09/05/2014 12:14 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

The Great Peanut Butter Debate: Creamy vs. Crunchy


Since the dawn of the modern peanut butter age (1884!), a relentless debate has raged over which butter has the best consistency: creamy or crunchy.

To debate this age-old question, we've enlisted super-smooth executive editor Kevin Alexander and crunchaholic staff writer Dan Gentile to spar off with their words, because hand-to-hand combat is impractical since they live in different cities.

Read on to hear both sides of the argument, then let us know your textural allegiance in the comments.


The case for creamy
By Kevin Alexander


On crunchy peanut butter being annoying to spread and hippies
Have you ever tried to take a knife and use it to spread gravel mixed with Elmer's glue onto a soft porous surface? Of course you haven't, because YOU ARE NOT A CRAZY PERSON, but that is what it's like spreading crunchy peanut butter. It's a horror of culinary calamities, especially if you're dealing with non-toasted bread, and, most of the time, you're dealing with non-toasted bread. It tears in half, it bunches up into peanut clumps, and it is not a great user experience. Smooth, on the other hand, is exactly that. The name alone implies that you're going to have a pleasant experience. People who are described as smooth win awards at prestigious advertising firms and have sex with attractive partners regularly while driving foreign sports cars. People described as crunchy are just hippies, and even typing out 'no one wants to eat a hippie' is gross.

More: Taste-Test: Which peanut butter is the best?


On the inconsistency inherent in crunchy; peanut roulette
Once you've finally managed to spread the crunchy pile of peanuts across your battered, weary bread, then, hopefully, put some sour cherry jam on that thing, because SOUR CHERRY JAM IS AMAZING, BUT THAT'S ANOTHER STORY, you come to another problem. Taste sensation. As I previously stated rather eloquently, crunchy peanut butter inevitably creates random pockets of peanuts almost sans butter. One second you'll be chewing smooth peanut-y bliss, and, the next second, your mouth is dry from eight peanuts overwhelming the flavor of that lovely sour cherry jam, and the lightly toasted bâtard. Maybe some people like this inconsistency and find that this type of Peanut Roulette somehow spices up their mundane lives, but I am not one of those people, and you shouldn't be either.


On how looking at it is gross
Now I'm not a shallow person. I usually prefer to stare into the dark depths of a person's soul rather than judge them on looks alone, but this is a fu**king debate, and since I plan to coarsely chop Dan's argument up from all angles like the stupid peanuts they put in stupid crunchy peanut butter, it must be said: crunchy peanut butter is ugly. I've witnessed our most lead-stomached food photographers nearly dry-heave at the thought of having to take pictures of that bumpy brown goo. Smooth peanut butter, on the other hand, looks so creamy and like a just-paved road of deliciousness. Crunchy is like the road right before they pave it, when the town is fighting with the Department of Public Works' union head about overtime wages, and so they just leave it all shi**y and bumpy, and put orange cones around it, and you end up popping your tire just after your warranty expires.


On the irrefutable evidence of the majority
Finally, friends, I'm going to let you in on a little secret. There is something called the National Peanut Board. And, aside from making deals in peanut butter-filled back rooms and approving changes to Mr. Peanut's attire, they also keep tabs on all sorts of peanut-related topics in the United States. And it turns out, 60% of Americans prefer smooth peanut butter to crunchy. Now this is America, and, as a constitutional democracy, we usually like to settle things with a majority vote. Well, here we are. The majority has spoken. Creamy retains the office of the victor for another four years, and crunchy can go back to Iowa to glad-hand donors sandwiched between white bread and cellophane in the caucus kitchens.

Do you hate creamy peanut butter? Read the strong case for crunchy on!

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