Make it Clean Monday: Almond Butter
Well, it’s Monday… or at least it will be by the time I get this blog post out. I have 2 children (age 3 and 5) who keep me pretty busy so it’s hard to find a good chunk of time to sit and write a blog from start to finish.
So “Make it Clean Monday” is when I take a not so healthy food item or recipe and make it… you guessed it… “clean!”
Since this is my first “Make it Clean Monday” post I will start with something simple… homemade almond butter.
There are lots of store bought peanut butters and almond butters out there that taste delish. However, many of them have lots off added ingredients that aren’t the best. Many contain oils that aren’t choice (by my standards at least) and sugar. And when you finally do find one without sugar it can end up costing you around 15 bucks per jar (here’s one example **affiliated link).
When I was a nursing momma, my daughter was very sensitive to the foods I ate. She had colic and would get rashes when I ate foods like dairy, soy, and peanuts (to name just a few). Problem was, I am a peanut butter lover! So I stared buying almond butter but it was so pricey (and full of other stuff as I mentioned before) so I researched how to make my own. Fast forward to years later and I prefer my home made almond butter to any store bought nut butter of any kind.
Here is how to make it:
You will need a food processor-the bigger the better. A blender just will not do. I used to make my almond butter in a dinky little food processor with not much power. It worked but I could only make a cup at a time and my motor burnt out eventually. When it broke I invested in a bigger better one. I currently own this Hamilton Beach 14 cup food processor and I love it.
Ingredients you will need:
- Coconut Oil (optional but OH so good!) I buy Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil from tropical traditions. However, if you are trying coconut oil for the first time and would like a less expensive option you might want to try this kind.
- Sea or Himalayan Salt (optional)
I didn’t write how much of each ingredient because I really make each batch slightly differently each time and depending on the size of your food processor you may use different amounts. But, for those who NEED an exact amount a small batch might call for 1 cup of almonds, a tsp of coconut oil and 1/8 tsp salt..
I preheat my oven to 300 degrees.
I then load up a big rectangle cookie sheet with as many almonds as I can fit without overlapping almonds. Since I have a large food processor I try to make as much almond butter as I can at once so I don’t have to make it so often (my kids love this stuff as much as I do and gobble it up fast).
Yep, I totally labeled my almond jar just in case anyone were to get confused. “Where are the almonds honey… oh, wait, just saw the label. Never mind!”
Then I cook my almonds for 20 minutes. You can skip cooking the almonds if you would like to keep them raw. I just really love the flavor brought out in toasting them.
Once the almonds are cooked, toss them in the food processor. Give them a few pulse grinds and then turn the food processor on full blast. You will then have to sit for a bit (or find some other tasks to do in the kitchen) since it takes a bit for the oils to release. You may have to periodically stop processing and scrape the sides of the food processor with a spoon or spatula and then turn it back on again.
You’ll need to be patient and keep the food processor on until the almonds become nice and creamy. They will start off as a powder then eventually will start to roll into a ball (keep blending), then they will become more and more creamy.
Tip: In the last few years I have been making almond butter I have burnt out one food processor motor and cracked 2 food processor bowls. My processors never seemed to handle processing almonds very well… UNTIL!…. I bought this beauty of a food processor. (affiliated link) Not only has the motor AND bowl held up but it’s SO quiet compared to any other processor I have owned in the past. It was a little pricy but well worth the extra money for quieter blending and not having to replace it. Best food processor I have ever owned! 🙂
Back to the recipe…
This is when you can either be done processing and enjoy your delicious almond butter OR you can make it amazing by adding your optionals (oil and or salt). I have a love affair with coconut oil so this is a must for me! In a large batch I add about a tablespoon (give or take), then about 1/4 tsp of salt at most. I like to add a little at a time, blend and taste. This way I get to eat as I make it. yum!
You’ll want to store your almond butter in an air tight container in the fridge since there aren’t any preservatives. I’m not really sure how long it lasts as I have never had it go bad (it’s so good we eat it all up in a couple of weeks or less).
Here is the finished product!
I like to keep mine in these Rubbermaid glass storage containers I found on amazon….
Or in a mason jar.
Making your own almond butter gives you total control over how you make it and what you put into it. You can ensure you are making a quality product for you and your family. You can use organic raw almonds if you prefer, or you can choose to toast them or not. You can omit any oil or add your favorite. Some people even love to add honey. Here is a post (click here) from my sister in laws awesome blog (MySweetNomsa.com). She made homemade peanut butter with honey after I went on and on about how delish homemade almond butter was.
UPDATE: If you would like to see a video on how I make my almond butter… click here.
*Some of the above links are affiliate links. Click here to learn more about affiliate links.