Butter Up! 5 Can’t-Stop-Eating Snacks for National Peanut Butter Day

02/28/2014 at 03:49 PM ET

Peanut Butter Recipes National Peanut Butter Day

Show of hands: Who here has eaten peanut butter straight from the jar?

We get it: Sometimes it’s late and you’re tired and sticking a spoon straight into the tub is pretty much the most satisfying thing on the planet. But you know what else is satisfying? Peanut butter teamed with pretzels, powdered sugar and chocolate, for one.

That’s just one of the recipes Food Network and Cooking Channel chef Kelsey Nixon created to celebrate National Peanut Butter Day on March 1st. Nixon, the author of Kitchen Confidence and host of Kelsey’s Essentials, shows off the spread’s versatility with 5 easy, addictive snacks.

Peanut Butter Yogurt Dip
“For an easy — and healthy! — dip to serve alongside fresh fruit, you can’t beat the combo of Greek yogurt, peanut butter and honey,” Nixon says. Why? It’s extra creamy without being too sweet. To make it, mix ⅓ cup plain Greek yogurt, 2 tbsp. creamy peanut butter and 1 tbsp. honey. Garnish with a sprinkle of cinnamon.

Mini Peanut Butter Banana Pancakes
“Kids go crazy for these bite-sized pancakes, yet every time I make them for my son, I end up eating more than him!” Nixon says. Mix 1 ripe banana, 1 tbsp. peanut butter and 1 large egg until fully combined. Pour 2-3 tbsp. batter onto a hot griddle or non-stick pan and cook for 1-2 minutes, then flip and cook the other side. Top mini pancakes with fresh banana slices and serve as a snack or as a healthy option for breakfast.

Savory Peanut Sauce
This is terrific as a dipping sauce for satay or as dressing for a crisp Asian salad or slaw. It’s also great tossed with cold spaghetti noodles, especially when topped with cilantro and chopped peanuts, Nixon says. Whisk together ½ cup creamy peanut butter, ½ cup water, 1 tbsp. soy sauce, juice from 2 limes, and 1 tbsp. sugar. You can adjust the consistency by using more or less water.

No-Bake Peanut Butter Pretzel Balls
“If you need to curb a sweet and salty dessert craving, look no further!” Nixon says. This bite-size, no-bake dessert “comes together in no time.” In a food processor, combine 1 cup pretzels, ½ cup creamy peanut butter, ¼ cup powdered sugar and 1 tbsp. softened butter. Form mixture into 1-inch balls and freeze for at least 30 minutes. In the meantime, melt 6 oz. of milk chocolate. Dip chilled peanut butter balls in chocolate and transfer to the refrigerator to chill until set.

Peanut Butter Dessert Cream
This fluffy cream goes with “just about any dessert,” Nixon says. “It’s like a peanut butter whipped cream that can be used to top everything from ice cream to cake or brownies – and I dare you to not lick the bowl clean!” To make, combine ¼ cup heavy cream, ¼ cup creamy peanut butter, ¼ cup powdered sugar, and ¼ tsp. vanilla extract in a mixing bowl and beat for 1-2 minutes using an electric mixer.

FILED UNDER: Dessert , Food , Recipes , Snack

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The Latest Craze in Disco Styles Is See-Through Jeans—but Beware of Foggy Bottoms
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The Latest Craze in Disco Styles Is See-Through Jeans—but Beware of Foggy Bottoms

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On a clear day, you can see forever—or at least that’s the wicked thought behind L.A. designer Agi Berliner’s transparent idea: see-through jeans. Exhibitionists notwithstanding, most folks wear them over bathing suits or as attention-getting evening wear with halters, garter belts and body stockings. Created for the disco crowd, the $34 jeans are selling like, well, hot pants. In just six weeks, 25,000 pairs have already been sold in such major department store chains as Macy’s, Bonwit’s and Saks.

“What’s limiting American designers is that we’re afraid to do something different,” says Berliner, 32, a Hungarian émigré who fled with her family to the U.S. in 1956. Agi thought up the gimmick in London while marveling at the way plastics were being employed by designers of punk fashion. In her L.A. office, where she designs for La Parisienne junior sportswear, Agi spent five days on the phone and six weeks testing to come up with the right plastic.

Agi herself tried out the French-cut jeans with the zipper in front, and quickly found several problems: Some plastics tore away from stitching, others wouldn’t bend and all fogged with perspiration. The ideal material proved to be a vinyl supplied by a bookbinder. The steam was eliminated with a series of vents behind the knees and in the crotch. “They’re no hotter than polyester pants,” claims Agi, “and if you wear them with tights, they won’t stick to your legs.”

Whatever the discomfort and despite the problem of Saturday night feverishness, discomaniacs report one major advantage of the plastic pants: no laundry bills. To keep Berliner’s see-through jeans clear, all the wearer needs is a little Windex.

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