Unless you have an allergy, there are very few pairings as magical as peanut butter and banana. One of my favorite sandwiches growing up had slices of bananas on crunchy peanut butter (it had to be Jif-brand back then, I wasn’t a hippie yet haha) with a liberal dusting of cinnamon on top. I’d eat the sandwich by tearing pieces off in chunks, so the super-soft white sandwich bread was always the best kind to use. Occasionally I’d toast the bread or add chocolate chips just to mix it up a bit. To this day you’ll still find the occasional PB&B sandwich in my lunchbag – or crammed into my little bento box – because I just don’t feel like anything else. Yup, I definitely think the PB&B sandwich has taken the backseat to the classic PB&J for far too long.
So when I stumbled across something called a “Jimmy Carter Shake” at a food joint back in VT I had to try it. It was called a shake, but was made with non-fat froyo and skim milk so it wasn’t exactly a dessert. Still, with all the calories of the peanut butter it isn’t exactly a health-food either. It had a deliciously thick consistency and you could easily taste both the bananas and peanut butter without either being too sweet. It was the perfect snack for a hot summer day and I vowed to one day learn to recreate it at home.
Jimmy Carter Smoothy (inspired by Boloco’s Jimmy Carter Shake)
1 Cup non-fat vanilla frozen yogurt (learn how to make your own here)
2 T creamy peanut butter, preferably organic
1½ fresh ripe bananas, sliced
¾ Cup low-fat milk
handful of ice cubs, if needed
- Put all ingredients in a blender, except for the ice cubes. Pulse until chunks have broken up and then blend on medium speed until smooth. If needed adjust for consistency and taste – because so many brands of PB differ and the sweetness will change depending on how ripe your bananas are, you really just have to play as you go here. I’ve never had to add sugar, but I’ve frequently added more banana slices or milk depending.
- Finally, if you don’t find your smoothy thick or cold enough, add the ice cubes and pulse until just incorporated. Serve immediately.
I love how this smoothy is like a PB&B sandwich plus milk all in one! I, for one, am calling it a smoothy because it is a froyo base with fruit (I’m not counting calories haha). I’m sorry the recipe is so open-ended, but your flavor and texture really will vary quite a bit depending on brands, ripeness of fruit, and what kind of froyo you’re using. It can even be adapted to be gluten-free (just make sure you buy a gluten-free peanut butter) or vegan (use vegan ice cream and soy or almond milk). You could also spice things up a bit with a teaspoon of cinnamon or a pinch of nutmeg. Or here’s a thought: what if you tried chocolate froyo as the base instead? Oooo…
Overall Enjoyment: ♥ ♥ ♥