Peanut butter is a paste made from roasted, ground and peeled peanuts.
They may have some preservatives and seasonings added. To be classified as peanut butter, the product must be composed of at least 90% peanuts.
What is the history of peanut butter?
There are records of peanuts from South America dating back at least 3,500 years. It is believed that the Inca Indians created peanut butter by grinding the nuts into a smooth paste.
Peanuts have long been an established snack for North America's poorest residents. They became much more popular after the American Civil War and stadium peanuts became a fan favorite.
The first major sale of commercial peanut butter was at the St Louis World's Fair in 1904. It was added to US Army rations because of its nutritional value. By the time of World War II, PB&J sandwiches had become a staple food for soldiers.
What is the nutritional content of peanut butter?
Peanut butter is high in fat, with a 2-tablespoon serving providing nearly ¼ of your daily requirement for saturated fat.
There are also many monounsaturated fatty acids and polyunsaturated fatty acids included in peanut butter. These are in similar proportions to olive oil, which also has many advantageous health benefits.
One serving of peanut butter contains 1.8g of fiber and 7g of protein. Peanut butter is not a source of all the essential amino acids your body requires, so it shouldn't be considered your only source of protein.
There are many different minerals included in peanut butter such as phosphorus, zinc, calcium, magnesium and vitamin B6.
The American Diabetes Association recommends peanut butter to promote heart health, improve blood lipids and help control weight in diabetic patients.
They don't advise everyone against everyone, but they do recommend a maximum of 46 g per day.
What are the different types of peanut butter?
pure/natural peanut butter
This is a peanut butter made exclusively from peanuts, perhaps with a little salt and/or oil.
This should withstand the freezing process very well and should not compromise flavor or texture.
crunchy peanut butter
This is peanut butter that has not been completely pulverized. There should be lots of small pieces of peanuts scattered throughout.
This gives it a crunchy appearance and texture, hence the name 'crispy'.
smooth peanut butter
This is peanut butter that has been mixed well to get a smooth, consistent texture.
Every tablespoon of peanut butter should taste and texture the same.
Smooth peanut butter tends to resist freezing and thawing better than crunchy peanut butter.
A peanut butter spread is defined as a peanut-based spread that contains less than 90% peanuts, according to Federal Food and Drug Regulations.
Why would you freeze peanut butter?
If you enjoy making your own peanut butter at home, freezing peanut butter allows you to make it in bulk and preserve it for the future.
This is also a good trick if you don't eat peanut butter regularly and want to avoid waste.
Peanut butter will keep in the freezer for up to 6 months before it starts to lose its flavor. If left too long, it doesn't mean it won't be safe to eat, but it could develop a rancid taste and not be as pleasant to eat.
A few years ago, there was a viral internet hack. This involved spreading a thin square of peanut butter onto a sheet of parchment paper and letting it freeze.
This makes making peanut butter andjellysandwiches a breeze! You'll never have to worry about breaking bread again.
Another good use for frozen peanut butter is as acookie doughstuffed.
How do you freeze peanut butter?
As different types of peanut butter freeze with varying degrees of success, it's wise to do a little freeze test to test it out.
To do this, spread a tablespoon of peanut butter onto a small square of parchment paper.
Put this onfreezer and leave a couple of hours to freeze. This means that if you don't freeze well, you won't have wasted a jar full of peanut butter.
Freeze an entire unopened jar
We do not recommend freezing peanut butter in glass jars. This is because the substances expand when freezing, putting excessive pressure on the sides of the vial.
If you placed a glass jar in the freezer, this increase in pressure could cause the glass to break.
This is not only a food hygiene issue as you may have glass in your food, but it can also pose a health and safety threat.
The glass can travel all the way through the freezer, which can cause serious injury if not cleaned properly.
If you don't want to remove the peanut butter from the jar, open the lid and remove the safety seal. This will give the peanut butter more room to expand and will lessen the chance of the jar breaking.
Replace the lid when the peanut butter is completely frozen. This can take up to 6 hours to occur.
Freeze an open jar
We suggest taking the peanut butter out of the jar if it has been open for a while or if it is less than half full. It's a good idea to transfer the peanut butter to an airtight container or freezer-safe ziplock bag.
We suggest choosing a container that is approximately the same size as the volume of peanut butter you want to freeze.
This is to reduce the amount of air left at the top of the container. You need something to allow for expansion, but air is one of the main components in generating frostbite.
If your container is much larger than the volume of peanut butter you hold, place a layer of plastic wrap on the surface before putting the lid on.
This will keep extra air from coming into contact with the peanut butter and help preserve its quality.
If you are freezing peanut butter in a ziplock bag, you need to squeeze out as much air as possible before sealing it. Make sure the bag is clearly labeled and dated.
Freeze a small amount
a very easyway to freezesmaller amounts of peanut butter is to dispense it into ice cube trays.
A standard tray makes ice cubes about 2 tablespoons in volume, but it's wise to check this before adding the peanut butter.
2 tablespoons is the perfect serving size for peanut butter, making meal prep a breeze!
Place some peanut butter on each cube on the tray and place in the freezer for a few hours to freeze.
Once frozen, remove the peanut butter cubes from the tray and place in a large ziplock bag. This must be clearly labeled and dated.
Freeze Biscuit Fillings
Another fantastic use for frozen peanut butter is as a filling for an indulgent meal.chocolate cookies. To make these stuffed empanadas, you will need a largebaking sheet covered with a layer of parchment paper.
Using a spoon, scoop out 1 to 2 tablespoons of peanut butter, depending on the size of finished cookies.
Roll out the portions into small, thin circles. Place the tray in the freezer for an hour or so to allow the circles to freeze.
Use this time to make your cookie dough! Place a peanut butter patty between 2 layers ofcookie doughand pinch the edges to seal the peanut butter puck.
bake the cookiesas usual and wait until you see the look of surprise on your children's faces.
Other ways to freeze peanut butter
If you're as addicted to PB&J as we are, you'll love this hack! You can make the sandwiches in advance and wrap them well in a double layer ofaluminum paper.
Be sure to spread a base layer of peanut butter on both slices of bread to prevent the jam from seeping into the bread.
You can take these sandwiches out of the freezer in the morning and put them in your lunch box.
By lunchtime, it will be perfectly defrosted and ready to eat - no mess or hassle! These will keep in the freezer for up to a month.
You can also create a fun frozen treat for your canine friends during the hot summer months. Mash a banana and mix it with some peanut butter.
Pour this mixture into ice cube trays and place in the freezer overnight, before transferring to a labeled ziplock bag.
It is important to make sure that the peanut butter you give your dog is 100% natural and does not contain xylitol.
A good measure is to feed your dog between ½ and 1 tablespoon of peanut butter a day, depending on the size of your dog.
How do you thaw peanut butter?
pure peanut butter
If you are freezing and thawing pure peanut butter, you will see a natural separation occur.
It's the same breakdown of the oil and butter emulsion that you would see if the peanut butter was kept in the cupboard. This is known as syneresis: the process of separating oils and solids as the temperature increases.
This will be slightly reduced if you place the peanut butter in the fridge to thaw. This will be a slower process but will reduce the amount of separation.
This doesn't mean you should throw away the peanut butter, just mix it well for a few minutes. Use a light, stirring motion and a fork to gently reincorporate the natural oils into the emulsion.
Other Peanut Butters
Peanut butter with additives usually also has stabilizers built into the paste. This prevents the seed from separating during storage.
These are more resistant and can only be defrosted on the kitchen counter.
A jar full of peanut butter
As with the freezing process, we recommend removing the peanut butter jar lid during thawing. You can replace the lid once it has completely thawed.
Place it in the fridge overnight to thaw gently.
small pieces of peanut butter
The easiest way to defrost small pieces of peanut butter is to place them on a plate on the counter. If you are using the small disk method to fill cookies, just add the frozen disks in the center.
We do not recommend defrosting peanut butter in the microwave under any circumstances. This is because extreme heat can cause the oils to burn, which can have health consequences. If you add it to a warm dish, you can freeze it and the heat will gently thaw it.
If you need a faster thawing method, place the sealed container in a bowl of warm water. This will gently heat the peanut butter without being too aggressive with the heat used.
How is peanut butter stored?
Commercial peanut butter lasts about a year once opened. You must store it with the lid tightly closed.
Ideal storage situations for peanut butter are a dry, cool, dark place such as a cupboard. Storing the jar of peanut butter in the refrigerator can further extend the shelf life.
Some peanut butter brands suggest storing them in the refrigerator, read the label to verify proper storage conditions. This may be because cooler temperatures can help reduce natural separation.
You should never refreeze thawed peanut butter. Hethe freezing process will shorten its shelf life once thawedand it won't last as long as a defrosted jar. Once frozen and thawed, peanut butter should be stored in the refrigerator.
Can you lose weight eating peanut butter?
Not exclusively, but you can lose weight by eating a diet that incorporates a moderate amount of peanut butter.
As long as you follow the recommended serving sizes, there's no reason why peanut butter should help you lose weight.
If you are trying to lose weight or are very health conscious, we recommend opting for 100% natural peanut butter.
This means that you will be eating only pure peanut products, with no added salt, sugars and extra oils.
Peanut butter's high protein and fat content will increase feelings of fullness and help keep you fuller for longer.
This is likely to mean that you will eat less, which will help you in the weight loss process. It is also unlikely to cause an increase in blood sugar levels.
How do you know when peanut butter has gone bad?
Peanut butter contains a high concentration of oils. Once these are exposed to oxygen, they can start to go rancid as they break down. This leads to taste, texture and odor changes in peanut butter.
The vitamin E contained in peanut butter helps extend its shelf life, and this is believed to be the reason why peanut butter lasts longer than other fats. Vitamin E acts as a natural antioxidant, slowing down the rancidity process.
The normal appearance of peanut butter is creamy, smooth and light brown in color. Peanut butter that has evaporated will turn dark brown, hard and dry.
The smell will likely change from salty to nutty. If peanut butter has gone rancid, it may have a bitter, strong, or even soapy odor. Watch for mold growing on the surface; if so, we recommend that you discard it.
Peanut butter, even when rancid, is unlikely to make you sick. It might not taste as good.
Can you eat 2 year old peanut butter?
In theory, yes. It won't cause or cause food poisoning, but it's unlikely to be as good as fresh peanut butter.
Is peanut butter safe for babies?
Yes, it is safe for most babies, with the obvious exception of babies with peanut allergies. If your child has other known allergies, particularly to eggs, be very careful. This puts them at much greater risk for a peanut allergic reaction.
Be careful when introducing new foods to your baby. It's good to know what allergies your child has, so he should be exposed to peanuts at some point.
If you have any serious concerns, consider waiting until you're at a doctor's or allergist's office. This means you are in a safe environment if your child starts to have an allergic reaction.
If your baby has no known allergies, you should give him peanut butter between 4 and 6 months of age.
Do not feed them crunchy peanut butter as there is a risk of choking. Some plain peanut butter can be too thick and difficult for babies to eat. Consider diluting with a little water to thin the consistency.
Watch for the first signs of an allergic reaction. These include red eyes, swelling, irritation and a runny nose. If you have any concerns, get them to a doctor as soon as possible.
Is peanut butter a good survival food?
Yes it is. It's easy to access and very stable. It can last for years without being opened, and even when the flavor wears off, it will still provide plenty of nutrients.
It is a very calorie-dense food, making it ideal for survival food packs. It's also very inexpensive to buy compared to most other survival foods.
You can also buy powdered peanut butter. This becomes a paste with the addition of a little water. This is specially designed for survival tents.
This has an incredibly long shelf life, up to 10 years. It's also very light and even more nutrient-dense than standard peanut butter.
A standard jar of peanut butter has about 2,660 calories. That's made up of 98g of protein, 224g of fat, and 98g of carbs.
A standard American needs a minimum of 2,000 calories a day. If you plan on eating nothing but peanut butter for a year, you'll need about 275 jars of peanut butter per person.
If you only want to eat the equivalent of one meal a day consisting of peanut butter, you'll need about 92 jars of peanut butter per person.
Secopeanut buttercontains about 65 servings per can, about 4,000 calories. This shows how much more nutrition is included in the powdered version, making it better for survivors.
Does frozen peanut butter taste good?
We do not recommend that you eat frozen peanut butter while it is still frozen or partially frozen. It is because...
When thawing frozen peanut butter, you will see a natural separation occur as the oil separates from the solids. It's the same process you would see if you left the peanut butter in the cupboard.
Therefore, for the best results, you should allow peanut butter to thaw properly before using it in a meal, snack, or recipe.
The best way to do this is to let the peanut butter thaw in the fridge. That's because this method helps to slow down the separation of oils and solids that we described earlier, known as syneresis. Remember to remove the lid as this will help defrost better.
Of course, it takes longer to defrost this way, but that's how you get the best possible results.
Once you are satisfied that the peanut butter has thawed properly, stir well for a few minutes to gently reincorporate the natural oils into the emulsion.
How long does peanut butter last in the freezer?
Peanut butter will keep in the freezer for up to 6 months before it starts to lose its flavor.
If left for longer than 6 months, it doesn't necessarily mean it's not safe to eat. However, it can develop a rancid taste and not be as pleasant to eat.
Putting frozen peanut butter in the fridge to thaw will help keep it longer than simply letting it thaw.
How do you make peanut butter smooth again?
If you have the patience to get your hands on thawed peanut butter, you can wait until it thaws properly over time in the fridge.
As the peanut butter begins to thaw, the oils separate from the peanut butter solids in a process known as syneresis. Putting the peanut butter in the fridge to thaw helps slow down this process.
When the peanut butter is naturally soft enough to stir in the fridge, you can stir it very well for several minutes. This stirring can help restore the peanut butter to the same consistency and texture as when you bought it.
You can still achieve this effect without the fridge, but it would require a lot more stirring and is not the recommended method.
We strongly recommend not defrosting peanut butter in the microwave, as the heat will cause the oils in the peanut butter to burn, which can have health implications.