Vanilla Cinnamon Almond Butter

A few months ago, I found out just how stinkin’ easy it was to make almond butter at home in the food processor–you can even do it in the Magic Bullet!  (Which I do.)  It’s cheap, you know exactly what’s in it, you save resources by not paying for the glass jar or fancy labels, and it’s endlessly customizable.  Needless to say, I swore off the MaraNatha then and there.  Nowadays I find that if I make a jar on the weekend, I’m set for the rest of the week in terms of nut butter desires/needs.

DSCN0112Before I tried out this variation on homemade raw almond butter, I had never tried my hand at making a flavored (or, “gourmet”, if you like–that sounds much fancier (:) almond butter.  The only flavored nut butter I had EVER made was Oh She Glows’ Dark Chocolate Pecan Butter–but that was guaranteed to be a winner, right?  It has chocolate in the name.

Then it occurred to me that I always put cinnamon on my homemade almond butter anyway…why not incorporate it into the actual nut butter itself?  A lengthy perusal of cinnamon almond butter recipes on several of my favorite food blogs turned up quite an extensive cache of recipes…but you know what?

Every single dang cinnamon almond butter recipes involved MAPLE SYRUP.  I happened to be out of this valuable commodity at the time in question, so understandably this infuriated me so.  What was a girl to do?

Make Vanilla-, not maple-, cinnamon almond butter, and stop being infuriated.

Ingredients:

-1 cup raw almonds

-1t-1T cinnamon, depending on the height of regard in which you hold cinnamon

-”Guts” of 1 vanilla bean

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The back of my Trader Joe’s vanilla bean package offers helpful information on how to “gut” your vanilla bean.  You are welcome.

Instructions:

So many pro bloggers offer amazing helpful tutorials on making almond butter from scratch, so I’ll leave the in-depth explaining to them. ;)  The main premise is that with enough blending and blending and blending and scraping and scraping and scraping, raw almonds will go from raw almonds to this.

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Especially if you make it in ye olde faithful Magic Bullet, there will be lots of times when you are near to giving up hope.  This is just crumbly almond flour, you’ll think.  This is never going to butterize (yes, even in your mind, you will be using the scientific terminology).  I’m going to go mad because I have to keep scraping the food processor so often.  At these moments, I implore you to think of your impending vanilla-y almond buttery deliciousness (which WILL manifest itself in time!), and charge on.  That’s right, MaraNatha’s got nothin’ on you.

Once you have powered through, you will be left with a warm, Autumnally spiced (even though it is Winter…shhh!) gooey spread of utter deliciousness, perfect for slathering on apple slices

DSCN0116AND swirling into warm bowls of the wonder that is oatmeal.

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This bowl contained hot steel-cut oats, a hit of greek yogurt, apple butter made by a coworker of Mother Dearest, and the all-important Vanilla-Cinnamon Almond Butter.  And then I died.

Who’s with me for pretending it’s still Fall? ;) It’s not like we’re getting much snow around these here parts anyway…