We've had a big-@$$ container of peanut butter in the pantry for months now. We bought it just before I started paleo, and I couldn't bring myself to throw it out when we switched the whole family over to becoming cavemen.
This week I got tired of coating my knuckles and wrist with Peter Pan every time I tried to scrape some of the small amount left at the very bottom out, so I finally gave up and tossed the container (after rinsing it thoroughly, of course) into the recycle bin and set about making some cashew butter.
It so happened that I'd had the foresight to buy 2.6lbs raw cashews at a local international market a couple weeks ago in anticipation of making the cashew butter, and finally dragged them out.
By the way, did you know cashews are not a nut? Nor are they a legume. Turns out (after a friendly argument and some googling) that the little buggers are a seed.
Yay, primal friendly.
So. Step 1..the cashews needed to be roasted.
I found this recipe by Emeril Lagasse for cashew butter, and tweaked it (naturally). His recipe uses said roasted cashews..so into the 350 degree F preheated oven my little cashews went, riding in style on a rimmed baking sheet.
I baked them for about 15 minutes, stirring once, and since they can burn easily, I took them out when they were lightly toasted rather than risk being distracted by the caveboys, who were busily brandishing swords at one another while standing on the top pole of our chain link fence.
I left the cashews for about a half hour to cool, then scooped out my 2 cups of cashews and tossed them in the food processor, along with 3 Tbs coconut oil, 1Tbs honey, and 1/2 tsp salt.
I gave the food processor a whirl until it ground down to a crumb, then let it go a bit more. I ended up adding about 2 Tbs of light olive oil…and then another 2…and then another 2. And then another Tbs of coconut oil.
After a couple taste tests, I added more honey and a tsp of vanilla ….this is for the boys, and I wanted something to really mimic peanut butter in taste and texture. I ended up adding more salt too. I finally got a consistency I thought I wanted- until I started to scoop it into my glass jar.
The consistency just wasn't right. This was drier, and thick, similar to a peanut-butter cookie dough. But my cavemen are demanding, and they want CREAMY. I knew that unless it mimicked the Peter Pan 'ral thing' close enough, it wouldn't pass muster.
Another 1/4 cup of olive oil went in (with me wincing all the way) and a little more honey and salt.
This was about the time I was thinking maybe making my own wasn't all that healthier.
Finally, at the right consistency, we scooped it out into a pint jar, and the stuff that didn't fit, well, it had to be eaten..right?
So how does the cost of making my own compare to buying it premade?
By my (totally questionable) math….
Cavemom's Recipe For Cashew Butter
- 2 cups unsalted roasted cashews (see instructions below)
- 4 Tbs coconut oil
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
To roast cashews: Spread cashews in a single layer over the pan (you might need to use more than one pan, depending on the size). Then cook for 10-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they are golden-brown. They can burn quickly, so keep an eye on them.
Cashews are susceptible to becoming rancid fairly quickly, so we keep our cashew butter in the fridge. If you're like my dad, however, and enjoy spoonfuls of it regularly straight from the jar, keeping it on the countertop will work just fine.Pin It