Everyone is familiar with the dynamic duo. There are songs, apparel and even movies about it. If you go into a cafeteria at an American elementary school, you will definitely come across a standard PB&J sandwich. The average American will eat 1500 PB&Js before they turn 18 — it’s so easy, quick and irresistibly fun to make that people of all ages enjoy it. Here are some fun facts about your favorite sandwich.
They’re relatively new
While bread has been around for thousands of years, the idea of sliced bread was not introduced until the early 1900s when a brilliant man named Frederick Rohwedder of Iowa invented a machine to automate the bread slicing process, making it an easier and more efficient way to consume bread.
The first PB&J sandwich was referenced in 1901 in a cookbook by Julia Davis Chandler. While it may seem that PB&Js have been around for hundreds of years, it has really only been around since the beginning of the 20th century.
They were used in the military
During WWII when money was tight and food was rationed, PB&J was a staple in the American military. Once the war was over, the troops popularized PB&J here in the States. PB&J was perfect for school lunches because it could sit in a lunchbox for a few hours without going bad.
#SpoonTip: For a more mature touch, you can definitely grill your sandwich.
It’s a coastal thing
There have been major debates between whether you should use crunchy peanut butter or smooth, or Skippy or Jif. It is really personal preference, but many feel that smooth is better because you are less likely to rip the bread while crafting your sandwich.
There have even been studies that have shown that people on the East Coast prefer creamy while the West Coast prefers crunch, but nobody has found the reason behind this phenomenon. Now, when it comes to what brand of peanut butter should be used, Jif is the way to go (maybe Skippy, but definitely not Peter Pan).
Foreigners find the combination weird
It is definitely something that is not common in other countries. This may be due to the fact that peanuts only grow in certain parts of the world, and because PB&J has such a short history.
#SpoonTip: Fortunately, PB&J isn’t banned anywhere, but there are certain foods that are banned in certain countries.
It takes a lot of peanuts to make one jar of peanut butter
Around 540 peanuts are necessary to make one 12 oz. jar, and Wisconsin is the largest producer of peanut butter in America. That’s a whole lot of cheese and peanut butter coming out of one state, but hey, who’s complaining. If you want to make your own PB, click here.
It has a history among presidents
Thomas Jefferson and Jimmy Carter were both peanut farmers and help lead to the rise in peanut consumption across the US. President George W. Bush admitted to Oprah that PB&J is his absolute favorite sandwich.
Whether you eat it on classic white sandwich bread or organic whole wheat (or just by the spoonful), every peanut butter and jelly is made with love and care.