Sweet and Savory Butter Madness!

Since I’ve been a little behind the past several weeks with my kitchen experiments and dishes, I thought I’d share THREE recipes with you for homemade (dairy free) “butters”. I LOVE nut butter/coconut butter/seed butters – I eat them by the spoonful or use them as toppings for both sweet and savory dishes or as dips or spreads.

Today I will share with you:

  • Homemade Coconut Butter
  • Homemade Almond-Pumpkin Seed Butter (sweet and savory nut butter recipes, my new favorite!)
  • Homemade Sunflower Seed Butter
Needless to say, my food processor has been getting a workout these days! It’s officially my favorite kitchen appliance…oh wait, I do adore my toaster oven.. and my Magic Bullet…well, it’s definitely in my top 2 or 3.to the butters!First up is so simple and doesn’t require a recipe-  homemade coconut butter. If you haven’t tasted coconut butter or you find the store brand so incredibly expensive ($9-11 per jar), you should give this a whirl (no pun intended).All you need is unsweetened, raw shredded coconut. I bought mine from NutsOnline so I know this brand works well. Buy the shredded coconut that doesn’t contain sulphur dioxide, it will turn into butter much quicker and you won’t be consuming preservatives.This is the basic step by step just like my homemade almond butter I made a while back. Nothing added, just coconut and a food processor (I have a KitchenAid)…and patience. It will turn into coconut butter but you will need to scrape down the sides with a spatula often, and repeat.

Homemade Coconut Butter

Ingredients

11 to 12 oz unsweetened, unsulphered shredded coconut (I used 3/4 bag of the 1 lb bag from NutsOnline)

Directions

1. Add shredded coconut to bowl of food processor. Turn on the processor, stopping every so often to scrape the sides, turn back on and repeat until you have a creamy coconut butter (it took me about 13 minutes).

Variations: I love the flavor of plain coconut butter but feel free to sweeten your butter with sweetener of choice, if desired (palm sugar, stevia, honey, agave etc). You can also flavor with vanilla, cinnamon, other spices etc to your liking.

Coconut butter will solidify at room temperature and it keeps for a quite awhile. I flake mine and use it on top of muffins, baked goods, breakfast bakes, flake bakes, pancakes, waffles, oatmeal or you can even use it as a base for a healthy fudge!

The second recipe is the one I’m most excited about — Almond-Pumpkin Seed Butter – it is DELICIOUS! I made 2 cups worth of this nut/seed butter a week ago and as of this morning, I am completely out. Obsessed much? Yes, I sure am!

I saw a bag of raw pepitas (pumpkin seeds) on sale at Natural Grocers a couple weeks ago that I couldn’t pass up. I’ve toasted them and sprinkled on top of my feta honeydew and tomato salad, I’ve used them in granola and as a topping but I haven’t used pepitas in such a large quantity.

Why not turn them into a seed butter? I had a couple cups of raw almonds lying around and thought they would make a good pair. After all, almonds are slightly sweet and would help off set a the greenish hue from the pepitas – it’s a match made in heaven!

I made a large jar of this nut-seed butter, the first very lightlysweetened with 1/2 tsp honey and a little sea salt…this was like crack on a spoon….Then the wheels started churning, and I couldn’t help but experiment a little. Ashley at Edible Perspective made a smoked paprika almond butterthat got me thinking I took a cup of the very lightly sweetened almond-pumpkin seed butter and added 1 teaspoon of garam masala (a mixture of toasted Indian spices – most mixes include cumin, cloves, cinnamon, coriander, black pepper, cardamom, bay leaves) for savory flair…oh man, was this good!Next, I’d like to try a homemade peanut butter with curry…

The combo may sound strange but this savory nut butter was gone in no time. I am actually going to the store tomorrow for more almonds to whip up another batch. If you aren’t too sure about it though, sprinkle a bit of garam masala on a spoonful of almond-pumpkin butter first…and then tell me it’s not crazy good! 🙂

Roasted Almond-Pumpkin Seed Butter

Ingredients

2 cups raw almonds
2 cups raw pepitas/pumpkin seeds
2 tsp garam masala or more to taste (an Indian spice mixture),
dash of cayenne pepper for a little kick, optional
1/2 tsp honey (agave for vegan)
sea salt to taste

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 170F and line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicon baking mat. Spread the almonds out onto the prepared baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes, stirring once half way through.* Remove from oven and let cool.

2. While almonds are baking, heat a dry large skillet over medium-high heat (no oil required). Add pepitas to pan and stir constantly with a wooden spoon or spatula until they are crackle, pop and are light brown on the edges (just a couple minutes). Be careful not to over toast or burn! Transfer to bowl of food processor and let them cool slightly.
3. Once almonds are mostly cool, add to the pepitas in the food processor. Turn on the processor, stopping every so often to scrape the sides, turn back on and repeat until you have a creamy almond-pepita butter (it took me about 9-10 minutes). Add salt and honey to taste and process again until well incorporated and try not to eat it all with a spoon enjoy!
*You can use raw almonds and pepitas but I prefer the flavor of the roasted/toasted, and it helps bring out some of the oils to reduce time in the food processor.
This recipe is featured at Marla’s Family Fresh Cooking blog at her Happy Post on Pumpkin Recipes this week!

Savory Almond-Pumpkin Seed Butter

Ingredients

2 cups raw almonds
2 cups raw pepitas/pumpkin seeds
1 1/2 to 2 tsp garam masala (an Indian spice mixture)
1/2 tsp honey (agave for vegan)
sea salt to taste

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 170F and line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicon baking mat. Spread the almonds out onto the prepared baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes, stirring once half way through.* Remove from oven and let cool.
2. While almonds are baking, heat a dry large skillet over medium-high heat (no oil required). Add pepitas to pan and stir constantly with a wooden spoon or spatula until they are crackle, pop and are light brown on the edges (just a couple minutes). Be careful not to over toast or burn! Transfer to bowl of food processor and let them cool slightly.
3. Once almonds are mostly cool, add to the pepitas in the food processor. Turn on the processor, stopping every so often to scrape the sides, turn back on and repeat until you have a creamy almond-pepita butter (it took me about 9-10 minutes). Add garam masala, salt and honey to taste and process again until well incorporated and enjoy!

Serve this savory nut butter with toast, bread, my grain-free seed crackers, sauteed veggies/meat, celery, carrots, apple (for a sweet/savory mix), baked sweet potato (if you ever tried PB and sweet potato, it’s AMAZING), over cooked lentils, in a curry or straight from the jar!

The last recipe is for sunflower seed butter, I actually made this three weeks ago and have since seen several posts for other bloggers homemade versions. Mama Pea posted her recipe a couple weeks ago about the time I had already made my own batch but she has great step by step photos of the process. She is too cute, has such a way with words and I am dying to get her new cookbook

The first time I tried Sunbutter, I had the impression it was going to be exactly like peanut butter since I’d been told it was the best replacement for those with peanut allergies. Though I found sunflower seed butter has a slight bitterness over PB but does has a wonderful depth of flavor that holds a special place in my heart and fridge.

My inital attempt at homemade sunflower seed butter was a fail, as I thought it was going to automatically would turn into butter without any additions…but after 30 minutes and it still being chunky, I knew I needed to help it along. I added tasteless, refined coconut oil but any neutral tasting oil works here. A few tablespoons made a big difference! It’s yummy unsweetened with a bit of salt but my preference is slightly sweetened, it’s up to you! The bit of sweet spices (cinnamon etc) would be a wonderful addition as well.

Homemade Sunflower Seed Butter

Ingredients

2 cups sunflower seeds (I used raw and toasted in a skillet like the pepitas above but any will work here)
2 Tbsp neutral oil (I used refined coconut but grapeseed, canola etc all work), may need more or less
sea salt to taste
Sweetener to taste, optional but this butter I like best slightly sweetened (I used 1 tsp honey but agave, maple syrup, stevia could work)

Directions

1. For toasted version, add sunflower seeds to a large skillet over medium-high heat. Stir constantly until sunflower seeds are lightly golden brown and toasted (just a couple minutes). Watch carefully or they will burn! Transfer to a bowl and let cool.
2. Add sunflower seeds to bowl of food processor and turn power on. Process until turns into a powder and then while processor is on, slowly pour in oil until the mixture transforms from a chunky meal into a creamy butter.
3. Add salt and sweetener if desired. Lick spoon and bowl of processor and enjoy!

Makes about 2 cups

I transferred the sunflower seed butter into a food-safe container and stored in the fridge. Due to the coconut oil, it will not be a drippy butter but you can set it out at room temperature or spread it on warm toast/bakes/oatmeal etc and it will melt slightly. You can use just like peanut butter as a sandwich filling, in desserts, in stir fries, or as a dip for fruit slices or crudites – Delicious!

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43 thoughts on “Sweet and Savory Butter Madness!

  1. What, are you insane??? As if a post featuring ONE nut butter recipe wasn’t enough, you had to include SEVERAL under one single click? OMG, you can’t do that! That’s it, I’m not looking, I am moving on to another post… moving on… but… wait… that roasted almond pumpkin seed butter looks pretty darn good… That’s it! You got my brain’s attention, now he wants to check out the recipe.

    Hmpft… I guess I’ll just have to blame it on you when I find myself stuffing spoonfuls of the stuff in my mouth (‘cuz we both know I’ll end up making this one, right!?!?) 😉

    • I know, I went a little “mad” on this one…haha – but I can’t ever seem to get enough nut/seed/coconut nutter – I eat spoonfuls daily of the homemade stuff…esp since it’s cheaper and yummier than the store-bought version, I just can’t help it! You can blame me, I can take it 🙂
      I think you would love the pumpkin seed-almond version, it doesn’t need any sweetener but it takes it over the edge – the addition of flax and vanilla would be divine. The garam masala adds a sweetness from the cinnamon, cloves and cardamom but a very slight savoriness that goes well with sweet dishes as well – oh how I love spices!

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  9. Hello All 🙂 So I’ve made up a lovely BIG batch of butters yesterday (coconut / brazil nut / hazelnut – which choc!!) and I’m curious to know what the difference between coconut butter and coconut oil is. They seem really similar to me…………..??

    Thank you, and happy easter!! xx

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