Nut butters are a great way to incorporate protein into your diet. Plus, let’s face it: They’re yummy! But many store-bought varieties are filled up with sugars, oils and salts. Go the natural route, and make your very own nut butters at home.
Nut butters aren’t at all hard to make; they just require that you believe in what seems impossible. Chances are you’ve seen nuts in their solid form and then in a spreadable form in jars, and always assumed it takes some extroardinary means to get from one form to the other. Not the case!
You can actually make your very own nut butters with basic ingredients and a good food processor. Using the example of almonds, we’ll demonstrate how to turn these nutritious, crunchy treats into a smooth and creamy butter.
Homemade almond butter
This incredibly healthy recipe requires only one ingredient: raw, unsalted almonds!
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Lay the desired quantity of almonds flat on a baking tray. One cup of almonds will yield roughly half a cup of almond butter.
- Roast the nuts in the oven for 10–12 minutes.
- Remove the nuts and let them cool slightly before pouring them into the food processor.
- Blend the nuts, scraping down the sides and turning up the bottom and edges when necessary. The important thing here is to have patience. The nuts may become a mealy substance for a while, which might cause you to feel as though they’ll never become creamy, but they will! Just wait for it. It may take up to 10 minutes for the consistency to change, but after enough time has passed, you’ll start to notice it clumping together, and you’ll have your very own almond butter.
Note: If after 10 minutes the almonds have not changed consistency, it may be that your food processor isn’t strong enough. If you don’t have a stronger one available, add a teaspoon of vegetable oil at a time until the mixture starts to come together. Give it time between each teaspoon you add.
Roasting and adding
Keep in mind that many nuts (including almonds) come already roasted, in which case you won’t have to roast them first. You can also purchase raw nuts and forgo roasting them to achieve an equally delicious raw nut butter. And as with store brands, you can choose to add other ingredients, such as a pinch of salt or a splash of agave nectar, for additional flavour. Plain, blended nuts, however, are always the healthiest option.
There are plenty of different homemade versions of nut butter to try, such as cashew, peanut, hazelnut and more. The great thing about creating a nut butter yourself is you don’t have to limit yourself to a single kind of nut. For example, you can make a cashew-macadamia blend or a peanut-almond blend. So if you get tired of a certain kind, play around with some new combinations!