I love to make my own nut and seed butters. I can control where the nuts came from, if they are raw or roasted, how much (if any) salt is in them, if they are creamy or chunky, etc.
Nut and seed butters are really easy to make! They do require a food processor or a high-powered blender for best results (although I have heard of people making them in a mortar and pestle). I decided long ago that I wouldn’t have an appliance-free countertop, so it takes no time at all for me to use my blender or food processor to make the nut butters.
The butter I make most often is peanut butter in my Vitamix. Peanuts take very little time to turn into peanut butter because of their oil content. That’s really the key in ease of turning any nut or seed into a butter.
I also make almond butter, cashew butter and tahini (from raw sesame seeds) regularly. When my daughter was in school, there were no tree nut butters allowed, so I made her sunflower seed butter.
Out of all the nut butters, almond is the hardest to make because the nuts are drier than most. After damaging my blender once trying to make almond butter without any oil (which is typically how I make my nut butters), I decided to choose to make it only in the food processor from then on. (And since it takes longer to turn creamy, the food processor is the more convenient tool, anyhow, because it does the work and you can walk away.)
My new favorite nut butter is pecan! I made it yesterday for the first time and I couldn’t believe how fast it came together – in just 30 seconds. I used raw pecans, no salt, no sweetener, and it’s SO creamy!
It was so easy to do, I can tell you in just one line: empty raw pecans into blender or food processor and process until creamy. (If you are using a food processor or standard blender, you may need to stir the pecans/push the pecans down…in my Vitamix I barely had to use the tamper.)
Once you start making your own nut and seed butters, you may realize like we did that they’re so much more delicious than the store bought kinds. For the most part, it’s also much less expensive to make your own and the possibilities are endless. Although I choose to keep it simple and use only the nuts or seeds (raw except for peanuts) in the butter, you can blend nuts/seeds, add some salt or seasonings (cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice…), sweetener, roast the nuts, etc.
I’ve got a couple more butters on my short list to make next – brazil, walnut and hemp seed.
So how do we use our nut and seed butters?
- on sprouted muffins or homemade bread
- in smoothies
- on apples
- on celery
- as a dip for dark chocolate squares (no candy bars needed here!)
- in granola bars
- in salad dressings
- in noodle sauces
- in dips
- on rice crackers
- in cookies and other baked goods
- off the spoon (?!)
What is your favorite nut or seed butter?