Nuts for Nutella
August 27th, 2010
10:30 AM ET
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I was 9 years old when I first had chocolate for breakfast, breaking into a jar of Nutella one morning and spreading the sweet, rich, velvety contents on a slice of bread usually reserved for strawberry jam.

It’s been a love affair ever since.

I live for dessert, so Nutella - a hazelnut and cocoa spread that's been around since 1963 - is my favorite indulgence and vice. Few days go by when I don’t dip a spoon into the smooth mixture that melts on warm toast and coats the roof of my mouth with chocolaty happiness whenever I take a bite.

There’s a price to pay, of course – all that deliciousness comes with 100 calories and more than 5 grams of fat per tablespoon. But the company that makes Nutella insists the breakfast spread can form a part of a balanced meal "when used in moderation with complementary foods."

Moderation? Forget about it.

You know those dainty, small jars of Nutella you can find tucked between jams and honeys at the grocery store? That's for amateurs. I buy the hefty two-pack of "family"-sized Nutella jars at my local warehouse club and keep close tabs on how much is left. It disappears fast and a household without Nutella is alarmingly empty for a dessert lover - it feels like a basic staple is missing.

I’m passionate about the stuff and I seem to have lots of company.

Plug "Nutella" into a search engine and you’ll find tributes, fan pages and lots of recipes infusing the spread into all sorts of culinary creations. Note this recipe for Milk Chocolate Hazelnut Panna Cotta, which calls for one full cup of Nutella.

There’s even a World Nutella Day - in February, alas - a website for which lists the Top 10 Signs You’re Addicted to Nutella. I nod vigorously when I get to No. 4: "You’ve never met any food item that didn’t pair well with Nutella."

It’s perfect with most any kind of bread, salty pretzels and spoons of peanut butter. I put it on sliced bananas, use it as a gooey dip for fresh, ripe strawberries and eat it with Macadamia nuts.

I reach for Nutella instead of syrup when I need a chocolaty kick for a bowl of ice cream. It's luscious oozing out of warm crepes or topped with whipped cream. Tea biscuits layered alternately with Nutella and tart plum jam make a satisfying dessert.

Then there's the ultimate breakfast indulgence: a flaky croissant, generously buttered for that extra silky touch, and drizzled with Nutella.

The world just seems sweeter when coated in hazelnut chocolate.

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Filed under: Bite • Obsessions • Products

soundoff (234 Responses)
  1. personal training Long Island

    There's a restaurant by me that makes Funnel Cake with Nutella spread through out it. So good!

    January 21, 2014 at 6:13 pm |
  2. Lashaun Roston

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    July 5, 2013 at 10:41 am |
  3. Jerry

    It's a real shame they no longer make Koogle. I don't remember what company it was but their flavored peanut butters were the best when I was a kid. Chocolate Koogle tasted like a smooth, creamy Resse's Peanut Butter Cup.

    April 18, 2011 at 7:35 pm |
  4. AleeD

    When I was a kid, mom "accidentally" picked up a jar of Nutella instead of peanut butter. It was weird tasting (to a kid), but not horrible. Recently I thought I'd give it a shot as a substitute for peanut butter, but the price & the carb content made me flinch. Nutella: 22g; Jiffy Extra Crunchy: 7g. I'll stick with peanut butter.

    April 18, 2011 at 7:39 am |
  5. Christian

    When I was a young child growing up here in Quebec, not having a jar of Nutella in your household was unthinkable. It's been a pantry staple for over 30 years. It's odd that the "version" we buy here is from France or Italy, but Americans are forced to buy the New Jersey "version". I've tried that one and it's just the same.

    April 17, 2011 at 8:31 am |
  6. Kim

    I do not allow myself to buy Nutella. If I had a jar of that stuff in my house it would be gone in about 2 days. Can't do that to myself, so I just live without. Love it though. It definitely IS junk food though, no matter how someone rationalizes it.

    September 3, 2010 at 1:28 pm |
  7. Adam

    What just kills me about humans is that so much of what is so bad for us we crave. It seems to me, that for the sake of survival of the species, we would crave things that make us healthy. My cat eats the same dry food every single day and turns his nose away at most other things. Rabbits eat vegetables. Cheetahs eat meat. But we'll push every sweet, fattening, fiber-free, butter-drenched, greasy thing into our food hole. Of course I understand that billions of dollars have gone into finding our weaknesses and taking advantage of them, but it still seems counter-intuitive.

    September 2, 2010 at 10:41 am |
    • Chandelier

      I often wonder about the exact same thing. Shouldn't we be wired to crave foods that are nutritious, cholesterol-fighting, vitamin-filled, etc.? I enjoy broccoli, oatmeal and apples, but I don't get the same pleasure eating them as I do foods like Nutella or ice cream. Shouldn't my body be designed to prefer foods that will keep me trim and fit?

      September 2, 2010 at 5:25 pm |
    • Kim

      Foods that are sweet and fatty have the most calories, that is what we are wired for. Couple that with unlimited choices of foods the typical modern human is faced with, and it becomes problematic for a lot of people.

      September 3, 2010 at 1:30 pm |
  8. Mrs. Larkin

    Mix equal parts Nutella and Marshmallow Fluff = nougat almost like the inside of a three musketeer's bar.

    September 1, 2010 at 9:42 am |
  9. imadome

    I tried Nutella for the first time yesterday after reading this post. It was delicious. I will have to watch my consumption of it due to the calories and fat in it... but it is good for the occasional treat.

    August 31, 2010 at 8:42 am |
  10. Sarah

    Nutella S'mores

    August 31, 2010 at 2:35 am |
  11. Yum!

    It's funny that I should find this on CNN today. For lunch I spoiled my children with Toasted Nutella and Banana sandwiches (on whole wheat).

    I have very limited self control around this substance (a jar of nutella, a spoon, and a good movie, and I'm done for!) so I don't buy it very often. But it truly is a decadent treat!

    August 30, 2010 at 11:25 pm |
  12. Brandon

    If you think Nutella is good, you should try Cocoahaze. I can only find it at Whole Foods, but it's all-natural and AMAZING! I make a great torte with graham cracker crust and fresh raspberries.

    August 30, 2010 at 10:16 pm |
  13. M. Jensen

    Your article made my mouth water but unfortunately I am very allergic to all tree nuts. Darn!

    August 30, 2010 at 8:26 pm |
  14. Holley

    My mother loves Nutella,But said thing for me i'am allergic to nuts:(.but when she eats it she has the sampel size ones because she would be abel to eat a whole jar in 3 days or less!!

    August 30, 2010 at 7:16 pm |
  15. comeonamerica

    This stuff is not healthy.

    Americans need to idolize vegetable and fruits, not snacks and Nutella.

    August 30, 2010 at 5:44 pm |
  16. Cuso

    Hey I love pizza just as much as nutella but I don't eat pizza everyday.

    August 30, 2010 at 4:17 pm |
  17. Wonder

    I wonder if the author A. Pawlowski's been on a scale lately?

    August 30, 2010 at 4:10 pm |
  18. Kate

    My first Nutella experience was in a warm crepe. It was amazing. I'm with MG. The only thing I need to enjoy Nutella is a spoon. I try to keep it out of the house for the obvious reasons, and am not always successful.

    August 30, 2010 at 3:26 pm |
  19. YukinoJudas

    It sounds great but it isn't vegan therefore I won't eat it. :(

    August 30, 2010 at 3:22 pm |
  20. patsybronx

    Ever had a nutella PIZZA???

    omg, it's to die for!!!

    August 30, 2010 at 3:13 pm |
  21. bassetmom

    We stayed at an Iberostar resort in Mexico several years ago and they had this HUGE pot of nutella at the breakfast buffet. That's when my daughter decided she loved staying at the Iberostar. Nutella is seriously great as a "swirl" added to homemade french vanilla icecream along with caramel. You just put it in when you are done making the ice cream and packing it for the freezer. The beauty of this is, if you are like me and make all of your ice cream in an old-fashioned crank driven ice cream maker, you burn off a few calories that way (not enough though).

    August 30, 2010 at 2:45 pm |
  22. Holly

    I like the flavor and texture of nutella, but the first ingredient on the label is sugar. I wish they would develop a reduced sugar version that features more hazelnut/cocoa and less sugar.

    August 30, 2010 at 2:42 pm |
  23. porky

    nasty stuff. too sweet. might as well just eat chocolate syrup if you like nutella. it's a lot cheaper.

    August 30, 2010 at 2:22 pm |
  24. Mary Carrol

    I've been in love with Nutella since I was introduced to it while living in Germany over 20 years ago. Giada is my favorite Food Network star mainly because she is such a Nutella fan and provides great recipes using this fabulous food staple.

    August 30, 2010 at 1:58 pm |
  25. George R

    My family doscovered Nutella when living in France in the late 70's and we have eaten it on just about everything but I agree with the fresh criossant as the best way to indulge. Also. since I discovered it in France. The French believe that some chocolate a day keeps the doctor away! Hmmm. Almost wounds better than an apple a day! :)

    August 30, 2010 at 1:52 pm |
  26. Elaine M

    I really like the taste but it has palm oil so I don't buy Nutella. Palm oil is an ingredient that is very bad for you and lots of manufacturer's use since it's cheap . Some peanut butter's contain palm oil, totally unnecessary. I betcha' Nutella could make the stuff without palm oil. I dare them.

    August 30, 2010 at 12:55 pm |
  27. John D.

    Just what America needs, an advertisement pretending to be an article glorifying crappy junk food with empty calories and harmful fats.

    August 30, 2010 at 10:39 am |
    • Moke

      And being the adult that I am, I am responsible for EVERYTHING that enters my mouth. And this stuff will be on my shelf to eat in moderation.

      August 30, 2010 at 1:15 pm |
  28. Mwndz

    funny to read this today, Tried nutella for the first time yesterday, LOVED IT! and it is now on my shopping list

    August 30, 2010 at 10:29 am |
  29. Ev

    made nutella cupcakes once or twice...just use a peanut butter cupcake recipe and swap out the peanut butter for nutella. Works for the cupcake and the frosting. They were deeeelicious. :)

    August 30, 2010 at 9:29 am |
  30. Y.O.

    Oh great! I haven't eaten Nutella in perhaps 10 years but after this article described its devistatingly beautiful taste, I got my self a small jar this weekend.

    August 30, 2010 at 9:12 am |
  31. MP

    Eat Justin's chocolate hazelnut butter instead –

    Same as nutella but not made with crap.

    Nutella ingredients:

    Justin's Chocolate Hazelnut Butter ingredients:
    Dry Roasted Hazelnuts, Organic Evaporated Cane Sugar, Organic Cocoa Powder, Organic Cocoa Butter, Organic Palm Fruit Oil, Natural Vanilla, Sea Salt.

    No dairy filler, no cheap artificial vanilla, no unnecessary soy, and mostly organic.

    August 30, 2010 at 8:21 am |
  32. Guest

    Dulce De Leche is waaaaaayyyyyyy better!

    August 30, 2010 at 2:14 am |
  33. joe b

    i grew up in a very italian-american family. when i was a boy in the '70s, nutella was only for italians. i was a big fan and it still reminds me strongly of that lost past. memories.....

    August 30, 2010 at 2:02 am |
  34. sama

    Love Nutella!!! I used to eat a big jar in three days, but now I buy the small sample size at World Market for a treat because my doctor told me that I had to lose weight.

    August 29, 2010 at 10:25 pm |
  35. MG

    I don't know why so many of you are bothering with mixing nutella with anything, especially bread.....All I need with my Nutella is a spoon and some alone time......

    August 29, 2010 at 8:51 pm |
  36. Dee

    Waaaay too fattening – forget it.

    August 29, 2010 at 7:52 pm |
  37. foofur2k

    Bless me father for I have sinned...Last year I spread packaged sugar cookie dough in a pizza pan and baked it until it was golden brown. When it cooled, I spread a whole jar of Nutella on it then covered that with fresh raspberries, sliced strawberries & sliced kiwis. I shared it with 4 friends. I'm ready for my penance now.

    August 29, 2010 at 7:03 pm |
    • Moke

      but you shared...that should count for something! This – I gotta try!

      August 30, 2010 at 1:12 pm |
      • Moke

        I did it! Nutella spread on a freshly baked 13×9 sugar cookie – topped with strawberries, blackberries and raspberries. Only took 12 minutes for 5 adults and 2 kids to polish off the whole pan.

        September 15, 2010 at 5:52 pm |
  38. MikeG

    I've just recently discovered Nutella. WOW!! I didn't realize what I was missing. I'm hooked! Thanks makers of Nutella.

    August 29, 2010 at 5:51 pm |
  39. NancyB

    Nutella has finally arrived. They have crepes with bananas and Nutella at the I-Hop. I was first introduced to Nutella at a friend's house on a plain cookie, topped with a raspberry. Yum! Now I'm responsible for turning a lot of other people to the goodness of Nutella. Not that they are really blaming me, or anything! ;-)

    August 29, 2010 at 4:18 pm |
  40. Mes

    I used to adore Nutella. It was dessert, it was breakfast, it was snacktime (in moderation). Unfortunately, an unusually late in life nut allergy prevents me from eating it anymore.

    August 29, 2010 at 4:00 pm |
  41. Emilee

    One way I've had Nutella is spread it on a slice of pound cake, add sliced strawberries, add another slice of pund cake and then put the whole thing on a panini press and grill it. Delicious dessert panini!

    August 29, 2010 at 3:13 pm |
  42. Harry Baung

    I just realized. Ferrero Rochers are probably filled with a dollop of Nutella, or something very very similar, because Rochers do have a creamy filling.

    August 29, 2010 at 1:07 pm |
    • imadome

      yum :) good comparison.

      August 30, 2010 at 3:10 pm |
  43. Ruanne

    Nutella is awesome. I refuse to buy it. I simply cannot will myself to moderation. A half a jar of the stuff, along with a half loaf of bread, are liable to disappear in one day. I would be obese if I kept it in the house.

    For any of you with loved ones overseas in Afghanistan and Iraq, or who participate in care package charities, you can sometimes find these little single serving Nutella containers that come with a little wooden ice cream spoon. My mother sent me these when I was deployed. They are excellent for care packages, as unlike regular chocolate bars, they will not melt -they are supposed to be semiliquid. Your loved one can stick a couple in his or her cargo pockets on the way to chow and laugh when friends look on in envy as they spread Nutella on toast, on the middle of a combat zone.

    August 29, 2010 at 1:05 pm |
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