Alternatives to PB&J When Your Kid Has a Peanut Allergy
I never grew out of the PB&J phase from my childhood; I’m just as happy devouring this sandwich with a cold glass of milk now as a 35-year-old woman as I was when I was 10. So when I discovered that my son was highly allergic to peanuts, I not only felt nervous for his safety but also wondered what the heck I’d feed my kid.
He’s on his way to being two years old, and he’s becoming more particular about his diet. On the no-way list so far: tuna salad and deli meat. I’m allergic to tree nuts, by the way, so ensuring my son gets a little protein each day is pretty much limited to eggs and Greek yogurt.
Enter sunflower butter. Like other peanut butter substitutes like almond butter (but without the pesky anaphylactic shock), sunflower butter is pretty much the only product I know of that allows me to introduce my son to the wonderful world of PB&J… or SB&J. But I’m generally pretty wary of food substitutes–vegan cheese and rice milk both immediately come to mind.
So is sunflower butter any good? Hell yes! It has the same appearance and texture as peanut butter, but it tastes like roasted sunflower seeds. Plus, it’s toddler approved. It has about the same amount of protein and fat as peanut butter, so there’s really no difference. In fact, as I write this, it occurs to me that I could substitute this magical butter in peanut butter cookies… Excuse me while I get my baking on.
Photo credit: Very Culinary