Who doesn’t love good nut butter? Peanut butter has always been in our cupboard. It goes great on apples, bread, by itself, and in smoothies. It is a great source of protein and several essential vitamins and minerals. If you are like me and prefer almond butter, you are getting more of your daily Vitamin E, Iron, and Magnesium. In either case, as with all items you purchase in your local grocery store, it is important to watch the ingredients on the label to look for added oil, salt, preservatives, and additives. So, by making your own, you are gaining the highest potential of nutritional value. And trust me, fresh makes a world of difference with taste.
To make your own almond butter, all you need are almonds, a food processor, and some patience. The only ingredient is raw almonds, organic being the best for taste and nutrition. The most affordable option we have come by is a bag of raw almonds from Trader Joe’s, which is about $6.99 for 16 oz. I used approximately 10-12 oz after Jourdan used the rest to make homemade almond milk.
The only other ingredient I used was coconut oil. By adding oil, it will get a little creamier, it will happen a bit faster, and will probably save on your food processor a bit. Coconut oil also added a delicious flavor to it. If you are feeling really inventive, add some spices to it as well, like cinnamon or cayenne pepper.
We use a KitchenAid 3 Speed Hand Blender. It comes with a small attachment that is a food processor. Any food processor will due, as long as you are using an “S” blade.
The instructions are simple. Blend up the almonds. You will see several stages of what happens to the almonds as you blend them. Pay close attention to make sure your processor does not overheat. You will also need to consistently push down the almonds from the side of the container.
First, the almonds will become ground up, finely chopped.
After about 5 minutes, you will see the almonds start to thicken. You will need to push them down from the sides consistently at this point.
After 10 minutes, it will start to form a thick paste. If you want, begin to add oil (I suggest coconut) 1 tablespoon at a time.
Between 15 and 20 minutes, you will see it become creamy. Patience is key. I really liked the almond butter at this point, but I processed it for another couple of minutes and it got even better! The heat of the food processor will actually begin to “cook” the almonds, that is why dry, raw almonds are best.
It yielded a jar of delicious almond butter, very much cost effective and healthier too! After you are done, put it in a sealed container in the refrigerator. It will keep for several weeks.
Try it these various ways!
~ Spread on sliced apples
~ On toast with honey
~ In a smoothie with banana and almond milk