Although coconut butter has been a thing for some time now, I only discovered it recently. I came across vegan peppermint patties on Pinterest, and was instantly intrigued. Coconut butter is available at stores and online, but of course I had to see if I could make it myself. In this post, I’ll discuss how I make coconut butter at home, how to use it, and what to know before you try it yourself.
How to make coconut butter
As I began my research, I started noticing a trend. The ingredients and directions all seemed simple enough, but people in the comments were having a lot of problems. This is what led me to try it for myself, to see if it truly was as impossible as people said.
I have a Cuisine Art food processor that I picked up at Goodwill. It’s a small version, and has a 3 cup capacity. I put the shredded coconut in the food processor and scraped down the sides, as instructed. It turned out great for me, and it was just how most recipes said it would go. However, it’s not that simple for everyone.
Making a toasted version
The only way I can think of to switch this up is to use toasted coconut. This is done by putting your shredded coconut in a skillet on the stove. Over medium heat, continuously stir until evenly golden; the deeper the gold, the more toasty the flavor. Otherwise, the method is the same. I like it because it gives a unique flavor, while only added one step. Next, I’ll discuss ways I think making coconut butter could be going wrong.
Since I only have my one food processor and have not tried this with other sizes, I can’t speak for certainty. However, I have gained some insights from watching different test kitchens try appliances like these. From what I understand, the distance between the blades and how responsive the motor is (among other things) can have a great impact on performance. Given what I’ve learned, from others and my own experience, I have some ideas on how to fix the problems.
Give it some time
When I’m in the kitchen, 2 minutes can feel like 5. I am not a good judge of how much time is passing, so using a timer has been helpful for me. Like most other recipes will tell you, coconut butter can take up to 10 minutes to make. It can be frustrating if it’s not coming together as quickly as other things might, but that doesn’t mean it won’t work.
Don’t add coconut oil (or anything else) until it’s already smooth
Some recipes for coconut butter include coconut oil or other liquid additives (like vanilla extract). I would only suggest trying this if you are not getting any results whatsoever. If you add it too soon, I think this could inhibit the coconut from becoming smooth.
Buy it from the store
Yes, yes. I know this isn’t the result you were hoping for. However, some appliances simply can’t do certain things. Companies build their food processors differently, and their size or design could make a task like this impossible. If you’re like me and just wanted to try it, I say let it go and move on; if you eat coconut butter like it’s going out of style, however, perhaps you may need to find a new appliance that can do the job.
How to use coconut butter
Like I mentioned before, this was something I wanted to see if I could make just for the fun of it. Now that I know I can, I have found a few ways to use it:
- Peppermint patties—the entire reason I started this venture! And it was so worth it
- Use as a spread on muffins, bread, etc.—anywhere you would spread your favorite nut butters, coconut butter can be substituted
- Use in baked goods—add a coconutty taste to the inside of whatever you’re making, as well
- Add to smoothies—adds creaminess and coconut flavor
- Use in curry—if you want a coconut flavor but are out of coconut milk, this makes a good substitute
- 1 cup dried or desiccated coconut flakes
- Add coconut to food processor. Grind and scrape down sides until blended into a paste.
Depending on the size of your food processor, you may need more coconut flakes. This recipe is meant to be scaled up.
1 cup of flaked coconut = 1/4 cup coconut butter
To make a toasted version, heat in a skillet over medium until evenly brown. Let cool, then proceed as usual
That’s it! All it takes is a food processor and coconut flakes. Have you ever made this before? What has your experience been like? Let me know in the comments!