Plenty of people are familiar with coconut oil, its uses, and its promoted healing benefits. And, in recent years, it’s been in the spotlight of wellness.
Although it’s less popular, coconut butter is also abundant in nutrients. These two products are different from each other, despite their similarity in terms of look and smell.
Coconut oil is made by cold-pressing the oil from coconut meat. At room temperature, the oil is solid and it liquefies when it’s heated. Its flavor is oily and mild to medium.
Coconut butter is made by pureeing the meat of the coconut, and the oil too. This butter is solid at room temperature and becomes softer when it’s heated.
Its flavor and odor are strong.
Nutrition: Coconut Oil vs. Coconut Butter
One tbsp of coconut oil is mostly saturated fat and one tbsp has approximately 14 grams of it.
Coconut butter is made from the entire coconut and it has around 10 grams of saturated fat per a tbsp.
But, the butter contains nutrients that coconut oil doesn’t, especially fiber. One tbsp of the butter has around 2 grams of fiber, as well as other nutrients like potassium, iron, magnesium, and protein.
Both of these products from coconut have a high amount of calories, around 110 to 120 per a tbsp.
Are Coconut Oil & Coconut Butter Healthy Options?
Because of the high content of saturated fat in both products, their consumption is controversial.
According to the AHA, a diet abundant in saturated fats elevates bad cholesterol and increases one’s risk of strokes and heart attacks.
On the other hand, advocates of coconut suggest that the research on saturated fat is outdated and they note that most of this fat in coconut is lauric acid which can actually boost the levels of good cholesterol and decrease the risk of illnesses.
This controversy may be resolved with further research and time.
How to Use & Make Coconut Butter?
If you decide to add it to your diet, coconut butter is quite versatile. Here are a few awesome ideas:
- Add it to hot drinks like tea, hot chocolate, coffee
- Combine it with smoothies
- Mix it in fruit salads
- Add it for extra creaminess in savory dishes
- Spread it onto bread and crackers
- Combine it with oatmeal and porridge
To make coconut butter at home, you will need:
3 to 4 cups of shredded and unsweetened coconut
A pinch of sea salt
½ tsp of vanilla extract
1 dash of stevia
Add the coconut to a food processor.
Depending on the cup size of the processor, this will be enough or you’ll need to add the fourth cup so that there’s sufficient content that can be ground into butter.
Don’t use a blender-it will kick the coconut up and won’t process it.
Process it into the food processor until you notice a creamy butter forming, sometimes, this will take up to 8 and 10 minutes.
Once it’s liquid and creamy, add the other, optional ingredients.
If the butter didn’t form, you’ve probably added fewer coconut flakes than necessary or the food processor isn’t powerful enough.
Keep the butter at room temperature, for up to two weeks. You can heat it in the microwave before using it or just use it to top hot meals.