Peanut Butter and Mayo: How to Make This Iconic Southern Sandwich

The most unusual Southern recipe out there? It has to be the peanut butter and mayo sandwich.

The peanut butter and mayo sandwich is having a moment right now. People are either intrigued or repulsed by the combo of salty peanut butter and tango mayo. I was certainly curious about how this combination would taste—but also about where it came from in the first place.

It turns out peanut butter and mayo was a popular sandwich from the 1930s to 1960s, due in large part to the Great Depression. The peanut butter and mayonnaise combo was a cheap, calorie-packed option for many families in the South.

Why Peanut Butter and Mayo?

During the Great Depression, many Southerners in the United States relied on this budget-friendly sandwich. They were once as popular as a peanut butter and jelly! Newspapers from the 1940s advised using just enough peanut butter and mayonnaise to form a “spreadable consistency.”

Find more unusual peanut butter sandwich recipes, like the Elvis sandwich—which is similar to this banana sandwich.

Peanut Butter And Mayo Sandwich On White BreadJenna Urben for Taste of Home

How to Make a Peanut Butter and Mayo Sandwich

This Southern Peanut Butter Mayo Sandwich is one that you can really adjust to fit your preferences. Want more mayo? Spread it on. Prefer more peanut butter? Make it happen!


  • 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon creamy peanut butter
  • 2 slices white bread

Editor’s Tip: This basic bread recipe makes the perfect sandwich bread.


Spread a layer of mayonnaise on one slice of bread and peanut butter on the other. Press the sandwich together to serve.

Variations on the Classic Recipe

In addition to the peanut butter and mayo, some sandwich lovers add extra ingredients.


Give your sandwich extra kick with some shredded cheese. Sharp cheddars add more flavor, while mild cheddars increase the creaminess.


A big leaf of iceberg lettuce adds crispness and helps cut through the heaviness of the sandwich spread. It’s also very cost-effective.


For an extra hit of protein, add a few slices of bacon. Just make sure you pick up our Test Kitchen’s preferred brand of bacon.

What Does a Peanut Butter and Mayo Sandwich Taste Like?

I won’t be making peanut butter and mayonnaise sandwiches often, but I must say, I enjoyed this Southern sandwich more than I thought I would. The classic taste of white bread with peanut butter can’t be beat, and the added mayo gave the sandwich a tang I’ve never experienced before.

I personally didn’t mind the lack of texture—but a couple pickle slices wouldn’t hurt!

Looking for more Southern classics? Try a pineapple sandwich!

Old-Fashioned Recipes for Southern Food
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Jenna Urben
Jenna is a food blogger focused on sharing allergy-friendly recipes. Her favorite ingredients include sweet potatoes, chickpeas and squash.