Ellie’s First Peanut Butter AKA The Day I Started Hating Peanuts


It was a beautiful Saturday morning. We had planned an outing to the Zoo with the grandparents and the kids were so excited!

When we got there I realized that I had LEFT.MY.CAMERA. Luckily I had my phone, so I still got a couple of pictures.


We went through the North American exhibit and the kids marveled at the seals, mountain lions, and bears. Then we decided to go back to the car for lunch. We didn’t feel like walking all the way to the picnic area so we decided to camp right on the grass in the parking lot. I have never been more thankful for my laziness.
We were eating sandwiches and peanut butter crackers. It was Ellie’s first experience with peanuts but I didn’t think for a second that she would have a reaction. Fast forward 5 minutes and we were in the car speeding towards CVS for a benadryl.

There were hives all over her face, her lips were starting to swell, and my husband was in panic mode. He is usually very calm about things so I knew that if HE was freaking out it was serious. Thankfully we got to the drug store and got the benadryl in her quickly, and within 15 minutes she was fine.

Now I am terrified to let her eat anything. She seemed to have a reaction a few nights ago and we are not even sure what she reacted to! I have scheduled an appointment with an allergist but until then I am to treat it as if it’s a life-threatening allergy and read EVERY SINGLE label to see if there is a peanut warning.
Anyone out there with peanut allergic children? Any advice?

11 thoughts on “Ellie’s First Peanut Butter AKA The Day I Started Hating Peanuts

  1. Allergist, stat. We thought our son had a peanut allergy, but it was something else in the food he ate. Also, one reaction does not equal a lifetime allergy, the allergist can tell you more about that.

    The other thing to note is that if tehre is an allergy it will take about two months to get used to this new way of interacting with the world. After that, it’s like breathing. You do it without a thought.

  2. Exact same thing happened to me. My family has absolutely no history of food allergies, so I was completely shocked when my daughter ate her first peanut butter and shortly after her lips looked like Angelina Jolie’s on bad botox. Thankfully, peanut ingredients are well-marked. For now, just avoid peanut products, and your allergist can tell you how severe the allergy is. The good news is that my allergist said if they don’t actually have a respiratory reaction on their first exposure, it’s not likely they will on subsequent exposures, either. Good luck.

  3. I am glad that you were able to get the benedryl in her quickly, glad she is ok.
    My daughter had what seemed to be a reaction (hives all over her face)a few months ago and we were avoiding peanuts. Her grandma watched her and FORGOT and gave her a pb&j sandwhich!! Yes I almost had a heart attack!!!! Luckily and oddly there was no reaction that time so now we are having her tested because it might still be the peanuts or it might be something else. Good luck to you guys!

  4. I gave a peanut butter cookie to a 2 yr old grandson. Yup-allergies to every nut but almonds. I felt so bad. He started asking everyone who offered him a treat if it has nuts in it. He still does(age 7)We are really proud of the way he handles his allergy – if there’s any question about whether or not it has nuts, or made on machinery that handles nuts – he declines the treat. I guess for him, it’s not a treat to have the allergic reaction.
    – check bread labels too. Some have walnuts or nut oils as part of the ingredients.

  5. I accidently gave my son (15 months at the time) a granola bar that had peanuts. There are a lot of allergies in our family so I was trying to with hold them until age 5 or so, but OOPS! Anyway, there were a few hives on his neck. I’m not certain it was the peanuts but now I’m quite nervous about it. I’m already scanning ingredients of everything as he has a dairy allergy. I’m glad to read Brenna’s comment about the respitory reaction.

  6. We have experience with milk allergy. When my son was 11 weeks old, I dabbed a bit of ice cream on his binky. Withing a couple minutes he had hives all over his face/neck. The odd thing was that he’d had milk products while in the hospital and at 6 weeks old. So a few days later I tried an ounce of formula (which he’d had a few times before he became good at breastfeeding)…WOWOWOW it was bad! The reaction this time around was as if he was one big hive and he was lethargic (characteristic of an anaphalactic reaction) So, for him it seemed as if the second reaction was a lot worse. Fyi, amount doesn’t make a difference. If it’s in your system it’s in your system. At that time (6 years ago) we were told he had to be 9 months old in order to be skin tested. You’ll get used to reading labels 🙂 and fyi, my son outgrew his allergy at 5 years old.

  7. I have a peanut allergy – my first reaction was when I was three. My mum says she doesn’t remember it being bad – I just swelled up and cried.

    BUT please, please be careful. My GP didn’t think I had a life threatening allergy and told me very clearly is was not the kind of allergy that could kill. Then when I was about 22 I ate something that contained peanut on a night out and almost died. Lucky for me we were in the city centre, v close to a hospital and my sister had the presence of mind to throw me into a taxi rather than wait for an ambulance. I am now slightly evangelical so apologies for being a bit scary but best to err on the side of caution I think.

    Big hugs for you ans your little one – I can appreciate it is terrifying to watch happen xxx

  8. ABSOLUTELY GO TO THE ALLERGIST! My daughter reacted to peanut butter the first time she had it and is deathly allergic. We discovered, in the same day mind you, that she’s allergic to eggs, peanuts and major hay fever. We took her to the doctor that next week because it was her normal appointment, he sent us to the allergist. I expected the peanuts to be mild and eggs to just be a weird coincidence, but she’s got them both badly. I carry 4+epipens with me at all times, and you have to read everything, and sometimes call the manufacturer. Send me an email if you’d like more information, I put a lot of links on my family blog… anyway, best of luck, it’s liveable, but very scary.

    lilsis.number3(at)gmail(dot)com

    I’m here for support, and can point you to a TON of support resources.

  9. And yes, I hate nuts too now (though I used to love love love them), now seeing them just makes my stomach turn… It’s the momma gene in us, trust it, it will help keep her safe, and unlike one person said, peanuts are not necessarily marked in everything that they could be in. There are things to look for, but to start with, call the manufacturers. Hersheys says on a recording that if there is the slightest chance of cross contamination with an allergen, they list it on the package, General Mills doesn’t have a recording, but have talked to 2 different brand call centers within the general mills family and they say the same thing as Hersheys. Watch out for baking chocolates, most are NOT safe. And pizza places can have issues too. Contact me and I can point you towards safe alternatives. There are options, just do internet research.

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