In the USA alone, we consume 700 million pounds of peanut butter annually, so many people are wondering if they can bring their favorite, tasty snack on a plane.
According to TSA regulations, you can bring peanut butter on a plane in your checked bags with no restrictions, but if packed in your carry on bags, the container should not exceed 3.4oz/100ml.
But does it make a difference if the peanut butter is opened or unopened?
Do the rules change when flying internationally?
Can you bring a peanut butter sandwich or crackers on a plane?
Let’s find out.
Table of Contents
- 1 Can You Bring Peanut Butter on a Plane?
- 2 Opened vs. Unopened Peanut Butter
- 3 The TSA Considers Peanut Butter to Be a Liquid
- 4 But You Bring a Peanut Butter Sandwich
- 5 You Can Bring Peanut Butter Crackers and Cups
- 6 And Peanuts Too
- 7 Avoid Packing Jelly in Your Carry On
Can You Bring Peanut Butter on a Plane?
Carry on Bags
The TSA has something called the 3-1-1 Rule, which prohibits passengers from bringing any liquid, gel or aerosol in a container that is larger than 3.4oz/100ml.
But peanut butter isn’t a liquid, gel, or aerosols, we hear you say.
Well, according to the TSA, much to the dismay of peanut butter lovers everywhere, “If you can squeeze it, smear it, pump it, spread it, spray it, or spill it then it’s considered a liquid.”
If you want to bring peanut butter on a plane in your carry on bags, you should buy travel-friendly containers or squeeze packs that are within the TSA’s 3.4oz/100ml limit.
You will have no problem packing peanut butter in your checked bags.
The TSA does not specific any limit to how much peanut butter you can pack in your checked bags, either.
Domestic vs. International Flights
The popularity of peanut butter abroad pales in comparison to the USA.
In fact, in the USA, the average person eats 22 tablespoons of peanut butter a year compared to just 1 tablespoon in Europe.
Thankfully, peanut butter is available to purchase in the UK, Europe, Australia, Canada, Mexico and other countries worldwide, though it can be harder to find peanut butter in some countries than others.
As it can sometimes be difficult finding peanut butter abroad, you’ll be pleased to know that you can bring it with you regardless of where you are flying, too.
Regardless if you’re flying domestically in the USA or internationally, the same rules apply.
So, you can only bring peanut butter in a container that is no larger than 3.4oz/100ml in your carry on bags, and there are no limits in your checked bags.
You should be fine to take peanut butter on a plane when flying with any regional or major air carrier.
However, due to just how common a peanut allergy is and how life-threatening it can be for some passengers, some airlines will request that you do not eat peanut butter onboard, especially as some passengers who will be affected might forget to bring their EpiPen.
Opened vs. Unopened Peanut Butter
It makes no difference if a jar of peanut butter is opened or unopened.
The same rules apply.
So, this means that peanut butter in a container greater than 3.4oz/100ml is not allowed to be packed in your carry on bags.
The TSA Considers Peanut Butter to Be a Liquid
Common sense tells us that peanut butter is not a liquid, but the TSA views things differently, which is all that matters if you want to bring peanut butter on a plane.
According to the TSA, “if you can squeeze it, smear it, pump it, spread it, spray it, or spill it” then it’s considered a liquid.”
But You Bring a Peanut Butter Sandwich
As long as your peanut butter sandwich is not overly soggy, you will have no problem passing airport security and bringing it on a plane.
Surprisingly, the TSA views peanut butter sandwiches differently to containers of peanut butter.
The TSA state that “PB & J sandwiches are allowed in carry-on bags with no quantity limitations or packing requirements”.
You Can Bring Peanut Butter Crackers and Cups
Just like with peanut butter sandwiches, you can take peanut butter crackers on a plane with no quantity limitations or packing requirements in your carry on bags.
The same applies to peanut butter cups.
And there are no quantity limitations or packing requirements
And Peanuts Too
Peanuts are considered a solid by the TSA, so you can bring them on a plane in both your carry on and checked bags with no quantity limitations.
However, again, due to how common peanut allergies are, you may be asked to refrain from eating them.
Many airlines have actually stopped serving peanuts in-flight for this reason.
Avoid Packing Jelly in Your Carry On
A peanut butter sandwich just isn’t the same without jelly, so you might be wondering if you can bring jelly on a plane too.
The TSA state that if you want to pack jelly in your carry on bags, it must be in a container that doesn’t exceed 3.4oz/100ml.
Ella Dunham, a Freelance Travel Journalist and Marketing Manager, boasts an impressive career spanning eight years in the travel and tourism sectors.
Honored as one of "30 Under 30" by TTG Media (the world’s very first weekly travel trade newspaper), a "Tour Operator Travel Guru" and "Legend Award" winner, Ella is also a Fellow of the Institute of Travel, a Member of the Association of Women Travel Executives, has completed over 250 travel modules, and hosts travel-focused segments on national radio shows where she provides insights on travel regulations and destinations.
Ella has visited over 40 countries (with 10 more planned this year).