There are endless combinations of types of nuts and flavors to use when making homemade nut butter, so you can really get creativity. I also love that you can truly control the ingredients being used. When I buy pre-made nut butters, I always spend tons of time reading the ingredients listed on each package. I usually find myself getting frustrated because the majority of the jars on the shelf contain sugar/cane syrup, lots of salt and the biggest blunder, palm oil.
Sugar is hidden in most everything prepackaged and I want to control how much is used and choose options that are lower on the glycemic index when possible. Salt is also overly used and not always necessary, in my opinion. Palm oil is most upsetting to me because there are so many other types of oil that can be added, if they even need to be added. Worst of all, the palm oil industry is completely destroying our rain forests, pushing numerous animals towards extinction, contributing to global warming and greatly abusing human rights. It is used in so many packaged foods, soaps, cosmetics and other personal care items, animal feed and more. I do not support the use of non-sustainable palm oil and do everything I can to try and avoid it. Consider this rant your reminder to always read package labels!
Now that I have that off my chest, back to cardamom cashew butter. I used 5 simple ingredients; raw cashews, cardamom, MCT oil, stevia and pure vanilla extract. Cashews are not the highest in fiber but they do supply protein and heaps of essential vitamins and minerals. Cardamom is naturally antibacterial, antimicrobial, antioxidant, an anti-inflammatory, and provides loads of health benefits. The MCT oil is not necessary but adds a super nutritional boost. The stevia used gives a hint of sweetness without the acidity and blood sugar spikes that sugar or cane syrup adds. By placing these ingredients into my Vitamix, the cashews turned to butter in just a matter of minutes. You can also use a food processor, but be prepared for it to take longer and be a bit of a test in patience.
Cardamom Cashew Butter
(makes ~1 cup)
- 2 cups cashews (I used raw but you can use roasted if you prefer)
- 1/2 teaspoon cardamom
- 1 tablespoon MCT oil ( I find Nutiva's to be the best)
- 3 drops of liquid stevia
- 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Place cashews, MCT oil and cardamom into a high speed blender, such as a Vitamix, and blend until the cashews start to break down into tiny pieces.
- Add the stevia and vanilla and blend again until creamy and smooth. You will likely need to use the tamper for your blender, or stop to scrape down the sides several times.
- Add the cashew butter to your breakfast porridge or smoothies, spread apples, bananas, toast, crackers or anything else you like to use, or enjoy directly from your spoon!
- Store in an airtight container. You may notice some separation, which is normal. Give a good stir before each use.