Comfort Food, Ideas, Recipes, Treats & Desserts

Natural Peanut Butter Tastes Like Cardboard

Most brands of peanut butter are heavily processed and blended with extra oils and sugars, yielding that familiar and oh-so-addictive flavor.

Luckily, there are several ready-made, natural and organic options as well.

Unfortunately, anyone who’s tried the most basic, natural peanut butters on the market knows firsthand what it tastes like – not good!

On top of being rather soupy upon opening, it usually tastes a bit like cardboard.


Well, when it’s not blended with an oil that stays solid at room temperature, along with other fillers, the peanut oil naturally separates. It’s normal, but can be difficult to work with. On top of that, instead of using a low GI, natural sweetener to replace the added sugar, many brands opt to omit the sweetness completely.

If you can’t live without peanut butter but wanna stay away from the overly processed, sugary stuff, then these tips might help:

Make Soupy Peanut Butter Spreadable

When you’re ready to open a new jar, mix it extremely well and store it in the fridge. This heavily reduces the extreme oil separation of natural peanut butter so you can spread to your heart’s content.

You can also opt to find a natural/organic peanut butter that’s blended with alternative natural/organic oils that stay solid at room temperature – but I’ve yet to find one in my area that didn’t have other added fillers that I’d rather avoid.

Make Natural Peanut Butter Taste Better

This depends on your personal preference and taste buds, but what I’ve found significantly helps is finding a brand with slightly higher sodium.

More Salt = More Flavor

Such a simple thing that honestly makes a world of difference. For example, Smucker’s Natural Creamy Peanut Butter comes in at 110mg Sodium – the taste is definitely more akin to peanut flavored cardboard. Nature’s Promise Free From Creamy Peanut Butter comes in at 125mg Sodium and the taste is noticeably better.

Texture also plays a big part in how folks experience peanut butter and this varies greatly brand to brand. Even though some call it Creamy, it’s usually not that fine texture we’ve been spoiled with. IMO, forgoing the perfectly smooth creaminess is a small price to pay so long as the taste is on point.

Reality Check

In the end, if you’re not over-indulging on a daily basis and have no issues with the ingredients, then your favorite standard brand of peanut butter will, most likely, still fall in the realm of low(ish) carb.

Most peanut butter, natural or not, comes in around 4 to 5g net carbs per serving.

The difference between natural and processed peanut butter isn’t really about the carbs, but more so about the quality of food you’re using to fuel your body.

Like I keep saying time and again – just check that label and make sure you’re happy with the ingredients and nutrition info. Don’t be afraid to try new things and when you do, track how your body reacts so you can learn what works and what doesn’t. If you know your body struggles with the added cane sugar or molasses found in many brands of peanut butter, then it’s definitely time for something less taxing on your system.


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