Who doesn’t love a generous spoonful of peanut butter?
We all get a delightful satisfaction in scooping out a glob of creamy peanut butter.
Sometimes it’s to spread on other food items. Bananas and whole wheat bread are my favorites.
Other times, it’s for your favorite dessert recipe, such as 5-Ingredient Peanut Butter Cookies.
The most memorable moments are those when you scrape it from the jar and eat it plain. Nutty goodness rushes to your taste buds. A satisfying earthy flavor takes over. The peanut butter sticks to the roof of your mouth and the spoon
You just can’t help yourself. It’s too delicious.
And then you feel guilty.
Why a Nutless nut butter?
Most peanut butters have added oil and sugar. Both add empty calories that contribute to weight gain. They also contribute to the addictive taste.
What if there was a healthy alternative to nut butter? An alternative you could eat guilt-free. One that was low fat and free of added oil and refined-sugar.
You think I’m lying. ‘There’s no such thing,’ you scoff.
Oh, how wrong you are.
I’ve created a healthy, low fat nut butter recipe that’s absolutely delicious. It’s as addicting as peanut butter and you can eat as much of it as you want.
I found the need to create this recipe from searching through Pinterest. There are so many recipes that involve peanut butter.
Sure, they’re all scrumptious. I can’t deny that. But they’re also high fat. And peanut butters usually have the dreaded added oil and sugar.
I knew this was a recipe I needed to create. Not just for me and my husband (he’s a peanut butter lover, too). For everybody who wants to stop feeling regret for enjoying a spoonful of something delicious, nutty and sweet.
Testing the recipe
I admit, this recipe was challenging. I ended up trialing this recipe six times.
The first time I attempted a peanut butter alternative was March 21st. I had a concrete idea of what I wanted to put into my peanut butter alternative to make it low fat, creamy and nutty. The two main ingredients were going to be:
- Toasted flax seeds
As you can imagine, a mixture of mashed chickpeas and flax seeds didn’t taste like peanut butter. While I didn’t know what to add, I knew it needed something more. I had peanut butter, but adding that would defeat the purpose of the recipe.
Nutella inspiration struck. Chocolate chickpea spread? It was worth a try.
I added a thawed frozen banana and a tablespoon of cocoa powder to the chickpea mixture and blended until smooth. I gave it a taste. It needed more sweetness and more chocolate. I added two packets of Splenda and another tablespoon of cocoa powder to the food processor.
I also threw in 1/4 teaspoon. of nutmeg and cinnamon. I call them ‘What the hell’ additions.
It wasn’t nutty, but delightfully sweet and chocolatey. Even though I had eaten lunch not long before, I couldn’t help myself from indulging in a few spoonfuls.
It was that tasty.
My first trial resulted in a lip-smackin’ recipe. On the other hand, it wasn’t the recipe I was looking for. I was looking for a nut butter alternative. This was a healthy chocolate frosting, so my testing wasn’t a loss.
Testing my patience
After brainstorming, I decided to add toasted brown rice and red quinoa to the mix.
The next three trials weren’t as successful. The second and third were complete failures. The rice, quinoa and chickpeas burned to the bottom of my pressure cooker. Twice.
The fourth trial was an overcorrection. Too much water. Yet since this trial was edible, I could taste I was on the right path. It had the nutty aftertaste I was looking for.
The winning trial was trial five. Creamy yet slightly chunky and salty, nutty and sweet.
My husband declared it wasn’t peanut butter.
He was right; it wasn’t peanut butter. However, it was healthy, low fat, nutty and addictive to eat.
I completed a sixth trial. That trial confirmed the previous version was the best.
I’m sure you’re ready for the recipe. Here it is!
This nut butter alternative recipe is your new best friend. You can enjoy spoonful after spoonful of this slightly sweet and somewhat nutty spread without feeling guilty.
Vegan and free of added sugar, oil, gluten, soy and nuts
Reasons to love this recipe: low fat, peanut butter alternative, nutty taste without the nuts
Yields 2 cups
- 1 c. cooked chickpeas
- 2 tbsp. red quinoa (dry)
- 2 tbsp. brown rice (dry)
- 1 c. (250 mL) water
- 1/4 c. (60 mL) aquafaba
- 2 tbsp. flax seeds
- 1/2 tsp. (pink) salt
- 10 dates, pitted and soaked overnight in 1.7 oz. (50 mL) water
Set the oven temperature to 350° F (175° C). Roast the chickpeas for 20 minutes. You don’t need to wait for the oven to preheat.
Next, toast the rice and quinoa in a saucepan on medium heat for 5 minutes. The mixture is done when it’s fragrant and the brown rice has darkened in color.
Immediately add the cup of water and salt to the saucepan. Bring to a boil if necessary. Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for 25 minutes.
By now the chickpeas should be done. While they’re still warm, add them to a food processor along with 1/4 cup aquafaba. Pulse to blend, then scrape down the sides. Repeat two more times.
When the rice/quinoa mixture is cooked, add it to the food processor. Process to combine. Set aside.
Now heat a small pan to medium heat. Toast the flax seeds for 4-5 minutes until they’ve darkened and are fragrant, too. Use a mini blender or coffee grinder to grind the flaxseeds.
Add the ground flaxseeds and soaked dates to the food processor. Process for around 5 minutes, scraping down the sides every now and then. To get it as smooth as possible, use the highest setting. Food processors with less power will take longer.
Finished! Enjoy by the spoonful, on a piece of toast or replace it in your favorite peanut butter recipes.