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Joy Bauer's PB & J Pops

YIELDS
makes 8 pops
RATE THIS RECIPE
(9)
Courtesy Joy Bauer
YIELDS
makes 8 pops
RATE THIS RECIPE
(9)

Ingredients

  • 1½-2 cups sliced/chopped strawberries
  • 1 cup 2% vanilla or berry-flavored Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • melted semi-sweet chocolate chips, crushed peanuts and freeze-dried strawberries (optional)

Chef notes

Your classic childhood sammie is now transformed into a protein-rich frozen treat. It's refreshingly cold, super creamy, and utterly delicious. Each bite delivers rich peanut butter flavor mingled with pockets of sweet strawberries. Then, you can bedazzle your pops with optional (yet highly recommended!) toppings — a drizzle of melty chocolate, crushed peanuts, and a sprinkling of dehydrated strawberries on top ... who's drooling?

Technique tips: If you prefer a smaller batch, you can half this recipe to make 4 pops. Although, it's nice to have a stash stored in the freezer for future healthy treats. After they're frozen, simply remove them from the ice pop mold and transfer to a freezer bag for easy storage. They'll keep in the freezer for up to a month.

The batter becomes very thick and may be a bit fussy when you're adding it into the popsicle mold. Use a wide spoon and a wooden stick or butter knife to fill each compartment, and gently tap the mold a few times (or insert the wooden stick or knife) to ensure the mixture has settled to the bottom and is evenly distributed ... all the way up to the top of each compartment.

For easy removal, you may have to run the mold under warm water to loosen up the pops. Just be careful not to leave them in the water too long or they'll melt. It's a bit of a dance and you'll want to test trying to remove them frequently, so you don't miss the mark!

Swap options: I like to use 2% Greek yogurt for a creamy consistency. This recipe also works well with 0% nonfat Greek yogurt, but pops will be a bit icier. For ease, I use flavored Greek yogurt (vanilla and berry flavors taste great mixed with the peanut butter. Look for brands with no added sugar if possible). However, you can also start with plain, unflavored Greek yogurt and mix it with 2 tablespoons honey or maple syrup to sweeten it up. Then, add the peanut butter and strawberries as directed.

Toppings are optional and will make your pops look and taste extra special. For a chocolate drizzle melt ½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips with 1 tablespoon peanut butter, as the nut butter will help to create a thinner, more drizzly consistency. Otherwise, the plain melty chocolate may be too thick for thin drizzling. The bedazzled topping is an easy and awesome touch for serving guests at a party!

Preparation

Add strawberries to a bowl and mash roughly with a muddler or fork. Stir in yogurt and peanut butter until smooth and well combined. Spoon into popsicle molds (batter will be thick, see note above for filling molds) and freeze for at least 4 hours or until overnight. Remove from mold and transfer to freezer bag for easy storage. Pops will last in freezer for up to a month.

To add coatings: Once solid, carefully remove pops from mold and lay flat on a baking sheet. Drizzle melted chocolate over the exposed side and sprinkle crushed peanuts and/or freeze-fried strawberries over the chocolate swirls. Place back in the freezer until chocolate firms, at least 30 minutes.