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Peanut Butter Reviews – Part 09

Nothing pleases me more than sitting down with 10 jars of peanut butter and a spoon to taste and review each one. Sometimes I think that’s what heaven would be like, except you wouldn’t get full and the jars wouldn’t run out. But my spiritual beliefs in peanut butter have yet to enlighten me as to why all the different brands, varieties and flavors of peanut butter that exist in America have yet to spread to the rest of the world. In terms of peanut butter technology, the US is light years ahead. No complaints here except that I’m unable to leave the country for extended periods of time. Now for this round of reviews, I go over some crucial store brands you may have missed as well as some interesting flavored peanut butter from upstate New York.


Wegman’s Natural Creamy

= 80%
My new favorite grocery store, Wegman’s, makes some fantastic natural peanut butter. This variety is perfectly ground to a coarse texture that is rich and thick. It comes unsalted, but that’s easily solved by adding around 1.5t of kosher salt per jar. Running at a reasonable price of $2.99 per jar (although nearly twice the price of my current favorite, 365 creamy) this natural peanut butter is a must try! I kind of like the fact that it comes unsalted because I can control the level of salt. And unsalted, it’s perfect to use for Peanut Butter Banana Pudding or any other dessert.

Wegman’s Natural Crunchy

= 80%
Similar to the creamy, this crunchy peanut butter is fantastic. The chunks are very crunchy and the peanut butter in between is coarsely ground, thick and delicious. Once again, if you prefer your peanut butter salty like I do be sure to add 1.5t of kosher salt per jar. I tend to savor this one for special occasions, such as a perfectly ripe banana begging to be loaded with peanut butter or to put on a warm Triple Threat Scone.

Saratoga Maple Peanut Butter

= 50%
Saratoga is a brand I have not heard of, but 2 of my Aunts went to a farmer’s market and found a variety of offerings from this company. The texture of this peanut butter is very nice, thick and creamy with tiny chunks spread throughout due to the nature of a coarse grind. When you open it up, the maple smell is overwhelming so I expected a strong tasting and overly sweet peanut butter. I was right in only one aspect, the maple flavor was very powerful but there was only a hint of sweetness. I like the low level of sweetness but they added a bit too much maple flavor (maple extract perhaps?) without the sweetness to back it up. An interesting idea, but either a reduction in maple flavor or increase in sweetness is needed. I tried it on a Colossal Pancake topped with maple syrup but that overwhelmingly maple flavor still came through. Maybe it would work better in a loaf of Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Bread.

Saratoga Monkey Boy Peanut Butter

= 75%
Despite my lack of enthusiasm for Saratoga’s maple offering, this flavor is much more interesting. This is a banana and raisin flavored peanut butter. The raisins are finely chopped and therefore are more evenly spread throughout the mixture. In addition, there is some kind of banana flavor or essence added to the peanut butter, similar to the maple flavor, except not nearly as strong. Just the right amount of sweetness brings this flavor to life. The only downside is that if you pair it with anything, even a banana, the delicate flavors of the banana and raisins are almost unnoticeable. Now this flavor works well on a Colossal Pancake, but don’t use too much maple syrup on top – a sprinkle of sugar works better.

Trader Joe’s Valencia Peanut Butter w/ Roasted Flaxseed

= 80%
Here’s a unique offering from Trader Joe’s. There is a great flavor with crunchy chunks. It’s salted nicely but could use a pinch more in my opinion. The addition of the flaxseed is a tasty and healthy addition but confusing at first. Flaxseed has a natural sweetness which complements the fresh peanut flavor but it adds lots of little crunches on top of the peanut chunks. While I eventually enjoyed the texture, it originally felt like there were little bits of plastic in it. A 12oz jar will cost you $2.99, but it’s well worth a try. Don’t refrigerate it like they recommend, it becomes too thick and nearly unusable. A glob of this is great for added nutrition in some Peanut Butter Cereal.

Additional Info:

Not enough peanut butter for you? Then check out all of my Peanut Butter Reviews.