Creamy or crunchy, peanut butter is meant for more than celery sticks.
A quintessential American food, peanut butter is full of nutrition, with
8 grams of protein in a two-tablespoon serving.
Sure, it’s high in fat – about two tablespoons of a reduced-fat
peanut butter has about 12 grams of fat. But it’s high in monounsaturated
fats – the good kind that lowers your risk of cardiovascular disease.
When you’re looking for peanut butter at the supermarket, choose
one with less salt and sugar. Organic brands usually have less salt. If
you’re looking to limit your sugar intake, pick a natural-style
peanut butter—the kind you have to stir—and you can get up
to 66 percent less sugar.
Put some peanuts in your lunch box with these shell-licious ideas. For
a different taste with similar fat content, try a nut butter made from
almonds, cashews or hazelnuts.
Peanut Butter Applewich. Your kids will have a great time making and eating these. Cut an apple
in half crossways, and then cut each half into round slices about the
same thickness as a slice of bread. Remove the center core with a spoon,
leaving a slice shaped like a bagel. Spread each slice with 1 tbsp. peanut
butter, top with honey, blueberries, or carob chips, and cap with a second
slice. (Inspired by a recipe from
Whole Foods Market.)
Chicken Salad with Peanut Butter Dressing. Combine 4 tbsps. of rice wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, or apple cider
vinegar, with 4 tbsps. olive oil or vegetable oil. Add 2 tbsps. chopped
cilantro and, two cloves of minced garlic. Stir in ¼ cup peanut
butter until completely mixed. Toss six ounces of shredded chicken breast
with chopped tomato and four cups of lettuce or coleslaw. Top with the
peanut butter dressing.
Spicy Peanut Butter Noodles. Prepare two cups of Asian-style noodles: use buckwheat soba for a nutty
flavor, or the thin rice noodles used to make pad thai. If you can’t
find non-wheat noodles, substitute angel hair pasta, thin spaghetti, or
vermicelli. Reserve ¾ cup of the cooking water. Make a sauce by
stirring the water with diced ginger, garlic, crushed red pepper to taste,
and enough peanut butter—start with two or three tablespoons –
for a pourable sauce. Top the noodles with the sauce. For a heartier main
course, top with sliced chicken. You can serve this dish warm or cold.
Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie. Combine two sliced bananas, two tablespoons peanut butter, two cups reduced
fat or fat-free milk, and six to eight large ice cubes. You can also add
two scoops of protein powder. Blend on high until thick and smooth, and
add more milk or ice if you’d like. Double the recipe and drink
half for breakfast; put the other half in the break room fridge to have
with a salad for lunch. This cold drink is sweet, satisfying, and packed