Peanut butter is a delicious way to build muscles. If you are a vegetarian or vegan, then peanut butter can be a great source of protein in lieu of meat or dairy. This versatile ingredient has come a long way in our cooking from the earlier classic PBJ or Peanut Butter and Jelly sandwiches. Indeed, you can use PB for cooking savory and sweet items. Let us look at some delicious and healthy ways to use peanut butter:
1. The classic recipe-on bread
The classic way to use peanut butter on bread is slather it on toast. You can apply PB on one slice and jam or jelly on the other. The classic combination is peanut butter and strawberry or grape jam/jelly or preserves. Some people also love to add sliced bananas to this combo. Here is a great classic PBJ sandwich recipe which is loved the world over:
- Two slices of any bread you like (toasted is best)
- Jelly/jam/fruit preserve
- 2 tsp peanut butter. (Choose a brand containing at least 90% peanuts-otherwise it is just a peanut spread)
Apply PB on one slice, jelly on the other.
2. Use variations of PB sandwiches
Use the following variations to the classic PB and J sandwiches:
- PB and pimento sandwich
- Club sandwich with PB, meat, lettuce and ham
- Peanut butter and watercress
- PB and cheese sandwiches
You can also apply peanut butter on untoasted bread slices and make a basic PB sandwich. Dip the entire sandwich in whisked egg and milk mixture and roast golden brown in bit of butter to make a delicious French toast. Sprinkle powdered sugar on top. Serve with strawberry, blueberries or raspberries. This is a delicious and easy way to use peanut butter on bread.
3. With milk (as smoothies)
Who says you cannot have dessert for breakfast? Here is a delicious chocolate smoothie with PB that is packed with protein.
- ¼ cup creamy peanut butter
- 3 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 ½ cups milk (you can use non dairy milk like soy or almond milk)
- ½ cup Greek yogurt
- 1 banana (frozen or fresh)
- 1 tbsp honey
Blend all ingredients to desired consistency. Enjoy chilled! This is a power packed way to use peanut butter in milk for breakfast or as a post gym meal.
4. With apples
For a quick energy snack use PB with apples post gym workout: Apply the butter on apple slices for quick snack or use the following elaborate baked apple recipe:
- 1/3rd cup cinnamon raisin peanut butter
- ½ cup or 1 stick plus 4 tsp unsalted butter
- 4 large apples cored
- 4 tsp sugar
- Vanilla yogurt/ice cream for serving
- Preheat oven to 300 F
- In a bowl, mix peanut butter with ½ cup butter and spoon the mixture inside core of each apple. Top each apple with 1 tsp butter and 1 tsp sugar.
- Place the apples in a baking tray with ¼ cup water and bake for 20-25 minutes. While they are baking, baste each apple with the juices in bottom of the pan once or twice.
- Allow to cool before serving with yogurt or ice cream.
You can also use PB with other fruits like pears, bananas etc.
5. Peanut butter banana bread
If you have many overripe bananas that you don’t know what to do with, use the following recipe to make delicious banana bread.
- 2 cups flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- Pinch of salt
- ½ cup vegetable shortening
- 1 cup each sugar and creamy PB
- 1 ½ cups mashed bananas (they should be very ripe)
- 2 large eggs
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- Prepare a bread pan by greasing the sides and bottom and sprinkling a fine dusting of flour. Also cut some parchment paper to place at the bottom of the pan.
- Dry ingredients- Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl. Set aside.
- Wet ingredients- In a large bowl, cream together eggs, shortening, bananas, and PB until creamy.
- Fold the dry ingredients into wet ingredients. Do not over-mix.
- Pour batter in prepared pan. Bake for an hour or until toothpick inserted inside comes out clean.
This is a delicious use of peanut butter for health. You can opt for coconut flour and coconut sugar in place of flour to make this recipe healthier and gluten free.
6. Peanut butter cookies
The following recipe makes a huge batch. You can halve the recipe or freeze the excess dough. This recipe yields about 5-6 dozen cookies.
- Butter -1 cup
- Brown sugar packed-1 cup
- Granulated sugar-1 cup
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup smooth peanut butter
- 3 cups flour
- 2 tsp baking soda
- Pinch of salt
- Pre heat oven to 375 F.
- Cream together PB, both sugars and one egg at a time until creamy.
- Now add dry ingredients and mix well.
- Shape the dough into small balls.
- Place on greased baking tray allowing some room for expansion.
- Bake for 12-15 minutes.
- Cool completely.
Eat these healthy cookies with milk. You can also take them to gym as post workout snack.
7. Cream of peanut butter soup
This is an unusual method of using PB.
- 5 cups whole milk
- 1 tsp grated onion
- ½ cup creamy peanut butter
- 2 cloves of garlic crushed
- 1 large bay leaf
- 2 whole cloves
- 4 sprigs of parsley
- 3 egg yolks beaten
- ½ tsp flour
- ½ stick butter
- In a pan, melt the butter and add bay leaf, crushed garlic, cloves and flour. Whisk quickly to prevent burning and dissolve lumps. Add milk and bring to a gentle boil.
- Now add onion and PB.
- Bring to gentle boil while adding yolks to prevent curdling and scalding
- Stir briskly and boil gently for a minute or two.
- Taste, add seasoning and serve hot with toasted peanuts.
8. Peanut butter salad dressing
Add the dressing on your lettuce, tomatoes and other veggies for a delicious salad.
- 40 ml or 8 tsp peanut butter-whisked to become creamy
- Pinch of cayenne pepper and salt
- 2 ½ tsp honey
- 6 tsp lemon juice
Whisk all ingredients. Combine well and use over your salads.
9. Peanut butter stew with fried fish
This is a delicious and unusual use of peanut butter for health.
- 2 lbs fish-seasoned with salt and pepper
- Oil for shallow frying the fish
Heat the oil in a pan and shallow fry fish pieces until brown on all sides.
For the stew
- Sliced onions (1), tomatoes (1) and green pepper (1)
- ¼ cup oil
- ½ tbsp tomato paste
- ¼ cup tomato sauce
- 1 tbsp peanut butter
In a pot, add the oil and fry veggies. Stew for 10 minutes. Add the paste, sauce and PB and stew for 10 minutes. Add fried fish pieces and simmer for 15 minutes or until the fish is tender.
Serve over rice, millet or couscous.
10. Peanut butter rice pudding
Traditional rice pudding is a creamy dessert in Indian cooking. Add a twist to the original recipe with PB:
- 4 cups light cream
- 1 cup whole milk
- ¾ cup sugar
- ½ tbsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- Pinch of salt
- 1 cup rice
- ½ cup peanut butter
- Golden raisins, dried apricot pieces
- For serving-whipped cream, orange marmalade, orange slices and chopped nuts.
- In a stockpot with lid, combine cream, milk, sugar, salt, cinnamon, vanilla and milk over low heat. Bring to a simmer then add rice.
- Stir frequently to prevent rice from sticking to bottom.
- Cook for 45 minutes or until rice is cooked.
- Remove pot from heat and add raisins, apricots and PB. Stir well.
- Cool to room temperature and refrigerate for at least 3 hours.
- To serve: ladle in cups, add a dollop of whipped cream and marmalade. Sprinkle chopped nuts on top.
We hope you love these delicious uses of peanut butter for building muscles or just as a snack because you deserve it.