My friend Shay adores almond butter. She has the ability to eat it day after day, smeared on toast or straight out of the jar with a spoon. And honestly? I never quite understood why she liked it so much. I always found it a bit stodgy and without the smoothness of some other nut butters I’ve tried.
But lately, the urge to make a homemade nut butters took hold and I couldn’t shake it loose. I was a little concerned that my 30+ year old food processor wasn’t up to the job, but I decided to give it a shot anyway. The motor did smell slightly overheated, but kept on chugging throughout the processing. I chose to make a roasted maple almond butter because I had all the ingredients needed. Plus, I figured that if I didn’t like it, I’d always have an appreciative audience in Shay.
I took my primary inspiration from this post on the Edible Perspective and tossed 1 1/2 cups of raw almonds with 3 tablespoons of maple syrup on a baking mat. I sprinkled a bit of sea salt on prior to roasting, because I like my nut butters to have a salty side.
After 20 minutes of roasting, the almonds took a little cool-down prior to their trip through the processor. Truly, I could have eaten the entire baking sheet just as they were (I must remember to do more with maple roasted nuts. Maybe I should make these again).
Once they were cool enough to handle, it was just a matter of running the processor, scraping down the sides and adding a bit of walnut oil to help things get moving. After six or seven minutes of processing, those roasted almonds had transformed into the most luscious nut butter I’d ever seen or tasted. Suddenly, I understood Shay’s love of almond butter. It’s creamy, nutty and just a touch sweet thanks to the maple syrup.
So far, I’ve eaten it with apple slices, spread on toasted millet bread (a friend gave me half a loaf, the recipe is from Moosewood) and straight out of the jar with a spoon. When this jar is gone (and it will be soon, I only got a little more than half a pint), I’ll be making more.
- 1 1/2 cups of raw almonds
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup
- pinch of sea salt
- 1-2 teaspoons walnut oil (or any other complimentary/neutral oil)
- Spread the almonds on a rimmed cookie sheet, preferably with a baking mat or sheet of parchment underneath them. Drizzle the maple syrup over the almonds and toss the nuts with your fingers so that they get evenly coated. Roast them at 325 degrees for 20 minutes, tossing at least once during the cooking process.
- When the nuts are fully roasted, remove the pan from the oven and let cool for at least 10-15 minutes.
- Pour the nuts into the food processor and pulse to begin breaking them up. Add a drizzle of your oil and run the processor 30-45 seconds. Remove the lid and scrape down the sides. Continue with this process/scrape/drizzle procedure until your nuts have broken down in butter. You may not need all the oil, it just depends on the moisture content of the almonds.
- Store your homemade almond butter in the fridge, as with many things you make at home, it will not have quite the lifespan that similar store bought products have.