Life without peanut butter is no life at all. Okay, that’s an exaggeration (and I mean no disrespect to people who can’t have peanuts). But, just as Winnie the Pooh needs his honey pot, and I need my peanut butter jar. Don’t give me cream cheese on a bagel, make it peanut butter! As much as I love Nutella, give me peanut butter instead! And my favorite kind of chocolate? Peanut butter cups.
While peanut butter has plenty of healthy fats – so it’s not “unhealthy” at all – I couldn’t help but be intrigued when I found out about PB2.
PB2 has been around for a while now, but I didn’t try it until last week. Why? I’m a big believer in the notion, “If it sounds too good to be try, then it probably is.” PB2 is a powder that is created from roasted peanuts which are pressed to remove 85% of the fat calories from the nuts.
Peanut butter with 85% less fat calories? “It must be too good to be true”, I thought. So I put off buying PB2 until I was simply too intrigued to put it off any longer. Finally, I purchased some PB2 from iHerb.com. As you can see from the photo below, I don’t do things by half-measures.
That’s nineteen and a half ounces of PB2! “I really hope this stuff is good”, I mumbled to myself while opening the box.
Luckily for me, this stuff is good. Really good. Well, it’s really good in most situations. So far, I’ve tried PB2 just as peanut butter, with yogurt, and in oatmeal.
PB2 as Good Ol’ Peanut Butter: If you mix 2 tablespoons of PB2 with 1 tablespoon of water, you’ll end up with something that’s similar too (albeit not the same as) peanut butter. To be honest, PB2 mixed with water is better described as “peanut paste” rather than as a butter. It’s not as creamy as peanut butter, so I’d stick to the real stuff when making sandwiches. I’m going to try mixing some PB2 paste with a little mashed banana or applesauce, to see if that makes a tastier spread.
PB2 with Yogurt: Amazing! I love making the “peanut paste” and then mixing it into yogurt. PB2 + yogurt + apple + honey = heaven!
PB2 in Oatmeal: Just like peanut butter! If making stove-top oatmeal, whisk the PB2 into the milk while it’s heating up. For baked oatmeal, it can just be added with the wet ingredients. I’m sure PB2 would also work in overnight oatmeal, pancakes and chia puddings.
I’ve even added PB2 into my hot chocolates, and will definitely be adding it to smoothies! So, on the whole, you can put me down as a PB2 fan.
When my box of PB2 arrived, I knew exactly what I wanted to make: a baked oatmeal that was seriously peanut buttery. Sure, I also wanted to try some more honey-nut and apple combinations, some peanut and chocolate oatmeals, and some mixture of peanut butter and banana – but that would all have to wait. I wanted extreme peanut butter.
This recipe also includes a banana, but that’s just to make it more sweet and moist. There’s barely any banana flavor in this oatmeal, instead it’s all eyes (or tongues?) on the peanut butter.
I have some optional maple syrup in the recipe. While the banana makes it just sweet enough for a breakfast food, the maple syrup makes it taste more like a cookie! Another option is to leave the maple syrup out of the oatmeal batter and then pour some on top before serving.
Of course, if you don’t have any PB2, I’m sure this would work with regular peanut butter – smooth or chunky. Actually, one thing that’s disappointing about PB2 is that there’s not chunky version! I realize why – they have to press the peanuts to remove the fat. Oh well, I can always chop up some peanuts and mix them in.
Speaking of mix-ins, you can throw in any extra ingredients into this recipe (yes, that was my attempt at a segue). I’d recommend chocolate chips, chopped peanuts and/or raisins. Any other ideas? What goes with peanut butter? Or, perhaps the more important question is: what doesn’t go with peanut butter?
- 1 very ripe banana
- ¼ cup PB2 powdered peanut butter
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon blackstrap molasses
- 2 - 4 teaspoons maple syrup (optional)
- ⅔ cup almond milk (or other milk)
- 1 cup rolled oats
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- Pinch of salt
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Grease two 1-cup capacity ramekins.
- In a bowl, mash the banana thoroughly. Mix in the PB2, vanilla extract, molasses and maple syrup (if using). Add the milk and stir well.
- Add the rolled oats, cinnamon, baking powder and salt, and mix until combined.
- Divide the mixture between the prepared ramekins. Bake for 22 to 27 minutes. Enjoy!
Blackstrap molasses add a slight brown sugar flavor to the oatmeal. If you don't have any molasses, either replace the maple syrup with brown sugar, or simply omit this ingredient.