You might be wondering why you would want to make your own cashew butter when you can simply buy a jar. Well, at an average price of $17 for a 16oz jar, it gets a little pricey. Could I just go without? Sure, but it tastes so darn good that I don't want to. And, I don't have to. Making it is actually quite easy. It does require a little time, especially if you soak and dehydrate your cashews first, but it's not hands on time. It's more like start the process and walk away. Not a bad deal.
If you don't want to dehydrate your cashews or if you don't have a dehydrator, you can still make cashew butter so just bypass my chatter about dehydrating. Simply throw 2 cups of raw cashews into your Vitamix and begin the process. Just scroll down to the particulars in my recipe instructions. But before you do that, you may be wondering why dehydrating is important to some people. Raw nuts contain high levels of phytic acid and enzyme ihibitors which can make digestion difficult. Soaking the nuts can neutralize those issues making it easier for us to utilize the health benefits that cashews have to offer. So naturally, after we soak the cashews, they must be dehydrated. This process can take up to 24 hours. But again, it's as simple as placing the cashews in your dehydrator and walking away.
Once your cashews are completely dry and cooled, you can begin the butter making process. For this, you need a high speed blender, such as a Vitamix. I like to use my dry mix container for this but if you don't have one, just use the standard container that comes with the Vitamix. Some people have success using their food processor to make cashew butter. I have personally never tried that method but I assume it would be a similar process to using your Vitamix.
Let me tell you a little about what to expect. First of all, it takes a little more effort to make cashew butter than simply turning your machine and blending away. It could quite possibly take up to 30 minutes of blending and stopping periodically. If you don't give your machine a break, you could burn out your motor. That would be devastating, wouldn't it? Basically, you will notice that the butter stops turning and kind of gets stuck either in a ball or to the sides of the machine. You will turn your machine off, scrape the sides down and loosen any butter that has been compacted to the bottom. Wait a couple of minutes and start again. You will repeat this process until you end up with some nice, smooth butter. It will be worth your effort!
2 cups raw cashews
1 tsp sea salt, for soaking
1. Soak your raw cashews in filtered water with 1 tsp sea salt for 4-6 hours. Rinse thoroughly, removing any salt from the cashews.
2. Rinse the cashews thoroughly and place them in your dehydrator. It's best to follow your manufacturers recommendations for proper temperature but it usually ranges from 110°-150° for nuts. Plan on this process taking approximately 24 hours.
3. Place the dehydrated cashews in your Vitamix and start blending on low. Gradually increase your speed until the cashew butter no longer turns. Stop the machine, scrape down the sides and loosen any butter packed down at the bottom. Wait a few minutes and repeat the process. You will likely do this a dozen times before you end up with rich, creamy cashew butter so just be patient and don't give up.
4. Once your butter is ready, remove it from your Vitamix (or whatever container you used) and store it in an airtight container in your refrigerator. Enjoy cashew butter on some toast, pancakes, muffins, in some oatmeal, with some fruit, or right from the spoon. The possibilities are endless! Two cups of cashews will yield about 1 1/4 cup cashew butter.