Is there anything in the food universe so glorious as peanut butter? There’s elegance in its simplicity. Its perfect mix of slightly sweet, rich, and savory makes it transition easily from dessert to main dish, or from nostalgic comfort food to high-brow gourmet.
As a single girl, peanut butter is a pantry staple. A peanut butter sandwich is the perfect solution when I need a meal-on-the-go. It’s a movie night companion (eaten straight out of the jar with a spoon – another perk of being a single girl). And nothing beats peanut butter and crackers to quell those midnight munchies.
Now, who among us has not enjoyed a satisfying slice of bread slathered with peanut butter? We’ve all heard of other hybrid breads; banana bread, zucchini bread, pumpkin bread, applesauce bread, and cornbread. But instead of peanut butter as a topping, what if we put it IN the bread?
This is a mind-blowing idea.
Thus, I set off on a mission to combine two of my favorite things into one epicurean delight: peanut butter bread.
Start with the wet ingredients: 1 cup milk (you can use real milk or almond milk – I used almond milk and it worked just fine), 2 eggs, 2/3 cup sugar, 1 cup peanut butter. You can use either creamy or crunchy peanut butter – whatever makes you happy! I’m a bit quirky. I like peanut butter everything, but I don’t like chunks of peanuts in anything. I only like whole peanuts one way – roasted and salted and all on their own. So, it’s creamy for me. But I promise not to judge if you’re more of a crunchy gal.
Wisk the wet ingredients until the peanut butter is completely blended and smooth. This will take some time and effort, and your arm muscles may protest. Think of it as an investment in the tasty treat you’ll get to eat later. There are definitely worse ways to tone muscle.
Continue with the dry ingredients: 1 3/4 cups flour (either white or whole wheat is fine), 1 tablespoon baking powder, 1 teaspoon salt. I used whole wheat flour because it’s a healthier option to refined white flour.
Actually, that’s a lie.
The truth is that I was out of white flour and too lazy to go to the store to get more. So, wheat flour for the win!
Fold the dry ingredients into the wet mixture until just combined. Be careful not to overmix. The batter will be thick – like cookie dough. Which brings me to this wise word of warning: If you are a raw cookie dough eater, this is the time to practice restraint. This stuff smells temptingly amazing.
Spoon batter into greased 9 x 5 loaf pan. Spread out each spoonful so no air pockets develop. The batter should almost reach the top of the pan. Bake at 350 for 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. I place the loaf pan on a cookie sheet lined with aluminum foil, so if the bread decides to overflow its banks, I won’t have an oven catastrophe to clean up after. I hate cleaning my oven.
It now occurs to me that many of my cooking decisions are built on a foundation of laziness. Should I be concerned? Hmm…too much work to evaluate that fact now – I’ll ponder it later….
Let the bread cool before slicing.
If you really want to gild the lily, top with good layer of butter and a drizzle of raw honey. Oh, my….I have no words for how good this is. This would also be fantastic warmed in a toaster oven (I don’t think it would hold up in a standard upright toaster) and eaten as a breakfast treat.
If you want to resist the urge to eat the entire loaf, slice it into single-serving slices and freeze in zip-top bags. Then warm/toast each slice whenever you’re ready to indulge!
Here’s the complete recipe. Enjoy!
1 cup milk
2/3 cup sugar
1 cup peanut butter
1 3/4 cups flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1) Combine milk, eggs, sugar, and peanut butter until smooth
2) Add dry ingredients and mix until just combined
3) Spoon into greased 9×5 pan
4) Bake at 350 for 50 to 60 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.