peanut butter stain on shirt

How to Get Peanut Butter Out of Clothes

Peanut butter is full of, you guessed it, peanutty goodness. It’s got a gloopy sort of texture, can be crunchy, and is oily!

It’s the perfect partner to jam and makes the yummiest, dribbliest peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Or, if you’re more traditional, you can use the nutty butter to create a mouthwatering round of toast smothered in crunchy scrumminess!

The only problems are; 1) You always want more peanut butter, and 2) You somehow end up wearing the oily spread!

Yep, peanut butter tends to find a way of plopping itself onto t-shirts and jeans and, in the process, causes unsightly stains.

So how do you remove peanut butter from your clothes? Find out below!


Things to Know When Dealing with Peanut Butter Stains

shirt with peanut butter stain

  • Act fast! New peanut butter stains are easier to remove in comparison to aged ones.
  • Keep the oily mess contained. Don’t rub the peanut butter onto other surfaces, like sofas and carpets.
  • Be prepared to repeat the treatment(s) below to get rid of the peanut butter from your item. The nutty treat can be stubborn at times, so take your time and re-treat your garment multiple times if you have to.
  • ‘Dry Clean Only’ means dry clean only. Take your item to a dry cleaning store and get them to deal with the peanut butter blemish for you. Specialists have access to different tools and products to manage the problem for you.
  • Ask a professional for help if you can’t remove the nutty stain. If you’ve tried the methods below, got a vintage piece or a delicate item, take it to a specialist cleaner and ask them to clean the garment instead.
  • Consider ways to minimise the peanutty mess. Perhaps you could use less peanut butter, make sure your kids sit in one place to eat their toasty treat, wear clothes you don’t mind getting dirty if you’re likely to drop food onto yourself, and pop a napkin over your clothes to protect them when you’re eating.
  • Test your chosen cleaning method out. Before you use any solution to treat your peanut butter-slathered item, you must do a patch test. A small test will tell you if the product you plan on using will damage/discolour your garment or if it’ll have no effect on it.
  • Don’t dry your garment until you know for sure that there isn’t any peanut butter on it! Heat sets stains and makes them difficult to remove! Always examine your item and re-treat it if need be, then dry it. You’ll save yourself a lot of bother if you just give your item of clothing a quick glance over.
  • Don’t scrub the stain! Scrubbing will drive the oily stain deeper into the material’s fibres. This will make the mess harder to remove. Blot or gently massage the blemish instead.


How to Get Peanut Butter Out of Clothes Fast

stain on white shirt

Steps to follow:

  1. Check the garment’s care label and find out how it needs to be washed.
  2. Grab a teaspoon and gently scrape the excess peanut butter off your item. Be careful; you don’t want to smudge the butter around or push it deeper into the material’s fibres.
  3. Repeat Step 2 until you’ve removed the nutty mess and you’re only left with a stain.
  4. Grab some biological liquid laundry detergent. A bio detergent packed with enzymes will break down the oily blemish.
  5. Pour detergent onto the stain.
  6. Rub the detergent into the stain using your fingers. Massage from the outside of the blemish and towards its centre.
  7. Wait at least 15 minutes. During this time, the solution will start working out the oily matter.
  8. Launder the item in hot water (the hottest temperature allowed for the material) and on the correct cycle (or hand wash).
  9. At the end of the laundering process, check the item.
  10. If you see a peanut butter stain, repeat the steps above. Do not dry the item until all of the nutty mark has been removed. Heat will set the stain and will make it difficult to eradicate!
  11. Dry the garment when there is no trace of peanut butter on the garment.

If you’ve got a difficult patch of peanut butter to deal with, consider the alternative cleaning solutions below.


Alternative Methods

In addition to the above, you could also try these methods.

White vinegar

vinegar for polo shirt stain

If you’ve got a more troubling peanut butter stain, you can remove it using white vinegar, which is a non-toxic approach!

Steps to follow:

  1. Scrape off the excess peanut butter with a teaspoon.
  2. Cover the stain in a biological laundry detergent.
  3. Leave the detergent on the stain for 15 minutes.
  4. Turn the garment inside out.
  5. Hold the back of the garment (back of the peanut butter stain facing up) under the warm water tap. 
  6. Flush the stain out using warm water.
  7. Lay the item on a covered, flat surface.
  8. Tuck a neutral-coloured towel up behind the back of the stain. This will stop any liquid from seeping through and onto the back of the garment.
  9. Fill a bowl with two tablespoons of white vinegar, one tablespoon of washing-up liquid, and two cups of warm water.
  10. Stir the mixture.
  11. Dip a neutral-coloured cloth into the liquid and wring out the cloth.
  12. Blot the stain.
  13. Repeat the steps above until the nutty blemish disappears.
  14. Launder your garment at the hottest temperature permitted for the material.
  15. Dry the item when the whole stain has gone.


Off-the-shelf stain remover

stain remover for peanut butter stain on clothes

If you’d prefer to use an off-the-shelf product to treat the peanut butter blemish on your garment, you can do so. Just choose a product that can remove oily stains, like peanut butter ones.

One product you could look into is Dr. Beckmann’s Stain Devils Fat & Sauces. This item specialises in cleaning up food-related messes, particularly greasy ones.

It’s easy to use and gets to work in a few minutes! It can also be used to get rid of other common stains like ketchup, chocolate, and spices, so it’s handy to have around!

To use an official stain remover, you must read the bottle’s packaging and adhere to the instructions you’re given.

Some cleaners require more input from you than others (you may have to work some solutions in with a soft toothbrush, for example), and others can be spread onto a stain, left, and then rinsed away.

It is, however, always worth keeping in mind that off-the-shelf stain removers get mixed results.

Sometimes specialised products work the first time. Other times, you have to re-treat items to see a significant result. And then there are times when the solutions have no impact at all.

In most cases, it’s trial and error. And you’ll have to try the specialised product for yourself to see if it’ll work for you!


How to Get Dried-On Peanut Butter Out of Clothes

brown stain on clothes

You can follow the steps outlined above to get dried-on peanut butter stains off your clothes. However, because heat sets stains, you’ll likely have to treat your item more than once to remove the entire blemish.

If you’re having difficulty, you should take your garment to a cleaner to see if they can help you. You may need strong cleaning goodies to remove the hardened stain – something you may not have access to at home.

For future reference, try and treat peanut butter stains immediately, or at the very least, remove the excess butter from your item so you don’t rub it around and create more mess.

And always check your garment before you dry it just in case there’s a slight stain on the material (you should do this whenever you are treating a stain!).