- Change the bread.
- Change the peanut butter.
- Add toppings.
- Grill it!
Who says PB&J has to be on white or wheat bread? Put it on a bagel or croissant, and you change the whole experience. Or try it on a sweet bread, like banana bread or zucchini bread (no, the kids won't taste the zucchini).
My peanut butter banana bread sandwiches are perfect on their own or topped with fresh sliced bananas. Trust me, Elvis isn't the only one who would love these.
Relax - I didn't say get rid of the peanut butter. Just upgrade it. Try different gourmet peanut butters - lots of flavors are available in your local supermarket. Or make you own. If you have a food processor, you can have homemade peanut butter in less than 10 minutes. Try adding chocolate or stirring in dried cherries or chopped pretzels - my chocolate cherry peanut butter is sinfully rich and so simple to make.
Or go in a completely different direction and make almond butter, cashew butter or macadamia nut butter. The possibilities are limited only to your imagination. And all work great on sandwiches -- with or without jelly.
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There's no need to stick to jelly alone to top your peanut butter sandwich. Why not get creative? Try using sliced bananas, shredded carrots or toasted coconut in place of, or in addition to, the jelly.
My personal favorite is sliced Granny Smith apples with Peanut Butter & Co. cinnamon raisin swirl peanut butter (compare prices). The slightly tart, yet juicy, apples provide the ideal contrast to the sweet, homey cinnamon raisin peanut butter. Don't want to spend the money on the fancy gourmet peanut butter? You can get a similar flavor at home just by stirring about 1/2 tsp. cinnamon and some raisins into 1/4 cup of regular peanut butter (creamy or chunky).
There is something about grilling sandwiches that not only changes the texture of the sandwich, it actually changes the flavor, too.
To make the perfect grilled peanut butter and jelly sandwich, butter the outside of two slices of bread. Smear the peanut butter and jelly on the un-buttered sides of the bread, then sandwich together. Grill in a cast iron skillet, grill pan or indoor contact grill, such as the George Foreman grill.
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