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What are peanuts?

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watch for hidden peanuts

Peanuts are the seeds of legume crop Arachis hypogaea. Because of its widespread use in packaged foods, it can be difficult to avoid the peanut allergen. Many school systems have resorted to banning foods containing peanuts to prevent allergic reactions by children within their schools. Those allergic react to all parts of the peanut from peanut dust to the actual peanut to the shells.

As a major allergen, peanuts will be clearly marked on the labels of foods produced for the US market, usually in the form “contains peanuts”. However, it is still important to learn what to look for to avoid peanuts in your diet.

Read the label for peanuts

Peanuts can be found in arachis oil, artificial nuts, beer nuts, goobers, ground nuts, mixed nuts, monkey nuts, nut pieces, nut meals, peanut (as in "peanut butter", "peanut oil", "peanut flour", etc.), enchilada sauce, marzipan, mole sauce, nougat.

Note: Please note that facilities which process tree nuts may process peanuts on shared lines. Always check the label.

Peanut free substitutions

Peanuts are one of the more challenging allergens to substitute simply because it is so commonly processed by shared lines and/or facilities. Even if you find a seemingly suitable substitute, you will need to check labels carefully that your sunflower seed butter wasn't made on a shared line with peanut products. That said, you may be able to substitute with a similar protein.

For peanut butter, substitute one for one:

For peanut flour, substitute roughly one for one (slight adjustments of liquid content):

For peanut oil in cooking, substitute one for one:


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