I didn’t eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich until I was 17.
The PB&J just wasn’t an integral part of my childhood like it was for most kids. I was more of a turkey sandwich kind of gal, with the occasional peanut butter and banana thrown in there.
I nannied for a few summers in high school and college, and one of the kids I babysat requested a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for lunch almost every. single. day.
I kind of rolled my eyes at his PB&J obsession, turning my nose up at a lunch I found to be terribly unsophisticated. (Because I was all class, of course, between braces, a wardrobe of worn-in Aeropostale sweatshirts, and a car that leaked oil all over the place…ha!)
Try as I might, though, the kids I watched refused to eat any of the creative meals I tempted them with. Jazzed-up mac-and-cheese? They wouldn’t touch it. Artisan grilled cheese? It was a no-go.
Finally, I gave up trying to be inventive and resorted to the daily PB&J special.
And one day I figured I may as well sample one for myself.
And it was surprisingly not disgusting! I should have known that smearing two sugary spreads between bread can’t be a bad thing. Right?
While my nannying days may not have turned me into a daily-PB-and-J convert, I certainly appreciate the flavor more than I did before. I love to make it appear in unexpected places, and breakfast is one of them.
One of my favorite ways to spice up my daily smoothie is to add the flavors of peanut butter and jelly.
The nice thing about jelly or jam is that it comes in so many fruity flavors. Strawberry, grape, raspberry–it’s your call! I like all of them in this recipe.
You don’t have to use real jelly to achieve the PB&J taste. Fresh or frozen fruit can work just as well here! Or you can use both. I vary my protein shakes depending on the ingredients I have stocked in my fridge or freezer.
This recipe is one of my favorite ways to enjoy a PB&J smoothie. I love the combination of creamy peanut butter, tart raspberries, and vanilla protein powder (I used Optimum Nutrition). It’s a milkshake-meets-smoothie-meets-childhood-recipe. And it’s pretty healthy.
I adapted the ingredients from my favorite banana protein shake, but don’t panic! Yes, there is a banana in this recipe, but no, it doesn’t taste like it. It’s all for sweetness! The slightly sour raspberries totally disguise the fact that there’s another fruit hidden inside.
If you’re really upset about adding a banana, don’t–throw in some sugar, honey, or sweetener instead.
So what will your PB&J shake look like? Picky eaters may not like this twist on a classic sandwich, but it’s right up this girl’s alley. :)
- 1 banana
- 1 cup frozen raspberries
- 1/4 cup fat-free milk
- 1 Tbsp. peanut butter
- 1 tsp. strawberry jam
- 1/2 scoop vanilla protein powder
- 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup ice cubes
- Place banana, berries, milk, peanut butter, and jam in a blender. Blend until smooth.
- Stir in protein powder and vanilla. Blend until combined.
- Add ice gradually, blending until desired consistency is reached. Pour smoothie into a glass and serve immediately.
If you don't have frozen raspberries, use fresh berries and a frozen banana. Or just add extra ice!
To make this shake even healthier, I like to add kale or spinach.