We Try 6 Different Trader Joe's Nut Butters

Categories: Taste Test

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Photo by Cleo Tobbi
Enough to cause a panic attack

I never understood why there were so many different nut butters at Trader Joe's. You can get peanut butter, almond butter, cookie butter, sunflower seed butter, so many other butters, many available in creamy, crunchy, salted, unsalted, organic or normal. Wow. Needless to say, TJ's nut butter wall is the stuff of panic attacks.

But how are the nut butters even different? How's the crunchy, salty peanut butter compare to the raw, organic almond butter? Or the crunchy, salty and organic peanut butter for that matter. Well, I did it. I braved the wall of butters to try six different nut butters. Sunflower; crunchy, salted peanut; organic, crunchy, salted peanut; raw, crunchy salted; and better'n peanut butter are all here, with a special guest of crunchy cookie butter. What's the difference? Well..

Peanut Butters

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Photo by Cleo Tobbi
Careful! Can be pointy

Trader Joe's offers peanut butter in organic, non-organic, salted, unsalted, smooth, crunchy and "Better'n" versions. This time around, we'll be looking at the crunchy and salted non-organic and organic peanut butters, as well as the better'n -- just out of morbid curiosity.
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Photo by Cleo Tobbi
The original!

The non-organic peanut butter is wonderful (and is actually my go-to peanut butter). It's a pretty standard jar of crunchy peanut butter, and it's not as sweet as the name brand butters tend to be. You can eat it sans guilt, knowing that the only ingredients in the jar are, as my sister would say, "straight up peanuts."

The same, unfortunately, can't be said for the organic peanut butter.

While the regular Trader Joe's peanut butter uses dry-roasted peanuts, the organic peanut butter uses non-roasted peanuts, and I'm not sure where to begin explaining my disdain for the organic jar.

How different could the organic and non-organic peanuts butter actually be?

So. Totally. Different.

For one, the earthy flavor you get with the organic peanut butter isn't so much an pleasant undertone or hint as a full-on top note. The organic peanut butter is just earthy -- it's almost like eating a jar of mud. Normally, I can't find something at Trader Joe's that I wouldn't eat twice, but I can't help but despise Trader Joe's organic, crunchy, salted peanut butter. It's a waste of peanuts.

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Photo by Cleo Tobbi
The imposter!

Then there's the Better'n peanut butter. The name's verging on false advertising, because it's not better n' anything. While apparently low in sugar, this sorry excuse for peanut butter is almost inedible with how sweet it is. I don't care that it's 85 percent less fat than regular peanut butter -- it's also 85 percent worse. At least, when it's between bread.

However, while it may not be my favorite thing for lunch, I know first hand that the Better'n peanut butter -- really more of a paste -- makes for a pretty killer dessert. Dollop the low sodium, trans fat-free, saturated fat-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, cholesterol-free, preservative-free peanut butter substitute on top of some vanilla ice cream and you almost feel healthy.



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16 comments
Rich Wagner
Rich Wagner

Because there are way better things to spread on your besides peanut butter and Trader Shoe's gives you choices.

Tom Slick Pearson
Tom Slick Pearson

Reread it. And while I can agree to the authors claim, he should give it a second chance. The next time try the cocoa and Speculoos spread. I didn't really care for the plain one, but the chocolate one is pretty damned good!

Louise Larsen
Louise Larsen

And, Joe -- I'm with you. Bring back the Soynut Butter!

Louise Larsen
Louise Larsen

BECAUSE Peanut Allergies have TRIPLED in the last ten years! When a whopping 20% of kids can't eat peanut butter because it might kill them people learn to create other butter alternatives, that's why! Want to know more about peanut allergies? Go here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/POKWASPeanutAllergy/

James Mossman
James Mossman

Tom Slick Pearson the cookie butter is on the second page of the article and the author didn't like it.

jrob0914
jrob0914

The problem with Trader Joe's is that just about every label has the peanut allergy warning on it so I do very little shopping there since my son is allergic to peanuts. I am sure the various butters you have tested will have the warning label so they are not a safe alternative to peanut butter. I cannot find even one loaf of bread there without the warning.

Ladya Oo
Ladya Oo

It keeps label companies in business.

Tom Slick Pearson
Tom Slick Pearson

All of that, and you left out their Speculoos cookie butter? That spread is soo sought after, they have to keep it at the front desk and limit it to one jar per customer! People will literally buy cases of it at a time, and why TJ's had to start keeping it at the service desk... Someone totally missed the mark on this story, and should have compared the hype against the actual product.

jmcguinness
jmcguinness

I'm not sure "inorganic" peanut butter sounds appetizing.

ctobbi
ctobbi

She* =) 


And the cocoa spreads will be up for round 2! Thanks for reading! 

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