Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Peanut Butter: High-Value Superfood

(NAPSI)-Want to spread the value in your meals and snacks and boost your protein and nutrients? Spread peanut butter. The benefits of peanut butter are clear when you compare cost per serving.

For instance, just two spoonfuls of peanut butter-a serving about the size of a ping-pong ball-costs around 13 cents but has just as much protein as a glass of milk (24 cents per serving) and more than a hot dog (56 cents per serving).

In addition to packing plenty of protein, researchers using data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture found that people who eat peanuts and peanut butter regularly take in many more nutrients-including vitamin E, magnesium, iron, zinc, folate and fiber-than those who don't. Plus, peanut butter provides good fats that lower cholesterol, according to researchers from Penn State.

One delightful way to up your protein and nutrients for less with peanut butter is with this recipe, which can healthfully feed a family of four.

Peanutty Vegetable Medley

2 teaspoons peanut oil

1 large onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 can (8 oz.) tomato sauce

½ cup water

2 teaspoons chili powder

½ teaspoon salt

1 cauliflower (about 2½ pounds), broken into large florets

2 carrots, cut into ½-inch slices

1 green pepper, cut into 1½-inch pieces

⅓ cup creamy peanut butter

8 ounces couscous, pasta or rice, cooked

In a 5-quart Dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; cook, stirring frequently, 3 to 5 minutes or until onion is translucent. Stir in tomato sauce, water, chili powder and salt. Add cauliflower, carrots and green pepper; bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 15 minutes. Stir in peanut butter. Cover and simmer 5 minutes longer or until vegetables are tender. Serve with couscous, pasta or rice.

Makes 4 servings.

You can find more recipes and information about the nutrition in peanuts and peanut butter from the experts at The Peanut Institute. Look online at www.peanutinstitute.org or call (888) 8PEANUT.

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