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Peanut butter (or any nut butter for that matter!) is a pantry staple in my home. I love peanut butter so much that it is one thing I would make sure to have with me if stranded on a desert island! I mix it into my bowl of oatmeal for added protein, dip pretzels in it, and mix it with Greek Yogurt and chocolate chips for a sweet treat. Of course, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich with a cold class of chocolate milk is a good go to breakfast or lunch. This is my go-to fuel before my long runs during marathon training.
Well, I finished off my jar of peanut butter and didn’t have time to run to the grocery store so I pulled out the 3 lb bag of almonds I recently purchased from Costco and decided to try my hand at making some almond butter. Almonds are a delicious and nutritious snack! While they are high in calories, a small handful is a good source of fiber, protein, Vitamin E, Manganese, Magnesium, Vitamin B2 and healthy fats. Almonds are also filled with antioxidants. Almonds help lower blood sugar levels, reduce blood pressure and lower cholesterol levels. This powerhouse tree nut can also help reduce hunger and assist with weight loss. Here’s how I used these nutritious whole raw almonds to make almond butter.
First, I spread 4 cups of almonds onto my largest cookie sheet and placed them in a preheated 350 degree oven. I set my timer for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, I moved them around a little bit and let them toast for an additional 3-5 minutes. Toasted nuts smell so good! When you smell them, they are done!
Next, I pulled out my trusty Hamilton Beach Food Processor. I placed all 4 cups into the food processor, but will only put 2 cups at a time the next time I make almond butter. It took awhile for the nuts to break down and I had to keep pausing to scrape down the bowl. You have to be very patient while the nuts are in the food processor. It took about 10-15 minutes for the almonds to break down and become smooth almond butter. I prefer a smoother consistency so I would run the food processor for a few minutes, stop it and check the consistency using a spoon until it was the smoothness I was looking for. It is actually magic watching the almonds go from whole tree nuts to a powder and eventually a spreadable butter!
I placed the almond butter in a mason jar and it will last in the refrigerator for a month. I prefer to put the almond butter in a glass container because it was still warm from being toasted and the glass container will not soak up the smell of the almond butter. I find that plastic containers soak up the smells of the food that is put inside of them. I always need to soak the plastic food containers in hot, soapy water to help get rid of the smell and/or stain. These mason jars are great because I use them to portion out my oatmeal for the week. They also work great for prepping salads for lunch.
I am looking forward to mixing some almond butter into my oatmeal for breakfast, dipping pretzels and carrots into it for a nutritious and satisfying snack and spreading it on two hearty slices of whole wheat bread for a delicious sandwich. What is your favorite nut butter? Have you ever made almond butter? I’d love to hear more about your experience making or eating almond butter in the comments!