On April 2nd each year, National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day celebrates a classic food favorite. The average American will have eaten over 2000 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches by the time they graduate from high school.
- Peanut butter was considered a delicacy in the early 1900s and was only served in New York City’s finest tea rooms.
- In a May 1896 article published in the Good Housekeeping magazine, a recipe “urged homemakers to use a meat grinder to make peanut butter and spread the result on bread.” That same year, in June, the culinary magazine Table Talk, published a “peanut butter sandwich recipe.”
- It is thought that Julia Davis Chandler issued the first reference to peanut butter (or paste) paired with jelly on bread in the United States in 1901. Her article is found in the Boston Cooking School Magazine of Culinary Science and Domestic Economics.
- In the late 1920s, the price of peanut butter declined, and the sandwich became very popular with children.
- The big kicker, though, was the invention of sliced bread by Gustav Papendick in 1928, although the phenomenon didn’t catch on immediately. Pre-sliced bread made it possible for children to make their own sandwiches.
- According to the Peanut Board, during World War II, both peanut butter and jelly were part of the United States soldiers’ military ration list.
- In 1968, The J.M. Smucker Co. introduced Goober, a jarred product that combined alternating vertical stripes of peanut butter and jelly.
- Peanut Butter was first invented by the Aztecs, who ground roasted peanuts into a rich nutritious paste.
- Peanut Butter and Jelly sandwiches were thought to be invented during the American Civil war, when the men mixed their peanut ration and jelly ration to create a delicious new treat while out on the field. When the men finally returned from the war, bedraggled and tired, they also brought with them news of this wonderful treat that brought them comfort on the field.
- Studies show that there is a 75% chance that if you drop a slice of peanut buttered bread, it will fall face down.
- 96% of people put peanut butter on before jelly.
- 50 percent of all the peanuts grown around the world are used to make peanut butter.
- It is estimated that the average American school child will have munched through 1500 Peanut Butter and Jelly sandwiches before graduation.
- An 18 ounce jar of peanut butter will contain about 850 peanuts.
- By law, any product labeled “peanut butter” in the United States must be at least 90 percent peanuts.
- Peanut butter was first introduced to the USA in 1904 at the Universal Exposition in St. Louis by C.H. Sumner, who sold $705.11 of the “new treat” at his concession stand.
- 94% of Americans have at least one jar of peanut butter at home so a PB&J is always at the ready.
- The Daily News reports that Americans eat an average of 2,984 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches in a lifetime. Stack all of those sandwiches up and they’d be taller than the Statue of Liberty.