Can you eat peanut butter past the expiration date?

In this brief guide, we’ll answer the question, ‘Can you eat peanut butter past the expiration date?’ and also discuss the benefits and the risks of eating peanut butter past the expiration date. We also talk about the shelf life of peanut butter and the conditions for proper storage.

Can you eat peanut butter past the expiration date?

Yes, technically you can eat peanut butter past the expiration date. Care should be taken that the expiration date is given by the manufacturer for the product’s warranty. Also, the expiration date only comes for commercially marketed peanut butter, not for homemade peanut butter.

In many cases, it has been reported that eating expired peanut butter has caused few side effects. Some bacterial growth has also been observed in the jars or containers when they were kept for longer durations in unfavorable conditions. 

Can peanut butter go bad

Yes, peanut butter made at home or bought from the store, can go bad. When you open a jar of peanut butter and find oil at the top, it is not a sign of spoilage. But there are other signs. Natural high-quality peanut butter doesn’t spoil easily because it mostly contains fats. Most spoilage comes from the growth of microorganisms and contact with air that causes rancidity.

How to know if the peanut butter has gone bad?

The high fat content in peanut butter makes it rancid which makes it taste foul. That’s a sign of spoilage. Coming in contact with air makes it turn darker in color and also makes it hard as opposed to soft and creamy when it’s new.  

What is the shelf life of peanut butter?

Store-bought peanut butter has an expiration date or a use-by date of usually 18 months. An unopened and sealed can or jar can be stored without the refrigerator for longer durations. Once opened it needs to be refrigerated. It can also last for a few months even after its expiration date, except for people with allergies, who should be careful when consuming past the expiration date. 

Commercial peanut butter contains stabilizers and preservatives which help in enhancing the shelf life of the product. They also help in combating microbial growth.

Homemade peanut butter lasts in the fridge for about 2-3 months after which it starts to smell, and become rancid. Consuming rancid homemade butter is not recommended after a few months.

What are the risks of eating spoiled peanut butter?

Spoiled peanut butter becomes rancid which when consumed causes vomiting, diarrhea, or stomach ache. It may also cause allergic reactions for certain individuals who are allergic to nuts and peanuts in particular. In other cases, it may also cause inflammation, weight gain, and increased cholesterol levels.

What to do with extra peanut butter in the house?

Here are some recipes for desserts that can be made with leftover peanut butter if you want to consume it before it gets spoiled. 

  • Peanut Butter Cream Pie

Mix cream cheese, castor sugar (confectioner’s sugar), and peanut butter together to make it smooth. Add one-half portion of whipped cream and mix well. Transfer the content into a graham cracker crust. Place the remaining whipped cream on top and sprinkle a layer of powdered or roasted peanuts on top and keep it to chill for over 2-3 hours in the refrigerator before serving.

  • Peanut butter ice cream sandwich
  • Peanut butter Cookies

Preheat the oven to -350°F. Mix peanut butter, sugar, and egg together using a blender until smooth and creamy to form a dough. Roll the dough into small ball-sized portions and lay them on the baking sheet and flatten it out. Bake them in the pre-heated oven for 10 minutes. Cool them completely before serving.

  • Peanut Bars (energy bars)

Other FAQs about Peanut Butter that you may be interested in.

Do I need to refrigerate peanut butter

Is expired peanut butter safe to eat?

Can dogs eat skippy peanut butter?


In this brief guide, we discussed eating peanut butter past its expiration date, and the benefits and risks of consuming spoilt peanut butter. We also shed a light on the shelf life and storage methods for peanut butter. We also learned some recipes to use extra peanut butter in the house.