Nothing quite screams “childhood” as much as a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. As a child, I was a super picky eater, and my mom used to pack crustless PB&Js in my school lunch for years. When those Uncrustable sandwiches came on the market, she tried to get me to eat those, but they were weird. I’ve learned something though — everyone eats PB&Js in unique ways. I, for one, prefer a 60:40 jelly (ONLY concord grape) to peanut butter (creamy only, duh) ratio, whereas Chirag likes more peanut butter. I also have to eat my PB&J so that the jelly is on the top, because then the peanut butter doesn’t get stuck to the roof of my mouth. My dad prefers a scant amount of jelly and his bread toasted. Kunal loves crunchy peanut butter. The details are what make this simple sandwich so fantastic.
As an adult, I still indulge in a PB&J sandwich every so often, but as far as balanced and nutritious meals go, these yummy sandwiches don’t really score very high. I’ve ditched the bread and replaced the jelly with unsweetened berries to make a filling smoothie that cuts out the unnecessary sugar and empty carbs. I usually use unsweetened vanilla almond milk, or unsweetened almond coconut milk, but you can use regular or soy milk as well. If you’re looking for an added protein boost, try adding 1/4 cup of Greek yogurt. I also use PB2 powdered peanut butter, which helps to keep the calories and fat low, but you can add no-salt-added or reduced fat peanut butter instead.
Peanut Butter and Jelly Smoothie
Preparation Time: <5 minutes
Cooking Time: 0 minutes
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 cup of frozen berries
1 Tbsp PB2
1 Tbsp fat free chocolate pudding
- Blend all ingredients until smooth and uniform.
I use frozen berries so that I don’t have to add ice to my smoothie. When berries are in season, I’ll buy them fresh and freeze them. Off season, I buy bagged mixed berries, which generally include blueberries, strawberries, blackberries and raspberries.
For an extra sweet treat, try adding 1 Tbsp of Nutella to the smoothie instead of chocolate pudding. You can also use a fortified chocolate shake powder mix, such as Weight Watchers Chocolate Smoothie packets.