Spicy PB&J

A new way to enjoy PB&J.

This ain’t your classic wonderbread PB&J. In fact, it’s even farther out there than the classic PB&J special (peanut butter and jelly with Cheetos shoved in the middle).

The concept stemmed from my lunch one day. I was eating a regular old PB&J, along with some almonds coated in ghost pepper powder. And going back and forth between the sandwich and the spicy almonds, I started to notice a peculiar but delicious taste.

The blending of the pepper powder with the sweetness of PB&J led to an epiphany. It was a manifestation of a new way to enjoy PB&Js. I’ll be the first to admit, a spicy peanut butter and jelly sandwich might not sound appetizing at all. And this one took a lot of experimenting and exploring to get it right. But if you’re able to take a leap of faith — or just really think about the flavor profiles in play — then you can start to see how this would work.

First of all, the sandwich is toasted, which creates a nice melty consistency for the chunky peanut butter. Next, to add to the crunchiness we’re using cashews.

The real twister here is the Sriracha hot sauce. But, that creamy, melted sweetness from the peanut butter, along with the sweet jelly, really tames the hot sauce. To tie the rest of the flavors together, we have curry powder, basil, and raisins for a sandwich that doesn’t shy away from its boldness.

Recipe notes: For the jam, I’d highly recommend a flavor that really complements Sriracha and its spiciness. I ended up making two versions of this, with one being an orange marmalade (for that slightly more bitter sensation of the orange peel) and a tropical pineapple jelly, which already pairs perfectly with spicy flavors. Feel free to try either, or even switch things up with a mango jam.

As for the bread, feel free to choose your preference. But, if you’re feeling gluttonous (like me), then I’d highly recommend a nice rich brioche, which toasts up oh so perfectly.

Time You Need

  • Prep: 5 minutes
  • Cooking: 8 minutes
  • Yields: 1 sandwich

What You Need

  • 2 slices of bread
  • ~3 tbsp of crunchy peanut butter
  • ~2 tbsp pineapple jelly or orange marmalade
  • ~2 tsp Sriracha
  • ~¼ cup unsalted, cashew halves
  • ~¼ cup of white raisins or cranberries
  • ¼ tsp curry powder
  • 3 basil leaves, sliced if you want
  • ~1 tbsp butter

What You Do

  • Spread peanut butter on one slice of bread, and the pineapple jelly or marmalade on the other.
  • Then sprinkle on curry powder, cashews, and raisins.
  • Next, drizzle Sriracha over both slices of bread. Top one side with basil, and place one slice on the other to form the sandwich.
  • On a heated skillet, add butter over medium heat. Let butter melt and then add sandwich.
  • Toast sandwich for about 3-4 minutes on each side, until crispy brown. Remove and slice. Serve and enjoy!
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