How-to Thicken Natural Peanut Butter

How-to Thicken Natural Peanut Butter

Natural or Organic peanut butter often has a layer of oil at the surface when you first open it. Some text on the jar would suggest you stir the jar well when you open to mix this in. However when you do you quickly find that you have a peanut butter that is runny and thin, a peanut butter that won’t hold onto a knife or keep from running out the side of a PB&J sandwich. Often times you will read that natural peanut butter should be refrigerated however this is just to mask the thin viscosity of it. When the peanut butter is cold the oil is solidified thus keeping its form better. However you may not like cold peanut butter so refrigerating your natural peanut butter wouldn’t be ideal. So here is how to fix this issue and remove some of the fat. Kind Of a win win situation right!

This extra oil is a natural part of the peanut originally however once ground the amount of oil fat doesn’t make a peanut butter with the viscosity that many of us have grown accustom to over our lifetime. One great thing about natural peanut butter is that the peanut solids will settle to the bottom allowing the oil to separate at the top over a few weeks of sitting undisturbed. This means that you can pour off a substantial amount of this oil (save it, store in the refrigerator and use for cooking) and using a half sheet of paper towel on the top of the peanut butter for 12-18 hours to soak up just the right amount.


  1. The first thing you should do is keep the jar in the pantry undisturbed for a few days to a week after purchasing to let that top layer of oil settle cleanly to the surface. Try keeping an extra jar in the pantry so you always have the oil settled on top when you need a new jar opened.oil-in-natural-peanut-butter
  2. Open the jar of peanut butter and with a second container ready to save the peanut oil slowly pour off the extra oil that has settle on the surface. It’s ok to pour off a little of the cloudy oil, the peanut solids will settle to the bottom of room temperature oil. This oil can be refrigerated and used as peanut oil for cooking later.pour-off-extra-oil-in-natural-peanut-butter
  3. Take a half sheet of paper towel and wad it up. Place on top of the peanut butter in the jar and put the lid back on. Let this sit for 12-18 hours undisturbed. half-sheet-paper-towel-in-peanutbutter-jar
  4. When you open the jar the paper towel would have become fully soaked with oil preventing any of the peanuts from clinging to it. Remove and discard paper towel.removing-peanut-oil-soaked-towel
  5. Give the jar of peanut butter a quick stir with a butter knife. Make sure to get all the way to the bottom corners. Enjoy some delicious thick natural peanut butter, wonderful right!

Your natural peanut butter will now have a viscosity to it similar to standard peanut butter. If for some reason it isn’t as thick as you would like first make sure you stir some of the lower peanut butter to the top as it could have settled more due to a longer time on the shelfs. If you would still prefer a thicker peanut butter try repeating step 3 and 4. Remember this isn’t an exact science due to various brands and each batch of peanuts used in the making volume of natural oil. Let us know how this worked for you in the comments.