Any guesses how much you’ve spent on nut butter this past year? If you’re anything like me, you’ll be hitting the multiple hundreds by now. The array of different blends we can now get actually blows my mind. Gone are the days where as a child, peanut butter (made by ETA) was the only nut butter avail. Now we get to pick from almond to cashew, ABC to chocolate hazelnut, to “everything” butters with every nut and seed you can imagine.
But whilst you’re mortgaging the house for said nut butter addiction, has anyone ever told you how easy it is to make your own Homemade Nut Butter? Think…
- One ingredient (ok two if we include the salt)
- A food processor
- Less than 15 minutes
To get you churning, I’ve written up my top tips below – which nut blends to use, whether to roast, dehydrate, or leave them raw, and how to ensure you achieve that drizzle-worthy texture. This one’s going to be fun – come dive in!
How to make your own Homemade Nut Butter
What is nut butter normally made from
In NZ we’re pretty lucky, in that there is a tonne of super lovely natural style nut butters available. But there are still a few dodgy blends about, and if you live in the US, South America, or Asia, these are likely the only thing on offer. Let’s check out the back of the label of one said butter:
Roasted peanuts (90%), sugar, hydrogenated vegetable oil (rapeseed oil, cottonseed oil, soybean oil), mono and diglycerides (emulsifiers), molasses, salt
I don’t know who thought it would be a good idea to add sugar to nut butter, but clearly, it’s being done en masse. Let’s pop that jar back where it belongs, and get some decent nut butter in your life.
Ingredients for this homemade nut butter
All you need to make the world’s best almond/cashew/peanut butter?
Plus, a bit of heat, but we’ll cover that below.
Tips for making the best nut butter
Here’s how you’re going to become a homemade nut butter blending goddess:
- Roast first – roasting your nuts helps to bring out incredible flavour (try eating a raw peanut vs roasted – no competition there). It also reduces the protective nutrients on the outside of the nut, which can inhibit digestion and absorption. Just make sure you only lightly roast at a low temperature, to minimise oxidation of the nuts’ omega essential fatty acids. Roasting also heats the nuts, making it way easier for them to release their oils and become a drizzly butter. Can you buy pre-roasted nuts? Yes, you just won’t get that heat factor which helps with blending.
- Or dehydrate – if you’re ready for next-level nut butter, you might like to experiment with dehydrating instead of roasting. Why? Dehydrating (or activating) removes the maximum amount of difficult-to-digest nutrients such as phytic acid, as well as initiates the sprouting process. This changes the nut from a dormant entity to a living food, and the nutrient profile in terms of vitamins, minerals and protein increases. It’s like watering a seed to grow it into a tree. To dehydrate – soak your nuts in a bowl of water overnight, rinse and drain, then dry them in a dehydrator for 24-48 hours. A dehydrator heats food at low temps while allowing moisture to escape, which helps get things crispy. If you don’t have one, use your oven at 50-80°C with the door slightly ajar (put a wooden spoon in there) for a few hours until things are crunchy. The oven method isn’t as energy-friendly, so fill all the trays before you start.
- Minimum 2 cups – you need critical mass and weight to release the nuts’ oils – it also helps them fall back down on the blades.
- Be patient – depending on the strength of your food processor/blender, it may take anywhere from 2 minutes to 5. It will go through four stages as seen in the photos below – whole, crumbly chunks, grainy paste, then finally smooth butter. Don’t stop at stage 3, keep going until stage 4. If you’re using a blender, use the stick tamper to push the nuts down into the blades as you go.
- Add a dash of oil – if your butter is still struggling, add a dash of neutral oil (rapeseed, sunflower, olive) to get things moving.
Blend ideas for your nut butters
Homemade almond butter is a great one to start with, but I also love making blends. Here are a few of my favourites:
- ABC – almonds, brazil nuts, cashews (which I’ve done in the in the vid here)
- Cashew & Coconut – 1 cup cashews + 3 cups desiccated coconut
- Peanut – be sure to roast for optimal flavour
- Almond sunflower – 2 cups almonds + 1 cup sunflower seeds
- Cinnamon almond – add 1 tsp cinnamon and ½ tsp vanilla after blending
How to use your homemade nut butter
Here are some of my favourite ways to use your nut butters:
- Spread on toast with sliced banana and cinnamon
- Drizzle over fruit salad, cake, or dessert
- Spoon into dates, dried apricots, or figs then pop in the freezer for a quick sweet treat
- Use to make an easy satay sauce with some soy sauce, salt, maple, and water or plant-milk
- Blend 2-3 tablespoons with 1 cup of water for a quick and easy nut milk
- Add 1 tablespoon + 1 cup water to your smoothie, instead of adding milk
- Use in baking instead of butter and eggs (it adds richness and bind)
How to store your nut butter
In a sealed jar in the pantry for a couple of months. You might see some places recommending storing your nut butter in the fridge, to make sure the pressed oils don’t go rancid. But I don’t recommend this as it’s make them go rock hard and definitely not drizzle-able. If it takes you a year to get through a jar of nut butter then sure. But you and I both know that’s never going to be us.
Want more easy pantry staples? Try these next:
If you make this Homemade Nut Butter – let me know! Leave a comment and rating below (it helps others find the recipe too), and if you want to really be my best friend, tag me in your jar @begoodorganics on Instagram, TikTok, or Facebook. I can’t wait to hear from you!
- 2 c nuts
- pinch sea salt
- Prepare your nuts. Either roast for 10 minutes at 150°C fan bake, shaking once during roasting. Or soak overnight, rinse and drain, then dehydrate for 24-36 hours. Or low-roast in the oven at 50-80°C fan bake with the door slightly ajar (put a wooden spoon in there) until crunchy.
- Blend warm nuts (at least two cups worth) in a food processor or blender with a tamper for 2-5 minutes until smooth and creamy. It will go through four stages as seen in the photos above – whole, crumbly chunks, grainy paste, then finally smooth butter. Don't stop at stage 3, keep going until stage 4! Scrape down the sides and blend again to get it super drizzly.
- Pour into a glass jar and keep in the pantry for up to two months. 2 cups nuts makes just over 1 cup nut butter.
- Food processor / blender
- Nut free: Use hemp, sunflower, pumpkin or sesame seeds, or a combination. Roast the sunflower/pumpkin/sesame seeds first for the best flavour.