Snack: Peanut Butter on everything.
Brain Booster Rating: 8 out of 10. The protein and fat in the peanut butter will keep you going as long as your work forces you awake.
Equipment: A knife and plate. A spoon if you must eat straight from the jar.
Ingredients: Peanut Butter!
It’s 11pm on a Tuesday, and you’ve just spent the last six hours avoiding this very moment at all costs (read: Facebooking). It is finally time to carve out your slice of library space and crank out that 15-page colloquium paper due by noon tomorrow.
No need to struggle in hunger. Peanut butter is a protein-packed, inexpensive ingredient that can be layered, swirled, stacked and spread in or on just about anything. With just one jar of peanut butter, you can make (at least!) 5 snacks that will satisfy any midnight craving and keep those productive library juices flowing until the wee hours of the morning.
1. Fluffernutter Crackers. Bite-sized butter crackers are best layered with creamy (or chunky!) peanut butter and silky smooth marshmallow fluff. Easy enough to pack in a baggie and eat in your cubicle, these hand-held snacks are amazingly addictive, so bring extra to share with your fellow procrastinators.
2. Ants on a Log. Remember when mom used to pack these healthy snacks-disguised-as-sweets in your lunch box? Simply spread peanut butter along the indented side of a celery stalk and top with raisins or dried cranberries.
3. Ice Cream. No, I’m not suggesting you make your own peanut butter ice cream (though how delicious would that be?!). Rather, scoop a heaping tablespoon atop your favorite vanilla or strawberry ice cream and add a drizzle of chocolate syrup. With this much sugar, you’ll definitely be able to stay awake until you’ve hammered out all the gory details of that paper.
4. Apple Stackers. This is a classic PB & J for the carb-conscious among us. Use thinly sliced apples (I prefer green granny smiths for their contrasting sour notes) instead of bread to make bite-sized sandwiches you can feel especially good about tomorrow.
5. PB & O. Just a scoop of peanut butter mixed into instant oatmeal transforms an otherwise drab and predictable bowl into a decadent and wholly satisfying warm-you-up snack. For extra indulgence, add a small scoop of cocoa powder for a classic chocolate-peanut butter combo.
Maria Russo is a senior at Barnard College majoring in English and prefers creamy peanut butter to all other kinds.