There’s nothing quite like peanut butter. That sweet yet salty flavor and the smooth and creamy (and sometimes crunchy) texture are unmatched, plus there’s so many foods and flavors that pair well with it. Can peanut butter fit into a keto lifestyle, though?
Is Peanut Butter Keto-Friendly?
In a nutshell (don’t hate me for that) – YES! Peanut butter can absolutely be a part of a keto diet, if you’re smart about it. The key here is choosing the right peanut butter, and eating it in moderation.
Keto 101 is “low carb, high fat”. There’s a little more to it than that, but that’s the diet on a basic level. Most keto eaters keep their daily carb intake between 20 and 30 net grams, and most foods are allowed as long as you can fit them into your daily macro goals. That means you can definitely incorporate low-carb peanut butters into your keto diet!
Peanut butter is really easy to overeat, especially if you’re a big PB lover, so it’s important to measure and track your portions to keep from going over your daily carbs. A serving of peanut butter is typically 2 tablespoons, but if you’re not careful you’ll be up to 6 or 8 (or more) tablespoons before you realize it! Just licking the spoon can add another hundred calories and a handful of carbs to your day.
Not All Butters Are Created Equal
Peanut butter is only as good as its ingredients, and the best keto peanut butters have no more than two ingredients – peanuts and salt. Anything else is frankly unnecessary.
When you’re perusing nutrition labels at the grocery store, try to avoid any peanut butters that have added sugars and hydrogenated oils.
Also, be wary of any peanut butters that contain xylitol. It’s a low-carb sweetener with a low impact on blood sugar levels when consumed in small amounts, so it seems perfectly keto on paper. Your body only digests 50% of xylitol, though. The rest ferments in your colon which can cause bloating, gas, and diarrhea. Xylitol is also incredibly toxic to dogs – even small amounts can be fatal. If you’re planning to share your peanut butter with your pets, put the xylitol back on the shelf.
Pass on reduced fat and low fat butters, too. One – keto is a high fat diet, so cutting out fat is just counterproductive. Two – reduced fat and low fat versions of anything are highly processed and usually contain added sugars to make up for the lack of flavor that happens when you take out fat.
All-natural or organic peanut butters are your best bet. Generally, these varieties don’t contain any unnecessary added ingredients and have the least amount of carbs.
Which Brands of Peanut Butter Are Best for Keto?
The nutrition information shown for each product listed below applies to 2 tablespoons of that product.
- Smucker’s Organic Creamy Peanut Butter | 180 calories, 16g fat, 8g protein, 2g net carbs
- Crazy Richard’s Creamy Peanut Butter | 180 calories, 16g fat, 8g protein, 2g net carbs
- Crazy Richard’s Crunchy Peanut Butter | 180 calories, 16g fat, 8g protein, 2g net carbs
- Once Again Natural Creamy Peanut Butter – Salt Free, Unsweetened | 190 calories, 16g fat, 9g protein, 3g net carbs
- 365 Everyday Value Organic Peanut Butter, Creamy, No Sugar Added | 190 calories, 17g fat, 7g protein, 4g net carbs
- Spread the Love NAKED Organic Peanut Butter | 180 calories, 15g fat, 7g protein, 4g net carbs
- Trader Joe’s Creamy Unsalted Peanut Butter from Unblanched Peanuts | 190 calories, 16g fat, 7g protein, 4g net carbs
- Teddie All Natural Chunky Peanut Butter | 190 calories, 16g fat, 8g protein, 4g net carbs
- PB2 Pure Peanut Powder (No Sugar or Salt) | 60 calories, 1.5g fat, 6g protein, 3g net carbs
- Justin’s Classic Peanut Butter | 210 calories, 18g fat, 7g protein, 5g net carbs
Honorable Mentions – These products are usually available at most grocery stores, so you won’t have to go out of your way or order online to find them. Though the macros are okay for keto, these peanut butters contain added sugars and hydrogenated oils, so we recommend choosing other options if you’re able.
Make Your Own
If you’re having a hard time finding a peanut butter that works for you, try making your own! It’s much easier than it sounds.
In a food processor, just process 1-2 cups of unshelled roasted peanuts until you’ve got a smooth and creamy peanut butter! They produce their own oils as you process them, so there’s no need to add coconut oil or anything to the mix. You can keep your keto peanut butter plain or add cinnamon, honey, or a sugar substitute to taste.
10 Keto Peanut Butter Recipes You’ll Love
- Keto Peanut Butter Cups
- Keto Buckeyes
- Soft Keto Peanut Butter Cookies
- Easy Keto Peanut Butter Bars from All Day I Dream About Food
- Keto Peanut Butter Chocolate Pie from I Breathe, I’m Hungry
- 3-Ingredient Peanut Butter Coconut Fat Bombs from The Big Man’s World
- Keto Peanut Butter Fudge from Maebells
- Keto Peanut Butter Chaffle from KetoFocus
- Peanut Butter + Jelly Cookies from Stem + Spoon
- No-Bake Peanut Butter Cheesecake (Keto) from Low Carb Yum