Whether you enjoy it with bananas, celery, inside a smoothie, paired with jelly or nutella in a sandwich or even on its own, peanut butter has become a staple food in many Americans' diets. It's bursting with proteins, is relatively low in fat, and it carries many health benefits with it. What most people don't know is that peanuts themselves aren't actually nuts; they fall into the legume family (which also includes alfalfa, beans and peas). While legumes are nourishing, bona fide nuts are actually even healthier. You see, in addition to lowering your risk of getting cardiovadcular disease like peanuts, eating a steady diet of true nuts helps lower your risk of developing heart disease.
In particular, almonds are among the healthiest nuts one can consume, as they protect against gall stones, diabetes and coronary heart disease. While many enjoy snacking on nuts by themselves, consuming nut butter is a delicious alternative to obtaining the health benefits that nuts have to offer. When combined with honey and cinnamon — two natural sweeteners that together form a popular folk remedy for diseases — almond butter can be both a scrumptious & sweet snack, delectable dip, and a heart healthy food. I find that making it with roasted almonds is better, since roasting adds another flavor without adding any ingredients.
Thus I give you JaxBass' recipe for Natural Roasted Almond Butter. It's quick (takes 45 minutes at absolute most), easy and yields a fantastic and healthy product. Plus it's all natural; there are no additives if you select your ingredients right. As mentioned above, if you buy your almonds at a supermarket (as opposed to a farmer's market or co-op), make sure they have no additives besides salt (look at the ingredients) and try to get roasted almonds
Here's what you'll need:
- 1 pound of additive-free almonds (roasted/salted is recommended, but whole, roasted and lightly salted work too).
- Natural Honey
- Ground cinnamon
- A food processor
- Glass container with lid
If you prefer to roast your almonds yourself, you'll also need:
- 2 baking tins/dishes
- An oven
- Sea salt
(If you don't want to roast the almonds by yourself, skip to step 5).
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
While it's preheating, separate the almonds into two 8 oz piles and put them into the baking tins.
Bake the almonds for 10-12 minutes. You'll know when it's done when a nutty smell exudes from the oven.
Take your almonds out and set them on a counter top. If you want to salt them, sprinkle 1.5 tsp of sea salt over each tin. Congratulations, you've successfully roasted your almonds.
Open the food processor and place all of the almonds into the processing chamber.
Drizzle 2 tbsp of honey over the almonds, making sure to get the honey evenly distributed over the almonds.
Sprinkle 1-1.5 tsp of cinnamon over the almonds, making sure to get the cinnamon evenly distributed over the almonds.
Close the food processor and turn it on. Watch the nuts get chopped up and fly all over the chamber.
Leave it running for about 10 minutes, or until you see little action happening in the chamber.
Open the chamber up. You'll probably see almond dust or small clumps of almond dust it inside. With a spoon, scrape the almonds off the sides of the chamber and push all of the almond bits towards the center of the chamber/towards the blade.
Close the chamber and turn the processor on again. Leave it running for 5 minutes this time, or until you see little action going on. The almonds should be clumping together into a paste by now.
Turn off and open the chamber up. Scrape the paste towards the center of the chamber with the spoon.
Repeat steps 11-12 until almond butter is at desired consistency. Running the food processor longer will give you a creamier product, whereas leaving the processor on for a shorter time will give you crunchier almond butter.
- When your almond butter is at the desired consistency, scrape all of it from the chamber into the glass container and seal rge container. Store in your refridgerator for generally up to a week. Congratulations, you've successfully made almond butter. Enjoy!
Culinarily-speaking, treat this almond butter just as you would peanut butter. When I've made it, I usually just eat it on a AB&J sandwich, with bananas or even plain. It's a great and healthy way to quell those sugar cravings.