The average American will have eaten over 2,000 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches by the time they graduate high school. That’s a lot of PB&J! These recipes allow you to savor this traditional after-school snack without the empty calories.
On National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day, use one of these healthy recipes to celebrate.
Healthy Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars
Need a food that works as a snack, dessert, or breakfast? These healthy peanut butter and jelly bars are made from whole foods. They are kid-friendly and gluten-free, making these delicious bars available for the whole family. Curb your sweet tooth by following this healthy PB&J recipe.
For this recipe, you will need:
- ½ cup of natural peanut butter
- ¼ cup of coconut oil
- ⅓ cup of pure maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- 3 cups of almond flour
- ½ teaspoon of baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon of salt
- ¾ cup of natural strawberry jam or jelly
- ½ cup of chopped peanuts
The peanuts are optional for a crumble topping. We highly recommend adding them on top of these sweet treats.
Follow these steps for healthy, delicious peanut butter and jelly bars:
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line one 8x8 pan with parchment paper or non-stick spray.
- Add the peanut butter, coconut oil, maple syrup, and vanilla extract to a bowl. Mix until they are well combined.
- Add the almond flour, baking soda, and salt to a separate bowl and whisk thoroughly.
- Add the contents of both bowls together (wet and dry ingredients) and stir.
- Press about ⅔ of the dough into the bottom of the pan, evenly covering it.
- Add an even layer of strawberry jelly.
- Crumble the remaining dough on top. Add chopped peanuts into the crumble (optional).
- Bake for 30–35 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.
- Allow the pan to cool for 30 minutes, then place it in the fridge. Refrigerate for at least 3–4 hours before cutting and serving.
- Keep the bars in the fridge until they are ready to be eaten.
The longer the dough is refrigerated, the more solid your bars will be. This recipe is great for on-the-go snacks, healthy desserts after dinner, and quick breakfasts.
If you’re short on time, you can whip up this healthy peanut butter and jelly smoothie. This smoothie is free of added sugar, processed jellies, and other unhealthy ingredients. The PB&J Smoothie makes for a convenient breakfast option when you have to run out the door in the morning.
For this recipe, you will need:
- 1 medium banana
- ½ cup of unsweetened almond milk
- 2 tablespoons of natural peanut butter
- ½ cup of frozen strawberries
- Ice for desired thickness
More ice will give your smoothie a thicker consistency. If possible, opt for frozen strawberries without any added sugar or preservatives.
All you have to do for this delectable smoothie is add all of the ingredients into a blender and blend. You can top your smoothie with a dollop of peanut butter if you wish.
This smoothie is incredibly satisfying and filling, thanks to the peanut butter. Natural peanut butter is free of added sugar, making it the healthiest option for this smoothie.
Peanut Butter and Jelly Overnight Oats
Oatmeal is a classic breakfast staple. If you’re tired of the same boring bowl of oatmeal, switch it up with these peanut butter and jelly overnight oats. Overnight oats are prepared and refrigerated the night before to make them creamy and thick the next morning. They are typically eaten cold, but you may microwave them if you wish.
To make these PB&J overnight oats, you will need:
- ½ to ¾ cup of old-fashioned oats
- ¾ to 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk
- 1 tablespoon of chia seeds
- 1 to 2 tablespoons of natural peanut butter
- 1 tablespoon of natural strawberry jam
- Dash of cinnamon (to taste)
You can choose how many oats you want to add to this recipe. For a heartier breakfast, add more oats and banana slices. You can add more almond milk to thin the consistency of the overnight oats. If you like thicker oats, stick to just ¾ cup of almond milk.
Follow these steps to make your overnight oats:
- Add the oats, almond milk, chia seeds, and cinnamon into a mason jar or Tupperware container.
- Layer the peanut butter on top of this mixture.
- Layer the strawberry jam on top of the peanut butter.
- Add a final layer of peanut butter on top (optional).
- Refrigerate each serving until you are ready to eat.
You can make this recipe in the morning if you are pressed for time. The oats will not be as thick or creamy, but overnight refrigeration is not required to enjoy this delicious breakfast.
Healthy Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich
This recipe is a little different from the others. You can make any classic peanut butter and jelly sandwich healthier with a few simple swaps; there’s no need to give up your favorite childhood snack to save on calories.
Replace white bread with whole wheat or sprouted grain bread. Whole grains are much healthier than refined white bread. Sprouted grain bread contains a lot of vitamins and minerals that can boost your health.
Instead of using peanut butter with added sugar, salt, and oil, opt for natural peanut butter. The fewer ingredients your peanut butter has, the healthier it is. Natural peanut butter isn’t filled with excess sugar and fat like processed peanut butter.
You can also buy sugar-free jellies or jams with no added sugar to cut back on the sugar found in traditional PB&J sandwiches. The taste is similar, and it saves you quite a few calories.
You don’t have to give up classic foods like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to stay healthy. With these healthy swaps, your PB&J sandwich will hit the spot without hitting your waistline.
Of course, if you just want to enjoy a classic PB&J once in a while, that’s just fine. Moderation is the key to staying healthy.