Does Peanut Butter Go Bad?

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Peanut butter is one of those foods that does not go bad.

In fact, peanut butter is so durable that you can use it for almost anything.

From spreading on toast to baking as an ingredient, there’s really no limit.

However, like all other foods, peanut butter will eventually spoil.

Here’s everything you need to know about how long peanut butter lasts and what you should do if it starts to go bad.

Does Peanut Butter Go Bad? 1

How can you tell if peanut butter has gone bad?

You might be wondering when exactly peanut butter goes bad.

There are actually two types of peanut butter: natural and processed.

Natural peanut butter is made from roasted peanuts.

It’s the type of peanut butter you find in grocery stores or health food stores.

This type of peanut butter is also known as “raw” or “natural.”

Processed peanut butter is the kind you get at supermarkets and convenience stores.

It’s made by processing raw peanuts into a paste.

Processed peanut butter is often enriched with added oils and fats.

The latter type of peanut butter is generally considered more shelf-stable than the former.

However, this depends on the brand.

Some brands of processed peanut butter have been found to last longer than others.

As a general rule, the fresher your peanut butter is, the better.

Therefore, it’s best to buy it within a few days of purchase.

If you want to make sure the peanut butter is fresh enough for consumption, check out our guide on how to test peanut butter for freshness.

If you think the peanut butter you bought is past its prime, here are some things you can try to bring back its flavor:

  • Reheat the peanut butter. Heat it up in the microwave or over low heat until it reaches room temperature. You can then spread it on bread or crackers.
  • Add some honey. Honey is a great way to bring back the flavor of a stale peanut butter.
  • Add salt. Salt can help restore the flavor of a stale peanut butter.
  • Use a blender. Blending peanut butter helps to release trapped air bubbles and bring back the original taste.
  • Refrigerate it. Refrigerating peanut butter brings back the original flavor.
  • Add sugar. Sugar is another good option for bringing back the flavor of a stale peanut butter.
  • Mix it with water. Peanut butter that has gone bad tends to separate. To bring back the original flavor, add some warm water to peanut butter and stir well.
  • Pour hot milk. Adding hot milk to peanut butter makes it easier to spread on bread or crackers.
  • Make it into a sandwich. Spread peanut butter on bread or crackers and top it with cheese or jam.
Peanut Butter

How long does peanut butter usually last before it goes bad?

The shelf life of peanut butter depends on the type of peanut butter you buy.

There are two types of peanut butter that have different expiration dates:

  • Unsalted or natural peanut butter has a longer shelf life than salted peanut butter because salt can accelerate the oxidation process in the peanut butter.
  • Honey roasted peanut butter has a shorter shelf life than plain peanut butter because honey contains sugar which also accelerates the oxidation process.

If you purchase peanut butter with added sugars, such as honey, then you should store your jar in the refrigerator.

If you don’t, then you should keep it at room temperature.

The only exception would be if you purchase a jar with a date printed on it.

These jars have been stored at room temperature and still have a good amount of time left until they spoil.

When you purchase peanut butter without added sugars, then you should store it in the pantry.

This way, your peanut butter can stay fresh for up to six months.

However, if you want to extend its shelf life even further, you can always freeze it.

You should never refreeze peanut butter after it has been frozen once.

That is because freezing destroys the structure of the peanut butter and makes it difficult to thaw out when needed.

In general, peanut butter can last for up to three years if you store it properly.

It is important to note that this shelf life only applies to unrefrigerated peanut butter.

Once you refrigerate it, then the shelf life becomes much shorter.

For example, peanut butter that is already open will start to go bad within 90 days.

What to do if peanut butter goes bad?

If you find that your peanut butter has gone bad, then you should discard it immediately.

Even though it may seem like your peanut butter has spoiled, it might just be more susceptible to bacteria growth compared to normal peanut butter.

Therefore, it is best to throw away any peanut butter that has become rancid or smells bad.

You can also try to reheat it by microwaving it for a few seconds.

Then, when it is hot, you can stir it well and let it cool down again.

Repeat this process several times until the peanut butter is warm enough to spread on bread.

You can also add some butter or oil to help preserve it.

Another option is to make a paste using it and store it in the freezer.

This will prevent the peanut butter from going bad.

However, when you defrost it, it will turn into a grainy mess.

What are the signs that peanut butter has gone bad?

Peanut butter typically goes bad when its oil separates from its solids.

This happens because the oil and solids have different densities and they don’t want to stay together.

When this happens, the peanut butter becomes runny and unusable.

If you see the oil separating from the solids in your jar of peanut butter, stop using it immediately.

If you’re unsure whether or not your peanut butter has separated, check out our guide to identifying spoiled peanut butter.

Another sign of peanut butter going bad is mold growth.

Peanut butter can become moldy due to exposure to air (which is why it’s important to keep peanut butter tightly sealed).

If you notice any mold growing on your peanut butter, throw it away.

Mold can make you very sick and even kill you.

The third sign of peanut butter going bad is discoloration.

Peanut butter turns brown when exposed to oxygen over time.

This is especially true if your peanut butter contains sugar or salt.

If your peanut butter is discolored, toss it out immediately.

What happens if you eat bad peanut butter?

If you don’t have any idea what “bad” means, then let us clear things up right now.

When you buy peanut butter, it has two types of ingredients:

  • The oil or fat content, which makes up around 80% of the total weight of peanut butter
  • The protein content, which makes up around 20% of the total weight of peanut butter

When you buy peanut butter, the label usually tells you the percentage of each of these in the product.

This is called the Nutritional Information Panel (NIP).

The NIP also contains the shelf life of the product, which indicates when you should throw out the product.

If you look at the expiration date, it might be difficult to understand, but it basically tells you when to stop using the product.

You should always follow the instructions on the packaging to avoid any problems.

So, in short, if your peanut butter expires before the expiration date, then you should throw it away immediately.

However, if the expiration date has passed, then you can safely keep it for another couple of weeks.

Now, what exactly happens when peanut butter goes bad?

1. The smell

One of the first signs that peanut butter is going bad is its odor.

Peanut butter smells delicious because of the high concentration of fats and oils it contains.

However, as time passes, the aroma fades, and you start to notice a foul odor coming from the jar.

This is caused by the growth of bacteria in the peanut butter.

As this happens, the texture changes too, making it impossible to spread properly on bread or cookies.

2. The color

Another sign of peanut butter going bad is the color.

When you open a new jar of peanut butter, it should appear bright yellow with a creamy consistency.

However, over time, the color starts to fade, and the peanut butter becomes darker and grainier.

As the color gets darker, the taste becomes bitter.

At this point, the peanut butter is not edible anymore.

So, if you find yourself eating a dark peanut butter, then it’s time to toss it out immediately.

3. The texture

When you open a new jar of peanut butter, you’ll notice that it spreads easily on your toast or cookie.

However, over time, the peanut butter starts to lose its spreadability.

As the spreadability decreases, you’ll see the peanut butter becoming more crumbly.

Eventually, it completely loses its ability to spread on anything.

4. The flavor

When you eat bad peanut butter, it tastes bitter.

The reason why is simple.

As the peanut butter begins to go bad, the protein content starts to break down.

The breakdown of proteins causes the peanut butter to become less tasty and more bland.

5. The texture

Bad peanut butter becomes harder to spread on your cookie or toast.

It’s very difficult to spread on anything because the peanut butter becomes stiffer.

When you try to spread the peanut butter on something, it feels like it’s made of concrete.

Is it safe to eat peanut butter that has gone bad?

It depends. If the peanut butter was made with good-quality ingredients, then it’s probably fine to consume.

However, if it started out as a cheaper product, it may contain preservatives or stabilizers that have been added to extend its shelf life.

In this case, you should avoid consuming the peanut butter unless it’s completely unopened.

If you find yourself in this situation, the best thing to do is to throw it away and try something else.

Otherwise, you might end up with some unpleasant consequences.

Reasons why peanut butter spoils

There are many reasons why peanut butter goes bad.

Some of them include:

  • Too much moisture: Moisture is one of the biggest enemies of peanut butter. When it gets too wet, the peanut butter becomes sticky and hard to spread. Therefore, it’s important to keep your peanut butter stored in a dry place.
  • Moisture from outside: The moisture that comes from the air can also cause peanut butter to spoil. This is especially true when you leave it open for longer periods of time. To prevent this, make sure that you seal your jar tightly after using it.
  • Temperature changes: Temperature fluctuations can also affect the quality of your peanut butter. For instance, if you store it at room temperature, it can be easily affected by heat and humidity. As such, it’s important to keep your peanut butter refrigerated until you use it.
  • Light exposure: Light exposure can also damage the quality of your peanut butter. This is because light causes the oil inside to oxidize, which makes it rancid. To prevent this, keep your peanut butter away from sunlight and heat sources.
  • Lack of nutrients: Nutrients are essential for healthy living. For example, vitamins A and E are two of the most common nutrients found in peanut butter. Without these nutrients, you won’t get proper nutrition from eating peanut butter. Therefore, it’s important to always check the label before buying peanut butter.
  • Preservatives: Preservatives are used to extend the shelf life of peanut butter. These additives are usually synthetic chemicals that help maintain the integrity of the product. However, they can sometimes cause adverse effects on your health. As such, it’s better to avoid using any type of preservative.

How to tell whether peanut butter has spoiled

The first step in determining whether your peanut butter has spoiled is to check the expiration date.

Peanut butter that has expired will have a shorter shelf life than new products.

This means that it’ll start to deteriorate sooner.

Once you notice these signs, it’s time to toss it out.

Once you’ve got rid of the old peanut butter, it’s still okay to eat it.

Just don’t expect it to taste as fresh as it did when it was brand new.

How long does bad peanut butter last?

In general, peanut butter goes bad when it has gone through the process of fermentation.

This means that it has been exposed to air, which allows bacteria to grow and multiply.

The time it takes for this to happen depends on temperature and humidity levels.

As a rule of thumb, peanut butter that is stored in a cooler area with low humidity will take longer to go bad than peanut butter stored in a warmer location with high humidity.

This is because bacteria are more likely to grow at cooler temperatures.

The same principle applies to any product that contains dairy products, such as yogurt or cheese.

If these items have been exposed to air for too long, they will start to ferment.

To test your peanut butter, place a small amount into a cup of warm water.

If it separates and becomes liquid, then it’s still good.

If it floats to the top and stays there, then it’s spoiled.

You can also use this method to check cheese, yogurt, or any other fermented food.

If you want to keep your peanut butter fresh, store it in the refrigerator.

However, if it smells bad, don’t eat it.

Instead, throw it out immediately.

How to tell if your peanut butter has spoiled

If you bought a jar of peanut butter and it started going bad before you opened it, you might be able to save some by using it right away.

But if you’ve opened the jar and it’s already spoiled, there’s nothing you can do except throw it out.

You can try to salvage the peanut butter by adding salt or lemon juice to cut down on the smell.

You can also add a little bit of honey or maple syrup to help preserve the taste.

These methods may work if you only used a small portion of the jar’s contents.

But if you ate most of the peanut butter, you won’t get much benefit from either of these methods.

They’re best used to prevent the spread of mold rather than to stop it once it’s started growing.

What do you do with bad peanut butter?

When peanut butter goes bad, the first thing to worry about is whether or not it tastes good.

If your peanut butter has gone bad and has lost its flavor, then it’s probably best to toss it out.

The only reason you would want to keep it around is if you are going to eat it in some way.

If you’re looking for a quick fix to get rid of bad peanut butter, try mixing it into a smoothie.

Mixing peanut butter into smoothies is a great way to hide any off flavors, especially if you don’t have time to make a new batch.

How to Make Peanut Butter Smoothies

To avoid having to throw out bad peanut butter, you can easily disguise the odor by blending in fruits and vegetables.

Try adding fresh banana slices to the blender along with a few tablespoons of peanut butter.

Blend until everything is well-mixed together.

This will help mask the smell and give your smoothie a nice creamy texture.

How to Use Peanut Butter in Your Cooking

You can also add peanut butter to your cooking.

Whether you’re making pancakes, waffles, ice cream, or even cookies, peanut butter works wonders when added to recipes.

You can even sprinkle it over popcorn to increase the overall crunchiness.

There are a lot of different ways you can use peanut butter, but here are just a couple of examples to get you started.

  • Mix 1/4 cup of peanut butter with 2 cups of oats and 1/2 cup of milk to create a delicious oatmeal cookie recipe.
  • Spread peanut butter on top of a piece of bread before grilling it. The smoky flavor from the grill will blend perfectly with the sweetness of the peanut butter.

How do you store peanut butter to keep it from going bad?

In general, there are two main ways to store peanut butter.

You can either put it in the fridge or in the freezer.

Of course, both methods have their advantages and disadvantages.

The best method depends on your needs and preferences.

Storing in the Fridge

The first way to store peanut butter is by putting it in the refrigerator.

This is the most common technique since refrigeration is necessary to keep many types of food fresh.

However, storing peanut butter in the refrigerator isn’t always ideal.

For example, refrigerators aren’t very good at keeping things cold.

So, while you may be able to keep peanut butter fresh for longer periods of time, it won’t stay frozen as well.

If you want to keep peanut butter fresh for a longer period of time, this means you need to buy a special container with a sealable lid.

These containers are usually made from glass or plastic and come with lids that fit snugly over the top.

You can also purchase sealed jars of peanut butter.

These jars are usually sold in large quantities, which makes them perfect for bulk purchases.

They are often used as gifts or to give away as samples when you’re trying out new products.

Storing in the Freezer

Another way to store peanut butter is to freeze it.

While freezing peanut butter isn’t always the best option, it can work well depending on your situation.

This is because freezing keeps peanut butter from spoiling as quickly.

When you freeze peanut butter, it actually turns into a solid block of ice.

As such, the bacteria that cause peanut butter to go bad cannot survive.

Of course, this isn’t always possible.

For instance, you probably don’t want to freeze your entire supply of peanut butter.

After all, it’ll take quite a bit of effort to defrost it once you’ve finished eating it.

So, in order to keep your peanut butter fresh, you need to buy a special container that allows you to freeze it.

It’s important to note that these containers are designed to be able to withstand the rigors of being frozen.

As such, they’re usually made of stainless steel or metal instead of plastic or glass.

When you’re ready to eat your peanut butter again, you just need to defrost it.

Simply pop it in the microwave until it melts.

Once melted, you can spread it onto bread, crackers, or whatever else you desire.

What is the best way to eat peanut butter?

There are many ways to eat peanut butter.

You can spread it on bread or crackers, add it to a sandwich, or even bake it into something sweet.

The only real rule is that it has to be consumed within a certain amount of time after opening.

If you buy peanut butter in a jar, you shouldn’t keep it more than two weeks because the shelf life is often shorter than this.

If you purchase it in a tube, the shelf life is usually longer but still not indefinite.

A good rule of thumb is to consume it within six months from when you bought it.

You can also buy peanut butter in bulk, which is great if you have a lot of friends who love peanut butter.

But if you don’t, then buying it in small amounts is probably better.

This is especially true if you buy it in a container that requires you to shake it before using.

The only other thing to consider is whether you want to eat peanut butter straight out of the jar or heat it up first.

If you don’t want to heat it up, then you might want to stick with peanut butter in a tube or a jar.

Heat-resistant jars are available, but they aren’t cheap, so you may want to opt for peanut butter in a tube instead.

You can also cook peanut butter bacon pop-tarts, African peanut soup or peanut butter ice cream,…

Does peanut butter go bad in the fridge?

The short answer is yes.

However, peanut butter doesn’t spoil overnight. It takes time for peanut butter to start going bad.

As such, it’s best to store your peanut butter in the refrigerator, where it will remain fresh much longer than it would at room temperature.

In general, the shelf life of peanut butter in the fridge is anywhere from six months to two years.

If you have leftover peanut butter, you can safely keep it in the fridge for up to three months.

If you want to extend the shelf life of your peanut butter even further, you can freeze it.

Just be sure to let it thaw completely before using it.

Once thawed, peanut butter can stay frozen for up to 12 months.

As with most foods, peanut butter goes bad when it comes into contact with air.

This includes exposure to light, heat, and moisture.

The main culprit here is oxygen.

If the packaging is sealed, then the peanut butter won’t be exposed to air until you open it.

But once opened, the air inside will quickly oxidize the peanut butter, making it taste stale and rancid.

So while peanut butter may not go bad overnight, it will definitely go bad sooner or later.

The good news is that you can prevent this by storing your peanut butter in the fridge.

If you don’t, then you’ll have to throw it out immediately.

Peanut Butter Ice Cream

Peanut Butter Ice Cream Recipe: The Best You’ll Ever Taste

Peanut Butter ice cream is a flavor of ice cream made with peanut butter. Peanut butter taste in ice cream is a unique and delicious experience.
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 5
Calories 662 kcal


  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup peanut butter


  • The first step is to make a peanut butter sauce.
  • This can be done by whisking together peanut butter, sugar, milk, and cream in a saucepan over medium heat.
  • Once the mixture is smooth and combined, remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract.
  • Next, make the ice cream base.
  • Combine the milk, cream, sugar, and brown sugar in a saucepan over medium heat.
  • Cook the mixture until it comes to a boil.
  • Once boiling, remove from heat and let cool slightly.
  • Now, it’s time to combine the two mixtures.
  • Add the peanut butter sauce to the ice cream base and stir until combined.
  • Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Serve immediately or store in an airtight container in the freezer for later.



Calories: 662kcalCarbohydrates: 57gProtein: 15gFat: 45gSaturated Fat: 17gPolyunsaturated Fat: 7gMonounsaturated Fat: 18gCholesterol: 60mgSodium: 259mgPotassium: 440mgFiber: 2gSugar: 51gVitamin A: 779IUVitamin C: 0.3mgCalcium: 135mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Peanut Butter Ice Cream Recipe: The Best You’ll Ever Taste
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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