Recipe Review

I Tried the Peanut Butter Bread That Reddit Is Obsessed With (and It’s Worth the Hype)

updated Jun 15, 2021
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Credit: Sheela Prakash

As is true for many of us, I’ve been on a baking kick these past few weeks. And while I typically look to cookbooks, food blogs, and Kitchn staffers for inspiration, a recipe on Reddit recently caught my eye. It’s called peanut butter bread, and it’s all the rage on  r/Old_Recipes — the subreddit home to the viral Grandma’s Lemon Bars and infamous Murder Cookies.

Why is peanut butter bread so popular among Reddit users? I’m willing to bet it’s because of its simplicity. The recipe, first shared by u/trixietravisbrown, comes from a depression-era cookbook from 1932 and calls for a very short list of pantry basics. Peanut butter actually replaces the need for both eggs and butter (both of which were hard to come by during the Great Depression), and the rest of the list is simple: flour, sugar, baking powder, salt. The recipe sounded easy, sure, but how did it taste? I baked a loaf to find out.

Credit: Sheela Prakash

Peanut Butter Bread Is Banana Bread’s Easier, One-Bowl Cousin

With basic baking ingredients hard to come by right now, I appreciate the ingenuity and simplicity of this peanut butter bread. And it’s pretty tasty, too! It’s moist, with a banana bread-like texture, and it’s packed with nutty peanut butter flavor. Since it only contains 1/4 cup sugar, it’s just barely sweet, which makes it nice on its own but even better toasted, buttered, and drizzled with honey or slathered with jam. Many Reddit users have turned slices into French toast, which I’m sure would be incredible.

The batter for the bread comes together easily in one bowl. You mix together the dry ingredients first, then add the milk, followed by the peanut butter. This was the only place I ran into an issue: stirring thick peanut butter into a thick batter (I had to mix pretty vigorously to get it to incorporate fully). Luckily, this didn’t lead to a tough bread, although it did mean my loaf had a few streaks of peanut butter running through it.

If you’re looking for a satisfying quick bread you can make with ingredients you have on hand, this peanut butter bread is an excellent option.

Credit: Sheela Prakash

What to Know If You, Too, Bake a Loaf of Peanut Butter Bread

This homey recipe is simple and straightforward, but these tips will set you up for success.

  • Use 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon peanut butter. The recipe calls for 1/2 cup peanut butter, but also recommends adding a little more. I used 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon to account for the “little more,” and was happy with the resulting flavor of the loaf.
  • Combine the milk and peanut butter separately. If your peanut butter is very thick, like mine was, I’d recommend whisking it into the milk and then adding it to the dry ingredients instead of stirring the milk and peanut butter in separately. I know this means pulling out a second bowl, but otherwise you may find it hard to mix in the peanut butter.
  • Start checking at 45 minutes. The recipe says to bake the loaf for 1 hour, but I found a range of 45 minutes to 1 hour to be more accurate. I started checking it at 45 minutes with a toothpick, and at 55 minutes the toothpick came out clean.
  • Let cool before slicing. I was eager to try the loaf, so I cut into it while it was still hot and it crumbled a bit. I’d recommend letting it cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then transferring it to a cooling rack to cool for at least another 10 minutes before slicing.

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