Sunday, July 15, 2012

PB&J(ust About Everything)

Krema Nut Company

Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Even as an adult is it hard not to crave this ultimate American childhood comfort food combo. When I am in need of a fix, I head to Krema Nut Company where you not only can find all natural peanut butter being made from one of the oldest plants in the country, but also an array of lip-smacking PB&J creations ready to transport you back to your youth.

Founder of Krema Nut Company, Benton Black, started his business in 1898 by making condiments such as mustard and horseradish. His exploration of grinding seeds into sauce naturally evolved into his experimenting with peanuts and, in 1922, he started manufacturing his all natural peanut butter. Since its inception, Krema has been producing peanut butters that are all natural with no salt, sugar, or preservatives added. In fact, Mr. Black was so unwilling to compromise the freshness and quality of his product he refused to sell it outside the state of Ohio.

Ready to discover this spreadable local choice, I visited the Krema Headquarters, Factory, Flagship Retail and PB&J Sandwich Store – all of which are located under one roof in Columbus. The Factory still cranks out gallons of deliciously gooey peanut butter along with their gourmet almond and cashew nut butters, while the Flagship Retail store neatly displays an assortment of packaged nuts, nut mixes, popcorn, chocolates, and candies perfect for snacking.

When visiting Krema Nut Company I had one destination in mind, The PB&J Sandwich Store. The menu of this hidden lunch spot lists numerous peanut butter combinations, as well as a build your own option that is sure to bring out the kid in anyone. After contemplating over choices such as The Buckeye (peanut butter layered with Nutella chocolate hazelnut spread) and the Nut Mallow (peanut butter combined with marshmallow fluff) I settled on the PB-Nana. This delicious toasted peanut butter sandwich filled with honey and sliced bananas was guaranteed to stick to the roof of my mouth. In order to minimize this inevitable outcome, I decided to channel my inner adolescence and rinse it all down with a thick and creamy peanut butter milkshake.

Peanut Butter

The Krema Nut Company peanut butter (pictured left) traveled 0 miles to Columbus, while the peanut butter (pictured right) traveled roughly 786 miles to Columbus.

Contradictory to its name, peanuts are not true nuts, but members of the legume family. The peanut plant is unusual because it flowers above ground and due to the weight of its seed the fruit buries itself below ground.

There are primarily three types of peanuts grown in the United States:

Spanish – small kernel, grown in the Southwest states of Texas, New Mexico, and Oklahoma

Virginia– medium kernel (know as snacking/cocktail), grown in Virginia and the Carolinas

Runner– large kernel and high yield per acre makes this the most sought after by large commercial peanut butter companies, grown in the Southeast states of Georgia, Florida and Alabama


  • Harvest – Krema uses 100% raw Spanish peanuts to make their peanut butters
  • Roast – gives the peanut color and flavor, the temperature and duration will vary between brands
  • Cool & Blanch -cleans the peanut and removes the skin
  • Grind – the degree will depend on if you are making smooth or chunky peanut butter
  • Package - Krema still fills its jars and adheres its labels by hand


Peanut Butter Manufacturing

Peanut Butter, Oat & Honey Granola Bars

Click on the recipe cards to print your copy:


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