Updated: Sep 6, 2020
Tips and tricks to making a super easy, vegan, and delicious homemade peanut butter, plus a recipe!
I'm writing this post mainly to share my tips and tricks I have learned when making my own peanut butter. There are plenty of recipes out there and they are all very similar, but I had about four failed batches before I finally got it right. And that is because not many blogs offer advice for beginners making peanut butter.
It is not as simple as "add all your ingredients to a food processor, blend, and you're done" like most sites suggest. Baking and cooking are a bit of a science and some things have to be done in a certain order or at a certain temperature or else it will not work out. This is the case with peanut butter.
It doesn't have to be exact measurements, temperatures, or times, but the order of processing definitely matters. And that is my first tip...
1. If you are sweetening your peanut butter, DO IT AT THE END!
I cannot stress this enough. It took me going through 12 cups of peanuts to realize that I should not be adding my sweetener at the end. So, once your peanut butter reaches the creaminess you prefer, that is when you should add 1-2 tbsp of sweetener plus 1-2 tbsp of peanut oil to balance out the creaminess.
If you add your sweetener too early, your peanut butter will end up very gritty and almost solidify into a fudge like consistency. The flavor is still fine, so if this happens to you, it is still edible. But, to get that perfect consistency, add it at the end or just leave it unsweetened.
2. Don't use "solid" sweeteners:
If you do chose to sweeten your peanut butter, avoid "solid" sweeteners. Things like white sugar, brown sugar, and coconut sugar will just end up making your peanut butter extra gritty. It will not be smooth because that kind of sugar just doesn't incorporate into the peanut butter. So, aim for liquid sweeteners, whatever you prefer!
3. But, if you want to mimic Jif:
Try molasses! According to labels on Jif creamy peanut butter, all they use is peanuts, salt, maybe some oil, and molasses. I add about 1-3 tbsp to my already creamy peanut butter (depending on my sweet tooth), add a little oil to keep it creamy, and blend until well combined and I once again reach my desired consistency.
4. Keeping that perfect consistency:
If you are anti-oil, you can skip this step. But, if you don't mind a bit of oil, that's all you need to maintain that perfect consistency in your homemade peanut butter. I use peanut oil, but have not experimented with other oils. I add a little bit at a time, to balance out adding my sweetener, until I get to the consistency I like.
5. Your peanut butter won't be perfectly creamy:
Yeah, it's kind of unfortunate, but homemade peanut butter tastes so delicious that you won't want to go back to factory made, plastic packaged peanut butter. Because most people don't have an industrial peanut butter creamer, your peanut butter just won't get to that consistency. It still will be very creamy, but it will just be slightly grittier than store bought.
6. Roast your peanuts:
Roasting your peanuts on 350F for about 5 minutes (don't over-roast!) will help the nuts release some of their natural oils. This helps them blend easier, faster, and you won't have to add as much oil in later.
7. Just keep blending:
It will be gritty and dry at the beginning, but don't give up. It takes time for the oil to release from the nuts and it also takes a while for the solids and liquids to combine and turn into a beautiful butter. For me, it normally takes ten or more minutes. But, every brand is different, it depends if you roast them or not, and it also depends on the type of food processor you use. But, if you are patient, it will eventually come together to the perfect consistency.
8. It keeps in the pantry, but keeps longer in the fridge:
Yes, this peanut butter is delicious and can probably be consumed in a few days, especially in a larger family, but if you want to savor it, store it in the fridge. It still keeps its consistency, but hardens slightly. This keeps the butter from separating too much and it keeps it form going bad too fast since there are no add-ins.
That's all the tips I have. I really hope they help you be successful on your first try and you can enjoy homemade peanut butter quicker than I did. Now, onto the recipe:
Homemade Creamy Peanut Butter
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Work Time: 10-20 minutes
Total Time: 15-25 minutes
Serves: About 2 cups of peanut butter
- 3 cups of peanuts
- a pinch of salt
- 1 tsp vanilla (optional)
- 2-4 tbsp molasses or other liquid sweetener (optional)
- 2-4 tbsp peanut oil (optional)
- Large food processor or high speed blender (though a food processor works best)
- A baking sheet
- A spatula
1. Roughly measure your peanuts and place them onto an un-greased baking sheet that has sides to prevent the nuts from falling off. Bake at 350F for about 5 minutes.
2. After they are done, carefully add them to a food processor with a pinch of salt. Begin blending on high, occasionally scraping down with a spatula. The texture will begin looking something like this (below), but keep going. It still eventually get creamy.
3. Once the peanut butter reaches the texture you desire, you are done, unless you want it to be sweet. At this point, add your molasses and oil. Adding peanut oil helps the sweetener not to clump up the peanut butter. Read more about this above.
4. Again, keep blending and scraping down until you once again reach the texture you desire.
5. Once it is complete, place your peanut butter in an air tight container. I use old jars or plastic tubs. Store in the pantry if you are going to eat it quickly or in the fridge if you want it to last a bit longer.
There you have it! Beautiful, creamy, homemade peanut butter with just two natural ingredients and some extra add-ins if you desire. This is a super easy way to eat healthier and reduce your plastic waste. It doesn't take much time out of your day either!
I hope you enjoy this recipe! Some other great add-ins might be cocoa powder or cinnamon. Experiment and make it your own!