The Truth About PB2 & Powdered Peanut Butter

I’ve been getting the question “What do you think about PB2?” a lot lately on my Facebook page. PB2 is a powdered peanut butter, made by squeezing natural oils out of the peanut and then dehydrating what’s left, yielding a powder in which 90% of the fat is removed from the peanut.

PB2 C

Photo Credit: Gym Optional


This is the truth about PB2 and why you’ll never see me eat this manufactured substitute for peanut butter:

      • PB2 Is Not Whole Real Food – When I talk about the foods I eat, I tell people I want to choose the most nutrient dense foods on the planet and PB2 is just not one of them. The beauty of a peanut is that it contains all of the nutrients nature intended. It has a healthy dose of fat, protein and vitamins.  PB2 extracts almost all of the essential monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, leaching the vitamin E content which is fat soluble, therefore reducing the nutritional content of the whole food. The fat is what keeps you satisfied and reduces cravings making just a tablespoon of real peanut butter so satisfying. This powdered form looks pretty clean when you review the ingredients, but it’s just another way for manufacturers to trick you into thinking less calories is better for you. They have to add a mixture of sugar and salt into the powder to make it taste better without the fat. I know I’d rather have the fat vs. the sugar and salt!

 

      • PB2 Is Not Organic – Conventional peanuts are some of the most heavily sprayed crops ever. The amount of toxic pesticides sprayed on peanuts is suspected to have caused the increase in peanut allergies.  As you know, peanuts have a very thin and porous outer layer and shell that allows toxins in easily. These toxins are not something you can wash off. Remember increased exposure to pesticides are linked to birth defects, nerve damage and cancer. The President’s Cancer Panel has urged us not to consume food sprayed with pesticides and doesn’t believe any amount is safe.

 

      • PB2 Has Added Sugar – It might not be that much added sugar but knowing what refined sugar does to my mind and my body – I try to avoid it at all costs unless it’s a special occasion. I eat nut butter almost everyday so I make sure that my variety is sugar free and made from whole organic nuts. Also, this sugar could be made from genetically modified sugar beets. 

 

      • Peanuts May Contain Aflatoxin – The mold that is frequently present in peanuts creates a carcinogen called Aflatoxin. This chemical has been shown to cause liver cancer in developing countries where there is a large consumption of corn, peanuts and grains grown without strict regulation of the quality of soil. Here in the United States, the FDA allows aflatoxin into our food system at varying levels. This is just not something I want to consume on a regular basis, even in small “approved” doses. For people who have had cancer or already have compromised liver function, you should really consider this information. This is why I choose to only eat Jungle Peanuts if I have a choice, because they are grown in an environment and harvested in a way that does not produce this toxin.

 

    • And… Almond Butter is Better For Your Health – According to this analysis taken from Prevention, almond butter has 69% more calcium, twice as much fiber, 86% more iron, and 169% more vitamin E than peanut butter.

Screen Shot 2012 09 17 at 9 27 31 AM

And just in case you ask – I like Tree of Life Organic Almond Butter and Once Again Organic Almond Butter. In both these products, the oil stays nicely mixed in when kept in the refrigerator, it’s extra creamy, raw and delicious – more than any other 100% pure almond butter I’ve ever tasted. A lot of stores don’t carry these brands, but if you live in Charlotte, you can find them both at Healthy Home Market.

I hope I didn’t burst anyone’s bubble about PB2… Just remember when a product seems too good to be true, it probably is!

What’s your favorite nut butter?

Food Babe

P.S. If you know someone who’s eating PB2, please share this post with them. 

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348 Responses to “The Truth About PB2 & Powdered Peanut Butter”

  1. DeeToo

    I think the problem with regular peanuts is pretty widely known (maybe not thought by reading some of these comments). While I love peanut butter and do buy organic, I try to make my own almond butter and cashew butter at home. Cashew is the easiet. And it is SOOOOO much cheaper than buying it already made. I have never tried PB2…..it just didn’t look like food to me? If you want a nut butter why not just decrease the amount? or if you buy natural style, just don’t mix in the fat?

    Reply
  2. Chabe

    Thanks for sharing this info! Any thoughts on hazelnut butter? I buy the organic kind I course

    Reply
  3. Michelle Heaps

    RAW aALMONDS ARE NOT RAW.
    Vani, above you state that your Almond Butter is raw. How can that be. My understanding is: due to a mandate set by the Food & Drug Admin in the US, almonds must be processed. It is very difficult to purchase truly raw almonds. I’ve been told that you can find places which sell small amounts of actual raw almonds. Oh, and the F&DAdmin provided some little loop hole which enables organic almonds to be labelled as raw inspite of them having been “processed”.
    Do you know anything contrary to this?

    Reply
    • Deena (to Michelle Heaps)

      This is for sure true in the state of California. I don’t know if it is true for the entire US. In California you can’t sell more than 25 lbs. of almonds if they have not been processed in some way to kill bacteria on them. They just love spoiling all of the good food in the name of killing bacteria. It seems to me most of the outbreaks are with the industrial food complex.

      Reply
    • Ash (to Michelle Heaps)

      It IS possible to buy almonds that have not been irradiated and are completely raw. You just need to search for it. Usually from farms, and usually in bulk.

      Reply
  4. dawnied

    I’m obsessed with cashew butter! Its mild and sweet I luv it!

    Reply
  5. gena

    I love sunbutter! It’s my favorite

    Reply
  6. Meg Heineken

    I have been eating Maranatha Sunflower Butter & it’s one of the better tasting ones to me, but what are your thoughts, Vani, on it?

    Reply
  7. Leo

    PB2 is a brilliant scam. It is the leftovers from making peanut oil, a huge commercial commodity. Before they put this crap in a jar, they sold it by the ton as animal feed.

    Reply
    • Wade Young (to Leo)

      Actually…PB2 was created as a result of a peanut surplus several years ago and was never sold by the ton for animal feed. It was specifically made to take the place of high calorie peanut butter.

      Reply
      • nikki (to Wade Young)

        exactly I agree because peanut butter makes me gain weight it doesn’t help that I am addicted to it!!! it’s like chips I can’t just have 1 table spoonful

  8. Wendy

    I have a great recipe for peanut butter brownies that calls for 1 cup of PB2. I was just about to go out and buy this stuff, so glad i saw this article first. What could I substitute for the 1 cup of PB2…..regular peanut butter, and would I use 1 cup?

    Reply
    • eclecticdeb (to Wendy)

      No, you can’t substitute “real” peanut butter. The powdered version is taking the place of some of the flour.

      Reply
    • nicole (to Wendy)

      Smear a few tablespoons of natural pb over mostly cooled brownies then top with a chocolate ganache. Orgasmic.

      Or melt 2 Tbsp butter, Mix with 4 Tbsp natural pb, then blend in a few Tbsp powdered sugar. pipe or drop by small spoonfuls over regular brownie batter and use a knife to marble in. Bake as usual.

      Reply
      • nicole (to nicole)

        In a normal recipe you could replace some of the liquid/fat and one egg with regular peanut butter.

  9. Chris

    Now I’m questioning the Earth Balance PB I eat daily…

    Reply
  10. Jen

    Lately all I’ve been doing at our local Good Food Store is freshly grinding peanuts w/their machine & eating it plain. I don’t have an actual brand anymore. I did try almond butter for awhile, but just could never acquire a taste for it. If I put it on something sweet, like an apple, it worked okay – just never wild about it unless it was mixed w/jelly or honey.

    Reply
  11. Sean Ward

    Hello FB, just wondering your opinion on Justins Almond Butter? Met these guys at Expo West, hearts seem in a good place, I know its not sourced organically but…

    Reply
  12. patti newby

    I eat and love the 7 seed and nut butter peanut free called nutzo. I get it at whole foods. I love how a woman adopted children that were nutrient deficient and invented it. You can get it with peanuts and it also comes with dark chocolate. What do you think about Nutzo Vani?

    Reply
  13. Dan

    So, almond butter is more nutritious. What about the warnings/claims regarding almonds truly being seeds and not nuts (proper), and therefore potentially hazardous? We wouldn’t eat apple seeds, for instance. Might you elaborate on this?

    Reply
    • Andrej (to Dan)

      I’m truly confused. Why on earth would you not eat apple seeds??

      Reply
      • Andrej (to Andrej)

        Ha Ha! Just like “they” used to say that eating more than 3 eggs per week would kill you, and now we know better… I ALWAYS eat seeds of ALL the fruits I consume (when I eat apples it is alwas a minimum of 5 pieces of fruit with ALL their seeds).. also, I have personally eaten amounts of apricot kernels mentioned in the article that are supposed to be “LETHAL”…

    • Angela (to Dan)

      All pitted fruits contain trace amounts of cyanide, but it’d be really hard to die from the dose. You’d need about a handful of apricot kernels, for example, to die from cyanide poisoning. I’d really recommend against eating apricot kernels, though, because they’ve caused quite a few deaths. You can definitely eat seeds in apples and watermelons and the like, though. I always eat the seeds in my grapes if they have seeds in them and only avoid apple seeds if I’m not in the mood to eat the core. I’m not a doctor, but I’ve interned with toxicologists in hospital emergency rooms and the only “seed” I’ve been warned about was apricot kernels.

      Reply
    • snowmoonelk (to Dan)

      Almonds are NUTS. I think you are confusing apricot kernels with almonds.

      Reply
  14. Jenna

    Any thoughts on Trader Joe ‘ s Raw Almond Butter? I bought it because it was significantly cheaper than some of the other brands but am curious to know if saving my money was worth it.

    Reply
  15. guy

    I read you all the time and I agree with you on almost everything and I agree that I like Almond Butter better, but the example of the Peanut Butter you do like is way out of line. Amazon wants $62 for 2 ounces. Thats too much! Ill pass on that one!

    Reply
    • Bev B (to guy)

      The 2 brands V recommended on Amazon – one came in a 3 jar quantity (I think it was about $30 a jar) and the other in a 12 jar quantity with free shipping. That one came to $15.66 a jar. But you have to buy 12 jars. Seems the nutrients would be lost by the time you ate it all. Gonna look at making it – but if the Almonds are not truly raw (I live in CA) I’m not sure what to do. :-/

      Reply
  16. Raj

    Maranatha Organic Raw almond Butter

    Reply
  17. Bill

    - What do you have to say regarding Almonds not really being organic or raw in the US because of laws requiring pasteurizing them.
    - Secondly if that is still better than peanut butter let us know, but what is the situation with phytic acid? I heard you are not supposed to eat more than 7 almonds per day because of this. What can you tell us about the phytic acid present in unsoaked and unsprouted almonds present in every almond butter I’ve ever seen.

    Thank you for the Post!

    Reply
  18. Kevin Smith

    PB2 is AWESOME. This review paints a negative picture of it.

    Everything said here is correct, by removing the fat you remove most of the vitamins + etc. Not to mention that the monounsaturated fat that is removed is actually good for you. I’m a fan of fat in my diet. I think we unfairly bais toward low fat foods.

    HOWEVER. PB2 serves an entirely different purpose from peanut butter. Peanut butter is not a good protien source, there are two many calories for it to be used as such. Peanut butter is primarily a monounsaturated fat source with protien as a bonus.

    PB2 though, much like the egg white is to the egg, is a FANTASTIC source of protien. Seriously I mix this stuff with everything and it is delicious. I have no problem hitting my protien goals now and it’s thanks to PB2. I have also on occasion cut peanut butter with it to produce something I can snack on that has more volume, the results are amazing.

    The added sugar is a bummer, but only marginally so since theres like 1 gram per serving (of 12 grams). Which still leaves the majority of the macros split pretty evenly between fat, protein and carbs (protein being the highest). I would like a product without the sugar removed because frankly it’s pointless, I can add sugar if I want but currently there are no lower priced alternatives to PB2.

    So yeah. Buy it for the right reasons I guess.

    /rant

    Reply
    • Ciara (to Kevin Smith)

      Awesome! Thanks for this! I was thinking of adding this stuff just for a little extra flavor and was discouraged by the original post. And now discouraged about raw almond butter really being raw. :-/ guess there’s a way around everything.

      Reply
    • Eric (to Kevin Smith)

      I’m with Kevin on this. PB2 is great stuff. I eat relatively low-carb, usually not more than 50 carbs per day. Seems to suit me best, how I feel best. Things like olive oil, fish, almonds, cheeses are a normal part of my diet so I’m not short on monounsaturated fats, and sugar is minimized. But peanut butter is my kryptonite…I love it and crave it like other people crave pizza and chips. I can’t eat just one tablespoon…hey, I’m human, I have my weaknesses. PB2 allows me to get my peanut butter groove on without blowing up my caloric intake. I don’t lose sleep over the gram of sugar per serving – the smog here in Phoenix probably does my body more harm than a gram of sugar. And I can’t believe how good PB2 tastes, it’s delicious. Add in Kevin’s point about the protein boost, and for me the list of positives is much longer than any list of negatives. I’ll keep buying it as long as they keep making it.

      Reply
    • Michelle (to Kevin Smith)

      Thanks for posting. The only noteworthy part of the review is the first point. The rest could be said about any peanut product on the market. Most people are going to get more fats (good and bad) than they need so foregoing the fat in a peanut powder is not the end of the world. It’s one gram of added sugar — hard to believe that would affect somebody’s mind and body to a strong degree. Having a nut butter around the house is fine if you are the type of person that can avoid bingeing. I don’t binge eat when I have the powder. It’s a great product if you use it as Kevin suggests.

      Reply
      • Sarah (to Michelle)

        I agree also with Kevin Smith. I discovered PB2 earlier this year and by adding it to my diet and removing all the unhealthy things I used to eat, like sausage and bacon and fried eggs and muffins and … I’ve lost over 30 pounds! And I’m 60 years old so that is a major accomplishment. As with everything in life though, you have to use the product in moderation. I add it to no fat yogurt for a high-protein, low calorie breakfast or eat it as a snack by simply reconstituting the powder. This product is a great option for those who like the taste of peanut butter but do not want the added calories

    • Beth (to Kevin Smith)

      I agree with Kevin. It’s wonderful. I love it in my protein shakes and on oatmeal. The calories is basically nothing compared to the real stuff and it’s a GREAT replacement.

      Reply
  19. sharon

    What about Organic powedered peanut butter from Just Great Stuff. It’s just organic peanuts, organic coconut sugar (not much) and sea salt (not much).

    Reply
    • CherylG (to sharon)

      I am wondering about Great Stuff too. I use it to flavor (my protein drink) rather than to add any real nutritional value or satiety.

      Reply
  20. Coach Bev Schlag

    What are your views on Just Great Stuff Powdered Peanut Butter? I realize the reduced fat content decreasing the satiated feeling. However what I usually do is 1 tbsp of the Organic Once Again Peanut Butter and then add in 2 Tbsp of the Organic Just Great Stuff PB for more PB flavor.

    Reply
    • Toni Brooks (to Coach Bev Schlag)

      Thanks for the info! I have been looking for an organic powdered peanut butter for my morning protein shakes, will Google this now! I want it for the flavor, I get enough of the nutritional benefits from other sources.

      Reply
  21. Fred Flintstone

    Zxft

    Reply
  22. Jen

    Before I get accused of having an “uneducated peanut for a brain” and being banished “the chemical, toxic and MSG sites where you and your kind belong” because my opinion may be different than the majority here, I am ultimately not here to fight. Just to offer a different perspective.

    Although PB2 may not be peanuts in the way nature intended, it can still serve a great purpose. If someone is getting their natural fats, nutrients, etc. through other sources, PB2 is a good way to enjoy the flavor and protein of peanut butter with fewer calories. It’s not necessarily a replacement, but can be a substitution.

    Reply
  23. Rose

    I love the PB2 product and it is a natural product, despite the other opinons noted above. The product simply does not have the oil content as other peanut butter products and is in a dehydrated form when you purchase it. You simply add water to the dehydrated peanute butter and voilla, you have a great tasting product with 85% less fat. Try it for yourself and read the label and the website about the product, it is fantastic and serves the desure for peanut butter and is very satisfying with a markedly lower fat intake….I use it in shakes as a powdered project and enjoy it and am thankful for gret products like this one that assist with a healthier food option.

    Reply
  24. Tracy

    Well damn. I JUST found PB2 not too long ago and am on my 3rd jar. Sigh….I love this site but it’s making me orthorexic. lol. Tis better to know what I’m eating than die of cancer when I’m 50 though I guess. Carry on Food Babe!

    Reply
  25. Jackie

    “I know I’d rather have the fat vs. the sugar and salt!”

    Compare the nutrition label of PB2 and real peanut butter. PB2 has LESS of both sugar and salt than the real stuff.

    Reply
  26. Mark

    I love to hear/see knowledgeable people telling it like it is.. so many times I hear shoppers at the local supermarket discussing fat content in healthy food like yogurt, etc. They typically go for the lowest fat product thinking they’re doing something good for themselves when reality is they are purchasing a stripped down products with 99% of fat soluble nutrients removed along with essential fats needed desperately by the body. And they pay for it. Good report Vani!

    Reply
  27. Tim

    Let me also remind you simple cannot compare peanut butter to nut butters because peanuts, are not tree nuts. In fact, they’re not nuts at all, they are legumes. So in theory, you could compare nutritional values but you can’t compare the processing or the way they’re manufactured. They are not the same thing.

    Reply
  28. Jennifer

    I am addicted to Artisana pecan butter, walnut butter, cashew butter , almond butter and coconut butter. I used to think peanut butter and banana was heaven on earth…wait until you try pecan butter with banana. You will never go back to peanut butter!

    Reply
  29. @anticancergirl

    Amber, I agree 100% with everything you said in this article! As an American we always have choices:
    1) Gods perfect fat OR
    2) God’s perfect fat processed by man & his machine.
    The choice is clear.
    Now following you on twitter and facebook! Thanks for this insight!

    Reply
  30. Aubrey

    Soooooo…. This food is evil? Ugh. Nothing is safe.

    Reply
  31. Sarah

    While I do eat some fat I feel that a low fat diet is healthiest for me. I prefer organic powdered peanut butter (Just Great Stuff makes one) but PB2 is way more affordable and tastes better actually. It is also GMO free certified. I find that the protein make it filling even without the so called “good” fats.

    Reply
  32. g. berry

    Making one’s owm almond butter is so easy I don’t know why anyone would buy it. That said PB2 is good for storage an an emergency food supply annd also for backpackers who want protein without weight.

    Reply
  33. itguyinsocal

    I have questions. I will be asking additional questions after this one is answered.

    I believe that there is a lot of generalization put into this article. Although there is some benefit to these comments /generalizations. I want facts not opinions about PB2. I think your readers do to.

    Can it be determined where did ( the famers) the peanuts came from?
    If yes
    Can it be determined what harvest practices were employed?
    If it cannot be determined then that would nullify the value of
    this article/ post about PB2.
    So please share you information.
    If there is no response to this comment then I would determine that the author has an unfounded adverse adgenda towards PB2.

    Reply
    • Rae (to itguyinsocal)

      I would also add that her post, while stating it applies to PB2, actually applies to all peanut butter in any form. And peanuts generally, for that matter.

      Reply
  34. Toni

    Great info Food Babe, love your site but FYI – PB2 does NOT use sugar from sugar beets.

    Reply
  35. Peanut

    Four out of five of these points in your list pertain to all peanut butters. Your title is misleading – why can’t you just write an actual article about the benefits of almond butter instead of baiting readers?

    Reply
  36. sarah

    Totally get all this, but have you heard the damage almonds are going to cause? Mass producing due to those switching to almond milk/butter. get the new nat geo mag and see what they have done to people!
    previvorfitmom.com

    Reply
  37. Julie @ Making Mindfulness

    Thank you for the insight regarding powdered PB. I have included a link in my recent Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Avocado Pudding recipe, in case readers want to see the difference and information on pb vs. powdered. http://makingmindfulness.blogspot.com/2014/08/chocolate-peanut-butter-banana-avocado.html Thanks, again, for the good information!

    Reply
  38. Gina R (to Steve Austin)

    Thank You for this comment. I agree with you!

    Reply
  39. hlj (to Steve Austin)

    Dear Shane,

    Thank you for your information on this product.I was wondering about PB2. I appreciate you taking your time to help others:)

    Respectfully, would you kindly change “less calories” to “fewer calories” in your information? The word “less” is for non-count nouns and “fewer” for nouns that you can count. For example, “less sand” or “less peanut butter” (You wouldn’t want to count each grain) and “fewer calories” (I don’t like counting ‘em but… chubby me has to do this!)

    Most Sincerely,

    HLJ

    Reply
  40. Amber Wilhoit (to Gina R)

    Do you realize you said defecate and not deficit? Interesting…anyway, if you think 2+2=4 always where metabolism is concerned, you have a lot to learn.

    Reply
  41. Gina R. (to Amber Wilhoit)

    I think your reply was maybe to Steve, but it posted in response to me.

    Reply
  42. Shane (to Amber Wilhoit)

    Amber if you think that pb2 is bad for you than I believe you should stop going off of BroScience like this article and go and find some real scientific proof.

    Reply
  43. Amber Wilhoit (to Shane)

    Shane, I’m sorry. Did I say PB2 was bad for me? I don’t recall saying that. I believe you are putting words in my mouth. I do believe that nature’s way of making the peanut is perfect and doesn’t need changing. I don’t have time for the back-and-forth. I talk nutrition all day long in my full-time job. Good day.

    Reply
  44. shae (to Shane)

    Shane,
    Amber didn’t say its bad for you, I did. So now go take your uneducated peanut for a brain to the chemical, toxic and MSG sites where you and your kind belong. You are out numbered on the Food Babes site…… buddy boy!!!!

    Reply
  45. Youarenotsmart (to Sternberg)

    At least she practices correct spelling.

    Reply
  46. Cheryl (to hlj)

    THANK YOU!!! I love when other people notice these things! I work in a college reading and writing lab, and this makes me very happy!

    Reply
  47. Andrej (to hlj)

    Where do you get the idea that chubby people need to count calories? Why?

    Reply
  48. Shae (to Rach)

    Rach,
    If you’re so against the so called Food Police, which by the way the Food Babe isn’t, then why even come on her site. Why don’t you just go over to the chemical, toxins, MSG sites and worry about polluting yourself. Its people like you that don’t understand and don’t want to understand what is in our food supply. You also don’t want to understand how these chemicals are so toxic and do your body harm. You might be one of the lucky few that don’t notice any effects but believe me, you are and you will. Sure, anyone could go out and get hit by your bus but stop being so negative and live your life to the fullest and that means understanding what is good and what is bad. Take it for what its worth…..

    Reply
  49. Danna (to Rach)

    Why are you on this site if you don’t care about food or what goes into you body? This site is all about food and health. So she was asked about a product and she answered the question, I don’t understand your opposition. Maybe if you spent some time understanding food then maybe you’d figure out the the world hunger things. Just saying.

    Reply
  50. The Food Doll (to Rach)

    Hey Rach! Just wondering….WHY are you on this page?? Seriously. Why are you here?? Just to quote your stupidity, saying, “Eat whichever kind of peanut butter you’d like.” Are you kidding? If you can’t comprehend the dangers of the toxins found in pesticides and used on peanuts and understand how detrimental it is to your health then that’s really unfortunate. But don’t waste the Food Babe’s time with your uneducated comments.

    Reply
  51. The Food Doll (to Shae)

    Right On Shae!! Very nicely said!!!

    Reply

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