Nut butters are essentials in our household. Being that we like to get all-natural and organic products when possible AND the fact that we go through about a jar a week, the cost eventually adds up. Especially, when you start to dabble with speciality nuts like cashew or walnut, for example.
Nut butters, especially peanut and almond, are protein packed and are a quick way to add healthy fats into your diet. While others like walnut, cashew or pecan arent the highest in protein or healthy fats, they still provide a great source of omega-3 and omega-6. Overall though, any type of homemade nut butter is better than the sugar-filled store brands. By making them yourself, you know the exact ingredients and aren’t left wondering if there are hidden oils or sugars. Take Jif or Skippy for example, the front label says “Natural” but the ingredient list starts out strong with roasted peanuts but then the next few ingredients are sugar and some more sugar, hidden in a different form of course, and a bunch of oily grossness. Plus, you can add your own little twist to each batch. We sometimes like to spice it up with some cinnamon or coconut oil, for a little extra oomph.
Grabbing some nut butter and a handful of either celery or carrot sticks is such an easy snack to take on the go, or munch on throughout the day. You can even share some with your pup! We usually prep little Ziploc bags of cut up celery and carrots and store it in the fridge for throughout the week.
Hands down the best Christmas gift I’ve ever received (you know you’re getting old when kitchen and house appliances get you excited) is the Nutri Ninja AutoIq Blender. We use it multiple times per day! However, we’ve had the Food Processor accessory sitting in our pantry for quite a while, with no real use for it, until I realized that I could save us so much money by making homemade nut butters! I came to this conclusion after trying to make a brownie recipe for a dinner party (recipe to come soon 🙂 ) and midway through mixing the ingredients, realized that I did not have any cashew butter on hand nor did I have enough time to stop what I was doing to run out and get some. I’ve seen people do it before but the thought sounded complex and time consuming. With the oven already preheated, I decided to go for it!
The whole process was rather easy and not as daunting as originally thought. It’s kind of like a slow cooker, just tossing it all in and letting it do its thing, while you do other things.
I tossed a cupful of raw cashews onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and gave it a little spritz of olive oil. I kept an eye on them until they were roasted and light brown. Next, I tossed them in the food processor and let it mix on medium until it started to take on a creamy consistency. I added a little coconut oil to speed the process up (depending on your blender, the nut you are using, and the ingredients, it can take up to 10 or so minutes). Once it reached the desired consistency, I took out the 1/2 cup needed for the brownie recipe and then transferred the rest of nut butter to a container and let cool.
I tried this again with almonds and walnuts, but the cashew butter is the reigning champ, in my opinion.
If you feel that the task is too time consuming and you’d rather just pay the extra money to have the company make it for you, I highly recommend the following brands: Smucker’s Natural, Crazy Richards, Teddie’s and Trader Joe’s. Each of these only have one or two ingredients: the roasted nut and 1% salt.
Do you make your own homemade nut butters? Have any tips/suggestions on fun things to add to it? We want to know, comment below! 🙂