We love you, crunchy almond, but we’re moving on.

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From spreads made of every nut from pistachio, cashew, and pecan, to amazing flavors like chai spice or chocolate chip, nut butters have really come into their own. They're high in protein, delicious for kids and adults alike, easy to eat for breakfast or snacks in sandwiches or on crackers, and superb as a dip for vegetables or fruit. Nut butters also bring flavor, texture, and protein to smoothies and shakes. And when it comes to baking, no product is more versatile in everything from basic bars and cookies to fancy mousses or ice cream.

Big Spoon Roasters Nut Butters
Credit: Courtesy Big Spoon Roasters

Which means now's the time to expand your nut butter game beyond supermarket almond crunch. Check out these companies making nut butters that are seriously next level. Here are 5 favorites to ask about at your local grocery store or to order online.  

5 Great Nut Butter Makers to Check Out Now

Big Spoon Nut Butter
Credit: Courtesy Big Spoon Roasters

Big Spoon Roasters

When it comes to having a flavor for every occasion, you cannot go wrong with Big Spoon Roasters, from their handcrafted basics like peanut butter sweetened lightly with sorghum or honey to specialty flavors like lemon coconut cashew butter, carrot cake almond walnut butter, or espresso almond butter. Big Spoon even makes a line of peanut butters especially for your dogs, and we all know a pooch who could use a special treat! Even better, they also sell their products in mini sizes perfect for exploring flavors or for giving as gifts and party favors.

Base Culture Nut Butter
Credit: Courtesy Base Culture

Base Culture

A company devoted to grain-free, gluten-free, and paleo compliant products, Base Culture started with an almond butter that has only one ingredient: almonds. That makes it both a pure flavor experience when eating as is, but a perfect choice for cooking and baking, since you have total control over what goes into your recipe. They have since branched out into some fun flavors as well, including Gingerbread and Maple. But they still keep the ingredient list short and simple, and that makes them a really healthy choice.

Nutmeg's Nut Butters
Credit: Courtesy Nutmeg's Nut Butters

Nutmeg's Nut Butters

I love this Chicago-based brand of nut butters, my go-to when I need an alternative option. While their peanut butter is great, I have fallen in love with their pecan, pistachio, almond, and cashew butters. I put pistachio butter on my cheese and charcuterie platters, use the pecan for a delicious surprise layer at the bottom of a tart or pie, and the cashew swapped in for tahini in hummus or creamy salad dressings. But really, a jar of Nutmeg's and a spoon is a pretty perfect way to snack.

Eliot's Nut Butters
Credit: Courtesy Eliot's Nut Butters

Eliot's Nut Butters

If you think nut butters are primarily kid's stuff, you need to get to know Eliot's Nut Butters, famous for its "grown-up" flavors. These flavors pack a distinctly adult punch, from Spicy Thai Peanut to Everything Bagel to Honey Chipotle to Espresso Cacao Nib, but don't be surprised if your kids fall in love with them too.

MaraNatha Nut Butter
Credit: Courtesy MaraNatha

MaraNatha

If nut butters are purely a grocery store pickup item for you, and you have shied away from trying some of the "natural" versions because you think they just don't get the texture that large commercial nut butters get, it is time to look for MaraNatha in your local supermarket. One of the earliest companies making all-natural products, they have cracked the code on delicious nut butters with all the silky texture you crave, and they even have no-stir versions where the oils do not separate, the bane of many a natural nut butter experience. Start with their no-stir creamy peanut to convert you, then explore some of their great flavors like coconut, caramel, or dark chocolate. My favorites these days are the light and dark roasted almond butters, which are perfect for recipes; use the light when you just want a subtle flavor and rich texture, the dark when you really want those deep roasted notes.