanuts.
Final thoughts: This is a fantastic peanut butter alternative. The taste and mouth feel is almost dead-on accurate, especially when used on bread. Those who have been unable to eat peanut butter due to allergy should definitely try WowButter. Parents needing a safe for school peanut butter alternative have to try WowButter. Kids won’t know the difference. I’m also very happy to see that WowButter uses cane sugar instead of high-fructose corn syrup, now known as “corn sugar.”
If I could make any suggestions to Hilton Soy Foods, it would be to offer a version of WowButter that does not have any sugar or monoglyceride added. Most consumers will be making sandwiches using WowButter and jelly. Just the bread and jelly together usually have too much sugar. There is no need to add extra sugar in the soy butter. Also, like most peanut butter brands found on store shelves, WowButter uses a small amount of monoglyceride (fully-hydrogenated oil) to keep the soybean oil from separating. Unfortunately, this means that the soy butter contains a tiny amount of trans fat, which are the worst artery clogging fats. If you’re eating a lot of soy butter or peanut butter this can add up over years. In order to limit the amount of trans fat I consume, I purchase all-natural peanut butter where the only additive is a little salt. Sure, when I purchase the peanut butter the oil is floating on the top. But once I’m home, it only takes 30 seconds or so of stirring with a butter knife to get it back to normal. Then I place it in the fridge and keep it there. If it means healthier arteries, I don’t think most people would mind initial oil separation and a bit of stirring.
Also, a message for ALL manufacturers, not just Hilton soy foods, for the products that contain monoglyceride, please state if you are using partially-hydrogenated or fully-hydrogenated oil on the ingredients listing. Additionally, please tell us how many milligrams or grams of trans fat is contained in the jar or is contained in each serving. I understand that the USDA has guidelines where you don’t have to state how much trans fat is contained as long as it is under a certain amount per serving, but consumers have the right to know what they are eating.
Where to purchase Safe4School Wowbutter:
Walmart supercenters, Reny’s, Food Lion, Winn Dixie, The Fresh Market, and most health food stores.
Note: The jars have the text Wow! Tastes Just Like Peanut Butter! on them.
Or you can click the link below to purchase a pack of 6 from amazon.com:
For additional information regarding WowButter visit wowbutter.com
Disclosure: Soy butter samples were provided for free for this review.
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