Who Is The Real Inventor Of Peanut Butter?

Victor Rivera
4 min readJun 26, 2023
who invented peanut butter george washington carver
Photo by Towfiqu barbhuiya on Unsplash

Peanut butter, a smooth and creamy spread loved by millions around the world, has become a staple in many households. Its rich flavor, versatility, and nutritional value make it a popular choice for sandwiches, snacks, and even desserts. However, the question of who the real inventor of peanut butter is remains a subject of debate. In this article, we delve into the history and explore the potential candidates for the true inventor of this beloved spread.

The Origins Of Peanut Butter

While peanut butter as we know it today may have evolved, the roots of its creation can be traced back to ancient civilizations. The Aztecs and Incas, for instance, ground roasted peanuts into a paste-like consistency, resembling the concept of peanut butter. However, it was not until much later that the modern incarnation of peanut butter began to take shape.

Marcellus Gilmore Edson: The Patent Pioneer

One of the earliest figures associated with the invention of peanut butter is Marcellus Gilmore Edson. In 1884, Edson, a Canadian pharmacist, patented a method for producing “peanut paste.” His patent described a process of milling roasted peanuts between heated surfaces until they reached a semi-fluid state. This invention marked an important step toward the commercialization of peanut butter.

george washington carver peanut butter
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Dr. John Harvey Kellogg: A Nutritional Visionary

Another prominent figure in the history of peanut butter is Dr. John Harvey Kellogg. Known for his contributions to the field of nutrition, Kellogg experimented with various nut-based products in the late 19th century. In his book “Treatise on Bread and Bread-Making,” published in 1897, he included a recipe for “nut butter” that closely resembled peanut butter. While Kellogg’s recipe used roasted almonds, it laid the foundation for the future development of peanut butter.

George Washington Carver: The Peanut Pioneer