Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches? Yes, please! With the crusts cut off because I’m extra like that. Peanut butter and mayo sandwiches? Um, that’ll be a hard pass. Most of us wouldn’t dream of the combination for a sandwich, but during the Great Depression, they were quite popular. During those hard times, people tried to consume high-calorie meals that had plenty of protein and fat. However, since dairy and meat products were quite pricey and not everyone could afford them, cheaper alternatives were needed. That is where the peanut butter and mayonnaise on white bread sandwich made its debut. The combination actually became quite common within the Southern regions of the United States. In fact, in some areas, it became equally as popular as the classic peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.
Over the following 30 years, the peanut butter and mayo combination kept up its popularity among American households. But some believe this was also tied to the fact that mayo helped to make the rough peanut butter easier to spread across the bread. As Garden & Gun reported, newspapers in the 1940s in both Salt Lake City, Utah, and Troy, New York, were known to advertise mayonnaise as a way of moistening or thinning peanut butter in order to make it spreadable before adding other items such as bacon or American cheese
Then in the 1960s, it was Hellman’s Mayonnaise that created an advertisement which actually suggested ways of taking the basic peanut butter & mayo sandwich to the next level. One idea was the “double crunch,” which consisted of adding bacon and pickles to the mix. There was another one called “funny face,” and the ingredients were raisins and carrots. Another one that sounds somewhat palatable was the “apple fandango,” which had apple slices and marmalade to it. And finally, there was one called “crazy combo.” And as the name suggests, it consisted of salami, sliced eggs, and onions.
While we might be able to imagine such a sandwich, the peanut butter and mayo combination still remains a favorite amongst those older generations who grew up with them. But for those who would be able to stomach them, they still remain one of the cheapest ways of getting in your calories. Thankfully, we’re living in a time that isn’t the Great Depression and we don’t need to rely on these for sustenance.SKM: below-content placeholder