sugar cookie dough almond butter

I love making my own nutbutters. It always proves to be a fun kitchen experiment, and the end result is the perfect topping to many of my weekday breakfasts. I’ve made many more nutbutters in real life than I’ve blogged about, probably because the nutbutter is already halfway gone by the time I would get around to taking a picture ;).

The idea for this particular recipe actually originated around Christmas when my work was doing a white elephant gift exchange. Our rules were to gift either something you already had at home or something homemade. I ended up scrounging up a peanut butter cookbook, packed a few Peanut Blossoms in small ball jars and then included another ball jar filled with this sugar cookie dough nutbutter (using cashews that time around). I did manage to take a photo before packing up my nutbutter gift, but never got around to posting it!

The biggest novelty of this nutbutter is the sprinkles, and even though any color sprinkles will do, it just seems more special to have holiday inspired sprinkles – so Valentine’s Day it is!

Sugar Cookie Dough Almond Butter

  • 2c raw almonds or cashews
  • 1/2 Tbs agave (honey would work too)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • pinch of salt
  • ~1-2 Tbs grapeseed oil
  • 1T sprinkles
  1. Preheat oven to 170* and roast the nuts for 40 minutes, flipping halfway through.
  2. Take out of the oven the let cool for about 5 minutes.
  3. In a food processor, add the roasted and slightly cooled nuts, and process for 8-12 minutes, or until the nuts break down and turn into a nutbutter consistency.
  4. Add in the agave, vanilla, almond extract and salt to the processed nuts, and process again to combine.
  5. The mixture will probably harden with the additions, so this is the place where you can add as much oil as you need to thin it back out. It really depends on the oil level of the nuts for how much you need, so start with a little and then add more to reach the desired consistency.
  6. Scoop the nutbutter into a bowl, and allow to cool.
  7. Once cooled, stir in the sprinkles and place into a jar to store.

This really does make such a cute gift, and a really delicious topping to your breakfasts. It’s also a pretty tasty dip for apples, gluten free pretzels, graham crackers, etc. Definitely be creative with what you top with this or dip in it, even eating it by the spoonful would be okay ;).

dessert pizza

Kinley and I took a trip to New York City this past January.  I loved it.  I have always loved big cities and this was my first time in NYC – although it had been a longtime ambition of mine to get there.  It’s actually quite funny now, we decided to eat vegetarian when we were there in order to help with cost savings – and now that’s all we do :).  We ended up finding a bunch of really good restaurants even without pre-planning anything.  We had a couple stops in mind, but those were mainly for cupcakes.  One night we were really struggling to find something to eat was the night we went to see a show on Broadway, American Idiot.  We were walking around and around and could only find expensive prix fixe meals that didn’t even sound good!  Luckily, on probably our tenth loop around on side streets, we stumbled upon a small Italian Bistro.  I forget the name of it (I do have their business card somewhere), but I remember it was extremely delicious food.  I had some sort of pasta dish but Kinley had a pizza that was to die for.  And what was even more to die for than her meal pizza?  Dessert pizza of course.  Pizza Crust + Nutella + Marshmallows.  We changed it up a bit due to ingredients we had on hand, but the variability of this idea is what will make anyone happy :).

Dessert Pizza makes 1 pizza

1. Preheat oven to 350′.

2. Pre-bake the crust for a couple of minutes, if desired.

3. Top crust with your desired pizza toppings.

4. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until nut butter is warm and marshmallows have melted.  You could also use a broiler to help the marshmallows puff up a bit ;).

Mine was PB2 – Kinley’s was Raw Almond Butter.  Both were incredibly delicious.  To make it even more like the original, break out that Justin’s Chocolate Hazelnut Butter.

There will be more of these in the future.  Many, many more.

chunky + creamy

There’s no better way to spend a Sunday than at home making homemade nut butters.  Especially because doing so will save quite a bit of money (especially with the coconut butter).  To be completely honest, I have never bought or tasted the coconut butter that you can buy in the stores, but all I know is that the recipe below is so simple and delicious there is no reason to spend more than a couple of dollars to enjoy it.

And all you need for either of these recipes is a food processer – couldn’t be much easier than that, right?

Chunky Almond Butter

  • 10 oz raw almonds
  • 1/4t salt

1. Preheat oven to 325*.

2. Roast the almonds for 15-18 minutes, until slightly toasted.

3. Let cook on the pan for 5 minutes.

4. Place 8 oz of the almonds in a food processor and process for 6-10 minutes or until it has reached a butter consistency.  Add in the salt and mix it a couple more times.  Pour into a mixing bowl.

5. Chop up the remaining 2 oz almonds into small to medium size chunks (whatever size you like the most).

6. Add the chopped almonds in with the almond butter and stir to combine.

7. Place in a mason jar and enjoy!  You can leave your almond butter at room temp for a couple of weeks, or put in the fridge to last longer (although it probably won’t last that long, especially in this house!).

Chunky perfection.

Coconut Butter

  • shredded coconut

1. In a food processor, place as much coconut as you’d like.  I normally stick to half of a 12oz bag for this which makes 6-7 fluid ounces of coconut butter.

2. Process until creamy.  It will take between 6 and 10 minutes, just scrape down the sides of the processor if needed.

Mmm creamy.

I wish I could say that I didn’t just make these both last weekend and had to make them again today.  Although most of the consumption happened before Kinley’s 1/2 marathon on our delicious pancakes.

what i ate wednesday #5

Welcome to the 5th edition of What I Ate Wednesday!  I had a super productive day today and it was also filled with a few surprises!

Breakfast

Steel-cut oats + chia topped with a little coconut butter, a little peanut butter, a ton of blueberries and some peanut butter granola (I’m addicted).  Also had a cup of green tea with soy milk (I made it one full week without coffee and only one caffeine headache!).

After breakfast I started two loads of laundry, cleaned the bathroom and cleaned a few windows before my friend Emilee came and picked me up to go workout by the bluff at my [former] college.  We did the stairs a couple times and walked around campus.  It’s kind of ridiculous how many renovations/additions are going on – making it nicer when we’re not there to enjoy it anymore…  I was definitely up for a snack when we returned.

Mid-Morning Snack

Fruit bowl – grapes + cantaloupe!

After my snack pick-me-up, I continued to clean – my room, the living room, dining room, and finished + folded the laundry.  Oh, and I also mowed the front lawn.

Lunch

I got to lunch a little later than usual due to my high productivity!  Lunch was leftover quinoa salad with green beans, sun-dried tomatoes, kidney beans and oregano with a glass of almond milk and carrots :).

Also had some not-so-lemony gluten-free lemon chia bread.

Around this time I saw a posting on Facebook for a small part-time job a local bakery was hiring for.  I emailed in my resume and they emailed back shortly thereafter asking if I was available today for an interview!  Jeesh, so I finally jumped in the shower at this point and got ready.

Afternoon Snack

Ate some rice cakes w/ homemade Honey Almond Butter + TJ’s Organic Blueberry Preserves (the raisin-looking dollops) while getting ready to go.

I also had an apple on the way to the interview.  The job would be throughout the summer and would be a fun addition to my schedule – I’ll find out by tomorrow if I got it or not!

Dinner

Kinley made dinner when I was at my interview.  Vegan Tamales (recipe here!) with broccoli and homemade guacamole with blue corn tortilla chips.  Yum!

After dinner, Kin and I took Crosby on a “Freedom Walk”.  AKA when he is really good and doesn’t need to use a leash.  He loves being able to wander around and not be weighed down by the heavy collar haha.

He just loves it, hope your night was as good as his was!

 

just a touch of sweetness

I think I have said it in just about every post the past few days but weather this week has been AWFUL!  Fog, rain, more fog, thunderstorm, power outage, another thunderstorm, power outage…  Luckily the sun has finally made an appearance today (although not without a few scattered rain showers).  I did find one thing that makes even the darkest and stormiest days a little sweeter.  Although I would not attempt making this if you’re without power… I would imagine it would be quite time consuming ;).

We had some almonds sitting around and are currently out of almond butter, so of course I knew what I had to do.  It took me a few minutes to decide what flavor I wanted to add along with the almonds… I considered the Vanilla Maple + Cinnamon Almond Butter that was oh-so-tasty, but wanted to try something new.  This combination is just the perfect amount of sweetness to add to any day.  Or any AB&J sandwich.

Honey Almond Butter

  • 8 oz raw almonds
  • 1T honey
  • large pinch of salt
  • 2-3T grapeseed oil

1.  Bake the almonds at 325* for 15-18 minutes, stirring about 3-4 times throughout.  Let cool for 5 minutes.

2. Put almonds in a food processer and blend for 6-10 minutes, scraping down the sides as necessary until the almonds start to butterize.

3.  Add in the honey and salt, mix well.  It will most likely turn thick at this point, so add as much oil as necessary (I used 2T).

It really was just that easy!  The flavor is amazing and I am making myself hungry just writing about it!

what i ate wednesday #2

It’s that day of the week again!  What I Ate Wednesdays by Peas and Crayons!

Breakfast:

Warm water with lemon right after I woke up.

Oat Bran with Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Almond Butter.  Don’t you just love how the chocolate from the almond butter got all melty?

Coffee with Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk.

Pre-Run:

1/2T Chia with a small glass of water (turns into a gel, supposedly helps with energy/hydration?).  I’m not sure if this helped or not, I decided to try running a fast 2 miles so it definitely was not easy, but I broke my previous PR (set over 2 years ago I believe?), so something was working for me!

Post-Run:

Gala Apple

Lunch:

Bulgur with a lemon/dill sauce (leftover from a lunch Kinley made this weekend), pecans and strawberries on butter lettuce.  Leftover Vegetable Masala Burger on sprouted wheat bread with organic ketchup.

Pineapple-Mango Smoothie with soy protein powder.

I was super hungry and this definitely filled me up!

Afternoon Snack:

I biked to the UPS store to drop off my last two rented textbooks, as well as mowed the whole lawn so I was ready for an afternoon snack!  I had 2 slices homemade gluten-free banana bread & carrots.  Also not pictured, around 1/2T of peanut butter I added on the banana bread – yum.

Dinner:

Spinach Quinoa with Pineapple, Butternut Squash and Trader Joe’s Baked Beans “Sauce”.  This idea came from Kinley and might sound super weird to you, but I guarantee it is delicious.  Somewhat sweet and sour like but summery at the same time because of the baked beans!