Peanut Butter Nutrition: Here’s What You Need to Know

It's hard to resist a spoonful of peanut butter. But is this creamy treat good for you? Let's look at peanut butter nutrition facts.

There is so much to love about peanut butter. It’s creamy and filling with just the right amount of salty flavor. It’s also loaded with healthy, plant-based fats. But what are the peanut butter nutrition facts? Is it OK to eat every day?

Is Peanut Butter Good for You?

Yes—but everything in moderation. Two tablespoons of smooth peanut butter (aka that spoonful we eat while making sandwiches for the kids) contains about 188 calories and 3 grams of saturated fat. While those calories and grams of fat can add up quickly, peanut butter is also loaded with healthy nutrients like protein, magnesium and zinc.

See how peanut butter compares to other healthy nut butters.

What are the Benefits of Eating Peanut Butter?

  • Better blood sugar control: Dipping apple slices or celery in peanut butter is a great way to keep your blood sugar stable. Peanut butter is low in carbs while providing our bodies with protein and healthy fats. According to the American Diabetes Association, peanut butter is a good source of monounsaturated fats, which can stabilize blood sugar and lower cholesterol.
  • Healthy heart: Eating peanuts and peanut butter have been linked with lower blood pressure and lower cholesterol levels. Peanuts are also rich in heart-healthy vitamins like magnesium and vitamin E.
  • Strong immune system: Ward off this year’s case of the sniffles by spreading your morning toast with peanut butter. Its high levels of zinc and vitamin B6 support your body’s immune system. Add in a hit of vitamin C with this peanutty strawberry banana smoothie for your healthiest winter yet.

Is Peanut Butter Good for Weight Loss?

Peanut butter lovers rejoice; adding this creamy treat to your diet has been linked with weight loss. A 2018 study in the European Journal of Nutrition found that eating nuts (like peanuts) cuts down on the risk of being overweight and obese. This may be due to the fact that peanuts and peanut butter increase feelings of fullness, helping you to reduce mindless snacking throughout the day.

How Much Peanut Butter per Day Is Healthy?

While peanut butter is packed with healthy nutrients and linked with weight loss, it’s definitely possible to have too much of a good thing. Stick with the two-tablespoon portion size when having peanut butter with a meal like a sandwich on whole wheat bread or mixed into overnight oats. Go ahead and add a few more teaspoons for a snack later in the day if you’d like. These chia seed protein bites pack tons of flavor and filling protein in a small package.

How to Shop for Peanut Butter

It’s time to pull out your reading glasses because that tiny nutrition label will tell you everything you need to know about the best peanut butter brands. Look for natural brands made from peanuts and salt (just watch out for too much sodium). Many varieties sneak in oil and sugar to boost the taste but that adds tons of calories and fat. Oh, and if you see the term, “hydrogenated oil” on the label, back away slowly. Those oils are linked with heart disease and other chronic conditions.

Making your own peanut butter is a delicious way to keep your snacking healthy. Otherwise, be on the lookout for these favorites:

Find Recipes for Healthy Peanut Butter Snacks
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Carrie Madormo, RN
Now a freelance health and food writer, Carrie worked as a nurse for over a decade. When she isn't hunched over her laptop with a baby in hand, you will find her cooking her grandmother’s recipes, lacing up her running shoes or sipping coffee in the bathroom to hide from her three young children.