Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, also known as PB & J, is as simple a concept as it gets for food. Served either open-faced or between two slices of bread, it’s a treat of equal part peanut butter and fruit preserves.
When sliced bread started being widely sold around 1928, the ease of making a PB & J meal, especially for young people, skyrocketed. The ingredients were cheap, tasty & pleasing to the palate. A legend was born.
According to the National Peanut Board, the origins of the primary ingredients are as varied as they are tasty. Sometimes, the simplest ingredients can become extraordinary.
History of Peanut Butter and Jelly
In World War II, peanut butter and jelly were on the U.S. military ration menus. It is said that the soldiers would add jelly to their peanut butter to make it tastier. Peanut butter provided an inexpensive and high-protein alternative to meat for soldiers. Peanut butter was an excellent alternative and a readily available source of protein.
Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches boomed during an excellent need for nutritious and inexpensive food. The Great Depression and the limitations that resulted in food rations caused by World War II helped the iconic & easy sandwich become an expensive way to provide nutritious food to U.S soldiers.
It’s no wonder why peanut butter and jelly sandwiches became such a staple for school lunches around the country, not to mention a prime choice for adults wanting a tasty and fulfilling meal. And today, there are many other foods that put their own spin on the flavor of PB & J including protein bars, cupcakes & more on-the-go snacks.
How Many Calories Are in a Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich?
A typical peanut butter and jelly sandwich, consisting of two slices of wheat bread, peanut butter, jelly, and contains 400 calories and 18 grams of fat. Hence, it is evident that peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are dense in calories.
They can contain more calories than grilled cheese, turkey or tuna sandwiches, but that doesn’t mean that PB & J sandwiches are unhealthy.
Are PB & J Sandwiches Good for Weight Loss?
Even though calories in a peanut butter and jelly sandwich are high compared to others, you can still lose weight by enjoying these sandwiches as part of a balanced diet.
A peanut butter and jelly sandwich is packed with healthy protein and carbohydrates. So, if you need to lose or gain weight healthily, PB & J sandwiches can be your meal of choice.
Although peanut butter is high in fat content, which packs almost 100 calories into each tablespoon, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich is high in protein. Some research suggests that eating peanut butter as part of an overall healthy diet may help you lose weight.
There are lower-calorie options available in peanut butter, jellies & jams and various types of bread. Using a combination that’s to your liking, you can create a low-calorie peanut butter and jelly sandwich that is excellent in taste and easy and convenient. If you use sugar-filled jelly, be sure to use it in moderation.
The choice of the sandwich bread used plays an important role in the total calorie count. A slice of sandwich bread can contain nearly 100 calories, so the bread can account for half the total calories in a PB & J.
These days there are many different styles of the classic PB & J, including ones that incorporate different types of nut butter and varieties of jelly beyond the traditional grape. In fact, the one on our Snackable menu contains raspberry jam mated to creamy peanut butter.
There is something remarkable to be said for the PB & J: it’s a delicious piece of iconic American food.