The Genius Trick to Keep Your Peanut Butter From Separating (No Stirring Required)

Gone are the days of losing your greasy spoon inside the peanut butter jar. 

It doesn't get much better than peanut butter. This versatile pantry staple smoothly sneaks into our breakfasts, lunches, snacks, and dinners (you haven't lived until you've made peanut noodles). It's a dreamy, creamy childhood favorite that we'll never outgrow. But not all peanut butter is created equal. Many supermarket options are loaded with added ingredients like sugar, preservatives, corn syrup solids, and hydrogenated oil. In fact, per the FDA, a product needs to have a minimum of 90 percent peanuts to be labeled peanut butter. This is why many of these imposters are reduced to being called "peanut spread." Thank you, next.

Natural peanut butters (i.e., those made just from peanuts and salt) are clearly healthier, but we have one key complaint: separation. Highly processed peanut butters contain hydrogenated oils and other stabilizers for a reason: to keep the ingredients from separating. You likely won't ever see oil hovering at the top of the jar of peanut spread. But because natural peanut butters don't contain these stabilizers, the oil in peanuts tends to separate from the peanut solids when sitting on the shelf.

The process of oils and solids separating, known as syneresis, is completely safe, but it's still really irritating. Luckily, there's a solution besides dumping it down the drain, trying to mix it with a spoon, or going back to buying peanut spread: Store the jar upside down. The oil will trickle to the bottom of the jar, and the peanut solids will stay on top. When you're ready to spread, turn the jar right-side-up (which lets the oil re-distribute evenly) and open the lid slowly. Game, changed. Repeat the flip every few days if you're a frequent peanut butter eater.

The upside-down trick works on all types of natural nut butter, including almond and cashew. Just make sure the ingredients are just nuts, oil, and salt. Want to fully stop the separation cycle? Store your jar in the fridge when it's all mixed together. Separation anxiety, gone!

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