It’s healthy, filling, and can be a dieter’s best friend.
When it comes to weight loss, you know that snacking can be an important tool. Having a little something-something every few hours keeps your metabolism humming and your blood sugar on an even keel.
If you’re a true peanut butter addict, lighten it up with this clever recipe! The addition of carrot puree slashes calories and boosts vitamins. Make sure you have plenty of veggies, and whole grain bread for dipping. This recipe makes two cups and lasts up to seven days in the fridge but cannot be frozen!
Yields: 2 cups Prep time: 15 minutes Cook time: 20 minutes
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2 cups peeled of 1/2-inch thick sliced carrots
1 cup reduced fat smooth or chunky peanut butter
Bring a small pot of water to a boil. Add the carrots and cook at a high simmer until very tender, about 20 minutes. Drain well. Place the carrots in the bowl of a food processor and blend on high speed until smooth. Add the peanut butter and process on high speed until very smooth. Transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate until ready to use, up to seven days.
Nutritional information per two tablespoon serving: calories 100, fat 6g, carbohydrates 8g, fiber 2g, protein 4g.
Once you’ve mastered this recipe, you can try it with pumpkin puree or roasted sweet potatoes in the place of the carrots, or with a different nut butter of your choosing.
The benefits of peanut butter
It helps you lose weight – Calling peanut butter a diet food, with 180 to 210 calories per serving, may seem counter-intuitive. But it has the enviable combination of fiber (2 g per serving) and protein (8 g per serving) that fills you up and keeps you feeling full longer, so you eat less overall. Peanut butter helps dieters fight cravings and stay on track.
It’s packed with nutrition – A serving of peanut butter has 3 mg of the powerful antioxidant vitamin E, 49 mg of bone-building magnesium, 208 mg of muscle-friendly potassium, and 0.17 mg of immunity-boosting vitamin B6. Research shows that eating peanuts can decrease your risk of heart disease, diabetes, and other chronic health conditions.
Consuming 1 ounce of nuts or peanut butter (about 2 tablespoons) at least 5 days a week can lower the risk of developing diabetes by almost 30%.
It’s got the good fat – Peanut butter is chock-full of heart-healthy monounsaturated fat. A recent study found that insulin-resistant adults who ate a diet high in monos had less belly fat than people who ate more carbohydrates or saturated fat.