In IQS HQ, peanut butter is KING of the sandwich spreads.
Jam is often too sugary, Vegemite is great but can only be tolerated in small doses and don’t even talk to us about Nutella. Natural peanut butter, on the other hand, is cheap, satiating and delicious enough to eat straight from the jar… and we often do!
So it was only natural that we compare natural peanut butter in our taste test series. We reviewed all the natural peanut butter we could get our sticky spoons into, based on taste, texture and top-of-the-mouth stickiness… thank goodness nobody in the office has a nut allergy!
Rachel: “I am really biased because I have a stash of Pic’s Peanut Butter hidden in a classified location (okay, my desk). I love that the peanuts are from Australia and the processing is done in New Zealand – locally owned and grown! It also has just the right kick of salt.”
Mai: “Everything you want in a peanut butter! It’s a really great consistency which makes it perfect in sandwiches (or eating straight off the spoon without making a dripping mess, if you’re so inclined).”
Consensus: Practically perfect in every way. Pic’s is definitely our pick!
Rachel: “This tastes great, but it’s so liquidy! If I put it on a sandwich, the whole filling would just drip out. Perhaps they should have added coconut flakes to bulk it up. However, I still reckon it would make a really nice satay sauce or gooey peanut butter brownies.”
Mai: “I had high hopes for this peanut butter, which promised to deliver one of my favourites combos in one silky spoonful. The coconut flavour was too subtle for me, though.”
Consensus: Quite liquidy and should taste more like coconut. But would be our first pick for a satay!
Rachel: “No. I refuse to believe this is just peanuts and coconut. There has to be a secret ingredient. How does it taste so good? It’s so tropical and creamy and sweet and salty and… what are the Hawaiians hiding from us?”
Mai: “I tried this on a trip to a Hawaii a few years back and have been an addict ever since! The label promises it’s only made of peanuts and coconut but I swear there’s a magical something extra in there. I have unashamedly placed multiple orders to deliver this stuff to me in Australia.”
Consensus: What is this, witchcraft?
Rachel: “It tastes exactly like plain peanuts, which is good – definitely natural! I personally prefer my PB salted. I also found the the texture a bit watery, despite the many chunks. Maybe it needed a bigger stir?”
Mai: “For me, the texture was on point. It was easily available in supermarkets too, so you don’t have venture out to a health store to pick it up. It’s great to see Big Food are listening to our call for real food!”
Consensus: Can you pass the salt?
Rachel: “I LOVE the texture – big chunks to sink your teeth into. I’m confused as to why this organic brand gets a 4.5 Health Star Rating while Sanitarium scores five, though! They have exactly the same ingredients… am I missing something?”
Mai: “From the natural taste to the way the oil naturally separates, everything about this peanut butter screams organic – which it is! The chunkiness would be perfect in a Snickers-style recipe.”
Consensus: We can’t find any difference in quality from the Sanitarium PB, despite the different Health Star Rating.
Rachel: “This has a much better texture than the Mayver’s coconut peanut butter – smooth and glossy with just a bit of that classic PB stickiness. The cacao is quite subtle, but it makes a great alternative to that sugary Nutella. I think it would go really well with our Chocolate and Peanut Butter Cake recipe.”
Mai: “This stuff is perfect for healthy DIY fudge. I mix a couple of spoonfuls in with melted coconut oil, pour into a metal container and pop into the freezer. Insta-dessert!”
Consensus: Chocolate and peanut butter are the perfect match. Going to make that fudge right now!
What’s your favourite natural peanut butter brand?
We originally published this article in November 2015. We updated it in September 2016.