It used to be that peanut butter was the standby lunchbox favorite. Then peanuts became a deadly enemy and moms had to start getting creative. As adults, many of us have rediscovered the nostalgic taste.
Of course, we have to be careful with which nut butter we buy. The ones that make it to the sale aisle have other ingredients besides nuts as the first ingredient. Oils and sweeteners often make it to the top of the list. Why not get back to basics and enjoy the nuts without any additives?
When you go to a health food store to peruse the options, you might notice that depending on the nut, a jar can cost quite a bit. Whether peanut butter is natural or processed, it costs pretty much the same. Things start to elevate when you go to the almond butter. Then the more expensive nuts, even when only added as a flavor, start to escalate. If you have pistachios, macadamia nuts or hazelnuts, chances are that your grocery bill may be going up.
This is all well and good, but if you have a food processor, why don’t you make your own? Even if you don’t, invest in a magic bullet and make your nut butter weekly to save money and gain flavour. You can roast your nuts in advance or you can just pour them into your food processor as they are. Add nothing, turn on your food processor and every minute or so, scrape down the sides of the bowl. It will begin to clump and look grainy. And just as you want to throw in the towel, the delightful, smooth consistency that you know and love will begin to magically happen.
This will take about 15 minutes, so be patient. Spoon into a mason jar and try not to eat it all in one sitting. Homemade nut butter will stay fresh in the fridge for about a week. Warm up to room temperature when you are ready to enjoy. It will taste fresh and delicious with all of the benefits of nuts and none of the additives that you don’t want in your diet.
Here are ten of our favorites:
1) Roasted hazelnut almond butter.
2) Roasted pecan butter.
3) Cashew peanut butter.
4) Chocolate almond butter (add a heaping tablespoon of cocoa powder to the food processor at the end and prepare to kick Nutella to the curb)
5) Vanilla cashew butter (add some vanilla beans or extract to the mix)
6) Sunflower seed butter (why leave out seeds?)
7) Walnut butter (it might look dry, but it is delicious)
8) Straight up peanut butter (make sure to buy unsalted peanuts)
9) Fruit on the bottom nut butter (make a jar with jam on the bottom for an easy oatmeal topper or sandwich spread)
10) Pistachio butter (very decadent)
Start experimenting, blending and prepare to never again buy another jar!
Photo credit: https://flic.kr/p/m9Zbr4