One of my all-time favorite snacks is dark chocolate chips poked into almond (or peanut or cashew) butter. It’s salty, rich, and just a bit sweet. A cold glass of milk is an imperative accompaniment.
As many of you know, I’ve really been trying to step up my health game after giving birth. Commercial nut butters were one of the things that I decided to let go in my attempts to clean up my diet. Of course I still wanted a treat, so I got into making my own.
Now, why would I want to avoid commercially produced almond butters? Let me explain…
3 REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD MAKE YOUR OWN ALMOND BUTTER
1) Homemade Almond Butter Tastes Better
Whenever I open a new jar of store-bought almond butter, I have high hopes. Those hopes are soon dashed when I shove a spoonful into my mouth. It always tastes old, or (worse yet) rancid. Gross.
My homemade almond butter never has that off flavor. It tastes fresh and delicious.
2) Homemade Almond Butter is Healthier
As I’ve mentioned before, most nuts and seeds have a nutrient-absorption inhibitor: phytic acid. This can make your journey to better health more difficult because phytic acid can make it harder for your body to absorb minerals. However, with a little careful preparation, you can reduce the phytic acid in almonds and other nuts. A simple soak in a brine helps to reduce the phytic acid, and sprouting diminishes it further.
For the most part, commercial nut butters are NOT properly prepared. Almonds are quite high in phytic acid, so it’s important to properly prepare them. You can read more about phytic acid HERE and HERE.
3) Homemade Almond Butter is More Economical
Store-bought almond butter can run you anywhere from around $8-$20 a jar. True, buying almonds isn’t the cheapest thing ever (how did they get SO expensive lately?!). But if you compare the cost of properly prepared commercial nut butters to the price of buying almonds, you’ll see that you’re going to save money by making it yourself.
NOTE: I have since learned that you can reduce the amount of anti-nutrients even further by purchasing skinless almonds, and/or by sprouting almonds. You have to buy TRULY raw almonds if you want to sprout them.
I am very interested in trying your recipe to make my own almond butter. I read and understand the reason for soaking the almonds in order to reduce the phytic acid. What I am not understanding is why is it necessary to then dry them in the over after we soak them? Is this just to imrove the taste, make it more nutty?
Thank you so much for sharing your experience and knowledge, I really appreciate it.
Monday 30th of April 2018
I have read conflicting opinions. Some people say that you shouldn't heat your nuts above 145 or so after soaking them because that kills off the beneficial enzymes that were activated in the soaking process. Other people say that you should toast the nuts after soaking them to help make them more digestible.
I personally dehydrate them after soaking because it improves the flavor and helps the nuts to be more shelf-stable (though I store mine in the freezer since we aren't huge nut eaters). I'm sure you could make the almond butter without dehydrating the nuts, but the texture and flavor would be different. :)
Tuesday 8th of August 2017
Yay! So happy it worked out for you! And I'm more than happy to try to answer any questions. :)
Monday 7th of August 2017
Hi Erica, I made almond butter today after soaking and drying my almonds without adding oil and it worked. I am not sure what the problem was when I tried it at the end of June. Maybe I had soaked them too long....I am not sure. But it worked today and I am over the top happy about it. It was so frustrating for me when it didn't work because I make almond butter every week and have been for years but never with soaked & dried almonds only raw. So now I am very happy. No more phytates!!! Thank you for your help and putting up with my frustration!!
Monday 7th of August 2017
I have made almond butter after soaking and drying without adding oil, but perhaps there's a variable in your case that we're not seeing. How big is your food processor? Sometimes if the food processor is too large for the amount of almonds you're processing, it can't get them smooth.
Saturday 5th of August 2017
I don't want to use oil because it will add more calories. According to your recipe adding coconut oil was a suggestion but not necessary and that even without the oil the food processor should process the almonds into the almond butter. Every recipe I have checked has said that after soaking and drying you can make almond butter without added oil.
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