Have you ever stopped and thought about how many things in this world are based around peanut butter?
You have peanut butter sandwiches.
Then there are peanut butter cookies.
Let’s not forget peanut butter and fruit or veggies (for the health minded people out there.)
There is peanut butter ice cream.
And please, don’t leave out all of the candy available that some genius of a person made when they realized how beautifully chocolate and peanut butter came together! Oh, yes!
As a person that strives to make as much of my own food as possible, I decided to take on this family favorite and create my own version. Here is what I came up with and how I accomplished it:
What You Need
- Fresh peanuts
- Sugar (Optional)
- Sugar Substitutes (Optional)
- Honey (Optional)
- Salt (Optional)
- A pan for roasting
- Blender or food processor
- Shell the peanuts: Take the fresh, raw peanuts out of their shells.
- Roast in the oven for 20-30 minutes: Place the shelled peanuts in a pan to be roasted. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit and roast the peanuts until they are golden brown.
- Process the roasted peanuts: Place the roasted peanuts in a blender or food processor. Process them for a minute at a time. Be sure to scrape the sides in between processing.
- Add your flavors: (Optional) Add sugar, honey, syrup, salt, etc. to taste.
1. Come Up With Some Peanuts.
I say ‘come up with’ because I’m not so particular as to how I get my hands on peanuts. You can plant your own, or you can purchase them in bulk from most local grocery stores.
I am planning on tackling growing my own peanuts in the near future but for now, I had to make a trip to the grocery store. I was able to buy a 10-pound bag of raw peanuts at less than $1/ pound. I was pretty happy with that.
If you wish to skip the next step, if you are fortunate to find bags of peanuts already roasted (and they don’t cost a small fortune) go ahead and get them. It will save you a couple of steps in the process.
Regardless of where you get your peanuts from, as long as they are whole nuts (in or out of the shell) you can use them to make this wonderfully, tasty treat.
2. Toss Those Shells
This is the longest part of making homemade peanut butter. You have to remove the shells of the peanuts.
It isn’t a difficult task. It just takes some time.
To open the shell of the peanut, you need to find the seam in the peanut and crack it.
You use your thumb and index finger and apply pressure on the crease in the peanut. This causes it to divide itself in half and open perfectly.
If you have a stubborn peanut, press it on a hard surface with the palm of your hand. It will submit and open.
Be sure not to get any of the shells in the bowl with the peanuts. They are easy to pull out but just try to pay attention as you go.
I only used 5 of my 10 pounds of peanuts for this batch that I made. I’ll be honest, I pulled a stool up to my kitchen counter and turned on a movie.
I turned on the movie because I thought I’d be there for a while. Much to my surprise I didn’t even make it a quarter of a way into the movie, and I was done.
One thing I should point out at this point is the skins that you’ll see on the shelled nuts. You do not have to peel those off.
I was a little unsure of myself about that during this process, but after I was finished, I was so glad I did not waste my time on that tiny detail.
It truly would be a tedious task to take on, and the peanut butter turns out just fine if they are left as is.
3. Give The Peanuts A Tan
If you purchased your peanuts raw or if you grew your own, then they will have to roast.
Once the nuts have been shelled, place them on a baking sheet. It can be a flat cookie sheet. I used a cake pan.
It all works the same. Just use what you have.
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. You will roast the nuts for 20 to 30 minutes.
Most articles say to roast them for 20 minutes. Mine took a little longer. I was satisfied with where they were at the 30-minute mark.
You will know they are done when they start to have a nutty aroma about them, and they turn darker.
After they are roasted, remove the nuts from the oven.
If you are toying with the idea of making crunchy peanut butter, you’ll need to set a couple of handfuls of nuts to the side at this point.
4. Crush The Peanuts
You can let your peanuts cool before you do this step. I’m a little on the impatient side, so I didn’t wait. (I couldn’t wait to see how this was going to turn out.)
You can use a food processor or blender in this step. This article gives great instructions on how to use a food processor to crush up your peanuts.
I do not have a food processor, so I just used my Kitchen Aid blender. From what I’ve read, they work about the same.
All you do is pour the roasted nuts into your blender or food processor.
I actually had to pour mine over the sink because I kept dropping them. If you have a funnel that would probably make this task a little easier.
I did smaller batches in my blender. You could probably do a little larger of a batch in a food processor.
Either way, you blend the nuts. You’ll have to let the appliance run for about a minute and then stop it so you can scrape the sides. Then start it again.
You do this until the peanuts have a smooth texture. Be sure that all of the nuts have been chopped up thoroughly. This takes about 5 minutes or less.
I used the chop setting until I got all of the big pieces broken down. It took 2 or 3 times running for about a minute each.
I then chose the mix option to get that desired smooth and creamy texture that I was hoping for with making my own peanut butter.
5. Add Some Flavor
Okay, so some people are just totally healthy and can stop with the process of homemade peanut butter right there.
For those of you that are like that, I applaud you and envy you simultaneously. I, sadly, am not there yet.
I need added flavor to be happy with my homemade peanut butter.
I have this thing.
If I am going to make something homemade it needs to taste at least slightly similar to what I buy at the store, or I’m probably going to end up buying what I like at the store.
I am not the lady in the grocery aisle buying the all-natural peanut butter. I am the lady buying the full fat, creamy kind.
For those of you I pass with the natural peanut butter in your cart, I secretly want to high-five you. I am addicted to my creamy peanut butter.
So I said all of that to basically let you know that the next few steps are totally optional.
But if you are trying to be a little healthier but still want some added flavor, here is a great recipe.
I achieved my added flavor by adding 1 cup of granulated sugar to the 5 pounds of peanuts.
You don’t have to use granulated sugar. You could use sugar substitutes in its place. I feel rather confident that the result would be equally delicious.
I then realized that it still needed something else.
We raise bees and get a tremendous amount of tasty honey from them each year. So I went to my honey cabinet and decided to put it to use. I added about 4 tablespoons of fresh honey to the mixture.
I say about because if I’m honest, I free poured it. I’m a honey feigned!
But I’m rather confident in saying 4 tablespoons of honey will do the trick.
If you don’t have fresh honey, the store bought kind will work the same. You can also add syrup.
Basically, anything naturally runny and sweet will do the trick when creating your homemade masterpiece.
6. Tell The Name Brands To Move Over
I’ll be honest, I’m a Jif kind of girl. I love how creamy their peanut butter is.
When you make homemade peanut butter, it is a little grainy in texture. I mean, I can live with this since I am clearly getting more bang for my buck and gaining knowledge through doing this.
But do I really want to live with this if I don’t have to?
That might turn some people off but sadly, not me. I dug through my cabinets to see if I had any Crisco.
When I didn’t, I didn’t give up there. I called my mother-in-law (who happens to live right across the street) to see if she had any.
Thankfully, she did!
I started off adding only 4 tablespoons. It made it slightly creamy.
Where I got such a large batch from 5 pounds of peanuts, I added another 4 tablespoons.
Then it became very creamy. I was thrilled!
7. Add Some Crunch
Not everyone loves crunchy peanut butter.
Everyone in my household happens to belong to that crowd.
I (yet again) am the oddball and love a variety of textures and flavors in my peanut butter.
So if you are like me and would love to add some crunch to your homemade peanut butter, you are in luck because it is easy.
After you finish adding all of the flavors you want to add to your mixture, take any left-over nuts that you saved from step three and mix them into your peanut butter.
It is that simple. Your peanut butter goes from smooth and creamy to chunky and crunchy in a matter of seconds.
8. Give It To The Taste Testers
After I had finished working my magic and turning what was once raw, tasteless peanuts into a magnificent snack, I called in my taste testers.
They just happen to be my three children that can gauge perfectly whether a treat is on point or if I missed the mark.
Considering they couldn’t get their spoons into the bowl fast enough, I’m going to say I hit the mark.
Homemade peanut butter will be a regular thing for us from this point on if I had to guess.
After I let my little taste testers try it out, it was time to put it away.
9. Put The Peanut Butter On A Shelf…Or In The Fridge
You can store peanut butter in multiple different ways.
You could just store the peanut butter in a bowl with an airtight lid and place it in the fridge. Be sure not to leave it out uncovered for very long as fresh peanuts can go rancid very quickly.
I chose to store my peanut butter in glass jars. I am a huge fan of Mason jars. It is the southerner in me, I guess.
I was sure to clean and sanitize my jars first.
This time, I wised up and used a funnel. I spooned all of the peanut butter through the funnel and into the jars.
Then adjusted the seal and ring accordingly. I did not process the peanut butter as I am planning on using it quickly.
There are mixed emotions about canning peanut butter. If you are interested in learning how, here is a great article that explains it. Use your own judgment as to what you think is best for you and your family.
Now that I’ve shared how I made my peanut butter, it is your turn! Do you use a different technique or add some different flavors?