Take Your PB&J To The Next Level With A Spread Of Tahini

It's time for your usual PB&J recipe to step aside. There are so many upgrades for your sandwich out there, from adding swirls of cream cheese to sprinkling shredded coconut flakes onto your slices, that there's no need to settle for the tried and true every time (unless you want to). One that adds a warm nutty richness to your snack is tahini. Whether you're craving a new taste or have run out of peanut butter, the toasty sesame seed flavor of tahini makes for an earthy, nutty sandwich spread that provides just the right amount of toothy smoothness to match with sweet fruit jelly.

For a tasty protein hit, try sampling two nutty flavors at once by adding a swirl of tahini to the surface of a peanut-butter-coated piece of toast or bread, or swap peanut butter out entirely for the decadent spread. Tahini also plays well with dashes of cinnamon and cardamom, and chopped pieces of dates and sliced bananas, which can be a wholesome textural addition to your peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Sometimes trying something new is a game changer in the kitchen and this easy addition can brighten any lunchtime or snack session without much effort.

A PB&J recipe for discerning palates

Once you've tried experimenting with tahini, you can have fun pairing the creamy, nutty spread with a variety of fruits, jams, and toppings. Try drizzling honey, maple syrup, molasses, or agave syrup on top of tahini-slathered toast, or place sliced kiwi fruits on top of the spread for juicier mouthfuls. Both fresh and dried blueberries can offer sweetness, while sprinklings of sesame seeds and ground-up walnuts can double down on the nutty flavors in your sandwich. 

When reaching into your cupboards for jams and fruit spreads, note that dark berry jams stand up well to tahini's rounder flavors, offering a more sophisticated sandwich. You could also mix tahini with almond butter to turn up the earthy flavors, and shave thin pieces of dark chocolate on top of the spread in an open-faced sandwich for a richer recipe that will leave no sweet-craving unaddressed. Spoonfuls of Nutella can also complement some of tahini's more decadent, nutty notes if a chocolatey idea grabs you. There are so many ways to shake up your usual peanut butter and jelly sandwich using alternative ingredients. And if you're new to tahini and wonder which brand to choose, look no further than our ranking of the best store-bought jars of tahini.