Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are probably as classic as the sliced bread they’re made with. Apparently, the average American will have eaten 1,500 PB&J’s before graduating from high school. Whether this statistic is true for you or not, there’s no harm in making future PB&J endeavors more interesting than the previous thousand and a half that you may or may not have had.
Fluffernutters and Nutella and peanut butter have been done time and time again, so here are some even fresher takes on the classic PB&J that simply require swapping ingredients or adding an extra zing of flavor.
Honey & Sunflower Seeds
Forgo the Wonder bread and use a toasted English muffin instead. Spread a base of crunchy peanut butter on each half and drizzle with a little honey. Top with salted sunflower seeds for a sweet and salty treat.
Fruit & Pumpkin Seeds
Granny Smith apples and bananas are the classic suspects, so why not try a sweet Golden Delicious instead for a softer crunch? Start with a piece of toasted baguette and spread a thin layer of organic peanut butter on top. Organic peanut butter, which is less viscous, is a great complement to fruit because of its spreadability that allows it to almost act as a dip. Other fruit pairings to try include Bartlett pears for another smooth flavor profile or kiwis for an unexpected pop. Top with roasted pumpkin seeds for an added earthy crunch.
Gruyère & Jam
Who said cheese and peanut butter can’t go together? If you’re not entirely ready for a nutty cheddar sandwich, try this open-faced version instead. Use a mild cheese like Gruyère so it doesn’t overpower the other components. Cut the cheese into paper-thin slices and layer over a piece of baguette. Drop a dollop of jam (we used St. Dalfour’s Four Fruits fruit spread) on top. Top with a dollop (or drizzle) of peanut butter. Fun tip: Another reason to opt for organic peanut butter is that you can just stick a knife in the jar and, because the butter is so thin, you can wave the knife, tip-down, over the snack for a clean and easy drizzle.
Jam & Pumpkin Seeds
While jam got the boot in Fruit & Pumpkin Seeds combo, this time try swapping out the peanut butter and for this Jam & Pumpkin Seeds combination for a modified take on the classic PB&J. Spread a good amount of jam on a piece of toasted baguette and sprinkle liberally with a handful of roasted pumpkin seeds for that nutty component.
And this is just the beginning. You can mix it up with other combinations of breads, jams, nut butters and even cheeses for more adventurous flavor profiles. Use pumpernickel or other rye breads for a different texture to use as a base. Experiment with almond and hazelnut butters to ground the sandwich in an earthier spread, or try a maple almond butter if you want something with more personality. Why not replace your staple grape jelly with peach preserve or ginger marmalade for an interesting contrast? Let us know what your favorite combination is in the comments below!