Food & Drink

Creative peanut butter sandwich ideas

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Among hundreds of uses George Washington Carver discovered for the peanut, peanut butter is one of the more popular.
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Peanut Butter Gets a Makeover

A peanut butter sandwich can be more than two pieces of bread with a layer of peanut butter and jelly slapped between. Even peanut butter's greatest fans can get tired of the same old thing, lunch after lunch. Try these techniques and creative ideas to switch things up a bit for your kids or bring a smile to your own face.

Add Another Ingredient to Your Peanut Butter Sandwich

Jelly and jam (like the classic favorites at Smucker's Online Store) are probably the two most popular sidekicks to peanut butter, and for good reason. A peanut butter and jelly sandwich combines sweetness and saltiness in a satisfying way.

You can make an easy variation by substituting a different sweet ingredient for the jelly or by adding a third or fourth ingredient to the inside of your peanut butter sandwich. Try some of these additional ingredients, but pick no more than one or two:

  • Sliced banana
  • Marshmallow creme
  • Chocolate hazelnut spread (Nutella)
  • Honey
  • Sliced apples
  • Raisins


If you don't like too much sweetness, you could substitute sliced celery, potato chips, or pretzels for a little extra crunch in your peanut butter sandwich. Bacon is an unusual and delicious combination for peanut butter, turning it into a breakfast sandwich.

Try varying the bread you use for your peanut butter sandwich. A crunchy whole-grain bread with add texture and nutrients, and emphasize the nuttiness of the sandwich. Challah, bagels, pita and cinnamon-raisin bread also add an interesting twist to a traditional peanut butter sandwich. Mini-peanut butter "sandwiches" can be made with Ritz crackers, saltines and wasa bread.

Change the Shape of Your Peanut Butter Sandwic

If you prefer plain peanut butter and jelly, you can leave out those extra ingredients and focus instead on the shape of the sandwich. Try one of these creative ideas to change the look of your peanut butter sandwich:

  • Use cookie cutters to achieve a variety of different shapes. Choose cutters with outlines only (no detail inside) and at least an inch of thickness. Make your peanut butter and jelly sandwich as usual; then cut through all the layers with your cookie cutter of choice.
  • Make faces, whether human or animal. Slap together the peanut butter sandwich and use a round cookie or biscuit cutter to cut the face. Provide the kids with materials to create the face. To make items stick to the top of the bread, you can use a small amount of honey, whipped cream, jelly, or a similar substance. Use blueberries, chocolate chips, sliced fruit, coconut, or other items to add eyes, nose, mouth, or hair to your sandwich "face."
  • Use different breads to change the shape, as well as the taste and texture, instantly. Try pitas, tortillas, English muffins, or bagels.


Change the Way You Prepare Your Peanut Butter Sandwich

Try lightly grilling your peanut butter sandwich. Spread the outer side of each piece of bread and brown in a pan coated lightly with cooking oil. A sandwich griddle makes a nice, crispy peanut butter "pocket" sandwich.

Elvis Presley's favorite sandwich was a hot peanut butter and banana creation

Individual size containers of peanut butter and jelly make everyone's favorite sandwich portable. Throw a couple in your purse or lunch box for a quick, protein-rich treat.

Check Out Winners of the Creative Peanut Butter Sandwich Contest

For more creative ideas and recipes, check out past winners of Jif's Most Creative Peanut Butter Sandwich Contest. You can find recipes for these creations in the recipe portion of the site.

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