Smooth or crunchy, peanut butter is a healthy, versatile and fun ingredient to have in the kitchen, especially if you have kids. The nutty spread most famous for the PB&J is also a star in many other family-friendly foods. Tell your kids to put on their aprons and help you prepare these quick-to-fix peanut butter recipes.
Peanut butter recipes
Peanut Butter Play Dough
Play dough is so much more fun if you can eat it. Peanut butter is the tasty foundation for this no-cook recipe that requires nothing more than a few ingredients and a budding imagination. Your kids can be expert chefs in making the peanut butter confection while nourishing their creative spirit by turning it into any number of shapes or objects.
2 cups smooth peanut butter
2 tablespoons honey
Dry milk powder
Cheerios or other cereal
Miniature chocolate chips
1. In a medium-sized bowl, stir together peanut butter and honey. Mix in enough milk powder to make playdough dry enough to handle.
2. Divide playdough among your kids and let them form it into different geometric shapes, happy faces, people, animals, or other objects using the extras.
The name of this dish alone is enough to pique the interest and hunger of your little ones. For a change, add cooked chicken or shrimp.
1 cup vegetable broth
2/3 cup natural crunchy peanut butter, stirred well
2 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespoons brown sugar
Juice of a lime
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 pound linguini, cooked al dente, warm
3/4 cup chopped green onion (white and green parts)
1-1/2 cups julienned carrots (cut into matchsticks)
1-1/2 cups broccoli florets, chopped
1 cup snow peas
Dry roasted, salted peanuts, chopped
1. Preheat oven to warm or the lowest temperature. In a large bowl, whisk together broth, peanut butter, soy sauce, brown sugar, lime juice and pepper.
2. Place cooked linguini in the bowl and toss to coat with the sauce. Remove linguini from the bowl, saving remaining sauce. Transfer linguini to a large oven-safe serving dish, cover and place in the oven.
3. Pour the remaining sauce into a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions, carrots, broccoli and snow peas and cook, stirring often, for 4 minutes or until tender.
4. Add the vegetables to the noodles and toss to combine. Serve garnished with chopped peanuts.
Peanut Butter Quesadillas
Surprise your family with a quesadilla surprise. Delicious for breakfast and lunch or served as an unusual dessert, these peanut butter quesadillas are a welcome change from the usual cheese-filled dish.
4 small or medium-sized whole wheat tortillas
1/2 cup natural crunchy or smooth peanut butter, stirred well
2 ripe but firm peaches, pitted, sliced
2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
1. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Spray with nonstick cooking spray. Spray one side of each tortilla with nonstick cooking spray (this will be the outside of the quesadilla).
2. Spread peanut butter on the inside of each tortilla. Place cooking spray-coated side of tortilla in the skillet and arrange peach slices on one half of the peanut butter. Sprinkle with cilantro.
3. Fold tortilla over to cover peaches and press lightly with a spatula. Cover skillet and cook for 2 minutes or until bottom side of tortilla is lightly browned. Flip and cook, covered, another 2 to 3 minutes or until lightly browned and peanut butter is warm.
4. Transfer to a serving platter, cut each quesadilla in half, and serve warm.
More creative culinary ideas for peanut butter
Peanut butter can be an integral component of sweet and savory dishes and for any meal of the day.
Here are some more inventive ways to put that jar of peanut butter to use:
- Top pancakes, waffles, French toast or English muffins with peanut butter and fruit.
- Puree peanut butter with softened cream cheese for a rich, creamy dip.
- Swirl peanut butter into yogurt and top with dried fruit and nuts.
- Blend peanut butter into smoothies or milkshakes.
- Spread peanut butter on graham crackers and top with cheddar cheese.
- Drizzle warm peanut butter and jelly on corn chips for nachos with a sweet flair.
- Make a peanut butter and bacon sandwich (one of Elvis’ favorites).
- Puree peanut butter with savory ingredients for a salad dressing, pasta sauce or dipping sauce for grilled kabobs.
- Spread peanut butter on tortillas and make fruit-topped tostadas or fruit-filled wraps.
- Fill celery sticks with peanut butter and dried cherries.
- Use peanut butter as “glue” for marshmallows and other candy to form shapes or other objects.
- Swirl peanut butter into cheesecake batter or softened ice cream.
- Dip apple slices in peanut butter and drizzle with maple syrup for a sweet treat.
Be adventurous and see how many new peanut butter recipes you and your kids can create.