Sunbutter: The Peanut Butter Alternative

Happy, Happy, Joy, Joy, Happy, Happy, Joy!

I can not tell you how happy I was to learn about Sunbutter. The topic came up on a pregnancy forum that I frequent in regards to moms that are avoiding peanut butter during pregnancy for fear that it leads to peanut allergies in their offspring. I’m not sure I agree with that theory but I am so happy to have learned about Sunbutter.

Peanut butter and I were best friends before my daughter came down with a peanut allergy. I’m not sure any other food allergy could have come at such a blow to my own personal dietary preferences. Now of course, her health comes before my food cravings so we have not kept it in the house since we first learned of her peanut allergy, which requires the use of an Epi Pen, upon exposure.

Once upon a time we tried Soy Butter which was the nastiest concoction I have ever tasted and I shudder just thinking about trying to pass that off as a peanut butter alternative to my daughter. A few months ago I tried Almond Butter and all though tasty it is not something I am willing to allow Camden to try since we have been counseled to avoid all tree nuts (her only reaction thus far has been to peanuts).

Sunbutter must be a direct inspiration from Heaven, I’m sure. It is soooo good. Even my husband when he went to take a whiff of the can said, “Wow, it smells exactly like peanut butter!” And truly, it does. It tastes a lot like peanut butter too but is delicious in it’s own right. Camden’s verdict? She absolutely loves it and is asking for Sunbutter constantly. We had homemade waffles for dinner and my love for waffles is back because I was able to top them with a bit of Sunbutter and dip them into maple syrup. Mmmm, that is the only way to eat waffles. I am looking forward to making our first batch of “peanut butter” cookies made with Sunbutter and all the other yummy baked goods that we’ve missed at Christmas times because we’ve had to go peanut free.

The best part about Sunbutter is that it is safe. It is produced in a peanut free facility and is safe from any cross-contamination. Even better? It is healthy. It contains double the fiber, more iron and 30% less saturated fat than typical peanut butter. It contains no hydrogenated oils and also has 27% of the adult requirement of vitamin E, per serving. It is also Gluten Free.

We bought our first jar of Sunbutter from a store called Haggen’s for about $3.89 and it is the Sunbutter brand. We later went to Trader Joe’s and realized that they carry Sunbutter as well and it is actually made by Sunbutter but is under the Trader Joe’s label. Next time we will buy the Sunbutter from Trader Joe’s. It is only $3.50 a jar and unlike the product under the Sunbutter label the Trader Joe variety does not contain any preservatives. It has 3 ingredients: roasted sunflower seeds, evaporated cane juice and salt. Whereas the Sunbutter we purchased under it’s own label has the following ingredients: sunflower seeds, sugar, mono-diglycerides to prevent separation, salt and natural mixed tocopherols to preserve freshness. For me, I run under the simpler is better approach. 3 ingredients is better than 5. I also tried the Trader Joe’s version, which I picked up for a friend, and I prefer the taste and texture of the TJ version much more even though they are made by the same company.

I think this product is such great news for everyone. It is not just peanut allergic kids that are affected by peanut allergies. It is their siblings, their parents, their extended families, their daycares and preschools and public schools and even beyond that airlines and public places in general are affected. A product like Sunbutter allows for a very tasty and safe alternative. In some taste tests people have actually preferred the taste of Sunbutter over Peanut Butter. As a peanut butter lover I can say that I love Sunbutter (though I’m not sure I’d go so far as to say that I’d choose Sunbutter over peanut butter). I honestly won’t miss peanut butter with this alternative. I am astounded by how good it is.

Sunbutter can be found at grocery stores and health food stores nationwide. It can be found at stores such as the following: Albertsons LLC, Andronico’s, Bristol Farms, Gelson’s, Giant, Kroger’s, Publix, Super Target, Trader Joe’s, Wegmans, Winn-Dixie, and Whole Foods. I found mine at Haggen’s which is a chain in the Pacific Northwest. I live in Eastern Washington but will be traveling back over to the west side next month and will visit Trader Joe’s again. If anyone would like a jar and can’t find any near them please let me know and I’d be happy to ship you a jar, or two or three. :)

I do want to point out that some parents of peanut allergic children may still avoid and not want to have Sunbutter in their homes or for their children to eat it and it is important for people to try and be understanding with this choice. Their reasoning is that Sunbutter looks and tastes like peanut butter and they don’t want their children to become confused on what is and is not safe for them to eat. Since my daughter’s food environment is very controlled (by myself) and she is never exposed to food unless I okay it, I don’t necessarily have this concern. I did take time to sit down with her and explain why she could eat this and that it wasn’t peanut butter and was made from Sunflower Seeds and that unless mommy or daddy gave it to her she was not allowed to eat Sunbutter.



  1. J. G. · December 2, 2010

    Our pediatrician had some samples at their office and I gave it a try because I can’t eat peanuts! My kids know to keep the peanuts and peanut butter away from me and now that we have Sunbutter in the house. I can finally enjoy a “peanut butter ” sandwich with them because it looks and tastes so much like the real thing! IT has been great for our preschool and schools as well. So many kids with allergies – we can take sunbutter sandwiches and put peanut free on the front so they can sit by their friends and it won’t affect them!

  2. Robin · April 9, 2010

    Going out to buy Sunbutter! My son suffers from a severe peanut/tree nut allergy and my husband and I had to give up one of our favorite foods when we discovered this fact. We tried Soy butter a few years back and YUK is stating it mildly. He is now 7 and someone recently told me about sunbutter but after the bad experience with soy butter we decided to pass on trying it out. I googled sunbutter today and found where you can purchase the product right on line or type in your zip code to find a retailer near you. After reading the posts on this website and googling a retailer near me I found that the Target in my area carries it so I’m off to purchase it this weekend. Thanks for all the posts-it certainly helped me make the decision to try it!

  3. Lorey · August 8, 2009

    I LOVE this. Just discovered it yesterday. My son is starting kindergarden and there was a flyer about the school being a NO PEANUT school. So I tried this for an alternitave He just had his first sandwich and LOVED it!

    I bought mine at walmart

  4. Diana · May 11, 2009

    I just found this alternative today at our Whole Foods store and love it!!!!!! My son loves it too! What a huge blessing this is. I can’t tell you how many times I wanted to make him a quick delicious pb&j sandwich but couldn’t dut to my son’s severe allergies. Well I just saw this add in a trader joe’s advertisement and thought I would try it. I am so glad I did. I could devour the whole jar and leave my son none but of course that would defeat the purpose of buying it. :) lol
    Anyway thanks for your blog spot I hope others find this wonderful alternative.

  5. Peanut Free in PA · January 20, 2009

    My family fell in love with Sunbutter a little over a year ago. Until last week I did not think there was anyway to be happier with their product, then we tried the Natural Crunch Sunbutter. I have always prefered smooth PB instead of Crunchy PB, so I was not sure I would like the Natural Crunch, but my son wanted to try it. It was so good my family went through a jar of the Natural Crunch Sunbutter in 1 week, it is Yum Yum Yummy!

  6. WAYNE NEW · January 8, 2009


  7. lexie · December 19, 2008

    Sun Gold Foods is the company that manufactures Sunbutter – all varieties, including the organic, no sugar kind. And yes, they are all made in a nut free facility.

  8. journeytocrunchville · December 10, 2008

    srila, that is AWESOME! We don’t have a whole foods here though. do you know if it is made in a nut free, dedicated facility?

  9. srila · December 10, 2008

    there is an ORGANIC sunflower seed butter now in production without sugar or salt or any other preservatives or anything. that’s right: one ingredient. roasted sunflower seeds. it is manufactured by sun gold foods. and i found it at whole foods.

  10. Kristine · August 4, 2008

    My daughter is peanut allergic and yes we like sunbutter too. We used to be able to get it for $1.89 at my local grocery store but now they have stopped stocking it due to low demand. Thanks for the Trader Joe’s tip. Keep getting the word out to others!

  11. hookitup · May 3, 2008

    Love SunButter :)

  12. gfcfmom · April 22, 2008

    Hi there…I am so happy you are spreading the word about celiac–and about sunbutter. I have never had it, but a celiac mom I know just recommended it to me and when I was so happy to read your post about it. Especially that I could buy it at Trader Joe’s which is my favorite store!!!

  13. journeytocrunchville · April 17, 2008

    Mmmm yum. That sounds very yummy. I’m trying to keep nuts out of the house (for my daughter’s sake) but that sounds delicious.

    Thanks for the compliment Nikki. I am going to be writing about this later but have you ever looked into a gluten intolerance for your son? It is linked to type 1 diabetes. I have been researching gluten intolerance/celiac for a little bit and am completely intrigued. The known cases of celiac are about 1 in every 100 people. They are suspecting the actual numbers of undiagnosed cases are even greater and are leading to many illnesses in the population, diabetes (type 1) being just one of them. I’ll be writing more about this later.

  14. Nikki · April 15, 2008

    If you like Trader Joe’s, try their Cashew Macademia Butter. It is sinful. Of course, I don’t know if that’s something you have to avoid b/c of the peanut allergy (some avoid all tree nuts, right?), but it has a very smooth texture even refrigerated and doesn’t contain the sugar of the sunflower seed butter.
    I love your blog..found it looking for dye-free candy to treat my 8 yo ds’s insulin reactions (type 1 diabetes). Thanks!

  15. Christen · April 15, 2008

    Hooray! Welcome back to the world of peanut butter waffles (sort of)! That’s my favorite and only way of eating waffles!

  16. titus2woman · April 15, 2008

    OH AWESOME! Thanks for the heads up~WOOHOOO! What a great price too~sooo much better than almond butter, which is the alternative we tried. Ds did NOT like it, but OH do *I*! LOL! (((((HUGS))))) sandi

  17. Brianne · April 14, 2008

    What a great find!

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