Getting mail is always a treat for me, probably more so than others. For whatever reason, the feeling of receiving something in the mail gets me all giddy inside. Though I don’t receive much mail, I do get all kinds of interesting things to review for Breaking Muscle. When a package comes for me to review, the first thing I do is look at the return address to see if I can figure out what it is. I rarely can, but it’s a fun game.
When Betty Lou’s products arrived, I did a double take. The return address was from McMinnville, Oregon. My dad’s whole side of his family is from a small town outside McMinnville called Carlton. For folks that live in Carlton, they use McMinnville to describe where they are from the same way that people from Burbank say they are from Los Angeles.
As I shook off the nostalgia of enjoying my grandmother’s treats years ago, not far from Betty Lou’s, Inc. headquarters, I had my first experience with Betty Lou’s products. Betty Lou sent two different types of tasty treats: nut butter balls and powdered peanut butter.
Right off the bat, it’s important to note the components of Betty Lou’s products and what separates them from other brands. Betty Lou’s foundation comes from, you guessed it, a woman named Betty Lou, who took refined sugars out of her family’s home some 32 years ago. Her products today still reflect that crucial point. The products are free of wheat, refined sugars, hydrogenated oils, and genetically modified foods.
Betty Lou’s Nut Butter balls are snack-sized balls that come in various flavors and are perfect for a quick bite or as a convenient emergency meal to store in a gym bag or purse. With that portion size in mind, you can begin to understand the product better, as the ingredients affect the look and texture of each flavor. The nut butter balls come in an assortment of flavors including: peanut butter, almond butter, high protein almond butter, coconut macadamia, cashew pecan, and spirulina ginseng.
My personal favorite was the coconut macadamia flavor. Not only was it incredibly tasty, it was amazingly true to its name. In my opinion, some of the other flavors had ingredients that took unnecessary dominance in the flavor profile. The ingredient list for the different flavors includes a cocktail of fairly benign ingredients like fruit juices, brown rice syrup, and gluten free oats. These ingredients, though important for things like stability and consistency, made for a less that straight forward flavor profile in seemingly simple flavor titles like peanut butter, for example. The coconut macadamia didn’t have that issue.
Betty Lou’s Just Great Stuff Powdered Peanut Butter was my first experience with a “just add water” type of food. This 100% certified organic powdered peanut butter is made of just three ingredients: organic peanuts, sea salt, and sustainably harvested coconut sugar.
If you’re like me, you may be wondering, why is it powdered? Well, the purpose is two-fold. The powdered version of peanut butter allows for a label claim that it has 85% less fat than traditional peanut butter. For example, Just Great Stuff Powdered Peanut Butter has 1.5 grams of fat per two tablespoons, while your traditional Jiffy Peanut Butter has 16 grams in the same two-tablespoon serving. A secondary reason for choosing a powdered format is that it is more ideal for including in shakes. Anyone who has made a shake or smoothie in the past with peanut butter can tell you it’s not the most easily mixed ingredient. This product gives you a great peanut butter ingredient without the stubborn mess of globs of traditional peanut butter. It also comes in both regular and chocolate flavors.
All and all, I see Betty Lou’s as a brand name that bridges the gap from the staunch rigidity of the health food crowd and the Wild West of America’s processed food industry. With valuable, clear distinctions in Betty Lou’s products, like being gluten free and free of refined sugars, they are able to make serious strides in their health claims without excluding the masses who aren’t devoted nutritional purists.