My son is a peanut butter fiend. His current favorite breakfast is a tortilla rolled up, filled with peanut butter and either sprinkles, honey, or sometimes nothing at all added. Therefore, we go through a LOT of peanut butter in this house. (And tortillas, consequently.) One morning, while making breakfast, I realized I was out of peanut butter. Thankfully I had a bag of peanuts in the freezer that could work rather well. I had made nut butter in the past, but only in very small quantities in an old coffee grinder. I grabbed my food processor and got to work. In less than five minutes, we were enjoying fresh peanut butter, and we've not gone back since.
I've refined my method a bit each time I've made peanut butter, even since these pictures were taken. I now don't use any oil, though you can add some if you want it a bit thinner. I also roast the peanuts and throw them in the food processor still warm, as they begin to release their oils when roasted and why not use that? A food processor is not strictly necessary, an old coffee grinder will do, but a food processor turns out much nicer nut butter. This method can be employed to make any type of nut or seed butter you wish to make. You can even add a bit of cocoa powder and honey or sugar and call it nutella. (Though to be fully authentic, use hazelnuts for that.)
Strictly speaking, all you really need to make nut butter, (besides the processor) are the nuts. To make it taste a bit better though, roast them first, add salt to the processor, and possibly sugar or honey if you like a touch of sweetness. (We do.) Otherwise, taste as you go. Blend longer for smoother butter. If you want chunky, I suggest blending extra long, making really smooth butter, then throwing in another handful of nuts and pulsing a bit so they make small chunks. I usually make smooth peanut butter, so that's what the pictures show.
1 pound of peanuts makes about 1 pint of creamy peanut butter.
Place peanuts in the bowl of a food processor. Process until nuts begin to clump together.
Add a pinch or two of salt, and, if desired, sugar or honey to taste.
Add oil now if you think you need it, but add it extremely sparingly, as not much is really needed. I use peanut oil if I add any, but if you have a peanut allergy and are making another variety, use any variety of oil you like to use in cooking. Coconut oil can be tasty. :)
With or without the oil, the nuts will begin to blend together even more and begin to look like the nut butter we know and love. Let it keep running, it'll get really smooth!
Once it tastes good, (it'll be warm, but make sure it still tastes delicious,) spoon into your favorite container. You're done!
I store my peanut butter in the refrigerator. If you find your nut butter to be somewhat runny, storing it in the fridge will thicken it up a bit. I've no idea, honestly, if the homemade nut butter is shelf stable, so I play it safe and keep it cool. Regardless, you can now enjoy any variety of nut butter with very little effort and great results. Enjoy!