PB & J Sandwich Cakes

It’s the end of summer, which means one thing—it’s time to go back to school! Well, at least for some. For parents, it means getting the kids ready for school. And then for people like me—out of school and without kids—it means absolutely nothing! JK. It’s a time for all of us to get a bit nostalgic and think back to our days in school, regardless of how long ago that may have been. I started thinking of my own school time nostalgia and the first thing that came to mind was the joy of eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich at lunch—all gooey and delicious, perfectly warmed and slightly smashed after a couple of hours spent in my backpack. The classic PB&J sandwich is just so darn perfect! So perfect that I wanted to create it in cake-form. Yes, it’s true—what you’re looking at here isn’t a sliced sandwich, it’s actually a sandwich CAKE!

With sliced angel food cake, a ridiculously delicious peanut butter buttercream, and a light layer of jam preserves, these peanut butter and jelly sandwich cakes will pass for the real thing … until you give them a taste! Whether they’re served as a surprising after-school treat for kids, gifted to teachers and classmates, or made solely to provoke childhood memories, everyone will be able to enjoy going back to school (whether physically or metaphorically) with these super sweet sandwiches.

PB & J Cakes, makes 8-10 sandwich cakes

1 1/2 cups liquid egg whites
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 teaspoon almond extract
1 1/4 cups cake flour
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
pinch of salt

For the frosting and filling:
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup creamy peanut butter
pinch of salt
2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup fruit preserves

With an electric or stand mixer, beat egg whites on medium speed until they are thick and form stiff white peaks. Turn the mixer down to low and slowly add in the cream of tartar and almond extract, continue beating for a few seconds until mixed in.

Sift together the flour, sugar, and salt. Repeat the sifting process four times. Using a spatula, gently fold the dry ingredients into the egg white mixture until all of the dry ingredients are mixed in.

Pour the mixture into ungreased loaf pans—you should have enough batter to fill two small to medium-sized loaf pans. Place the pans in a cool oven, then turn on the oven and bake at 325°F for 45 minutes to 1 hour until the cake is golden brown. Once baked, place pans on their sides to cool so that the angel food loaf keeps its shape. Allow the cake to completely cool (around 2 hours) in the pan. Once cool, slide a spatula around the sides of the pan to loosen and remove.

While your cakes are cooling, prepare the frosting and filling for your sandwich cakes. For the peanut butter buttercream, in the bowl of your mixer blend together 1 cup of room temperature unsalted butter and 1 cup of creamy peanut butter until combined. If your peanut butter is salt-free, add in a pinch of salt. With the mixer on low, gradually add in 2 cups of powdered sugar. Once the sugar has mixed into the peanut butter, turn the mixer up to medium and whip for 2-3 minutes until fluffy. Scoop a cup or two of the frosting into a bowl and set aside. For the remaining frosting, bag and store it in the refrigerator for future use. It’s so good, you will definitely want to use it again soon.

For the fruit preserves, simply just add a cup of your preferred jam or jelly into a bowl and mix with a spoon to thin it out. Set it aside with your buttercream.

Once the cakes are cooled, turn the cake loaves upside down and slice them with a serrated knife into thin (bread-like) slices.

Use a spreading knife or spatula to add the peanut butter buttercream and jam to your cake slices.

Sandwich two opposite-filled slices together, and there you have it—peanut butter and jelly sandwich cakes!

I can’t believe how much these look like actual sandwiches. I preferred the bright white and airy look of the angel food cake, but you could also use your favorite white cake recipe. Vanilla cake could work too—it just looks a bit more like potato bread than white bread. In regards to that extra peanut butter buttercream, believe me, you will not be mad about having some of that leftover to use on your next dessert. In addition to frosting cakes with it, it also tastes delicious when used as a dipping sauce for some chocolate, topped on ice cream, or frosted on some warm, freshly-baked cookies. There are endless peanut butter buttercream pairings, that I felt it was necessary to provide a recipe that would leave you with some leftover. Enjoy! xo. Alana

Credits//Author and Photography: Alana Jones-Mann. Photos edited with A Color Story Desktop.