Last Fall, Trader Joe’s recalled their Valencia Peanut Butter due to salmonella exposure. We had about 1/4 of the jar left. Luckily, we suffered no ill effects, but it again brought to light the risks of contamination with factory produced foods. Apparently this manufacturing plant had a history of bad practices including, “improper handling of the products, unclean equipment and uncovered trailers of peanuts outside the facility that were exposed to rain and birds.”
I’m not overly concerned about nut butters and salmonella, but it is so easy to make your own. I have a lot of raw almonds on hand for making almond milk. I decided to try making almond butter in the food processor. I’ve made peanut butter in the Vitamix before, but although it works well, the scary noises coming from the beast during the processing made me want to explore another method. Also, more people have food processors than fancy blenders. After using both appliances, I prefer the food processor method. It took a little longer but the nut butter had a better consistency and was easier to process.
I did toast the almonds before blending, but raw almonds would work just as well and might even be a little more nutritious. You can also use roasted almonds, but I’d recommend unsalted so you can control the sodium.
I like to store the nut butter in a glass jar or container. You have to refrigerate natural nut butters and sometimes they become too stiff to spread. Warming the nut butter for a few seconds in the microwave makes them spread well again. For this reason, I like to use glass. You can re-use an old peanut butter jar, use a mason jar, or for smaller amounts a glass-lock container.
- 2 cups of roasted or raw unsalted almonds
- 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon of salt (to taste)
- Place the almonds in the bowl of your food processor fitted with the blade attachment.
- Turn on the food processor and process for 1-2 minutes. Turn off and scrape down the sides.
- Process for another 2 minutes.
- Turn off and scrape down the sides. Add salt to taste.
- Process until the nuts become creamy. You can add additional almonds and pulse to create a chunky version.
- Store in a glass jar or container. Refrigerate and stir before using.