These are the ones you should look for.
Ever since I was a little girl, I have always loved peanut butter. I love the taste of it, the creamy, smooth texture, and the versatility of the ingredient.
I never even knew there was a difference in terms of the health implications between the various brands available to choose from at the grocery store.
When I was little, my family bought peanut butter with added sugar. We thought nothing of it, and I honestly didn't even know that it contained sugar, or that there were specific nut butters that truly were completely natural.
Once I entered high school, I began to care more about the foods I put into my body, so I switched to a natural peanut butter. Little did I know that just because a jar of peanut butter has the word "natural" slapped on the front of the label, doesn't mean it's actually free of all added sugars.
Finally, when I got to college, I found a peanut butter with only two simple ingredients (peanuts and salt) that I truly enjoyed the taste and flavor of. I ditched the added sugar and hydrogenated oils, and I haven't looked back since.
Now, it might seem crazy to some to dedicate an entire article to discussing various peanut butters, but I think it's important enough to share some of the healthiest ones that are widely available, because I'm sure there are many others out there who can relate to my former self, not knowing which to choose out of the many different ones available.
Plus, peanut butter is a wildly popular food, In fact, data based on the U.S. Census data and Simmons National Consumer Survey (NHCS) reveals that:
Therefore, I think this article is relatable to many people. So, let's dive into three of the healthiest peanut butters you can eat, two of which also happen to be highly recommended by dietitians.
1. Crazy Richard's 100% Peanuts All Natural Peanut Butter
This is actually the first peanut butter that I started buying in college. I was able to purchase it at Walmart, it was relatively inexpensive, and I truly enjoyed the taste and texture of it. Because it does not have additives, it is less thick than many of the nut butters processed with sugar and/or oils.
I actually see this as a positive because I find it easier to incorporate into recipes or drizzle on top of desserts, oatmeal bowls, etc. I am someone who eats oatmeal for breakfast 4 - 5 times each and every week, so a smooth, drizzly, and healthy peanut butter is an absolute must for me.
However, after a couple of years, I discovered a peanut butter with just a little bit of added salt and a slightly thicker consistency, which is why I don't buy this one as often as I used to.
Still, this peanut butter ranks as one of the healthiest ones on the market, as it only includes one simple ingredient - peanuts.
"Crazy Richard's peanut butter has no added oil, salt or sugar for those looking for the purest product. You can always add a touch of salt if you wish but for people limiting sodium and sugar due to medical conditions or dietary preferences, Crazy Richard's is a fabulous choice. "
Due to the delicious taste, texture, and simplicity of Crazy Richard's peanut butter, along with the approval from registered dietitians like Harris-Pincus, it ranks as one of the healthiest peanut butters on the market.
2. Trader Joe's Creamy No Salt Organic Peanut Butter, Valencia
I had to include this peanut butter because Trader Joe's is one of my absolute favorite grocery stores to shop at, and this peanut butter has a unique taste due to the organic valencia peanuts used to create this nut butter.
I can't say I'm surprised that Trader Joe's would offer a number of incredibly healthy peanut butter options, much like some of the other healthy and unique products that line their shelves.
I first tried this nut butter midway through college. I absolutely love the creaminess and flavor of it. The only reason I don't buy it more often is because I don't live near a Trader Joe's right now. When I was in college, the closest one was even further - over 90 minutes away from me.
Still, when I do occasionally head to Trader Joe's, I love to pick this nut butter up, as it tastes amazing and I know it's healthy.
Another favorite of mine that is worth checking out is the chia and flaxseed peanut butter. It tastes delicious, and while it does have a few extra ingredients, the chia and flaxseeds are two superfood seeds which are incredible to incorporate into your diet. Plus, they give the peanut butter a nice crunchy texture.
3. Wild Friends Classic Creamy Peanut Butter
I first tried Wild Friends peanut butter in college when I found a few flavors discounted at my local TJMaxx. I got the classic creamy peanut butter, the chocolate coconut peanut butter, and the sugar cookie peanut butter.
While the last two did have a bit of added sugar, I used them more scarcely as toppings for my dessert at the end of the night.
All three flavors tasted incredible and got me hooked on the brand. The only problem was, I couldn't afford them unless I found them discounted at TJMaxx. So, every time I found a jar, I bought it. To this day, the wild friends creamy peanut butter is one of my favorite healthy peanut butters.
I recommend it to all my friends, and I truly love the taste, texture, and the brand as a whole. Plus, this Wild Friends creamy peanut butter is another one that is dietitian recommended.
"because of its simple ingredient list and solid fiber and protein count."
The Wild Friends classic creamy peanut butter includes only roasted peanuts and salt, and it has 3 grams of fiber per 2 tablespoon serving. I had to include this one as the final one to complete the list.
The best way to tell whether or not a jar of peanut butter is truly natural is to check the ingredients list on the back of the label.
I try to purchase nut butters with only peanuts or peanuts and salt as the ingredients. I also love to use the fresh peanut grinding machine at my local grocery store when it is available, but it creates a much thicker peanut butter which isn't ideal to spread or bake with, so I like to keep my pantry stocked with the packaged kind as well.
If you stay away from the added sugars and oils, and find a nut butter with simple ingredients that you truly enjoy the taste of, your health will ultimately receive a boost.