HOME > Chowhound > Los Angeles Area >


peanut butter quandry

having a hard time finding my favorite peanut butter these days:
santa cruz brand DARK ROASTED, crunchy, sold in glass jars.
gelsons used to carry it but can now only procure the creamy.

i've been making do with TJ' organic, glass jared. crunchy, (sadly, NOT dark roasted) with salt.
now THAT product has disappeard from the shelves ].

any other ideas?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Their locator:

    I'd probably call first before driving. Good luck! Peanut butter is such an elemental flavor.

    4 Replies
    1. re: DuchessNukem

      Punching in my Culver City Zip It offers the suggestion of Fedco at the corner of La Cienega and Rodeo. Since Fedco hasn't been there for 13 years, the listings may not be accurate. Though it may be found at the Target which is now on the site.

      1. re: Mattapoisett in LA

        Well that's ridiculous then. Thirteen years and still haven't updated the website. Bummer.

        1. re: Mattapoisett in LA

          i already tried the Fox Hills Target, no luck there.
          may attempt to hit other Target stores as i drive around.

          1. re: Mattapoisett in LA

            Agreed! I looked up MY zip code + 30 miles and 8 of the first 12 listings are long gone as well. Sheesh! That company needs some help.

        2. Haven't looked for this particular product myself, but I know that Whole Foods carries the Santa Cruz brand prominently in all the stores I've been to... In the Valley, at any rate.

          1. I too am a big fan of Santa Cruz crunchy, but I've found that Mara Natha crunchy, which is also sold in Whole Foods, is an acceptable substitute. BTW, if you're shopping in Gelson's, read the labels carefully -- for one of these brands (I forget which), the version in Gelson's has sugar added for some reason.

            1 Reply
            1. re: medrite

              thank you.
              it appears to me that gelson's has started stocking a brand of "organic" food that is being supplied by one of the mega/agribusiness companies.
              i've been carefully reading all labels there for a while.
              thanks for the warning!

            2. The CC Gelsons had the crunchy the last time I was there. They often put it on sale, too. The TJs is not even in the same class.

              Larger WFs too

              1. I noticed at the Los Feliz Gelson's this week that there's a sign next to the Santa Cruz peanut butter saying that the company is experiencing severe production shortages. They only had the creamy kind too, so you might want to call other Gelson's or Whole Foods markets to see if they have any left.

                3 Replies
                1. re: madcao

                  i've been in the process of doing just that.
                  the marina gelson's only has the creamy.
                  the century city gelson's only has the creamy
                  whole foods on barrington has NO santa cruz pb at all.

                  i'll keep trying... . .
                  thanks everyone for keeping an eye out for me!

                  1. re: westsidegal

                    It's available on Amazon from a vendor called vitacost for about $5 plus $5 shipping. If you want to buy $50 worth of it, then you will get free shipping. http://www.amazon.com/Santa-Cruz-Orga...

                    1. re: madcao

                      Vitacost has their own site too: http://www.vitacost.com/santa-cruz-or.... Unfortunately, WSG wants crunchy.

                      These two sites, which looks to be one parent company, says they have it in stock:


                      No idea how trustworthy the sites are.

                  1. re: shab

                    I was looking for some myself today and noticed that Vicente Foods, too, only had creamy on the shelf. So, I asked the employee in charge of that section about it. He says he's been trying to get more from the manufacturer for many weeks now, but they keep saying they are temporarily out. Seems strange, but FWIW that's what I was told.

                    1. re: shab

                      i've been "making do" with the creamy which has returned to the shelf at the gelson's in marina del rey.

                  2. I was looking for it today at WF in Westwood and there was none. WF and Gelson's CC are my usual spots for Santa Cruz Dark Roast.....the best!
                    My other favorite indulgence, PeanutButter & Co. Dark Chocolate Dreams, also was not on the shelves at two Whole Foods in the last week. What's up with that?

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: pnutbuddah

                      I've seen the PBC Dark Chocolate Dreams all over the place, even Target. Bay Cites too. Tasty stuff.

                    2. I think most of the best sources for organic peanuts - especially Deaf Smith County in Texas - have probably been devastated by drought. The shortage began last year and it's just gotten worse. The worst part from my own thoroughly selfish standpoint is that this has most heavily affected those brands that do not add any sugar. A good organic crunchy containing only peanuts and salt is what we want, and that's getting harder to find.

                      1. sorry i'm so late to the party. some other places to check (i'd call first):
                        Co-opportunity in SM
                        Rainbow Acres on Washington Blvd
                        Bristol Farms in Westchester
                        Sprouts in Culver City

                        if you happen to be over by the Grove at some point, check Erewhon. and i know some locations of VP Discount have carried it in the past - i used to buy it at the Beverly Blvd store.

                        7 Replies
                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                          have already checked sprouts and bristol farms and they didn't have it.
                          will check the others now.

                              1. re: westsidegal

                                i checked the shelf at Erewhon today - no dice.

                                1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                  This sounds dumb, maybe, but... there used to be a world before the internet, right? You haven't mentioned it on the page, but... have you tried... calling them?

                                  From the site:
                                  Our Store Locator will help you locate a store near you that carries our products. Not finding what you’re looking for? Contact Customer Service by calling 888-569-6993, Monday - Friday, 9am to 7pm.

                                  There has to be someone there whose job it is to know EXACTLY who they're selling to, doesn't there?

                                  1. re: EricDC

                                    it depends. some companies only have the names of their distributors in each region - so they'll give you that contact info, then you have to call each of the distributors to find out which stores are under their purview...and hope you get someone helpful who is willing to track down the inventory lists for their customers to see which store might stock the product you seek. i've done this more than once, not often with very good results. it's still my first line of inquiry as it's initially quicker and more direct than waiting for random strangers on the web to [potentially] reply, but if it doesn't lead me to the answer, i end up here.

                                    someone else already pointed out that their website store locator lists places that have been closed for years, so i'm not sure how accurate the info would be from the company anyway...and the OP did say she was going to call some of the suggested stores before bothering to go looking for it.

                                    1. re: EricDC

                                      at this point, i'm getting used to the creamy version that i'm getting from my local Gelson's.
                                      i know it's fresh because the shelves were bare of all types for a while.

                              2. Ok, Now I must go buy some of the S.C dark roasted peanut butter tomorrow. All this talk it must be good. Living in S.C.

                                5 Replies
                                1. re: emglow101

                                  It is quite good, my favorite. Sadly I don't think I'll see stock up prices at Gelson's any time soon.

                                  1. re: JudiAU

                                    what's Gelson's charging for it these days? would you believe it's now $7.49 at Sprouts?!

                                    1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                      the last time i bought it at gelson's it cost $6.99

                                      1. re: westsidegal

                                        so theirs went up too. i still can't believe Sprouts is even more expensive, and i said as much to the manager.

                                        i know it doesn't help with the "crunchy" issue, but since we can't find it anyway (Sprouts is also only carrying the creamy) i've been buying the freshly ground organic PB at Whole Foods. it's only $4.99/lb and the roast on the peanuts they use is darker than a lot of commercial brands.

                                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                          i've used the WF freshly ground peanut butter as a stop gap.

                                          if i have the choice, i gladly pay the extra $2 a jar for the Santa Cruz dark roasted because, to my palate, it tastes far better.
                                          even at $6.99 it is a cheap thrill.

                                2. Have been looking since the original post and just found it tonight for the first time at Gelson's Century City. $6.39 a jar, and enjoying it at this moment.....straight out of the jar!

                                  4 Replies
                                  1. re: pnutbuddah

                                    The Dark Roast Crunchy? Really? I was beginning to think it was going to disappear for good. I'll have to check my Gelson's again.

                                    1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                      Sorry, Gelson's has creamy....no crunchy in Century City.

                                      1. re: pnutbuddah

                                        Yeah, that's the problem. The OP & I are addicted to the crunchy, but only the creamy has been available for months.

                                    2. re: pnutbuddah

                                      just looked for it at the gelson's in marina del rey this afternoon and so far they only have the creamy.

                                    3. yeah, that scare a few months ago did a number on the peanut.

                                      TJ's stopped carrying their chunky peanut butter with flax seed as well.

                                      1. Got 2 jars of SC dark roasted crunchy at Sprouts Pasadena! Been looking for months and finally back in stock.

                                        4 Replies
                                        1. re: kimara

                                          yesterday i found it at my local gelson's.
                                          bought four jars.
                                          thanks for remembering my quest!

                                          1. re: kimara

                                            Gah! I bought a jar of the creamy at Sprouts last week because they still didn't have the crunchy. I'll have to check my local Gelson's tomorrow.

                                            1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                              you can telephone your local gelson's tonight.
                                              they will hold items for you.
                                              i know for sure that the marina del rey gelson's had it a couple of days ago.

                                            2. Hi, westsidegal!

                                              Your Santa Cruz Dark Roasted Crunchy is back on the shelves at Gelson's Westlake Village...and I will assume at other Gelson's Markets.

                                              For several weeks, there was a sign on the shelf where it was supposed to be that they were having difficulty stocking this product. However, now it is there in abundance!

                                              It is quite delicious...thanks for the recommendation!

                                              2 Replies
                                              1. re: liu

                                                and it's ON SALE now!
                                                (only 50 cents off the normal price, but i'm happy to take it)
                                                so glad you like it.

                                                1. re: westsidegal

                                                  It must be a popular item. A few feet of shelf space were dedicated solely to this brand!

                                              2. Argh. *I* wanted to be the one to post that it was available again at Gelsons. Just bought some today.