DESIGN
Peanut ButterDecember 8, 2016

If you knock over an open jar of peanut butter on the kitchen counter, what will happen:

  1. It will explode.
  2. The peanut butter will turn into a jelly.
  3. The peanut butter will spill out in a gooey puddle.
  4. It will immediately roll off the counter and onto the floor.
  5. Nothing.

There are two answers. For every jar of peanut butter I have ever bought, except for one brand, the answer is 5.

Number 4 might just happen if it was knocked over very hard, so, some people might say that that is a valid answer (but it is very unlikely).

The trick answer is 3, as that will happen for most of Trader Joe's jars of peanut butter!

And, as I see it, Trader Joe's peanut butter is a flawed design. It is so soupy that tipping the jar will pour the stuff out! Molasses pours out slower! A butter knife can not be used on the stuff as spills right off it as the knife comes out of the jar. Eating a TJ's PB&J sandwich causes the PB to run out the sides.

All those jars, for all these years, and they think their PB is great! And nobody has ever complained probably. And Trader Joe's has no social media presence for product feedback.

Peanut butter is called "peanut butter" because the peanuts are ground to a consistency near butter so that is can be spread with a knife – typically along with jelly on slices of bread. (Though I suppose TJ's PB and be poured on the bread like honey – and like honey, one can pour too much.)

But TJ's may be better for baking. If a recipe calls for 1/2 cup of PB, one could pour the PB into a 1/2 cup measurer, and pour that into the mixing bowl, with just a little spatula to get the rest. Otherwise, one is scooping the BP with knife or spoon from jar to measurer to bowl – a stickier process (perhaps having to clean some PB off your fingers afterward).

Notes

I could have added this answer: "A little oil will spill out," as some brands do have a little oil on the top (which seeps out after a time).

The PB I prefer is freshly ground at the store; Whole Foods and many local "Health Food" stores provide this. Many of the latter have been doing so for a very long time – though those tend to be found mostly in cities.

Some PBs are of what I call "poor design," and that is the majority of PB brands as they have way too much sugar and salt. (Yet the manufacturers probably think their's is a "good design" as long as it sells.)