Here’s how to make deep-fried peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Because yes, that’s a thing. A darn good thing.
Deep-fried peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Yes, it’s a thing. And the recipe below shows you how to make it. As the authors say, “although this would be insane trade bait in the lunchroom, it’s best to eat these deep-fried wonders right out of the fryer.” To us, the deep-fried rendition of a childhood classic is damn good straight up without the white chocolate ganache for dipping. I mean, whatever happened to purity of purpose? To simple pleasures? To it being midnight and you gotta cut some corners? But if you feel the need to embellish, it’s also damn good with a shmear of the sweet stuff. This recipe has been updated. Originally published February 11, 2014.–Max Sussman & Eli Sussman
Deep-Fried Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches
- Quick Glance
- 1 H
- 1 H
- Makes 8 sandwich halves
Special Equipment: Deep-fry or candy or instant-read thermometer
- For the white chocolate ganache (optional)
- 1 cup white chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- For the deep-fried peanut butter and jelly sandwiches
- Peanut oil, for deep-frying
- About 1/2 loaf best-quality bread, perhaps a heavy sourdough nut or fruit bread such as raisin-walnut bread
- About 1/2 cup peanut butter
- About 1/2 cup strawberry jam (or any flavor)
- About 2 1/4 cups banana chips (optional)
- 1 cup (5 ounces) all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup (2 ounces) granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 to 3/4 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Make the white chocolate ganache (optional)
- 1. Place the white chocolate in a heatproof bowl and nest the bowl in a saucepan over but not touching simmering water. (Alternatively, put the chocolate in the top pan of a double boiler and place over the lower pan filled with simmering water.) Heat the chocolate until melted, occasionally stirring gently with a spatula to help the melting along. (Be careful not to let so much as a single drop of water get in the chocolate or it may seize.)
- 2. When the chocolate has fully melted, reduce the heat to low. Switch to a whisk and slowly add the cream, whisking constantly until fully incorporated. Remove the pan from the heat and scrape the ganache into a heatproof bowl. Cover with aluminum foil to keep warm.
- Make the deep-fried peanut butter and jelly
- 3. Pour enough oil in a deep pot or deep-fryer to measure about 3 inches. Heat the oil to 325°F (165°C).
- 4. Cut the bread into 8 slices, each about 1/4 inch thick. Go ahead and make 4 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. (If you are a human, you should know how to do this.) But for this fried version, be sure you don’t overload them with too much PB or J. Before closing each sandwich, add a layer of banana chips if you dare.
- 5. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add 1/2 cup milk and vanilla and whisk until a smooth batter forms. If necessary, add more milk to create a dippable consistency.
- 6. When the oil is hot, make sure all the sandwiches are tightly closed. Then, working with 1 sandwich at a time, dip it into the batter and turn it gently to thoroughly coat it. Lift it from the batter and let the excess batter drip back into the bowl. Using tongs to hold the sandwich tightly on 1 end, submerge the sandwich halfway into the hot oil and fry for 15 seconds, then release the sandwich into the oil. It should now float. Fry the sandwich, turning once, until golden brown on both sides, 2 to 2 1/2 minutes per side. [Editor’s Note: If the sandwich isn’t turning golden brown in the suggested time, increase the temperature of the oil to 350°F (177°C).] Using the tongs, transfer the deep-fried PB&J to paper towels or a brown paper bag to drain. Repeat with the remaining sandwiches.
- 7. Serve the warm sandwiches with the white chocolate ganache, if using, on the side for dipping.
Recipe Testers Reviews
We loved the deep-fried peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. We used a sourdough bread that would stand up to any liquid inflicted on it. I substituted red currant jelly for the strawberry jelly and it was yummy. We made 2 sandwiches with sliced banana and 2 without. I heated the oil and started the ganache. Next, I put together batter and had to add another 1/4 cup milk. It was too stiff for dipping. I cut the first sandwich in half before I fried it. Then a wild hair came over me and I chopped a half sandwich into thirds, like finger sandwiches, before frying. I liked this size better for eating and serving as it was more manageable. I found the 2-minute time frame perfect for each side to let them swim around in the pool of hot oil. The fried banana was creamy within the confines of the golden fried batter. The white chocolate drizzle was goodness on top of awesome.
These deep-fried peanut butter and jelly sandwiches were just too fun to pass up. The batter was too thick to work with as written, a bit like a paste. I added 1/4 cup more milk to thin it some so it would coat the sandwiches. That did help, but it was still pretty thick. It took closer to 4 minutes to fry each sandwich. The first one took the longest at about 7 minutes. I raised the fryer heat to 370°F (188°C). The remaining sandwiches took 4 minutes each. The finished sandwich is a bit like a filled funnel cake. I bypassed the white chocolate ganache and banana chips and just enjoyed the sandwich itself. While these are not a light dessert, they are yummy.