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Old 05-26-2008, 12:12 PM   #11
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I will only buy the natural peanut butter and have always refrigerated it. It is a bit of a pain to spread when it is chilled. A suggestion might be to scoop out of the jar what is needed at the time and let it sit awhile at room temp before spreading.
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Old 05-26-2008, 12:14 PM   #12
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I treat my all-natural PB like butter, i.e. I store it in the refrigerator and set it out ahead of time to warm slightly before using. I would not feel comfortable microwaving the whole jar and then putting it back in the fridge, but that's just me.
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Old 05-31-2008, 03:41 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by LavenderLily View Post
I keep on hearing how you're supposed to refrigerate peanut butter, especially the natural kind, which totally makes sense to me because of all of the oils. It's so difficult to spread when it's cold, though, and I was thinking - I go through a jar every two weeks or so - does it still need to be refrigerated, seeing as how it's not exactly sitting in the pantry for months at a time?

And what about the kind with preservatives in it (which my husband INSISTS on buying) - how long can it be in the pantry without being refrigerated?


TIA!
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Hi Kerry:

By law, the commercial peanut butter you buy at the grocery must contain 90% or more peanuts with no artificial sweeteners, colors or preservatives. Your DH's peanut butter contains a very small amount of hydrogenated oil to stabilize the natural peanut oil, some natural sweeteners and perhaps some salt. It doesn't have to be refrigerated because it has a low "water activity" (around 7) that inhibits the growth of bacteria, molds and yeast.

Natural peanut butter also has a low water activity and also does not need refrigeration. People refrigerate NP because they don't like the oil separation and refrigeration inhibits this.

It it really a matter of taste as to which is best. Some prefer natural and some prefer commercial.
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Old 05-31-2008, 03:47 PM   #14
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I only buy natural peanut butter, and I refrigerate it, but not for food safety sake. I referigerate it because it makes such a mess when you have to stir the oil back into it every time you use it.

Now, if you use commercial peanut butter like Jif or Skippy, with it's preservatives, high fructose corn syrup, and hydrogenated vegetable oil, it won't ever separate and you can keep it in the cupboard for months without it getting rancid.
I keep my jar of pb upside down , the oils stay on top instead of going to the bottom and having to stir it a lot.
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Old 05-31-2008, 04:04 PM   #15
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I don't see the correlation between 'all the oils' and required refrigeration. Oil shouldn't be refrigerated.
My mother used to refrigerate the peanut butter when we were kids. If I wanted a PBJ for lunch, I had to take the jar out of the fridge at 8am so it wouldn't rip the Wonder Bread to shreds.
It took some getting used to, but eventually, she managed to leave the Skippy in the cupboard.

She refrigerated the ketchup, too
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Old 05-31-2008, 04:16 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by mozart View Post
.

Natural peanut butter also has a low water activity and also does not need refrigeration. People refrigerate NP because they don't like the oil separation and refrigeration inhibits this.
I refrigerate my natural peanut butter because the instructions on the jar state "REFRIGERATE AFTER OPENING" , yes, in bold capital letters. I buy Arrowhead Mills 100% Valencia PB and follow the instructions. I figure if it says to refrigerate in bold capital letters, then I will do it
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Old 05-31-2008, 07:36 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by bethzaring View Post
I refrigerate my natural peanut butter because the instructions on the jar state "REFRIGERATE AFTER OPENING" , yes, in bold capital letters. I buy Arrowhead Mills 100% Valencia PB and follow the instructions. I figure if it says to refrigerate in bold capital letters, then I will do it
It says that because customers have complained about the oil separation, not because of any food safety issue. Rather than educate the complainers one at a time, it is easier to just tell everyone to refrigerate.

The only difference between natural peanut butter and commercial peanut butter is a small amount of hydrogenated oil and some glycerides. They have no preservative properties.

I'm not suggesting that you discontinue refrigerating your peanut better, just saying that it is not necessary from a food safety standpoint.
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Old 05-31-2008, 07:43 PM   #18
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I figure if it says to refrigerate in bold capital letters, then I will do it
You had better not let the peanut butter company hear you say that. They may just add "BUY THIS PRODUCT 7 TIMES A DAY" if they know you will do what they say because they put it in caps
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Old 05-31-2008, 07:45 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by mozart View Post
It says that because customers have complained about the oil separation, not because of any food safety issue. Rather than educate the complainers one at a time, it is easier to just tell everyone to refrigerate.

The only difference between natural peanut butter and commercial peanut butter is a small amount of hydrogenated oil and some glycerides. They have no preservative properties.

I'm not suggesting that you discontinue refrigerating your peanut better, just saying that it is not necessary from a food safety standpoint.
Well, I didn't know that, thanks..

What happens with me is, when I buy the peanut butter, it is already separated and I just stick it in the frig. I do not try to mix anything together. I tried, once, and vowed I would never do that again, what a mess. So I never stir my pb and it stays separated. I don't understand the big deal. Just leave it alone and use it. I dive right into the jar.
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Old 05-31-2008, 07:46 PM   #20
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You had better not let the peanut butter company hear you say that. They may just add "BUY THIS PRODUCT 7 TIMES A DAY" if they know you will do what they say because they put it in caps
with peanut butter, I just may do it
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