Friends of ours gave us a panini press as a wedding present and for some reason it sat in the closet for years until we had kids. I don’t know why we didn’t break it out sooner because it’s hands down one of my favorite pieces of kitchen equipment. It’s amazing how just hot pressing a sandwich can turn average bread and filling into a rich, gooey and crusty creation that my kids, their friends (and our mommy and daddy friends) adore.

Surprisingly, making a panini doesn’t take much longer than a regular sandwich. In fact, while I’m packing the rest of Kenya’s lunch I just put his sandwich in the press for a couple of minutes and by the time I’m finished, so is the sandwich, ready to be packed away.

When most people think about paninis, cheese comes to mind, but I thought hot pressing a PB&J was a cool way to liven up a classic school lunch sandwich. With plenty of potassium from the banana slices, carbohydrates from the bread and protein from the nut butter, this is a well rounded treat that will keep your kids going in the middle of the day when they need it most. You’ll be hard pressed to beat it. 😉


PB & J Banana Panini

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Servings: 4
Author: Catherine McCord
Total Time 4 minutes



  • Cut the banana in half. Then cut each half into strips lengthwise (so the pieces are long and flat).
  • Spread the peanut butter on one side of four pieces of the bread and top with the several slices of bananas.
  • Spread the jelly on one side of the four remaining pieces of bread and then place on top of the banana slices.
  • Place sandwiches in a panini maker, press and cook for 3-4 minutes or until sandwich is pressed and golden.
  • Serve.


Calories: 200kcal | Carbohydrates: 39g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 2g | Sodium: 260mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 11g
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About the Author

Catherine is a mama of three. A Kentucky girl living in California. Here’s what I know: all kids can be great eaters and mealtime must be easy. I create simple, healthy recipes the whole family will love.


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  2. […] I stand very much corrected. See here, here and here if you are at a loss for how in the world one might construct such a difficult dish! Like […]

  3. Hi Catherine,
    Do you know of any panini makers that have a stainless steel interior as opposed to the usual non stick ones? Thanks!

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