I’ve been making lots of seed and nut butters recently, and they are really so much more simple than I expected. I particularly love seed butters, but they can be expensive to buy if you eat them as much as I do.

I eat seed butter on its own, dip carrots in for a snack, spread it on crackers and add to sauces for stir fries. Fortunately it’s pretty straightforward to make your own. All you need are 3 cups of your choice of seeds or nuts, a food processor and about 15 minutes to blend.

The picture is one of the seed butters I made using organic sunflower seeds. They’re one of my favourite seeds and are a great substitute for peanut butter. I’ve also done this butter using a mix of seeds.

 

Making seed or nut butter

 

Step 1: Toast (optional)

Toast seeds or nuts in the oven for 15-20 minutes at 180 degrees / 160 degrees fan. Spread out them in a layer on a baking tray, turning occasionally so they don’t burn. Leave to cool for a few minutes before blending. You can skip this step, but I think the toasted flavour improves the taste of the butter.

 

Step 2: Blend

Tip the seeds into the food processor. Turn it up to the maximum speed and grind. The seeds will first become a fine powder and then start to clump together. You may need to stop the food processor to wipe the sides down.

The mixture will begin to turn more buttery and warm up as the oil from the seeds releases. You can stop at about 13-15 minutes if you want it crunchy, or keep it going for 15-20 minutes for smooth. You can also stop for a short rest if the food processor engine gets too hot. If your mixture is still a little dry, just add a small drizzle of light extra virgin olive oil.

 

Step 3: Final additions

I tend to add a good sprinkle of good sea salt and ½ teaspoon honey, and blend for another 30 seconds. This is another optional step, but is a good flavour enhancer. Other optional additions are: vanilla extract, spices (e.g. cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, chilli or cumin), or a teaspoon or two of cacao powder for a chocolate spread.

 

Step 4: Store

Scrape the butter into a clean glass jar, seal it and store in a cool place. It will keep for a good few weeks – but I’ve normally eaten it long before then!

 

Making seed or nut butterMaking seed or nut butterMaking seed or nut butterMaking seed or nut butterMaking seed or nut butterMaking seed or nut butterMaking seed or nut butter

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