• Tue, Dec 6 2011

Trader Joe’s “Cookie Butter”: Healthy Treat Or Gross-Out Snack?

My college roommate made sandwiches out of Duncan Hines chocolate frosting and bread. The only snack that’s come remotely close to grossing me out as much is Trader Joe’s new “Cookie Butter,” which is essentially a jar of almond butter mixed with Dutch Speculoos cookies. But to some—like Fitnessista, who blogged about how to make a homemade version recently—this could be considered a healthy treat.

Nutrition facts aren’t available online, but rumor on bodybuilding.com’s forum has it that TJ’s contains trans fats (likely from the cookies). Which tips the scale in favor of my original judgement: This is pretty much a gross-out snack. On the other hand, pairing cookies with almond butter will at least help maintain your blood sugar levels better than a dessert that contains no protein: This is, in fact, a healthier treat than say, a stack of Oreos.

So what’s the verdict? Cookie butter is what it sounds like: A dessert. And to some, it’s a good one. Jo Deeangdeelert Cho of Oh Joy is quickly spreading rumors that it tastes amazing:

There is a thing called cookie butter which I discovered over the weekend and am currently in love with. My friend Caroline suggested it, and I’m sort of eating it by the spoonful now. Inspired by the Dutch Speculoos spread, the cookie butter from Trader Joe’s has the look and consistency of peanut butter but tasty like gingerbread biscuits in a spreadable form. It’s like comfort and Christmas in a jar. Someone on Twitter suggested adding a touch of sea salt, which adds a nice contrast to the sweetness to the cookie butter on top of toast.

As desserts go, this one is relatively healthy, but like the other favorite dessert-for-breakfast spread, nutella, it doesn’t make a healthy snack.

UPDATE: Want to know more about the nutrition facts of Trader Joe’s Cookie Butter? Or how it tastes? We researched. Check it out.

Photo: Oh Joy

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  • Hanna Brooks Olsen

    Oh, Trader Joe’s. What will you come up with (and then make disappear forever) next?

  • M

    I live in Belgium and this is a very common occurence here- I would compare the usage to Nutella. Is it healthy? Most likely not. Is it a total gross-out food? Most likely not. Just an alternative spread to have on toast for breakfast.

    ~M

  • Jennifer

    I bought this and here are the nutrition facts for those of you who are curious: One tablespoon has 90 calories, 6g total fat (9% DV), and 1.5 g sat fat (8% DV). There are no trans fat in this baby (trans fats come from solid fats, like butter or lard, and the cookies in the spread were made with the healthier liquid fats). Incidentally enough, this is less fat than the same amount of both peanut butter and almond butter. Sure, it doesn’t pack the protein that PB does, but almond butter doesn’t have much protein either. The ingredients are basically half the ingredients in the cookies from which the flavor comes and the other half consists of palm oil and emulsifiers (to make it spreadable). Nothing too gross here, nor nothing too entirely unhealthy (when compared with other spreads). For a gal like me who eats PB or AB every day after working out (gotta have some fat, ladies!), this is a nice, festive-tasting alternative. So stop freaking out. It tastes like gingerbread.

  • BeMLuv

    Trans fats come in liquid forms, like partially hydrogenated oil (oil processed with hydrogen). Butter and oils are natural fats and not trans fats. Trans fats are oils/fats pumped full of hydrogen so the oil becomes more thin, therefore a little goes a long way. Due to this, it is cheaper for food companies to use in their snack/sweet products. It also helps with shelf life/preservation. But where it is cheaper and has a better shelf life, it also is not processed or tolerated well by our bodies because it’s a chemical fat that is hard to break down. While no fat is good for you in large amounts, butter and natural oils are okay in moderation (and even foods like avocado have healthy fats), but trans fats are never okay.

  • Ally

    I tried it and it’s actually really good. TRY IT :D

  • someguy

    This stuff is gross, when I first tried it I spit it out. Tastes like prechewed (& spit out) graham crackers, crisco & sugar. If I’m going to splurge on something I’ll just have a donut.

  • Jen

    @Hanna, this is not a Trader Joe’s invention, it is a Belgian treat.

    I am personally very excited to discover this because we’ve just run out of Speculoos we picked up in Paris – my husband makes a fabulous Speculoos Ice cream with it! 1 tablespoon is satisfying!

  • Julie

    I would like to stress that this is a BELGIAN treat. Nothing Dutch about it.

  • Jess J

    I haven’t had the Trader Joe’s version, but I have had Biscoff, one of the original European spreads. Definitely the nutritional equivalent of Nutella. It’s actually lower in calories than the peanut butter I stock, but devoid of the few nutrients that the PB has, so what calories are there are pretty empty.

  • Maria

    I Love it!!!!!!!!