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Almond butter is very simple to make at home. The only requirements are a good food processor and a few minutes of your time.

Almonds are a great source of Vitamin E, magnesium, manganese, copper and riboflavin (vitamin B2). Ever so versatile, almond butter can be enjoyed on its own or paired with a number of foods for a quick snack or protein boost.

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Homemade Almond Butter

Ingredients:

2 cups raw, unsalted almonds*
1 tsp olive oil
sea salt (optional)

*You may also toast the almonds in your oven on a baking sheet at 350°F for 8-10 minutes, then allow to cool prior to processing if you want to enhance the flavor some more. I personally prefer the raw version.

Add raw almonds to food processor with metal S-blade attachment. Turn on high speed, scrape down sides of bowl as needed. During the beginning the almonds will be dry and coarse. About 5 minutes into processing, add olive oil and a few sprinkles of sea salt. Process for another 5 minutes until smooth and creamy in consistency.* It usually takes about 10 minutes to complete using my Cuisinart, but this may vary depending on your machine.

*If you prefer a more crunchy texture, add a handful of almonds to the smooth butter and pulse to desired consistency before transferring from food processor.

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Scrape out with spatula, transfer to glass jar and keep refrigerated.

Serving suggestions:

-Great as a spread on crackers or sandwiches.
-Use as a dip with sliced apples for a quick, healthy snack.
-Add a couple of teaspoons to smoothies for a protein boost.
-Kid-friendly: add with raisins on celery sticks for a new take on “ants on a log.”
-Substitute for peanut butter in baked goods.

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With spring in full season, I was craving something that would complement the sunny weather and remind me that summer is just around the corner. I came up with this very tropical themed raw pie recipe, playing off flavors of coconut and lime wrapped in a rich crust consisting of cashews, almonds and dates. The final result? A perfect combination of tart and sweet. Serve this chilled or slightly thawed, great for a summer picnic or a refreshing dessert!

Raw Coconut Lime Pie

Pie Crust:

1/2 cup cashews
1/2 cup almonds
1 cup mature coconut meat chunks
3-4 pitted dates

Filling:

Juice of two small limes
1 avocado
1/2 cup pineapple chunks*
1/2 cup mango chunks*
1/2 cup coconut meat
1/4 cup coconut water

*I used frozen, fresh fruit might change the consistency just slightly.

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Start with draining the water from a mature coconut to reserve for the filling, set aside. Break open the coconut and cut into chunks.

In a food processor, add the cashews and almonds. Process briefly into a coarse, broken down texture. This shouldn’t take long; approximately a minute or so. Add in the coconut meat chunks and dates, process until well combined with the nuts. Remove from food processor bowl and set into a 9″ pie form. Alternatively, you could also make two smaller pies, or multiple tart size ones.

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Combine all filling ingredients in food processor, pulse into smooth consistency. If you want a more dense/thick filling, leave out the coconut water.

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With a spatula, smooth filling into pie crust.

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Chill in freezer for about 2 hours, until firm. It should come out looking something like this!:

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I ate it straight out of the freezer, unchilled – I couldn’t wait to taste it! Best served thawed at room temperature with your favorite toppings – I added fresh shredded coconut and blueberries, delicious!

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