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Thread: Any decent organic or sugar-free peanut butter?

  1. #1
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    Any decent organic or sugar-free peanut butter?

    I'm trying to cut back on the added sugars in foods, and peanut butter - I thought - would be a painless way to start. I found organic PB, but all the oil was at the top, it splashed out when I opened the jar, it splashed when I tried to stir it and I finally just gave up.

    Is there any sugar-free PB that doesn't drip oil?

  2. #2
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    If you have the time and interest try making your own peanut butter in a food processor. After I tried homemade peanut butter, I was never able to go back to the store bought kind!
    Jennifer

  3. #3
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    I use Smucker's natural PB.

    I am pretty sure all natural PB has that layer of oil. it is normal. the first time you stir it, you just have to be very careful. but after that, the oil doesn't separate (even at room temperature). the jar says to refrigerate to prevent separation, but I find that is not necessary. in fact, if you do refrigerate it, it becomes hard and therefore difficult to spread. I just store it in the cabinet and give it a little stir each time I use it. works out great.

  4. #4
    Another vote for Smucker's Natural. It's our favorite!

  5. #5
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    I have had good success with all natural peanut butter. Smuckers is probably my least favorite. Once you stir the oil into the peanut butter, it stays mixed well and you shouldn't have to mix it again. It's not so bad once you are expecting the oil the first time you open the jar.

    I don't think I've eaten anything other than natural peanut butter for 3 years and now when I taste Jif or something like it, I don't like it. Good luck in finding a good solution.
    Christine

  6. #6
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    It also helps to turn the jar upside down for a couple of days before you stir it. When you turn the jar back over to stir it the oil will be on the bottom and won't splash out to the same degree. I really like Trader Joe's organic natural peanut butter.

  7. #7
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    I only buy natural pb too, but I don't seem to recall seeing much in the way of organic if that's a must. I also find that after that first sort of annoying mixing I don't have to do it again.
    The Wednesday Food section does a column called Taster's Choice where a panel of chefs and cookbook authors review various brands within a category, and they just did natural peanut butters a week or so ago. Adams came out #1 and Laura Scudder's and TJ's came in last. Hmmm, looks like Smuckers is popular here but wasn't even among the 9 tasted, I wonder why?? (Wait, now that I think about it I've never seen Smuckers PB! Maybe it's not sold here....)

  8. #8
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    I use Trader Joe's and love it. I'm surprised to see that it came in last place in the Taster's Choice poll. Now it makes me want to try some other brands to see what I'm missing!

  9. #9
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    since natural PB is just made of peanuts (and sometimes salt) it is hard to see how the brands could differ that greatly. but maybe they do. I have never tested them side by side.

  10. #10
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    Steph, if you have a grocery store nearby (you're in Atl, Harry's or Whole Foods should carry this) that has a little machine that grinds pb fresh, try that. It's salt and sugar free, and pretty good. The oil stays mixed in, too.
    "It covers your bread like a stinkyfishy tarp
    I know it isn't butter
    But I can't believe it's carp!"

    Kenny Blankenship and Vic Romano, Most Extreme Elimination Challenge

  11. #11
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    Originally posted by jennanne
    If you have the time and interest try making your own peanut butter in a food processor. After I tried homemade peanut butter, I was never able to go back to the store bought kind!
    I agree, but if you don't have the time try looking in the Natural Foods section of your local grocery stores. Like JHolcomb said, some do have grinding machines, and you can make your own peanut butter or they do it for you. They sometimes have some containers made up fresh to buy too. It is really good!
    Zinnia

  12. #12
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    I don't know if you have Publix grocery stores, but if we move where there isn't one, I will miss my Publix peanut butter so much! It's just peanuts, but somehow it comes already blended and smooth, and tastes like exactly what it is, peanuts. The grinder idea, mentioned above, must be how they make it. It stays mixed too, so there's never a layer of oil on top.
    Wendy

  13. #13
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    Adam's Natural No-Stir (Crunchy). We got through a 16oz jar about every week
    If you are a dreamer, come in. If you are a dreamer, a wisher, a liar, a hoper, a prayer, a magic-bean-buyer. If you're a pretender, come sit by my fire, for we have some flax-golden tales to spin. Come in! Come in! Shel Silverstein, Where the Sidewalk Ends.

  14. #14
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    Another vote for Trader Joe's -- I've tried all the natural peanut butters available in this area, and I think TJ's is the best both for taste and price.

    What I've noticed is that some of the natural peanut butters come in a jar that is too narrow to stir it up well, and you get the kind of mess that Stephanie described. Look for a brand that comes in a wide-mouthed jar. Also, when I stir it up, I put the jar in the sink, so that any oil that slooshes out won't get the countertop all messy.

    I keep it in the frig, and if necessary, put a tablespoon or so in the microwave for 7 seconds before spreading.

    I've also liked Arrowhead Mills brand, which sells two varieties, both "organic" and "conventional."

    At my local Whole Foods (Bread & Circus) there are two peanut butter grinders, one for "conventional" and the other for "organic."

    It seems that these peanut butters are pretty regional, because I've never heard of Adams or Laura Scudders, which Canice mentions, but I see Smucker's everywhere. We also have a brand made here in the Boston area called Teddie's that I've bought on occasion.

    Helene
    "We reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals. Our founding fathers, faced with perils we can scarcely imagine, drafted a charter to assure the rule of law and the rights of man, a charter expanded by the blood of generations. Those ideals still light the world, and we will not give them up for expedience's sake."
    --President Barack Obama, 1/20/09

  15. #15
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    Thanks for the feedback, everyone! I'll check Whole Foods early next week, and I love the idea of storing it upside down. We don't have this Trader Joe's place around here (is it a supermarket?), but after everything I read on the CL board I wish we did!

  16. #16
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    I like the Whole Foods brand, 365 Natural Peanut butter. I am planning a Trader Joe's run today so maybe I'll check out their brand. I have a jar of Teddie now and I'm not wild about it. It doesn't taste as fresh as the 365, I don't think.

    I like to keep it in the fridge so it doesn't get rancid (I'm the only one who eats it.) The way I get around the "hardness" issue is I eat PB on toast or toasted English muffins, so after I toast my bread, I plop the PB on it and put the bread back in the warm toaster oven for a minute. When I take it out, the cold PB is warm and spreadable. Yum.

  17. #17
    Originally posted by Beth G.
    It also helps to turn the jar upside down for a couple of days before you stir it. When you turn the jar back over to stir it the oil will be on the bottom and won't splash out to the same degree. I really like Trader Joe's organic natural peanut butter.
    Good tip! I am going to try that next time!

    We use Smucker's Natural and I've always thought it was pretty tasty but I am anxious to try some of these other brands mentioned to see if there is a difference.

  18. #18
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    Another vote for Adams, crunchy of course. I prefer the salted kind, but the Trader Joes is too salty for us. I have bought it a couple of times and every jar has been salty.

    I usually pour off most of the oil when the jar is first opened and then I stir what remains into the peanut butter.

  19. #19
    I buy TJ's PB, or Smuckers if I don't have time to get to TJ's. I use a knife to stir rather than a spoon- it seems to cut down on splashing significantly.

  20. #20
    Maranatha Organic Peanut Butter. We found it at Costco, of all places, and it is really good. No stabilizers, PHOs, sugar, etc., just organic dry-roasted peanuts and sea salt. The oil doesn't tend to separate, so no stirring is required, and the spreading consistency is good straight out of the refrigerator. Some other brands we tried were pretty stiff when cold and could really tear up a slice of bread.

  21. #21
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    Originally posted by valchemist
    since natural PB is just made of peanuts (and sometimes salt) it is hard to see how the brands could differ that greatly....
    Piqued my curiosity, Val, so I went back to the column (link below) and it looks like texture, salt level and basic peanut flavor were the factors. But I'd never given it any thought before, myself.
    http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cg....DTL&type=food

  22. #22
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    I just yesterday read an article in a local weekly newspaper that praised Teddie's:

    Teddie's Old Fashioned Peanut Butter Review in Boston Phoenix

    Makes me want to go buy some!
    Sarah

  23. #23
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    Another vote for Adams' Crunchy. I haven't tried the no stir kind. I stir it well once, put it in the fridge and don't ever seem to have to stir it again.

  24. #24
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    Originally posted by gertdog
    I buy TJ's PB, or Smuckers if I don't have time to get to TJ's. I use a knife to stir rather than a spoon- it seems to cut down on splashing significantly.
    I also use a knife to stir it up.

  25. #25
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    Stefania,

    Trader Joes is "a unique grocery store". Here is a link that answers the question What is Trader Joes? - http://www.traderjoes.com/about/index.asp

    It is a pretty dandy store that carries a lot of good food and beverages at good prices. Many of the products are under there own label and they also carry brand name items. They carry fresh breads and baked goods, coffee and tea, a limited selection of packaged fresh fruit and vegetables and meat and poultry, prepared foods, cheese, dairy products, pizza dough, wine and beer, dried pasta, olive oil, canned tomatoes and bean....The list goes on and on. I shop there a lot.

  26. #26
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    Krema Peanut Butter, based in Columbus, is the oldest peanut butter manufacturer still operating in the US. They've been making peanut butter since 1908. All of their nut butters are all-natural, so you can add any salt to your taste. (You can visit them at www.krema.com) They even have a new hot and spicy one, but I ca'nt find any details about it on their site.

    Cook's Illustrated had a hint about natural peanut butter and stirring - they suggested putting all of the contents of the jar into a wide, flat plastic container (like a Tupperware one) to make it easier to stir, and to add ingredients (like honey) if you wanted to.
    --Mary Kate--

    "In all our woods there is not a tree so hard to kill as the buckeye. The deepest girdling does not deaden it, and even after it is cut down and worked up into the side of a cabin it will send out young branches, denoting to all the world that Buckeyes are not easily conquered, and could with difficulty be destroyed." - Daniel Drake, 1833

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