Peanut Butter & Jelly Time

It exists on every menu--the item everyone truly wants to order but doesn't for fear of looking like the juvenile, poor-palated person in the group. Whether it's the burger at a steakhouse or the PB&J at a sandwich shop, you know you want it. Go ahead and order that PB&J without shame at these places that celebrate it--the cream of the creamy-PB crop. Here are our six favorite PB&Js in San Francisco.

Updated: April 12, 2010

Best Gourmet PB&J in SF


Specialty's Cafe & Bakery

101 New Montgomery St, San Francisco, CA 94105

The Peanut Butter & Stuff sandwich should serve as an inspiration to lazy, Jif-toting moms everywhere. This grownup version of the childhood classic employs two thick slabs of freshly baked whole-wheat bread and packs within them creamy peanut butter, fresh cranberry sauce, sliced bananas and slivers of Granny Smith apple--all for under $5.


Best PB&J for Under $2


Courtney's Produce

101 Castro St, San Francisco, CA 94114

Fore a mere $1.50, this corner produce market delivers the best dessert-disguised-as-lunch in the city: a PB&J made on Semifreddi cinnamon bread with fresh and juicy sliced strawberries layered inside. It's a worthy reward for anyone who hikes to the top of that hill to get there.


Best Calorie-Bomb PB&J


Butter

354 11th St, San Francisco, CA 94103

This should come as no surprise from a self-described "white-trash bar" that also deep-fries Twinkies, serves Jello shots and named itself after lard--but Butter has managed to turn the wholesome, protein-packed youngster favorite into drunk food by tossing it in the deep-fryer alongside those Twinkies. And, damn, is it delicious.


Best PB&J Dessert Sandwich


Sauce

131 Gough St, San Francisco, CA 94102

Satisfy a midnight craving with the PB&J dessert at this late-night restaurant. The crown jewel of the dessert menu is a pan-seared sponge cake sandwich that's layered with house-made strawberry preserves and Frangelico peanut butter and filled with a vanilla ice-cream center.


Best Non-Sandwich PB&J


Nob Hill Grille Restaurant

969 Hyde St, San Francisco, CA 94109

This once breakfast-only neighborhood grill recently started serving all day, including the most important meal of anyone's day: dessert. The $10 cupcake trio on the sweets menu includes Kahlua-chocolate-hazelnut and pumpkin-chocolate-chip flavors, too, but the standout is the PB&J--also available solo for $4.


Best Secret-Ingredient PB&J


Ike's Place

3506 16th St, San Francisco, CA 94114

The Ooey, Gooey & Louie PB&J, made with organic peanut butter, jelly and Ike's secret "dirty sauce" is a favorite at this Castro sandwich shop. Ike's well-deserved cult following is largely hinged on the mayo-based secret sauce--so while it might seem like an odd addition to the traditional sammie, trust that this is a risk you'll be glad you took.