Written by Michael

Modified & Updated: 01 Jun 2024

Sherman Smith

Reviewed by Sherman Smith

Peanuts and Fresh Peanut Butter

Peanut butter: a simple yet delicious treat that has earned a place in pantries around the world. Beyond its tastiness, however, there’s a lot more to learn about this humble spread. In this article, we delve into 18 intriguing facts about peanut butter, exploring its origins, nutritional value, and much more.

Table of Contents

A Historic Staple

The roots of peanut butter go back thousands of years. Evidence suggests that ancient South American Inca Indians were the first to grind peanuts to make a rudimentary form of peanut butter.

American Origins

The modern version of peanut butter, however, was born in the United States. Dr. Ambrose W. Straub is generally credited for its modern invention. He received a patent for a peanut butter-making machine in 1903.

The Peanut Plant

One fascinating fact about peanut butter is that it comes from a legume, not a nut. The peanut plant grows its edible seeds underground, which is why peanuts are also called groundnuts.

Rich in Protein

Peanut butter is packed with protein. Two tablespoons of it provide about 7-8 grams of protein, making it a great plant-based protein source.

Toast with Peanut butter
Image from Adobe Stock

Full of Healthy Fats

Peanut butter is high in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which are known as “good fats.” These fats can help reduce bad cholesterol levels, decreasing the risk of heart disease.

Vitamin and Mineral Hub

Peanut butter is also an excellent source of several vitamins and minerals, including Vitamin E, B3 (niacin), B6, folate, magnesium, copper, and manganese.

Fiber Provider

Beyond protein and healthy fats, peanut butter provides dietary fiber. A two-tablespoon serving offers about 2 grams of fiber, which can aid in digestion and help control hunger.

Antioxidant Power

Peanuts contain a significant amount of antioxidants, including p-coumaric acid and resveratrol, which have been linked to cancer prevention and anti-aging effects.

Versatility in the Kitchen

Peanut butter isn’t just for PB&Js. Its creamy texture and rich flavor make it versatile in the kitchen, finding its way into sauces, marinades, smoothies, desserts, and more.

Peanut butter sandwich on wood background
Image from Adobe Stock

A Staple in Space

Peanut butter has been a favorite among astronauts and has been included in space missions since the early days of NASA.

Different Types

There are several types of peanut butter, including creamy, chunky, and natural versions. Each varies in texture and nutritional content.


Peanut butter is high in calories, with around 190 calories in a two-tablespoon serving. While it’s packed with nutrition, portion control is important.

Reduced-Fat Isn’t Always Better

While you might think reduced-fat peanut butter is a healthier choice, these versions often contain more sugar to improve taste, negating the calorie savings.

The Power of Brands

Some brands add sugar, salt, and oils to their peanut butter. For a healthier choice, look for brands that list peanuts as their primary (or only) ingredient.

peanut butter and peanut beans on wooden background
Image from Adobe Stock

The Jif vs. Skippy Debate

In the United States, the top two-selling peanut butter brands are Jif and Skippy. They each have their loyal fans, creating a friendly rivalry.

There’s a National Peanut Butter Day

January 24th is National Peanut Butter Day in the United States, a day to celebrate this beloved spread.

The Peanut Butter Economy

Peanut butter is big business. It’s estimated that the average American will eat over 2,500 PB&J sandwiches by adulthood.

There’s a Fear of Peanut Butter

Finally, it may seem odd, but there’s a recognized fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of the mouth. It’s called “Arachibutyrophobia.”

Wrapping Up

Peanut butter is more than just a delicious spread; it’s a nutritional powerhouse and a cultural icon with a rich and interesting history. From its protein content to its role in American life, these 18 facts offer a deeper look into the world of peanut butter.

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