Folks got real fired up over our recent post about chocolate hazelnut spreads, such as Nutella. Everyone agrees that this sweet spread is delicious, but some are surprised to learn that it’s not as healthy as it sounds. But the good news is, you can enjoy a healthier version of this treat by making your own.
Clever marketing has attempted to convince consumers that chocolate-hazelnut spreads make a nutritious breakfast. Can this chocolaty delight be a healthy part of any meal?
Manufacturers tout that this creamy spread contains wholesome ingredients like hazelnuts and skim milk — and it does. There’s actually not much else to it, only a couple of other ingredients make up the recipe — but that’s where things start to get messy.
The first 2 ingredients listed on the label of chocolate-hazelnut spreads are sugar, followed by palm oil, which means these ingredients out-weigh all others. When you break down the numbers you’ll find it contains 100 calories per tablespoon and more than 50-percent of that comes from fat. While there are some heart-healthy fats from nuts, one-third is the artery-clogging saturated kind. As for the sugar, it’s not looking much better – nearly 5 teaspoons per serving!
Most brands also include thickeners such as soy lecithin. While this food additive is considered safe, folks with soy allergies should be aware.