Chocolate Hazelnut Spread

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I love hazelnuts!  As a kid, I remember my mother buying Nutella for my siblings and I as a treat once in a while. When I decided to make some changes to my diet, I thought it would be fun to try making a vegan version. I tried many different recipes, but was never completely satisfied. This recipe came in first place! The only downer about this hazelnut spread is that hazelnuts can be so expensive!! I live on a tight budget. I don’t have a whole lot of wiggle room to splurge on my favourite foods. My secret to getting 5 cups of hazelnuts for $4 is that after Christmas I went to the grocery store and got those bags of mixed nuts. I bought two huge bags for a fraction of the regular price! The nuts have lasted me for months! The downside is that I had to spend three whole days cracking nuts… Also, I had cuts all over my hands from the broken shells. But, it was well worth it if you ask me! Anything to save a buck ;)

Back to the recipe… I left my hazelnut spread with some lumps. I like the texture of the hazelnuts, but feel free to keep processing it until it’s as smooth as butter. I also tried a raw version, but I like the taste of the toasted hazelnuts better—it is also easier to take the bitter skin off when they are toasted. Make sure to store this in the fridge and it should keep for at least 2 weeks. Use it for desserts, as a fruit dip or just eat it with a spoon. It is just that good!

Let me know how yours comes out by leaving a comment below!

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Ingredients – Makes about 1 3/4 cups of nut butter

  • 2 cups hazelnuts
  • 2 tbsp virgin coconut oil
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup (or liquid sweetener of choice)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract or 1 tsp vanilla powder
  • 2 1/2 tbsp cacao (if you use cocoa you will need to use more)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • water as needed

Directions

  1. Toast the hazelnuts on 200ºF for about 15 minutes. Once toasted, remove the skin. The skins come off easier if the nuts are still warm. Fold them into an old cloth and rub. Don’t worry about getting all the skin off. Just get as much of it as you can.
  2. After the nuts have cooled, place them in the food processor for about 1 minute until the hazelnuts have been finely ground.
  3. Add in the rest of your ingredients and continue to blend, scraping down the sides of your food processor when needed.
  4. Add water to create a thiner texture. I only needed 2 teaspoons.
  5. Process for another couple of minutes and put in a jar.

You now have your very own Nutella! Enjoy and try to share!

 

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