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Tags: Pro/Con
Dec. 11, 2006

PRO/CON: creamy vs. crunchy peanut butter

by Eve Gleichman, Online Editor-in-Chief and Priyanka Gokhale, Online Editor-in-Chief
Priyanka Gokhale says: Creamy is dreamy

Let's talk about applesauce for a minute. We've all eaten applesauce from the little Motts cups with foil tops. Now, imagine peeling back the foil top, expecting some creamy, delicious applesauce inside and instead finding…little chunks of apples! Ridiculous, right?

Well, that's the idea behind crunchy peanut butter – a culinary disaster that undermines the integrity of good old creamy peanut butter.

Creamy peanut butter is one of the few spreads that can be deemed "heavenly" (aside from Philadelphia cream cheese, well, at least according to their commercials!) This ground peanut confection is easy-to-spread and decadent, not to mention a great friend to jelly! And then, there's crunchy peanut butter – creamy peanut butter's evil twin. Half-baked and inferior in taste, crunch peanut butter is essentially creamy filled with little chunks of peanuts.

Crunchy peanut butter has infinite – no, infinite plus one flaws, but here are three that truly illustrate its substandard-ness.
Who can resist the smoothness of creamy peanut butter?
Who can resist the smoothness of creamy peanut butter?

1. Crunchy peanut butter is hard to spread.
No, really. Have you ever tried to smear crunchy peanut butter on a slice of bread? Not only does it lack the smoothness that allows creamy peanut butter to glide on to any surface, but crunchy is simply DIFFICULT to spread. The annoying too-small-to-be-peanuts too-big-to-be-ground-up chunks get stuck everywhere – on the knife, on the bread, on the counter. Not only that, but the end result is often a sandwich with an irregular amount of peanut butter on both sides, making for a not-so-yummy lunch.

2. Crunchy peanut butter can't take gum out of your hair.
One of creamy peanut butter's biggest household uses comes from its ability to unstick gum from hair. If you've ever had the misfortune of getting gum in your hair, then you know that I'm talking about, spreading peanut butter around the gum allows Mommy to work it out without too much hassle (but a lot of grossness!) Users of crunchy lack this multipurpose facet because they run a risk of the peanut butter leaving a trail of peanut pieces behind.

3. Crunchy peanut butter is (not) for lovers.
Unlike Virginia, crunchy peanut butter is not for lovers. Don't believe me? Then take a look at the statistics. According to www.peanutbutter.com, creamy lovers outnumber crunchy lovers 60 to 40 percent. What's more, the East coast prefers creamy peanut butter and leaves crunchy to the Californians. And, since we live on the East side (represent!), we've got to stay true and stay creamy. Duh.

So, if you want to be a hater, go ahead. Eat crunchy. But, if you want to stay true to the goodness of peanut butter, make the right choice. Go creamy!


Eve Gleichman says: Creamy is for freedom haters

Let us reflect for a moment on lunchtime during our kindergarten days. Two pieces of smooth white bread. A layer of smooth grape jelly (which is, by the way, inferior to peanut butter – but that's for a later time); don't we need some texture here?

The answer is yes. Yes, yes, yes. Good thing crunchy peanut butter stepped in to save the day. Perfectly salted and delightfully small, these bits of wonder will keep your mouth happy, your body healthy and your ethics up to scratch.

Creamy's infamous stuck-to-the-roof-of-your-mouth factor proves to be pitiful competition against our crunchy hero. These little bits of crispy delight act not only as taste bud stimulators but also as mouth roof cleaners, scraping gobs of peanut butter from your hard palate, unlike its creamy nemesis, which will stick to you like glue. Don't believe me? Take a look at Shel Silverstein's "Peanut Butter Sandwich" an illuminating poem which depicts a king's creamy peanut butter as a "sticky…dripping…stubborn" misfortune. ("Then one day he took a bite/And started chewing with delight/But found his mouth was stuck quite tight/From that last bite of peanut-butter"). Sounds like the gooey mess could have used a chunk or two for de-gobbing.

Now let's talk ethics. Specifically, the ethical treatment of peanuts. If you were a peanut – a crunchy, solid legume – would you want to be grounded so thoroughly that you were considered creamy?. Neither would I. So why support such an anti-legume product?

Now for all you health (pea)nuts: The extra crunch factor gives you a nice hearty workout, a simple way to lose a nice amount of calories via mandibular exercise without overexerting yourself. With no chewing involved, your body could take a turn for the worse if you're a big into peanut butter.
Need I say more?
Need I say more?


I suppose it is important for us refute the pitiful claims of those that dream in cream. Everyone knows there's a no-whining rule for real PB&J makers. If you can't handle spreading delectable bits of peanuts across of piece of bread, than your issues extend far beyond the pathetic woes at the kitchen counter. Besides, spreading crunchy peanut butter poses a nice challenge; a fun, invigorating part of your sandwich preparation. How boring our lives would be if everything was as easy as spreading bland creamy peanut butter. And please, it's nothing compared to spreading jelly, which takes three times as long because of the transportation from the jar to the bread (Don't pretend like you don't know what I'm talking about).

Perhaps the best part of crunchy peanut butter is the after effect. Rarely when you eat the peanut butter which shall not be named do you find yourself enjoying your snack hours after you've swallowed it. But with crunchy, you might find a little peanut surprise hanging out in a back molar, just waiting to make your day later on.

Consider the fact now that if crunchy wanted to, it could become creamy. But no matter how hard it tries, creamy can never become crunchy. It's the sad truth.

On a completely separate note, is it a coincidence that "creamy" begins with the same letter as "communism?" I think not.

If you like the bandwagon, the bland, the boring, then by all means, stick with this creamy nonsense. But if you want to stay true to yourself and to the world, go crunchy. We will not be indoctrinated, we will not conform, we will not eat paste!



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  • creamy lover on December 11, 2006 at 11:43 PM
    best humor ever. :)
  • af on December 12, 2006 at 7:23 AM
    Good article.
    Go Crunchy!!
  • squad on December 12, 2006 at 7:34 AM
    creamy is smooth n sexy
    crunchy=ghetto
  • mccreamy=mcdreamy on December 12, 2006 at 7:34 AM
    "crunchy" also begins with the same letter as "communism," "coincidence" and the same first TWO letters as "crap" and therefore crunchy is crappy.
    • dacream=dabest (View Email) on September 22, 2009 at 8:04 PM
      completely agree with you.
    • Really? on January 18, 2012 at 2:14 PM
      So does "creamy"... Lmao, you're argument isn't valid at all
      • Kayla (View Email) on February 27, 2012 at 5:44 PM
        hahahahhaa lol i like that!:D

        but really were arguing over peanutbutter ? I mean rly eat what you like. avoid what you dont!
  • Crunchy lover on December 12, 2006 at 8:01 AM
    HAHAHA
    Both sides presented strong arguments, however....CRUNCHY IS STILL BETTER!


    <3 crunchy fan
  • cruncher on December 12, 2006 at 10:55 AM
    holler at the crunchy pb
  • War time on December 12, 2006 at 11:18 AM
    I think it is time for a war on Crunchy Peanut Butter. As our Homeland Department of Security intelligence tells us, Crunchy Peanut Butter has been known to cause acts of terrorism, such as being late to class and wearing a lanyard that is different than its academy. Such acts must be stopped!
  • Creamy all the way on December 12, 2006 at 1:23 PM
    can u really call crunchy peanut BUTTER. butter is smooth-crunchy is not. and if you freeze creamy then it becomes crunchy so that argument about creamy can't become crunchy is wrong. But why would you want to freeze peanut butter and made it harder to eat? i don't know. You'll have to ask the crunchy lovers why they want to work so hard to eat a sandwich instead of just nejoying creamy. And you are supposed to have a tall glass of milk with a PB&J sandwhich so you're mouth does not become all sticky. If you want your mouth to work hard bust out a jar of nuts and eat them without grinding it down, because if you only grind it halfway down then aren't the manufacturers really just taking a shortcut and cutting corners?
  • input on December 12, 2006 at 2:35 PM
    crunchy all the way, creamy is just so BLAND.

    crunchy is munchy ;-)
  • Lucas (View Email) on December 13, 2006 at 3:09 PM
    crunchy is better and you know it
  • what? on December 13, 2006 at 7:30 PM
    this is actually the most random article ever
  • mmmmm..... on December 14, 2006 at 7:56 AM
    why can't both creamy lovers and crunchy lovers come together and admit that both creamy and crunchy peanut butter have lovable qualities--even verging on divine! there are some things you eat with creamy, and some with cruncy. sometimes creamy just doesn't do it because it's so thin and smooth, and you need that extra rich, extra textured feeling of crunchy. plus, authentic peanuts! that's at least one thing that isn't artificial! and like one comment below said, creamy is smooth and sexy, and sometimes crunchy seems rather brutish by comparison. it all depends. either way, I get stuck eating reduced fat because it's so oily. man!
    augh.
  • connoiseur (View Email) on December 14, 2006 at 9:56 AM
    i kno peanut butter and crunchy is the truth. if u eat creamy ur soft
  • Whoever on December 15, 2006 at 8:48 AM
    To what?:
    A sense of humor. Get one.
  • Theanda (View Email) on December 20, 2006 at 8:41 AM
    I like crunchy peanut butter better it taste really good with the grape jelly!!!
    WELL BYE
  • wow on December 30, 2006 at 8:01 PM
    that thing about freezing creamy was just...pure genius. how insightful! it WILL become crunchy in the freezer.
    this piece was slightly amusing, it was alright i guess. and has me craving peanut butter. I swear my friend asked me about this very subject a few days ago.....

    I'd have to say I like both. But sometimes, you just crave the texture crunchy's got. My mouth is watering at the thought of those peanut pieces.....
    besides, i would like to think crunchy is for more...."sophisticated" peanut butter lovers. ones who've been eating the stuff long enough to expand their palettes to a wider range.
    dangit it's the texture that drives one mad for crunchy. crunchy is...crunchy. but at the same time so much more.
    I would like to see a publication debating "college-ruled" and "wide-ruled paper" next
  • varun on January 1, 2007 at 8:16 PM
    haha, nice work.

    creamy trumps crunchy, any day, any sandwich
  • Go Crunchy (View Email) on January 3, 2007 at 7:51 PM
    Crunchy isn't for lovers because more people love creamy? Weaak. Crunchy lovers such as myself happen to be much more passionate about their peanut butter.
  • zack on January 9, 2007 at 10:17 AM
    oh god i'm so hungry and i still don't know which i like best
  • freshman on January 17, 2007 at 11:33 AM
    Crunchy is for those of us with exuberance and passion, who want to enjoy every tiny peanut chunk in our lives!

    And it's just tastier.
  • lkjasdof on February 20, 2007 at 9:45 PM
    crunchy begins with c, too!
  • elodie (View Email) on June 29, 2007 at 10:36 AM
    I LOVE CRUNCHY PEANUT BUTTER! YEAH, IT MAY NOT TAKE GUM OUT OF YOUR HAIR, OR IT MAY BE A LITTLE HARD TO SPREAD, BUT IT'S ALL WORTH IT WHEN I BITE INTO THAT CREAMY SANDWICH SMEARED WITH JELLY. THE CRUNCHINESS JUST ADDS A LITTLE EXTRA. AND IT IS DELICIOUS!
  • meg (View Email) on July 22, 2007 at 11:40 PM
    ok i'm sorry, but anyone who says creamy pb is better is touched in the head
  • $m!+H3r$ (View Email) on September 27, 2007 at 5:52 PM
    YES UM CRUNCHY BEGINS WITH C ALSO. AND LEMME SAY THIS.........ANY KIND OF PEANUT BUTTER IS NAYASTY....IT'S ALL ABOUT THAT JELLY BABY. AND U KNOW THIS TO BE TRUE!!! LOLZ BUT I LIKED THIS ARTICLE OR WHUTEVER U CALL IT. U GOT ME TO READ! LOLERZ
  • Mira F (View Email) on November 12, 2007 at 3:19 PM
    Go crunchy, first of all.
    Second: funny.
    Third: Seriously, you guys are editors? Never mind.

    I love the communism picture (caption is icing)
  • lufcforever on December 21, 2009 at 7:45 AM
    Crunchy is eaten by the gods. Creamy isn't. Crunchy will rule for eternity.
  • ucerna on April 17, 2010 at 4:43 PM
    I know I'm 3 years too late but I have to say... crunchy is superior but it also starts with the same letter as communism. Communism, crunchy, creamy... It's all c's
  • little bunny foo foo on April 20, 2011 at 11:27 AM
    creamy & grape
  • bluewombat (View Email) on June 2, 2011 at 8:36 PM
    I like both, although my preference runs to crunchy: it's more flavorful, and I like the texture.

    Jon Krampner

    Author of "Creamy and Crunchy: An Informal History of Peanut Butter, the All-American Food," which will be published in the spring of 2012 by Columbia University Press (http://www.creamyandcrunchy.com)
  • Katherine on June 16, 2011 at 2:09 PM
    This is a very entertaining article. Of all the things to argue about...peanut butter.
  • Mac` (View Email) on October 31, 2011 at 12:34 AM
    in spite of this article i will now walk into my kitchen and easily spread a hefty amount of Extra Crunchy Jif Peanut Butter onto my whole grain wheat bread with little difficulty. Long live the legumes!
  • Sarahboo1820 on November 2, 2013 at 1:11 PM
    Crunchy all the way!!!!!!!!!!!! Creamy just isn't the same.
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