Aw Nuts, Butter!


So for those of you who follow me on Facebook, you know I was in search of a food processor so I could try my hand in making almond butter.

Almond butter, as you may know, is very expensive in the store (as are almonds), so my banker husband is always a little skeptical to try it. So I did what any normal wife would do…I took to the Internet to see if I could make my own.

Now, I love peanut butter, but I wanted to see what the benefits were of other nut butters (14yo boys make jokes now) without paying a fortune. According to Whole Foods website, almonds are high in monounsaturated fats, the same type of health-promoting fats as are found in olive oil, which have been associated with reduced risk of heart disease. According to the 3fatchicks blog, almond butter, which is equally delicious (as peanut butter) is more nutritious than most other types of sandwich spreads. Below you’ll find the health benefits associated with the consumption of almond butter. In addition to helping your heart, it can help lower blood pressure, help control blood sugar, help with weight control and is full of antioxidants.

Basically, just because almonds are high in calories and fat, it’s like an avocado. It’s full of good fats that keep you healthy and is better for you than a peanut butter that is full of preservatives and loaded down with salt. Just FYIing here.

Anyway, I found this recipe for Sea Salt Honey Almond Butter and that blog directed me to this one. Which provided me this recipe.

You don’t need to use the links because the recipe is super easy. Ready? Almonds, honey, sea salt. If you’re impatient like me you might want to have a little olive oil on hand.

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As far as equipment goes, you’ll need a food processor. And a spatula. And a mason jar. We had a KitchenAid chopper, but the difference, friends, is that a food processor stays on whereas a chopper must be pulsed. My worry with the chopper was that it might overheat because you need a good solid 12-15 minutes of run time (with some stop time factored in).

You can start by toasting your nuts. I spread two cups of almonds out on a cookie sheet lined with aluminum foil and baked at 350 for about 5 minutes.

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Then transfer the nuts to the food processor. You can do it right away. And start the processor.

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It will go through several stages of chopped-uppedness.

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Then it will start to clump. Throughout this process, I stopped the processor and scrapped down the sides a bit. This stage was supposed to show me it’s close to ready because it is starting to clump.

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You can see here that it’s starting to cream up. Yeah! Its working. This is after about 8 to 10 minutes of processing and stopping and scraping. At this point, I added about one tablespoon of Kroger Lighter Flavor Olive Oil just to ensure it would cream.

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This is basically the finished product.

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After processing a few more minutes, just to be sure, I stopped the processor, took out the blade and added the sea salt and honey, one teaspoon and two tablespoons respectively, and mixed with my spatula. Then I transferred to an 8 ounce mason jar.

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I suggest using one tablespoon of this as a serving, because, as my husband said, “Eh. It’s very almondy.” Here are the nutrition facts…100 calories, 8.4g total fat, .6g saturated fat, .1g polyunsaturated fat, .6g monounsaturated fat, 0 trans fats, 0mg cholesterol, 79.5mg sodium, .5mg potassium, 5.1g carbohydrates, 1.8g fiber, 2.8g sugar, 3g protein. Obviously if you need two tablespoons, you’d double these numbers.

You have to store this in the fridge because apparently almond butter will rot or something.

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Now as far as cost goes (if you don’t factor in the cost of the processor), we had the honey (free), we had the sea salt (free), almonds ($5ish–but I only used half the bag), we had the mason jar (free). So whereas a jar from the grocery store costs about six bucks, my jar cost about half that and it was customized the way I like it!

Definitely try it…some of the recipes I found factored in cinnamon and cloves or other tasty spices. Pretty cool, I think.

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