The Best Natural Peanut Butters That a Dietitian Recommends

Once Again Creamy Peanut Butter contains just organic, dry-roasted peanuts

We independently research, test, review, and recommend the best products. Healthcare professionals review articles for medical accuracy. Learn more about our process. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.

Peanut butter is a nutrient dense, delicious, and satisfying food to incorporate into your diet. There is no regulatory definition of "natural" when it comes to food labeling, however, the FDA considers the term natural to mean that nothing artificial or synthetic has been added to the food. In general, "natural" is used as a marketing term, and it does not inherently mean healthy. For example, some natural peanut butters can contain high amounts of added sugars and oils. It is best to look for products with whole, simple ingredients that meet your nutritional needs and preferences.

Reviewed & Approved

Once Again Unsweetened Creamy Peanut Butter is our top pick because it contains just organic, dry-roasted peanuts. We also love Justin's Classic Peanut Butter because it has a creamy, no-stir texture.

Sammi Brondo, MS, RD, CDN says, "Peanut butter is such a versatile and nutritious staple. It's filled with healthy fats, protein, vitamins, and minerals. I love having it with oatmeal, Greek yogurt, or in a smoothie. And, of course, you can never go wrong with a classic peanut butter and jelly sandwich."

Consider what you plan on using the peanut butter for, and choose one with the appropriate texture and spreadability. For example, some peanut butters without added oils may require stirring, and will likely not spread as easily, but do blend well into smoothies or oatmeal. When choosing our list of natural peanut butters, we prioritized products with simple ingredient lists and considered packaging, nutritional content, certifications, availability and price.

Here are the best natural peanut butters, according to a dietitian.

Best Overall

Once Again Unsweetened Salt-Free Creamy Peanut Butter

Once Again Unsweetened Salt-Free Creamy Peanut Butter

Courtesy of Amazon

Pros
  • Contains just dry roasted peanuts

  • USDA Organic and Non-GMO

  • Commitment to sustainability

Cons
  • Requires stirring

Once Again Creamy Peanut Butter is our top pick because it's made with just USDA Organic dry roasted peanuts. Because it contains no added oils or other additives, it does require stirring, but once the natural oils are mixed and incorporated, it does spread easily. Once Again recommends stirring the product when you first open it, and then refrigerating the jar to minimize continued separation.

Once Again also offers a no-stir variety made with palm oil, as well as crunchy, sweetened and salt-added varieties, depending on your preference. If you use peanut butter a lot in your household, they also offer 5 and 9 pound containers, which reduces the price per ounce by about half.

We love that Once Again has a Honest in Trade program that is committed to sustainability, from sourcing to packaging.

Price at time of publish: $13 ($0.80 per ounce)

Ingredients: Dry-roasted, blanched peanuts | Serving size: 2 tablespoons | Protein: 9 grams | Fat: 16 grams | Saturated Fat: 3 grams | Sodium: 0 milligrams | Sweeteners: None

Best Organic

Santa Cruz ORGANIC Creamy Light Roasted Peanut Butter

Santa Cruz ORGANIC Creamy Light Roasted Peanut Butter

Courtesy of Amazon

Pros
  • USDA Organic and Non-GMO

  • Contains just organic roasted peanuts and salt

Cons
  • Requires stirring

If you’re looking for a tasty organic peanut butter with simple ingredients, try the Santa Cruz Organic Light Roasted Creamy Peanut Butter. The product is free of hydrogenated oils, added sugar, and artificial ingredients, containing just organic roasted peanuts and a small amount of salt.

Like other peanut butters without added oils, it does requiring stirring to incorporate the natural oils that separate in the jar. Santa Cruz does offer no-stir versions that contain organic palm oil. If you prefer a deeper and smokier flavor, Santa Cruz makes a creamy dark roast, and they offer crunchy varieties in both light and dark roast.

Price at time of publish: $39 for 3 ($0.80 per ounce)

Ingredients: Roasted peanuts | Serving size: 2 tablespoons | Protein: 8 grams | Fat: 16 grams | Saturated Fat: 2 grams | Sodium: 55 milligrams | Sweeteners: None

Best No-Stir

Justin's Nut Butter Justin's Classic Peanut Butter

Justin's Nut Butter Justin's Classic Peanut Butter

Courtesy of Amazon

Pros
  • Does not require stirring

  • Less expensive

Cons
  • Higher in saturated fat from added palm oil

One downside of many natural peanut butters is that they often requiring stirring due to the separation of the natural peanut oils. Justin’s Classic Peanut Butter uses palm oil to give the product a creamy, no-stir texture, without any oil separation. We also like that the palm oil used is sustainably sourced. Justin's Peanut Butter is delicious and thick, but spreads easily onto bread and toast.

If you're looking for a sweeter peanut butter, Justin's also makes Honey Peanut Butter, which combines honey, organic cane sugar, peanut oil, palm oil, and a touch of sea salt with dry roasted peanuts to create a sweet and salty spread. In addition to the traditional jars, they also offer convenient, single-serve packets, which are perfect paired with fruit or crackers for an on-the-go snack.

Price at time of publish: $6 ($0.23/ounce)

Ingredients: Dry roasted peanuts, palm oil | Serving size: 2 tablespoons | Protein: 8 grams | Fat: 18 grams | Saturated Fat: 3.5 grams | Sodium: 25 milligrams | Sweeteners: None

Best Unsweetened & Salt-Free

MaraNatha Organic No Sugar or Salt Added Creamy Peanut Butter

4.7
MaraNatha Peanut Butter

Courtesy of MaraNatha.com

Pros
  • USDA Organic and Non-GMO

  • Does not requiring stirring

Cons
  • Higher in saturated fat from added palm oil

If you are looking for an unsweetened, salt-free peanut butter that does not requiring stirring, try MaraNatha's Creamy Peanut Butter. This peanut butter is USDA Organic and Non-GMO and made with dry roasted peanuts and palm oil. It has a smooth, velvety texture, making it great for spreading.

We like MaraNatha's environmentally-friendly approach, sourcing nuts only from environmentally sensitive growers and using recyclable glass jars.

Price at time of publish: $34 ($0.70 per ounce)

Ingredients: Dry roasted peanuts, palm oil | Serving size: 2 tablespoons | Protein: 8 grams | Fat per serving: 17 grams | Saturated Fat: 3 grams | Sodium: 25 milligrams | Sweeteners: None

Best Crunchy

Crazy Richard's Crunchy Peanut Butter

Crazy Richard's Crunchy Peanut Butter

Courtesy of Amazon

Pros
  • Contains just dry-roasted peanuts

  • Give-back mission

  • Less expensive

Cons
  • Requires stirring

Crazy Richard's Crunchy Peanut Butter is made with just dry-roasted, US-grown peanuts. This peanut butter does require stirring to incorporate the natural peanut oils. It has more of a runny texture, great for drizzling on yogurt or oatmeal. Try storing the jar upside down until the oils work their way to the jar's bottom and then give it a shake to mix. It can be stored at room temperature or in the refrigerator if you prefer a thicker texture.

We love that Crazy Richards has a give back mission too, partnering with non-profits including Feeding America, and donating to local food banks.

Price at time of publish: $3 ($0.20/ounce)

Ingredients: Peanuts | Serving size: 2 tablespoons | Protein: 8 grams | Fat: 16 grams | Saturated Fat: 2 grams | Sodium: 0 milligrams | Sweeteners: None

Best Powdered

PB2 Powdered Peanut Butter

PB2 Powdered Peanut Butter

Courtesy of Amazon

Pros
  • Versatile - can be mixed into a variety of foods for peanut butter flavor

  • A lower calorie and lower saturated fat option

Cons
  • Less satiating than regular peanut butter

  • Requires mixing with water or adding to other foods

If you're looking to add a peanut flavor and boost of protein to a smoothie or oatmeal, powdered peanut butter such as PB2 is an excellent option. Peanut butter powder is a great alternative that adds the protein of peanuts, along with the flavor, but contains fewer calories and fat. Simply mix two tablespoons of the non-GMO powder with one tablespoon of water to create a spread, or blend it into smoothies or baked goods to satisfy your peanut butter cravings.

Made with roasted peanuts, sugar, and salt, PB2 contains 90 percent less fat and approximately 70 percent fewer calories than traditional peanut butter. Freshly roasted peanuts are pressed to remove most of the oil, then a small amount of salt and sugar are added for flavor. Due to the low fat content, this peanut butter is not as satiating on its own, so it is best mixed into smoothies or oatmeals with other sources of healthy fats like nuts, seeds, avocado, or full fat yogurt.

Price at time of publish: $21 ($0.66 per ounce)

Ingredients: Roasted peanuts, sugar, salt | Serving size: 2 tablespoons | Protein: 6 grams | Fat: 1.5 grams | Saturated Fat: 0 grams | Sodium: 90 milligrams | Sweeteners: Sugar (2 grams/serving)

Best Budget

Smucker's Organic Creamy Peanut Butter

Smucker's Organic Natural Peanut Butter Creamy

Courtesy of Target.com

Pros
  • Less expensive

  • Contains just organic roasted peanuts and salt

  • USDA Organic and Non-GMO

Cons

Nut butters can be expensive, but instead of buying a less expensive, potentially sugar-filled peanut butter spread, look to your favorite brand for a higher quality, natural or organic product. Known for their dependable, family-favorite products, Smucker's Organic Natural Peanut Butter tastes great but is also budget-friendly, vegan, and gluten-free.

Unlike typical low-priced peanut butter spreads filled with additives like hydrogenated oils, sugar, and salt, Smucker's Organic Creamy Peanut Butter is made using only organic roasted peanuts and a bit of salt. The product is also kosher, USDA Organic, and Non-GMO Certified by NSF.

Price at time of publish: $5 ($0.31 per ounce)

Ingredients: Roasted peanuts, 1% or less of salt | Serving size: 2 tablespoons | Protein: 8 grams | Fat: 16 grams | Saturated Fat: 2.5 grams | Sodium: 50 milligrams | Sweeteners: No

Best Single-Serve Packet

Justin's Classic Almond Butter Squeeze Pack

Justin's Classic Almond Butter Squeeze Pack

Courtesy of Amazon

Pros
  • Convenient for on-the-go snacking

  • Does not require stirring

Cons
  • Higher in saturated fat from added palm oil

  • More expensive

It can be hard to enjoy peanut butter when you're on the go. Jars are hard to pack and are typically messy; however, single-serve packets are an easy way to enjoy your favorite peanut butter anytime and anywhere. Justin's single-serve squeeze packs offer the brand's Classic Peanut Butter in a convenient, portable package. Simply rip the side slit and squeeze the nut butter onto your favorite fruit or cracker, or directly into your mouth.

Each 1.15-ounce packet holds Justin's delicious gluten-free, vegan, and non-GMO Project Verified nut butter. If you're a fan of a sweeter nut butter, Justin's also makes squeeze packs with six other flavors including Honey Peanut Butter and Maple Almond Butter.

Price at time of publish: $16 ($1.39/ounce)

Ingredients: Dry roasted peanuts, palm oil | Serving size: 1 pack (32 grams) | Protein: 8 grams | Fat: 18 grams | Saturated Fat: 3.5 grams | Sodium: 25 milligrams | Sweeteners: No

What to Look for in a Natural Peanut Butter

Ingredients

When purchasing natural peanut butter, take a look at the ingredients on the label. The fewer the ingredients, the better. When possible, opt for a product that contains only peanuts. If you prefer a no-stir nut butter with a longer shelf life, try one with salt and sustainably sourced palm oil. If you like a sweeter peanut butter, try one with a few grams of added sugar or naturally sweet flavorings like maple syrup and honey.

Nut Butter vs. Peanut Butter Spread

Some peanut butters are referred to as "peanut butter spreads" as opposed to 100% nut butter. The term "peanut butter" is controlled by the FDA, and signifies that peanuts are the main ingredient, whereas "peanut butter spreads" generally contain less than 90% peanuts.

Packaging

When choosing a natural peanut butter, consider how often, when, and how you use peanut butter. If you frequently consume peanut butter at home, you may want to buy a large container or purchase jars in bulk, which are typically less expensive per ounce. If you travel a lot or want to eat your peanut butter on the run, a squeeze pack may be best for you.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Is natural peanut butter good for you?

    Yes, natural peanut butter is good for you. Packed with protein, healthy fat, fiber, and other essential nutrients, natural peanut butter is a healthy protein choice.

    When selecting a peanut butter, take a look at the nutrition facts label and ingredients list, as some can contain high amounts of added sugar, sodium and hydrogenated oils. Try and select a natural peanut butter that lists peanuts as the first ingredient.If it does contain other ingredients, look for simple ones like salt and sugar in limited amounts. If you are looking for a no-stir option, try one with sustainably sourced palm oil or other non-hydrogenated fats.


  • How should I store natural peanut butter?

    Some natural peanut butters are shelf-stable while others require refrigeration, so it is best to store it as directed on the food label. FoodSafety.gov recommends storing your natural peanut butter in the refrigerator, and consuming it within three to four months after opening. You can also reference the use-by date on the label.

  • Is eating natural peanut butter part of a plant-based diet?

    Eating natural peanut butter can be part of a plant-based diet. The USDA considers nuts and nut butters like natural peanut butter a healthy vegetarian protein choice. Made without any animal products, natural peanut butter is a good source of protein and other essential nutrients for the vegan diet.

  • What do you do when natural peanut butter separates?

    Most natural peanut butter is made without the food stabilizers that prevent oil separation. When your natural peanut butter separates, take it out of the refrigerator and let it soften for 30 to 60 minutes, and then gently stir. 
    Or, store your natural peanut butter upside down, allowing the oil to naturally mix back in with the nut butter. Then, rotate as needed.



  • How does natural peanut butter impact cholesterol?

    According to the American Heart Association, nut butters like natural peanut butter are a good way to add health-promoting nutrients to your diet. Though most of the fat in natural peanut butter is in the form of healthy unsaturated fats, it also contains saturated fat. Peanut butters made with added oils, typically have higher amounts of saturated fat.
    The AHA recommends limiting saturated fat intake to no more than 6% of your daily calorie needs, or about 13 grams on a 2,000-calorie diet. Diets high in saturated fat increase blood cholesterol levels and risk of heart disease.
    Two tablespoons of natural peanut butter has about 2 grams of saturated fat, which is a relatively small amount. If you are looking to reduce your cholesterol, consider all of the sources of saturated fat in your diet, and portion appropriately.


Why Trust Verywell Fit?

A personal note on my recommendations written above. As a dietitian, I'm a huge fan of peanut butter. There are lots of great options on the market, such as the products above, but it's important to consider quality when choosing peanut butter. In writing this article, I looked at multiple products and brands and consulted with trusted peers in dietetics.

I believe the products in the round-up are made by trusted brands and are composed of high-quality ingredients. I would recommend the above products to friends, family, and clients, and have personally tried all of the products. You can currently find Justin's and Once Again Peanut Butter in my pantry. Eliza Savage, MS, RD, CDN

9 Sources
Verywell Fit uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. FDA. Use of the term natural on food labeling. Published online February 22, 2021.

  2. Food and Drug Administration. Food Standard Innovations: Peanut Butter's Sticky Standard.

  3. Caudill H. What to Look for When Buying Peanut Butter. Food & Nutrition.

  4. FoodSafety.gov. Peanut Butter, Natural. FoodKeeper App.

  5. USDA. MyPlate. Protein Foods.

  6. Mangels, R. Protein in the Vegan Diet. Vegetarian Resource Group.

  7. Government of Canada. Canadian Food Inspection Agency. Separation of Oil in Natural Peanut Butter.

  8. American Heart Association. Nut Butters are a Healthy Way to Spread Nutrients.

  9. U.S. National Library of Medicine. Facts About Saturated Fat.