Preparedness Challenge Week 3
This week the preparedness challenge is to pick up a couple of jars of peanut butter. Substitute another nut butter if you prefer or if you have peanut allergies in your family.
Peanut butter is an American staple and has been around for over 100 years. It is the perfect survival food. Peanut butter tastes good, is full of nutritious calories, and is an inexpensive protein. You probably won’t have to worry about it sitting in your food storage and “going bad” because it will be eaten too fast. The challenge might be keeping enough on hand.
How Much Peanut Butter Should You Store?
On average, Americans eat about six jars of peanut butter a year!
The average American kid will eat 1500 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches before they graduate from high school. A typical serving of peanut butter is two tablespoons, and a 28-ounce jar contains about 25 servings. If you average three servings of peanut butter a week, you would need just over 150 servings for a year. That turns out to be about six jars (28-ounce) of peanut butter.
Track How Much Peanut Butter Your Family Uses
Wondering how much peanut butter your family uses? The next time you open a jar of peanut butter, write the date on the label. Note the date when the jar is empty and that will give you a rough estimate of how much peanut butter your family uses. Since peanut butter is convenient and requires no refrigeration, it is a great emergency food. You may want to increase the amount you store.
What Is the Shelf Life for Peanut Butter?
Peanut butter is high in oil, so it doesn’t have a long shelf life. The “best-by” date for creamy, homogenized peanut butter is two to three years. If it is stored in a cool, dark location, it may last longer. It is OK to use peanut butter after the “best-by” date if it tastes and smells good. If peanut oil separates from the peanut butter, just stir it back in. Natural peanut butter and chunky peanut butter have a shorter shelf life, only about six to nine months.
Have You Tried Peanut Butter Powder?
Peanut Butter Powder is an alternative to regular peanut butter. It is made from roasted peanuts that have been pressed to remove the peanut oil and then ground into powder. It contains the protein and fiber of peanut butter but lacks some of the nutritional and health benefits of regular peanut butter. Use it in smoothies, baked goods, and to make various peanut sauces. I like using PBFit Peanut Butter Powder to make banana-peanut butter smoothies—blend one cup of milk, one frozen banana, and 1 scoop of PBFit.
Dehydrated peanut butter is also available from some food storage suppliers in #10 cans. The shelf life is five years.
Make Your Own Nut Butter!
Nut butters are easy to make yourself! I recently tried it and nothing could be simpler. I put one cup of lightly salted mixed nuts with peanuts into my little Cuisinart Mini-Prep Food Processor and turned it on—The nuts ground quickly into a dry nut flour. I kept the processor running and within a few minutes the nut oils started to blend in. In less than five minutes one cup of nuts turned into a half cup of delicious, spreadable nut butter. I highly recommend it! Give it a try!
Find more tips for storing peanut butter, other food storage foods, and all areas of preparedness in my book “Crisis Preparedness Handbook, Third Edition.”
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