Congratulations. You’ve made the brave leap to make your own peanut butter (trust us, the homemade stuff always tastes better).
You’ve looked online for a few DIY peanut butter recipes, and you’ve analysed the ingredients list (100% peanuts). Of course you want to do a little research to find the perfect peanuts for the job. It’s your obligation.
But which peanuts should you be opting for? And how will they affect your final nut butter?
Read on, below, for a thick spread of nutty wisdom.
Roasted or unroasted?
You’re going to need to roast the peanuts yourself in order to warm the nut to release the oils (and to make them soft enough to blitz). Stick with unroasted peanuts for making homemade peanut butter, and leave roasted varieties to the snacking cupboard. The art is in the home roasting.
Shelled or unshelled?
So, you might think that unshelled or skinless is the way forward when you’re roasting and blending your own peanuts. And they are more convenient.
However, you can still make homemade peanut butter with shelled peanuts and, what’s more, they require a shorter roasting time (usually around 8 minutes vs typical 10-12 mins) as the heat stays packed in the shell. You just need to make the effort to deshell or deskin your peanuts before they go into the food processor.
Blanched or raw?
Blanched peanuts have had their skin removed from the nut, whereas raw peanuts, well, haven’t.
To loosen and remove the skin, there is usually a small degree of boiling that is involved, and this gives the nuts a slightly softer texture than raw nuts. This typically makes them a slightly easier peanut type to roast and blitz at home. Save raw peanuts for snacking, or for salting.
Salted or unsalted?
As with roasted peanuts, ready salted peanuts aren’t necessary when you’re making your own peanut butter. Done right, your DIY nut butter should be flavourful enough that you don’t need any salt (and if you do, you should only require a teeny tiny bit).
Start with unsalted peanuts, and add in salt to taste where necessary.