DIY Projects: Make Your Own Nut Butters

July 2009

I have lived in fear--and morbid curiosity--of peanut butter for 29 years. Due to my severe allergy, peanuts have sent me to the hospital more times than I care to remember. I fear flights. I fear Thai food. I am terrified during baseball games. But I'm also curious. I want to know what this mysterious, spreadable substance tastes like. I want to have more than just a jelly sandwich.

I was surprised to find it's actually very easy to make nut butters at home. People like me can safely avoid their allergy, and others can experiment with new creamy nut butters using different legumes.

I started with this recipe. If you don't love almonds, substitute Brazil nuts, cashews, hazelnuts, or macadamia nuts.

Jennie's Allergen-Free Almond Butter

1 cup of almonds (I got them from my beloved bulk aisle.)

¼ teaspoon sea salt

1 tablespoon unrefined vegetable oil

Step 1: This recipe recommends roasting the almonds first, and I'll agree--it brings out some great aromas. Put your almonds in a pan and pop them in a 300-degree oven for 20 minutes.

Step 2: Put your almonds and salt in a food processor and blend them until they are finely ground. I don't have a food processor so I used my smoothie maker--it was not as successful and often got clogged by almond chunks.

Step 3: Add oil and blend until the almond dust becomes almond paste. I needed to add a little more oil to get the right consistency.

Step 4: Grab bananas and honey and enjoy.