I originally came across this Nuttvia Hazelnut Spread back in June 2017 and was so freakin excited, however that excitement quickly withered once I looked at the nutritional panel…
Now this product does have it’s upsides and it does taste really good so I don’t want you to think it’s terrible, it’s more a bit disappointing as it was a real missed opportunity by them to create something truely brilliant.
What do I mean by that? Read on to find out.
So first up, how does Nuttvia taste?
Taste-wise it’s extremely similar to the real thing (Nutella). The strong chocolate and hazelnut taste we’ve all come to know and love is evident hear and that’s appreciated. They haven’t tried to put their own unique taste profile on it.
Texture-wise it’s quite similar to Nutella, it doesn’t have the ultimate smooth creaminess of Nutella but that’s just what happens when you take out the sugar unfortunately. Not a criticism of the product, just the nature of food.
All in all. Taste wise it’s pretty damn good.
So what’s in Nuttvia?
The ingredients of Nuttvia are:
SWEETENERS (MALTITOL, ERYTHRITOL, STEVIOL GLYCOSIDES), VEGETABLE OIL (SUNFLOWER, COCONUT), MALTODEXTRIN, HAZELNUTS (10%), FAT-REDUCED COCOA POWDER (7.4%), COCOA BUTTER, EMULSIFIER (LECITHINS [SUNFLOWER]), SWEET WHEY POWDER (FROM MILK).
Ok, so there’s quite a lot going on here. Keeping in mind that ingredients panels need to be listed in descending order (by weight of inclusion), let’s unpack that label a bit.
Maltitol is a sugar alcohol which is around 75-90% the sweetness of regular table sugar and has very similar functional properties, however only has around half the caloric value of sugar (2-3 kcalories/g).
Because it’s technically a sugar alcohol, and not a sugar, it falls outside of their “97% less sugar” claim. I’ll let you decide if you think that’s kinda misleading or not.
Erythritol and Steviol Glycosides are also a sugar alcohol and extract, respectively and are fantastic natural sweeteners.
Like Maltitol, Erythritol is also around 70% as sweet as sugar, however only has a caloric value of 0.2 kcalories/g – around 95% less than sugar.
Steviol Glycosides are the extract from the leaves of the stevia plant which is around 300 times as sweet as sugar but is quite bitter which is why it’s pared with the other sweeteners to take the edge of.
Maltodextrin is basically just straight carbs. It’s absorbed very quickly into the body as glucose. It’s used in food production as a texturiser to help give this product body and substance.
Emulsifiers, as we’ve covered in our previous review of Vitawerx chocolate are used in a heap of food products to help keep the water and oil molecules hugging rather than fighting and having your food end up separating and tasting gritty.
Overall, there’s only a small amount of what I’d consider to be “real food” in this product. None of the ones I mentioned are necessarily bad, it’s just they’re not much of anything. Small amounts of natural sweeteners are ok, however it seems like this one is predominately made of them.
Nutritionally speaking how does Nuttvia compare to regular Nutella?
Very comparable as it turns out…
Per 15g serve ??? of Nuttvia:
✅ Energy: 291 kJ (70 Cal)
✅ Protein: 0.5g
✅ Fat: 4.8g
✅ Carbs (total): 8.2g
✅ – Sugars: 0.3g
Compare that to 15g (1 serve) of Nutella. Also ???
• Energy: 336 kJ (80 Cal)
• Protein: 0.9g
• Fat: 4.6g
• Carbs (total): 8.6g
• – Sugars: 8.4g
So, even without a calculator you can see the problem here. Despite having 97% less sugar, it’s got almost exactly the same amount of total carbs. As we’ve discussed before, it doesn’t really matter what types of carbs you eat, your body turns it all into glucose.
Ok. Math time. Nuttvia has just 12% less calories and 5% less carbs than Nutella.
Not as revolutionary as it first seems right.
Did Nuttvia deliver on their promise?
Technically yes. Is it misleading? I’ll let you decide for yourself.
My biggest issue I have with this product and any other products doing a similar thing is that people (rightly or wrongly) don’t often take the time to read the back of the packet.
Even if they do, very few people have the nutritional knowledge to understand that just because it’s 97% less sugar, doesn’t mean they can eat 32 times as much.
So you’re going to get a heap of customers buying this product thinking their being healthy and doing the right thing, ultimately probably being set back in their health and fitness goals because they’re eating more calories than they think they are. Not cool man.
Would I buy it again… ?
The one thing that this product has going for it is being palm oil free. I won’t get into that too much but the harvest and manufacturing of palm oil has some pretty nasty effects on orangutans and the environment so being palm oil free is a big win in and of itself.
Nutritionally speaking, it’s so close to Nutella it’s as good as no different in my opinion.
Have a product you want to see reviewed?
Let me know by commenting below! I’m always keen to see what you guys find and I love food 🙂
- An avid barefoot trail runner, explorer, creator, and keen learner. I'm incredibly humbled by everyone who's helped The Protein Bread Co. to grow to where it is today – actively supporting our mission to help 5M Australians and 20M people globally to live fitter, healthier and happier lives. You can reach out to me via Twitter or Instagram @thelowcarbgiant, Facebook @lukehopkins, or shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
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