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Foods to Avoid on a Peanut Free Diet

Foods to Avoid with a Peanut Allergy

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Updated August 26, 2008

Are you allergic to peanuts? If so, avoid any food with peanuts in the ingredients list, or that indicates it has been manufactured in the presence of peanuts or peanut-containing ingredients.

Avoid any food containing the following:

  • Peanuts and peanut butter
  • Ground nuts
  • Mixed nuts
  • Artificial nuts (such as Nu-Nuts®)
  • Peanut flour
  • In imported foods, hydrolyzed plant or vegetable protein (foods made in the United States and Canada are required to list the source of these ingredients)
  • Cold-pressed, expelled, or expressed peanut oil

Be especially alert for the presence of peanuts in the following:

  • Cosmetics, medications, creams, and other topical products containing arachis oil (another name for peanuts generally used in pharmaceuticals)
  • East Asian cuisine. Peanuts are nearly ubiquitous in Thai, Chinese, and Indonesian cooking but are used in many Asian cooking traditions
  • West African and Southern American cuisine
  • Baked goods, especially cookies, cakes, cupcakes, crackers, and the like
  • Chocolates and candies. "Brittle" almost always indicates peanuts, and "barks" are usually made from nuts of some kind. Many otherwise safe chocolates are made on shared lines with peanuts
  • Spaghetti sauces, chilis, soups, and similar dishes
  • Ice cream and other frozen desserts
  • Nougat and marzipan
  • Cereal and granola

Be aware of shared manufacturing lines and "may contain peanut" warnings. Studies have shown that a significant percentage of foods with these type of labels contain enough allergen proteins to trigger a reaction in susceptible individuals.

Sources:

McGee, Harold. "Seeds: Grains, Legumes, Nuts." On Food and Cooking. 1st Rev. Ed. New York: Scribner, 2004. 451-515.

Stanford University, Lucille Packard Children's Hospital. "Peanut Allergy Diet." 25 Aug. 2008.

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