I literally take it everywhere
Credit: Photo by @barneybutter via Instagram

I see powdered peanut butter all over recipes and grocery store shelves, but I only just recently got my hands on a jar of powdered almond butter. Barney Butter Unsweetened Powdered Almond Butter just launched, and even after just a couple weeks of using the product, I couldn’t be more excited about how it has affected my breakfasts. As someone who avoids peanuts but eats almonds like they’re going out of style, I can barely contain my joy.

The dehydrated nut butter—made only from blanched almonds—is certified vegan, gluten-free, peanut-free, and Paleo. Of course, almonds are naturally free from dairy, gluten, and peanuts already, but the certification can be gravely important for those with allergies. While I follow none of these special diets, I still find a jar of the stuff incredibly handy to have on hand. And by on hand, I actually mean I’ve been carrying around powdered almond butter in my bag for snacking emergencies.

Do I care that the jar excitedly pronounces that powdered almond butter contains 93 percent less fat than the company’s classic smooth almond butter? Not especially. In fact, I’m usually looking to incorporate more fat into my diet. Yet this won’t keep me from sharing my joy about powdered almond butter. The jar is shelf-stable (of course, refrigerating any product made from real food will keep it fresh for longer, so that’s where I stashed the stuff after opening), and, according to the stamp on the bottom of the jar, will stay good for at least a year, which is much more than a classic nut butter can say.

It’s been swelteringly hot in New York City these past couple weeks, which means my go-to breakfast has been a freezing-cold smoothie. I may buy one at the fancy juice shop near my office as a treat once a week, but for the most part, I’m embracing the DIY. Adding a scoop of powdered almond butter transforms what could’ve been a boring smoothie into a truly exciting one—that would probably cost about $11 at said juice shop. Indeed, you could add a scoop of regular almond butter to the blender, but I find that the powder actually brings a stronger almond-y flavor to the mixture, which I love. When it gets warm again, you can bet your bottom dollar I’ll be stirring many a spoonful of this powder into my oatmeal.

Barney Butter’s powdered almond butter is also fun to bake with—in addition to cookies and bars, I’ve even started adding it to my pre-workout energy nut-and-seed bites for a little extra flavor. When whisked with soy sauce, sesame oil, lime juice, and garlic, it makes a killer sauce for noodles and vegetables, like a riff on a peanut sauce. But perhaps my favorite way to use the powdered almond butter is to make an on-the-fly almond milk by mixing two tablespoons of the powder into a cup of cold water. Sometimes, I’ll add a teaspoon or two of cocoa powder and a splash of maple syrup for chocolate almond milk, and let me tell you, it’s magic.

I’m going to be straight with you. When I’m looking for almond butter to spread on toast or apples, powdered almond butter wouldn’t be my first choice. While it does work—you simply mix together a tablespoon or two of the powder with spoonfuls of water until you’ve reached your desired consistency—I don’t think it tastes as great at the real deal. The flavor did improve when I added a few shakes of cinnamon, but when I’m using nut butter as a spread, I want it to be fatty and rich, and that just won’t happen here. But for all other almond butter uses, powdered almond butter, I salute you.