Raw Recipe: Almond Butter

by Susan on February 6, 2010

Making nut butters can be a little tricky. I used to think that I had to do them in my Vitamix, which would drive me batty with all the scraping down that was required. Other times, I would have a fail, only because I quit too early. I didn’t realize how much time it takes, and the process that the nuts have to go through. But if you have a little patience, you can make nut butters that are fabulous. You will never want to buy them again!

I used my Kitchen Aid 12 cup food processor. It is a strong processor. The bottom warms up a little bit but if you are using an older processor, or a processor with a much weaker motor, common sense needs to prevail.

Almond Butter
yield 1 1/4 cup almond butter
  • 2 C Almonds
  • 1 T  Raw Honey (optional)
  • 1/2 t Sea Salt (optional)

Place almonds in food processor. Process for 8-12 minutes. You will need to scrape down the sides in the beginning. If you choose to use the honey and salt, stir in by hand after the butter is made as it will seize the mixture if you try to add it before.

*Chef’s Note: If using soaked, dehydrated (dried) almonds, you may need to add a little oil. This recipe requires the use of completely dry almonds.

After 2 minutes it will look like this.

After 4 minutes it will look like this.

After 6 minutes it will look like this.

Around 8 minutes, the almond mixture will ball up. Just let it keep going.

At 10 minutes it has begun to redistribute, but it is not done yet. You want to wait until the oils get released.

At 12 minutes the almonds have released their oil and the butter is ready! If you want to add honey or salt, stir it in by hand.

*Chef’s Note: If using soaked, dehydrated (dried) almonds, you may need to add a little oil. This recipe requires the use of completely dry almonds.

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{ 366 comments… read them below or add one }

Jessy (squeezetheday) December 14, 2011 at 2:34 pm

I’ve made homemade almond butter before, but my food processor is weak, so I only do it once in a while.

What do you mean with ”If you choose to use the honey and salt, stir in by hand after the butter is made as it will seize the mixture if you try to add it before.”, though?

Susan December 14, 2011 at 10:56 pm

Exactly what it says…it can seize the mixture, meaning change the texture and harden it if you add it while you are actually making the butter. It is best to stir it in by hand when it is done.

Raoul December 15, 2011 at 12:21 am

Hi,

Thanks for this instructive recipe. I will be using soaked and dehydrated nuts. I undertsand the need to add a little oil, but WHEN should this be added please? At the start with the whole nuts or once they are chopped up a bit?

Thank you.

Susan December 15, 2011 at 12:26 am

You can add it at any time.

Raoul December 15, 2011 at 9:18 pm

Hi Susan,
Thanks for that. I have tried it now with soaked, dehydrated almonds (2 cups). I added about 10-15ml of grapeseed oil after about 2 minutes of processing. I continued to process the nuts and the stages as you described them were all accomplished in about 15min. In the end I have produced a beautifully satisfying product. I showed it to my 2 boys and upon tasting it I nearly had to rip it off them lest the empty the bowl. I had no problems with my processor which is belt-driven, but the blades are still sharp, which could be where people may be having problems.

Gail Quillman January 2, 2012 at 7:01 pm

Hi Susan,
I’ve been making almond butter in my VitaMix for quite a while, and you’re right about scraping down, only my big hassle is getting the butter out. Lately the butter has been very stiff, so I soaked the almonds a few hours before trying again today, but the results were the same. So I have determined to buy a larger food processor.
With my current finances, the best I can afford is the Cuisinart 7-cup. Do you know or think that this machine would be up to the task?
Your recipes are heavenly and I’m very, very happy to receive the newsletters.
Thanks so much,
Gail

Gail Quillman January 2, 2012 at 7:02 pm

p.s.
I have been using raw almonds.

gq

goodsammy January 2, 2012 at 10:01 pm

Hi,

Thanks for a well explained tutorial. Can I use soaked and skinned nuts without dehydrating them?

Susan January 2, 2012 at 10:05 pm

I would worry about the extra moisture in the nuts if they are soaked and not dehydrated. Cheers!

Sonia Seeds January 5, 2012 at 9:31 pm

Gail Quillman,

I use my Cuisinart 7-cup food processor to make this recipe. It works great. I also use raw almonds. It takes about 10-15 minutes to make, but the final result is delicious. My co-workers are getting addicted to my new find. Enjoy

Robin January 14, 2012 at 2:03 pm

I’m confused. When you say raw, is this with or without soaking and dehydrating them? You don’t seem to add oil, yet you have told people to add oil? Could you please explain?

Susan January 14, 2012 at 2:18 pm

You can use raw almonds without soaking them. If you do decide to soak your almonds (to release the enzyme inhibitors) you must dehydrate them dry before using. Because you have soaked and dried the almonds, they don’t have quite as much oil in them and you may need to add some oil. That is why it says, “*Chef’s Note: If using soaked, dehydrated almonds, you may need to add a little oil.”

Vivienne January 17, 2012 at 9:05 pm

Hi,
Is the photo shown above almond butter with added oil or without? I am just wondering if the consistency (without adding oil) is similar to those sold in store.
Thank you.

Susan January 17, 2012 at 9:07 pm

I did not add oil to the photo. Cheers!

kelby January 21, 2012 at 5:49 pm

I have been wanting to try to make this for a while now but didnt know if it would work.
After borrowing my mothers 1988 GE food processer I had to try it. I used raw almonds and followed the recipe to a ” T “. I am excited to say it worked perfectly ! Sure beats the heck out of paying 8 to 10 dollars a jar ! Thanks Susan !

RawDad January 28, 2012 at 1:40 am

The every two minute pictures are great. Good presentation and directions.

Rena January 28, 2012 at 12:12 pm

Hello,

Thanks for this; can’t wait to try! One question – how long will the butter stay good for, and does it need to be stored in a specific manner?

Thanks!
Best…

Susan January 28, 2012 at 7:07 pm

I would keep it in the frige in a closed container and it should last for weeks. Nuts will go rancid after a while so you want to stay in line with that. Cheers!

Lindsey January 28, 2012 at 9:08 pm

I just bought a new food processor so I can do this. The top cannot be off while I have it on so I have to stop it if I’m going to scrap the sides down. I need to know though, is it normal for the butter to get so hot that it starts to steam?

Susan January 28, 2012 at 9:17 pm

If you check the temperature, you will find that the “steam” is probably water that is generating from the process. The temperature of the almond butter isn’t that hot. Cheers.

Lindsey January 28, 2012 at 9:20 pm

I was more curious as to what food processor you use. I can’t seem to not have the almonds smoking, even with professional tools

Susan January 28, 2012 at 9:24 pm

I use a KitchenAid 12 cup. If it is getting hot (check the temp) you can rest it for a bit when you are making it. Mine “steams” also but the temp of the butter never gets above 115. It isn’t actually like boiling, hot steam.

Kei Jager January 29, 2012 at 7:47 pm

I have a daughter who is allergic to nuts and soy… could this same process work with sunflower seeds? I’ve heard others talk about sunflower butter, and thought that might be a good option for us. Thanks.

Lisa February 2, 2012 at 9:13 pm

WOW made my first ra hazelnut butter. Way better than the raw bought stuff and cheaper too! Thank you.

Monica February 3, 2012 at 7:57 pm

Yay, thanks for the recipe! I am actually going to try to make gluten free almond butter cookies this weekend. Can’t wait!

Cryptic February 13, 2012 at 8:14 pm

thanks so much for the helpful recipe! the image references were quite useful. made it in my hamilton beach 4 speed blender. definitely had some issues with the bottom heating up, although the motor seemed to do ok. turned out it was more an issue of the rotary mechanism attached to the blades getting hot from the friction. it was basically a game of blend blend, stop stir scrape rest, blend some more. the mixture didnt ball up as pictured here, but i assume that is largely due to the size and dynamic of the blender. anyways, definitely fun watching the magic happen as the oils finally release. ‘its not working… its not working… omg its almond butter!’

Susan February 13, 2012 at 8:51 pm

Wow…a blender? You are brave! I am glad it worked for you!! Cheers!

Pam February 13, 2012 at 10:19 pm

You stated: “…If you do decide to soak your almonds (to release the enzyme inhibitors) you must dehydrate them dry before using.” Please share with me Why previously soaked almonds MUST be dehydrated. I can’t find information on that, and I’m really wanting to know this info that would be new to me. (PS – I do understand the purpose of soaking.) Thank you.

Susan February 13, 2012 at 10:26 pm

Pam…Because the nuts need to be dry, not wet for this to work. Cheers!

elaine February 15, 2012 at 11:42 am

thanks 4 sharing! i am sooo happy. the pictures really helped alot.
yum

elaine February 15, 2012 at 11:45 am

thank u this is great. the pictures really helped alot

dijaw February 16, 2012 at 10:33 am

Hi, Great recipe…love the pics. I added the honey and salt after the almonds had released their oils and it had become butter. I did not hand mix as you recommended…(didn’t read that far)….and it did seize! But then, I just let it blend and the process repeated itself, until I again had a nice oily butter. Thanks so much for the recipe:))

Sheri February 26, 2012 at 10:32 pm

Thank you so much for this recipe! It took my almonds a few minutes longer, but it worked perfectly! I am so glad I tried it!

katie March 1, 2012 at 6:40 pm

thanks for the recipe! but perhaps i should have read these comments first… i soaked my almonds overnight and emptied the water this morning before going to work. when i got home i decided that i’d try making the butter, since i’ve been putting it off for days. i don’t have a dehydrator so i put them in my oven with the door open. the lowest setting is 170* so i really didn’t leave them in there too long because of the temperature. most of the nuts were still wet when i had begun making the butter. do you know if its possible to let my crumbly almond mixture dry out and retry this tomorrow? thanks

raniarafie March 3, 2012 at 6:00 pm

can i just ask a stupid question?
what does C stand for? x)

Susan March 3, 2012 at 7:56 pm

C stands for cup. :-)

julie March 6, 2012 at 2:22 pm

Hi! If this helps I make a small amount, 2 cups worth. I soak, then dry out on a towel for a few hrs. or even a day. Then I put spread onto my little toaster oven rack and keep on warm for around 5hrs. turning the almonds every so often. I don’t have a food processor so I use my daughter’s Oster 12 speed using the chop/grind speed. I split the almond amount into thirds and grind each at a time. This speed “pulses” the almonds so they don’t get all stuck by the blade, and I also spatula the sides every so often. Then I dump each third as it is ground as small as I like, into a dish. After all 3 batches are done I pour back into the blender and add enough olive oil to make it the consistensy I want. YUM! P.S. I add a pinch of salt and a pinch of organic cane sugar also to the blender as I am adding the oil. : >

Tori March 6, 2012 at 8:47 pm

Thank you so much for this recipe. We just tried it and LOVE it!!! We added some local honey. It did take us about 15 minutes total. My husband keeps commenting how good it is as he licks the food processing bowl clean :)

Gloria Huerta March 14, 2012 at 9:48 pm

I am making some right now, in my Cuisinart processor. Only the container feels just a little warm to the touch. It’s been spinning now for about 8 minutes… looking good. I am not going to use honey. I am going to add about pitted 2 medjools or 3 honey dates, maybe. This is wonderful. I can’t wait to taste. I am so glad I found your website.

Erika March 15, 2012 at 11:46 pm

I only used 1 cup of raw almonds and I had to constantly keep scraping (and I have a nice food processor). I’m assuming this could be because I didn’t use enough almonds… ??? Maybe I should have soaked them?

Susan March 16, 2012 at 8:25 am

One cup of almonds is not enough. Also, if you soak the almonds you must dehydrate dry. You do not want to make this with wet almonds. You do need to scrape this down.

GeoffreyLevens March 16, 2012 at 10:20 am

If you start w/ frozen nuts you might find that it takes considerably less time to reach the final product. My wife stumbled on this accidentally while trying to make cashew meal for flourless bread. We store nuts in freezer so they keep better and when she just went straight from freezer to processor, the nuts started to turn to butter very quickly, before even really getting to the “meal” stage. I think being frozen somehow makes the oil separate out a bit though it goes right back into hiding if you thaw the nuts first.

Moriah March 17, 2012 at 2:35 pm

I just made a batch for the first time using Organic Pastures Raw Almonds. I have a Mini-Cuisinart Food Processor and it took about 12 minutes like it says. The only problem? It completely killed my processor! Even though it’s a little guy, it was quite expensive, so I’m bummed…but lesson learned!

Shari Reid March 18, 2012 at 2:56 pm

Awesome! Thanks for the recipe with the images through out the processing. Very helpful!

Susan March 19, 2012 at 9:03 am

Thus the warning…if you have a smaller processor common sense needs to prevail… :-)

Alexis Kimbrough March 20, 2012 at 9:00 am

I’ve never had almond butter before, but really wanted to try this because I’m such a PB fan. Made this last night in my Hamilton Beach food processor, eating it now as a breakfast snack with apples :) wonderful. I only made a cup because I wasn’t sure if I’d like it. Thanks for the detailed instructions and photos. I would have thought it didn’t work without the pictures because it did take a while.

Anjanette Harrell March 21, 2012 at 10:09 am

after making almond butter where is the best place to store it and how long will it keep?

Susan March 21, 2012 at 10:10 am

Consider the ingredients. It is just nuts. But nuts have oils that can go rancid so I store mine in the refrigerator. It keeps for weeks but use common sense, your nose and your tastebuds. Cheers!

Kimberly March 22, 2012 at 10:44 am

Another silly questions but there was not a photo before the almonds were ground, so . . .:) Do you use almonds with skin on or off? I’ve always used skins on and just raw, but not dehydrated. I get ok results but not quite as good as yours. I have a KitchenAid 9 cup processor.

Susan March 22, 2012 at 12:21 pm

I did not remove the skins. :-) If I had, I would have stated it in the recipe. Cheers!

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