PB&J Permutations: Peanut Butter and Jelly Soda

There are certain combinations of foods that have become so iconic in the American food psyche (e.g., apple pie and vanilla ice cream, spaghetti and meatballs) that it seems wrong to have one without the other. The illustrious union of peanut butter and jelly -- which has proved so successful in the world of sandwiches -- is popping up unsurprisingly in other culinary dimensions. This winter I'm on the hunt to find (per)mutations of this comfort food classic.

On a recent trip to Candylicious to forage for discount Halloween candy, I spotted PB&J in a most surprising form: soda.

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It seems some enterprising young (well, not so much) man named Lester has developed a line of novelty soda flavors that includes peanut butter and jelly as well as pumpkin pie, sweet corn, and bacon.

Candylicious sells individual bottles for $2.99 (without tax), a steep price for a liquid sandwich. But I probably couldn't make this at home, so I was okay with paying some extra shekels.

The soda was suspiciously pink in color, which suggested to me that (1) it would taste more strongly of jelly flavor and (2) that jelly flavor would be strawberry -- despite a label photograph that suggested grape. But lo and behold, it was the taste of peanut butter that dominated -- though "peanut butter" is perhaps a generous term for the fake legume overtones.

After a few sips, I grew bored and just started craving a real peanut butter and jelly sandwich. With milk. I'm tempted to pour the remaining soda in a juice bottle to prank some unsuspecting fridge prowler, but five dollars says that prowler might end up being me.

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