Nuts are packed with healthy fats, so do not worry about the calories in this nut butter. Nuts are also a great way to start your day, they help you feel full and keep you going until lunch time. The peanut plant is actually an herb, while the peanut itself is classified as a legume, like many beans are. This delicious nut originated in the Central Americas, but then spread throughout the world once it was discovered. Peanuts in particular are packed with energy boosting nutrients, including mono-unsaturated fatty acids which aid in lowering bad cholesterol. This hearty nut also contains, vitamin E, niacin, folates and several antioxidants. So after hearing about all these important health benefits of peanuts, feel free to slap some on your morning whole grain toast, or along side a fresh apple!
This recipe is one of simplest and most delicious! The trick is to use raw peanuts and roast them yourself, this ensures that they really are fresh. Shelling might seem like a lot of work, but think about all the times you watch tv or wait on something to cook, well there is a great opportunity. If you really do not have time, store bought, unsalted, roasted peanuts will work also.
Have you ever stood at the peanut butter isle and asked yourself, now which peanut butter is right for me or aren't they all the same? Well, they are not all the same, and some are most definitely not right for anyone. The most popular peanut butters (like the one we all ate when we were kids, do not deny it) are usually filled with extra ingredients and saturated fats, which make it creamy. Most peanut butters are also sweetened with high fructose corn syrup or other random sweeteners. When looking for peanut butter at the store, look for all natural or organic, then double check by looking at the label. Peanut butter should mainly consist of peanuts, and salt but some other ingredients are not all bad either, like organic palm oil, honey, cane sugar and evaporated cane juice. Many organic peanut butter brands also have a no stir peanut butter, which is similar to the processed version we have all enjoyed at some point. So, before you place that jar in your cart be sure to check the label!
Simple Homemade Peanut Butter
3 cups shelled RAW peanuts (I buy mine at my local market in a large bag)
1/2 tsp sea salt (I usually just eyeball it)
Pre-heat the oven to 350F degrees.
Spread peanuts on a baking sheet and roast for about 20 minutes, stirring half way through to make sure they do not BURN (don't worry I've burnt them many times also). Once the nuts are done roasting, let them cool for about 10 minutes. You can then easily slip off the skins, but I find that they do not really make a difference in taste or texture, so you can leave them on.
Next, add the peanuts to a food processor or a high speed blender with a plunger attachment. Sprinkle in the salt and process for about 5-10 minutes, scraping the sides as necessary. You can tell when the peanuts have turned to butter, they will release their oil and become really smooth and creamy. If you are using a high speed blender, use the frozen dessert setting while pushing the peanuts down into the blades with the plunger, this only took about 1 minute for mine to finish. Once your nut butter is done, keep it in a glass jar in the refrigerator. Enjoy!