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Why Is My Peanut Butter Watery? Here’s What You Can Do

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Have you ever woke up in the morning and craved a good peanut butter for your breakfast, only to find out that your jar of peanut butter is watery?

This can be off-putting because you need an extra effort to stir it back, or it is actually its texture and will not thicken anything you do.

I know that this can happen and can be frustrating, so I will answer your questions in this article and what to do in those situations. Let’s start from the beginning.

peanut butter oil

Why is my peanut butter watery?

Watery peanut butter signifies that you have a non-homogenized product, most likely an all-natural jar of peanut butter.

Peanut butter is watery mostly because the peanut oil is rising to the top. This often happens with organic or all-natural peanut butter because they don’t have additional additives as “hydrogenated oil.”

So you should be happy if your peanut butter is watery. That is a good sign that tells you your peanut butter is natural, but that comes with a minor inconvenience.

Let me explain this more in simple terms without getting too deep into the subject. There are two types of fats, saturated and unsaturated fats. Saturated fats are solid at room temperature, and unsaturated fats become liquid at room temperature.

Organic peanut butter contains only unsaturated fats, while in commercial peanut butter, you will see unsaturated fats added to help peanut butter keep its consistency.

What to do when peanut butter has oil on top

If your peanut butter has oil on top, you should stir it back in with a spoon or a butter knife.

One way to prevent this is to store your peanut butter upside down. This way, even if you still have to stir a bit when you prepare your peanut butter, it should be much easier than if you don’t store it upside down.

Difference between natural and conventional peanut butter

The main difference is that conventional peanut butter can contain more ingredients than peanuts and salt. Usually, they contain sugar for the taste and hydrogenated vegetable oil that will help its consistency no matter the temperature. You may also find thickeners like xanthan gum or guar gum. 

natural peanut butter

There are different types of conventional peanut butter. Some of them are crunchy, some are creamy, others are even creamier to ensure an easier time spreading it on your bread.

Also, natural peanut butter tends to be a bit grainier than the conventional one, even if both are labeled as “creamy.”

Read Also:4 Reasons Peanut Butter Is Expensive

Can you find conventional peanut butter that is watery?

Yes, you can find conventional peanut butter that is watery.

Since tons of companies produce peanut butter, you can find a lot of varieties in the extra ingredients they add and the quantities those ingredients are in the peanut butter.

In this case, some of them can separate like natural peanut butter. Also, they resist different temperatures, so for example, one brand can separate if you keep it in a warm place, and other brands or types will not separate.

How to thicken peanut butter?

-Stir it. This is the most obvious way to thicken your peanut butter, but sometimes it is not the easiest way.

Depending on the peanut butter you have, this can be quite difficult and messy.

-Refrigerate it. Sounds intuitive because this will prevent the oil from separating from the peanuts.

The bad part of this is that you can’t control the temperature very well, and most likely, it will be too solid when you get it out of the fridge, making it hard to spread on your bread.

-Drain the oil. You can also drain the oil out. I wouldn’t recommend this way, but it can work. The downside is that you will have dehydrated peanut butter after this, and also, the taste will differ a lot so preferably go for another way to thicken your peanut butter.

-Add ground peanuts. You can add extra peanuts that you grind yourself. This can help, but it takes a long time, and the texture and taste will not be the same.

How to tell if peanut butter has gone bad?

Fresh peanut butter should be soft and creamy. If your peanut butter goes bad, most likely, it will have a hard and dry texture.

The smell of it is another sign that it has gone bad. Usually, it should smell like fresh roasted peanuts, but if somehow it has a sharper, bitter, or burnt smell most likely is a sign that it’s gone bad.


After reading this article, I hope you feel relieved knowing that your peanut butter is fine, even if it is watery. In fact, it is the way it should be if you have all-natural or organic peanut butter.

Make sure you stir it back and enjoy your peanut butter without thinking something was wrong.

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