Delicious Peanut Butter and Jelly Alternatives

Photo courtesy of iStockphoto/jjshaw14Photo courtesy of iStockphoto/jjshaw14By Scott DeSimon and Marissa Lippert, Bon Appétit

For decades, the PB&J had a stranglehold on kids' lunches. If you were born before 1980, at one point or another, you have taken a slightly smushed peanut butter and jelly sandwich from a lunchbox or brown paper bag and gone to town on it. But things have changed. The rise of peanut allergies has made people a little skittish on the classic sando, especially in public spaces (like cafeterias). Fear not. There are plenty of nut butters out there for those with peanut issues. And while you could just replace your Skippy with, say, cashew butter and keep the jelly, why not explore more creative ways to get your--or your kid's--nut butter fix? We did.

Pistachio Butter "Pizza" with Grilled Chicken and Mozzarella

1 8" whole wheat lavash or flatbread
1 Tbsp. pistachio butter
3 oz. grilled or roasted chicken breast , shredded into bit-sized pieces (about 1 cup)
1 oz. fresh mozzarella cheese, about 2 thin slices
1 cup arugula

Place lavash on a work surface. Spread lavash with pistachio butter and top with chicken breast, mozzarella cheese and arugula. If desired, fold in sides and roll up like a wrap.

Banana Nutter Butter on Whole Wheat

2 slices whole wheat bread, toasted
2 Tbsp. almond butter
2 tsp. honey
1 small banana, sliced

Spread almond butter on one slice of toast. Drizzle honey over almond butter. Place banana slices on top and cover with remaining slice of toast. Cut in half and serve.

Baby Banh Mi with Grilled Chicken and Soy-Lime-Cashew Butter

1 mini baguette or mini brioche roll, toasted
1 Tbsp. cashew butter
1/2 tsp. low-sodium soy sauce
1 tsp. lime juice
3 ounces grilled chicken breast, cut into strips
2 sprigs fresh mint
2 sprigs fresh cilantro
1 cup baby carrots or carrot sticks


In a small mixing bowl, whip together cashew butter, soy sauce and lime juice. Spread cashew butter mixture evenly on one side of baguette or brioche roll. Top with chicken breast and fresh mint and cilantro. Serve with carrots.

Cumin Roasted Carrots and Avocado Sandwiches with Sunflower Butter

2 large carrots, peeled
1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. lime juice
Kosher salt
2 pieces sunflower oat bread
1 Tbsp. sunflower butter
1 oz. goat cheese
1/4 avocado, sliced, about 3-4 slices

Carrots can be roasted ahead of time or the day before.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. On a roasting pan, toss carrots with olive oil, cumin, lime juice and salt. Roast for 20-25 minutes until desired tenderness. Once cooled, cut carrots in half lengthwise and then into 2" pieces. On a work surface, spread sunflower butter one slice of sunflower oat bread and goat cheese on remaining slice. Top with roasted carrots and avocado slices. Cut sandwich into triangles or use a cookie cutter of choice to cut into kid-friendly shapes.

Grilled Sweet Potato Wraps with Soy Nut Butter and Cilantro

1 medium sweet potato or yam
1/2 tsp. canola oil
1/2 tsp. sesame oil
kosher salt and freshly cracked pepper
1 12" wholegrain wrap
2 Tbsp. soy nut butter
3-4 sprigs cilantro
1 cup steamed edamame in pods
Sea salt

Cook sweet potato in a saucepan of boiling salted water until just tender, about 15 minutes. Allow to cool. Can be done day prior. Cut sweet potato into thick rounds. Brush with canola and sesame oil and season with salt and freshly cracked pepper. Grill sweet potatoes on a grill pan over medium-high heat until grill marks appear, about 3 minutes on each side. Set aside to cool.

Place wholegrain wrap on a work surface. Spread soy nut butter evenly on wrap. Place sweet potatoes in the center of the wrap and top with cilantro. Fold in sides of the wrap and then roll up like a burrito. Cut in half and serve with edamame sprinkled lightly with sea salt.

Roast Turkey and Apple Sandwiches with Pecan Butter

2 pieces multigrain bread
1 Tbsp. pecan butter
1 tsp honey mustard
1/4 Granny Smith or Crispin apple, thinly sliced
2 oz. all-natural or organic roast turkey slices, about 4 slices

Place bread on a work surface. Spread pecan butter on one slice of bread, honey mustard on the other. Top one slice with apples and turkey and cover with remaining piece of bread. Cut in half to serve.

Bacon, Tomato & Pumpkin Seed Butter Sandwiches

2 pieces pumpernickel bread, toasted
1 Tbsp. pumpkin seed butter
1 oz. cooked applewood-smoked bacon or turkey bacon, about 3 pieces
1 small tomato, sliced

Place toast on a work surface. Spread pumpkin seed butter on one slice. Top with bacon and tomato slices.

Check out Bon Appétit for more delicious PB&J alternatives.

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