Does Peanut Butter Go Bad?

Peanut butter is a great source of vitamins, healthy fats, and minerals. It became a popular spread, thanks to its creamy texture and rich taste. Peanut butter has a relatively long shelf-life. Hence, you wonder if it goes bad. Well, I can assure you it does. I'll explain some basic features regarding its shelf-life, how it's stored, and how to keep it safe, etc.

Why should you store peanut butter

Store Peanut Butter

Just like every other food, you should store your peanut butter as well. It helps keep it away from the action of bacteria and also help increase its shelf life

How long does peanut butter last

All peanut butter jars have best-by-date. However, peanut butter has a very long-lasting shelf-life compared to other spreads. It has low moisture content, and it's high in fat. These properties do not allow the growth of bacteria. Hence, the long-lasting characteristic of peanut butter.

  • Opened: this can last a few months past its best-by-date if stored in the fridge.
  • Unopened: it could last for months or years after the best-by-date, but this depends on how you store it. The storage method matters too.
  • Homemade: its shelf-life depends on the ingredient you used. Suppose you do not use any perishable ingredients in preparing it. In that case, it should probably last for at least a month or even longer.

How to tell if peanut butter is bad

Peanut butter contains fat and little water, which is not conducive to the growth of bacteria and fungi. The only factor that could affect your peanut butter is oxygen. It alters its taste one way or the other.

  • Color change: once you notice your peanut butter has changed from its initial color to dark coloration, it proves the action of bacteria/mold.
  • Abnormal smell: any deviation from your peanut butter's initial smell would probably indicate it's starting to go bad. You should probably toss it
  • Bad taste: peradventure you taste it, and it's not as exact as it uses to, you might toss it if you don't like the quality. Some might still be edible, depends on your discretion.
  • Texture change: once your peanut butter changes from soft and creamy to hard and dry form, you should toss it immediately.
  • Container: once you notice the lid of the peanut butter jar is off, or the container is deformed, it shows the presence of bacteria, heated up. It would be best if you tossed it immediately
  • Expiration date: if your peanut butter has passed its expiration date, it best to dispose of it, it's better safe than sorry.

 How to store peanut butter

If you want to increase the shelf-life of your peanut butter, store it appropriately. There are various means of doing this, and they include

  • Closing the lid tightly: once you opened the peanut butter or you've started using it, make sure you close the lid tightly before storing it. It will help prevent bacteria from entering the container.
  • Use clean Utensils: when scooping your peanut butter, make sure you use clean and dry Utensils. Unclean Utensils could cause cross-contamination and do not double-dip.
  • Temperature and light: be sure to keep your peanut butter in a cool and dark place. The cold temperature helps prolong its shelf-life.
  • Powdered peanut: endeavor to store them in a cold, dry, and dark condition. You could easily store it in the pantry. If it's creamy peanut, you could store it in the fridge for up to 48 hours in an airtight container.


Does peanut butter last longer in the fridge?

Yes, it does. Peanut butter should be stored under cold temperature and away from light, preferable in the fridge. It helps to increase its shelf-life. 

Can you freeze your peanut butter?

Yes, you can freeze your peanut butter. If you don't use it regularly or you won't be needing it anytime soon. Freeze it.

Can expired peanut butter harm you?

It won't harm you, but the taste is rather disgusting, and you might not be able to eat it. It, however, can cause an allergic reaction. It's all better safe than sorry. It would be best if you didn't consume it in the first place.

How long can you eat peanut butter after it's expired?

As long as it tastes good and you don't have peanut allergies, you can consume it after its best-by-date. But, once it hits the expiration date and the taste still looks great in the mouth, you could eat it as much as you don't have allergies or you don't feel irritated by the smell. Once again, its better safe than sorry, and you could easily toss it and get a new one.

Can you do anything with old peanut butter?

Yes, you can. If the quality remains intact and it smells good, you could use it to prepare dessert.

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