Peanut butter and snack time go together almost as well as peanut butter and jelly — but there are some healthier alternatives to this classic combo. Check out our roundup of creative, healthy peanut butter snacks to fuel you and your family from Monday to Friday — and all throughout the weekend!
Peanut butter plays a leading role in a variety of better-for-you snacks, from the classic ants-on-a-log to the more unusual but surprisingly delicious flavor combos. Before we dig into some of the best “Why did I not try this sooner?!” snack ideas, let’s go over the factors that make healthy peanut butter snacks so good and good for you.
There’s nothing quite like peanut butter, is there? It can be enjoyed crunchy or creamy, sweet or savory, melted or frozen, baked or eaten straight from the jar — so it really does check all the boxes. Kids and adults love peanut butter for its iconic earthy flavor, making it a great choice for the whole family. If you keep a jar of this iconic nut butter on hand, snack time will never be boring!
It tastes great with a variety of other foods, too. After all, how many other foods taste just as good with bananas and dark chocolate as they do when tossed with spicy, stir-fried veggies and noodles?
Not only do peanuts give our taste buds immediate gratification, but they also offer long-term health benefits. For instance, studies have shown that eating a handful of peanuts every weekday is associated with a lower risk of heart disease and Type 2 diabetes.
The humble peanut has a lot to offer in terms of nutrition. One serving — which is about 28 peanuts or 2 tablespoons of peanut butter — contains about 7 grams of protein. And that’s bundled with potassium, calcium, magnesium, antioxidants, and beneficial omega-6 and omega-9 fatty acids.
Due to their healthy monounsaturated fats and high protein content, these nutty little legumes are considered a heart-healthy choice by the American Heart Association. To promote healthy eating habits, the AHA just advises against buying peanut butter products that are high in added sugar or sodium.
Looking for a better-for-you snack starring peanut butter and other nutritious ingredients? Check out our week’s worth of recipe ideas and protein-packed snack inspo:
Start the week off right with this creamy classic: a peanut butter smoothie. You can do so much with this simple idea, so feel free to mix in your favorite flavors. Byrdie suggests everything from a green peanut butter smoothie to one with oatmeal and Greek yogurt that is hearty enough to work as a meal replacement. But there’s always the crowd-pleasing chocolate peanut butter cup flavor combination for a sweeter sip.
Another peanut butter smoothie variation involves mixing in fresh or frozen bananas, strawberries, blueberries, and other fruity flavors in with a base of almond milk and a scoop of ground flaxseed for a nutritional boost. And, with so many colorful and flavorful ingredients to explore, why not enjoy your concoction as a smoothie bowl every once in a while?
After a busy day, you and your family will be ready to chill out with this freezer-friendly snack. It features a refreshing bunch of naturally sweet grapes covered in a peanut buttery glaze — and it’s super easy to prepare. You just need to mix up melted peanut butter, almond milk, and a dollop of Greek yogurt with some pumpkin pie spices, toss the grapes, and pop them in the freezer.
This is one of those ideas where, once you try it, you’ll be adding it to your regular recipe rotation. Peanut butter-topped sweet potatoes work well as a hearty breakfast or main dish, and they make a great mid-day snack when shared with the family. Simply bake a sweet potato and top it with a dollop of peanut butter and a dusting of cinnamon. Feel free to add a sprinkle of chia seeds, coconut flakes, banana slices, Greek Yogurt, or whatever you fancy!
On Thursday morning, toss together these five ingredients in five minutes and you’ll have a flavorful bowl of overnight oats waiting for you later in the day. Combine your favorite plant-based milk with peanut butter, chia seeds, and maple syrup in a bowl, then stir in half a cup of rolled oats. Pop them in the fridge for at least six hours to allow the oats to get soft and delicious. You can enjoy your overnight oats chilled or warmed up in the microwave with your favorite toppings.
Since when can you serve up ice cream as a healthy study snack? Since you discovered this game-changing recipe from Taste of Home that’s packed with nutritious ingredients! It calls for frozen bananas, almond milk, peanut butter, raisins, chopped walnuts, shredded coconut, and a few drops of vanilla extract. Although it’s not really ice cream, it will definitely win you a few brownie points.
Here’s a family-friendly update on the timeless apple and peanut butter snack combination. Slice up a few apples and spread them out like nachos. Then, top them with a melted peanut butter and honey drizzle, a handful of chocolate chips, and whatever other toppings you can think of. This shareable snack is perfect for study sessions, mid-day munching, and movie nights at home.
Since it’s always enjoyable straight from the jar, you might forget that you can also bake peanut butter into all kinds of recipes for oven-fresh better-for-you peanut butter snacks. When Sunday rolls around, why not give these banana peanut butter muffins a shot? They’re made with good-for-you ingredients like Greek yogurt, honey, almond milk, whole wheat flour — plus mini chocolate chips to sweeten the deal and a delectable melted peanut butter glaze.
Chances are, you’re not up for an ambitious kitchen adventure seven days a week. Lucky for you, at Perfect Snacks we’ve created a variety of grab-and-go snack options featuring organic peanut butter (and other nut butter favorites like cashew and almond butter). Try our selection of Perfect Bars in fabulous flavors like Coconut Peanut Butter, Dark Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter, and our original Peanut Butter, of course.
Each bar is gluten-free, low-GI, and ready to enjoy from the fridge or on the go. Perfect Bars not only offer the cookie-dough texture and satisfying flavors you crave, but they also contain a blend of 20 superfood ingredients, nutrients including calcium, riboflavin, iron, and Vitamins A, C, and E, plus up to 17 grams of protein per bar.
Order a box today — and don’t miss out on Perfect Kids for your little ones and deliciously shareable Perfect Bites for the whole crew, too!