Roasted Almond Butter

Making almond butter for the first time is an exercise in faith and patience. Trust me, it's going to take a bare minimum of 10 minutes of constant grinding to get anywhere near completion. And you need to be careful how you add oil and honey and salt — add a little at a time, grind, test some between your fingers, and taste. Don't rush this recipe and it will reward you with a smoother, more flavorful almond butter for half of what it costs in stores.

Yields 3¼ - 3½ cups

Ingredients:

  • 22½ ounces/637 grams/4 cups whole unsalted almonds
  • 1 - 2½+ teaspoons kosher salt
  • 0 - 4+ tablespoons honey
  • 0 - 4+ tablespoons almond oil/neutral oil

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Place almonds in a single layer onto a silicone mat or parchment-lined baking sheet. Roast for 8-10 minutes, until darkened slightly and shiny.
  2. Dump all almonds into a food processor fitted with its steel blade. Start grinding on high until you get almond meal, about 2 minutes. Pinch the meal between your fingers to get a reference for how much smoother it will get. Continue grinding for at least another 10 minutes. You will need to scrape down the sides every couple of minutes. Try switching the processor from high to low for a few minutes to better incorporate the almonds.
  3. It will eventually turn shiny, then ball up into pebbles, then congeal into a big ball. Keep grinding until the ball releases and forms a paste. At this stage, you may add the honey and salt; I recommend starting with 1 teaspoon salt and 2 tablespoons honey. Grind until well mixed, another 2 minutes or so. Pinch off a bit of the butter between your fingers to get a feel for its texture. It should feel much smoother than the meal at this point. Taste for sweetness and saltiness.
  4. Season; grind; pinch; taste; repeat until desired taste is achieved.
  5. To create a smoother and more spreadable texture, pour in a tablespoon of oil at a time; grind very well. Pinch and taste to check the texture. You may not notice much of a difference for the first couple of tablespoons, but by the third it will be much smoother and more spreadable. Spread a bit on a plate to determine if it is at your desired viscosity, don't just rely on how thin it looks.
  6. Once at your desired consistency, grind on high for two minutes, continuously. This will guarantee the best texture possible.
  7. Scrape out into a storage container. For longest shelf life, keep refrigerated.