PB&J Quinoa Bowl

The best Monday breakfast you could ever hope for.

This PB&J Quinoa Bowl is the perfect healthy breakfast to get your week started on the right foot.

That’s right. This PB&J Quinoa Bowl will change the way you view beginning-of-the-week breakfasts forever, and I don’t think you’ll be one bit mad about it.


I don’t know about you, but the weekends always feel like a crazy whirlwind of fun for me, and it’s always just a little bit tough to go to bed on Sunday night knowing I have to wake up and face the “real world” the next day. Yes, I work from home and yes, many feel that’s quite the luxury, but I promise it’s still not easy. If anything, I feel more accountable for being productive, especially after an event-filled weekend like the one I just had.

I’ve been up north at the parents’ house since last Wednesday and I’ll actually be working from up here for the next week due to a heavy influx of close friend and family obligations. I helped cater one of my good friends’ baby showers this past Saturday and next weekend we have a family birthday party, so I just decided to forego 8 extra hours in the car (no bueno for a pregnant mamma!) and stay up here for the week.

The downside of that is, now I’m here surrounded by family, and they all have fun, exciting things that they want to do, yet I still need to be sure I find the time to actually WORK and get done what I need to get done since I’m still held accountable for doing my job, even when I’m not physically at my “home base.” Does anyone else struggle with this? Please tell me you do and give me pointers!

But enough about my time management/life balancing skills, let’s talk about what we REALLY need to get out on the table today (both literally and figuratively) – these PB&J Quinoa Bowls!

Two PB&J Quinoa Bowls ready to be enjoyed on any weekday or weekend morning!

Real life talk: this is another recipe where I have to give all creative credit to a favorite eating establishment of mine. When I first moved to Santa Barbara, one of the things I remember being most excited about was the fact that they had an entire eatery based around the concept of one of my favorite breakfasts – the acai bowl! Yes, I get excited about these things because, hey, I am a food blogger. And there most definitely were no such places in Napa, where I lived previously.

Let me tell you a little bit about Backyard Bowls and why it is so amazing. Well, they literally have any sort of acai bowl you can imagine – green bowls, power bowls, tropical bowls – you name it! Then on top of that they have a whole list of smoothies, PLUS a line of non-acai bowls that are also healthy and taste absolutely amazing. This is the section of the menu where the PB&J Quinoa Bowl resides.

A big PB&J Quinoa Bowl is the perfect healthy, filling breakfast to get your week started on the right foot.

When I was still working in a “real office” full time, a PB&J Quinoa Bowl from Backyard Bowls was one of my favorite breakfasts to pick up on my way to work and eat at my desk, especially if I had a long day ahead of me where I didn’t know what time I’d be able to get to any sort of lunch.

It’s chock full of protein, yet still tastes indulgent at the same time. And the quinoa, oh the quinoa. If you have never ventured into the world of quinoa served oatmeal-style for breakfast, I highly recommend you do so soon (you can try this Banana Peach Breakfast Quinoa with Cinnamon Sugar Pecans while you’re at it.) It is so tasty, super healthy, and full of protein. And yes, quinoa tastes just as good with sweet breakfast-y ingredients as it does with savory dinner-y ingredients.

So here’s the PB&J Quinoa Bowl scoop: First off, you literally cook it just as you would oatmeal. And instead of cooking it using water as the liquid, you’ll use good ol’ cashew milk. In fact, you could really use any sort of regular OR nut milk, I just used cashew because I was trying to really capture Backyard Bowls’ take on the whole thing and that’s what they use. But it’s totally up to you!

Overhead shot of the super-creamy and delicious PB&J Quinoa Bowl. The perfect healthy breakfast!

Once the quinoa is cooked (but while it’s still warm) you’ll stir in a little additional cashew (or other) milk along with your favorite peanut butter to make it extra creamy.

That’s it as far as cooking goes! The next bit, the toppings, is what really takes your PB&J Quinoa Bowl over the edge. First off, your favorite jelly is KEY. I’m quite the traditionalist and prefer to stick to strawberry jam, but feel free to use your own creative license here and use whatever your little heart desires.

Next, you’ll want to add some texture with nicely toasted slivered almonds. They add the perfect crunch to an otherwise texturally one-dimensional bowl. And are such a fun contrast to the peanut butter!

Finally, slice up some fresh banana and fan that out over top. Because what’s a breakfast bowl without a sliced banana topping?

Long story short, this PB&J Quinoa Bowl is a super easy and insanely delicious recipe that needs to make an appearance in your kitchen ASAP. It’s the perfect breakfast to really turn a week around and I guarantee you won’t be mad about it once your piping hot bowl is sitting in front of you on a Monday morning before heading to work.

PB&J Quinoa Bowl topped with strawberry jam, slivered almonds and fresh bananas. The perfect healthy breakfast!

Grab the recipe below and here’s to another productive week ahead! Xo

This PB&J Quinoa Bowl is the perfect healthy breakfast to get your week started on the right foot.
Print
PB&J Quinoa Bowl
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
9 mins
Total Time
24 mins
 

Protein-packed quinoa gets a morning makeover when cooked with your favorite nut milk and swirled with peanut butter and jam, plus even more delicious toppings!

Course: Breakfast
Author: CaliGirl Cooking
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 cups rinsed tricolor quinoa
  • 3 cups unsweetened cashew milk, divided
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter, plus more for topping (if desired)
  • 2-4 tablespoons strawberry jelly
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds, toasted
  • 2 bananas, sliced
Instructions
  1. Bring quinoa, 2 ½ cups of the cashew milk and honey to a boil in a medium saucepan, stirring occasionally. 

  2. Turn down the heat to a low simmer, cover and cook for 10 more minutes. 

  3. Turn off the heat and stir in additional ½ cup of cashew milk, salt and peanut butter. 

  4. Scoop quinoa into 2-4 bowls and top with strawberry jelly, almonds, banana and more peanut butter, if desired.

PB&J Quinoa Bowl | CaliGirlCooking.com

Peanut Butter and Jelly Pull-Apart Bread

We’re taking this week by the horns, and this Peanut Butter & Jelly Pull-Apart Bread is going to help us do it.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Pull-Apart Bread | CaliGirl Cooking

There’s nothing like conquering a delicious bread recipe to give you some motivation and an extra boost of confidence (when it turns out well, that is.) Not considering myself an “experienced” bread baker, I have to admit that I had my doubts about this recipe throughout the ENTIRE baking process. I powered through and told myself to keep going even when the gumminess of the dough was making my stand mixer overheat. Thankfully the amount of butter in this recipe loosened things up nicely and the result was a rich, moist dough laced with creamy peanut butter and jelly.


But first, how was everyone’s weekend? We had a great couple of days with my folks, going out to eat at some tasty Santa Barbara restaurants and hitting up the Paul Simon concert at the Santa Barbara Bowl last night. It was a triple date with my parents, my brother and sister-in-law, and Chris and I (the first time we had ever done such a thing) and it was a blast! The Santa Barbara Bowl is an out-of-this world outdoor concert venue and if you’re ever in the area between the months of April and October (“Bowl Season”) I highly recommend you get a ticket to whoever happens to be playing while you’re here, it is so worth it!

Anyhow, I digress. Back to this Peanut Butter & Jelly Pull-Apart Bread. This was a bit of a nostalgic recipe for me to create. I came up with the idea based off of this Pull-Apart Beer Bread with Comte and Whole Grain Mustard. It came out so well and got such rave reviews that I knew I wanted to play around with the “pull-apart” concept and come up with some different flavor combinations. If you’ve known me for any period of time, you’ll know that I am a biiiiiiig peanut butter-lover. Like, I kind of need to have it in some form or another every single day. And peanut butter and jelly are just natural partners, amiright? There’s nothing that goes better together (IMHO.)

Peanut Butter and Jelly Pull-Apart Bread | CaliGirl Cooking

So, since this flavor combo would be a little sweeter than the Comte and whole grain mustard I filled the beer bread with, I decided to go with more of a brioche dough for this bread. I pulled out my trusty Bouchon Bakery cookbook (can’t go wrong with that, even if it’s a leeeetle bit intimidating) and found Thomas Keller’s recipe for Craquelins. Technically, Craquelins are brioche’s sugar sweet cousin. They’re these cute little rolls dusted in pearl sugar with a sugar cube tucked inside each one. I didn’t go quite that far, but slightly adapted Mr. Keller’s recipe to come up with a buttery, slightly sweet dough laced with vanilla and cinnamon.

Important note: The dough needs to rest quite a bit (including an overnight rise) so you’ll want to plan in advance when making this recipe. But the waiting is the hardest part. When you break it down step by step, the actual techniques and ingredients required are REALLY easy.

The first step is to make a “starter” and let that sit for about an hour. Then we get into the mixing and kneading of the dough. We let the dough go through a rise as is before lacing it with the peanut butter and jelly, then let it rise overnight in the pan in what will eventually be its finished form. In the morning, we bake it off and less than an hour later we have a delicious, messy, sticky, sweet loaf of Peanut Butter and Jelly Pull-Apart Bread.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Pull-Apart Bread | CaliGirl Cooking

Eat it right away, freeze it for later, or cut it into pieces to pack in your (or your child’s) lunch. This is an incredibly rich bread and you really don’t need very much to feel satisfied. A little bit goes a long way!

Now, go forth and make this bread! I have nothing but faith in you, you can do it!

Peanut Butter and Jelly Pull-Apart Bread

Yield: Makes one 8-inch loaf

A delicious, indulgent pull-apart bread laced with peanut butter and jelly.

Ingredients

    For the starter:
  • 3 ½ tablespoons whole milk, warmed to 75 degrees Fahrenheit
  • 2 3/8 teaspoons instant yeast (about 1 1/3 packets)
  • ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons plus ¾ teaspoon flour
    For the dough:
  • 2 ¾ cup plus 2 teaspoons flour
  • ¼ cup plus ½ teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 ¼ cups plus 1 tablespoon butter, cut into ½ inch pieces, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla bean paste
    For the filling:
  • 5 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup jelly (your choice of flavor, I used strawberry)
    For the egg wash:
  • 1 egg

Instructions

  1. First, make the starter. Combine milk and yeast in a small bowl. Add flour and mix ingredients together using your fingers. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for one hour.
  2. Place the flour, sugar and salt for the dough in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook and mix to combine. Add the starter and mix on low speed for 30 seconds. While the mixer is still running, add eggs, one at a time, mixing each time until incorporated. The dough will be incredibly dry. Don’t stress! Mix on low speed for about 15 minutes. Keep an eye on your mixer and give it a rest throughout the process if needed. My mixer got a little warm by about minute 10 so I stopped mixing and let it rest for a few minutes to cool down.
  3. Next, add the butter, a few pieces at a time, mixing on low speed after each addition until incorporated. I stopped the mixer and used my hands to incorporate the butter for the first couple of additions, until the dough loosened up a bit. Once all the butter has been added, run the mixer for an additional two minutes. The dough will be very sticky at this point.
  4. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface (you may need to use a spatula to get the dough cleanly out of the bowl.) Pat the dough roughly into the shape of a rectangle, then take the right side and fold it over to the middle. Repeat for the left side (like you’re folding a letter.) Form dough into a ball. Spray a large mixing bowl with cooking spray and place dough in bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise for at least one hour, or until doubled in size.
  5. Once again, turn dough out onto a floured surface. Pat into a long rectangle. Spread peanut butter, then jelly, evenly over the dough. Roll dough up into a log on the floured surface, then cut the log into slices (each slice should be 1 ½ to 2 inches thick.) Spray an 8-inch loaf pan with cooking spray, and carefully tuck the slices of dough into the pan. When it bakes, the dough will meld together and form the pull-apart bread.
  6. Cover the loaf pan with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator overnight.
  7. The next morning, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove loaf from refrigerator and place in preheated oven. Bake for 45-55 minutes, or until top is golden and bread feels fairly solid when tapping on the center. Check the loaf at minute 35 or so. If the top is already pretty golden, cover with aluminum foil to prevent it from browning too much. Let bread cool completely before serving.
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Peanut Butter and Jelly Pull-Apart Bread | CaliGirl Cooking

It’s peanut butter-jelly time!