Sunbutter — the name alone just sounds friendly, doesn’t it? Actually, Sunbutter is a registered trademark, so I think that I have to call my version sunflower seed butter or something that isn’t Sunbutter.
I initially thought that I might be able to find the unsweetened version at Trader Joe’s, where lots of people on the interwebs said that the regular, sweetened type could be found, but my local Trader Joe’s only had the sugar-filled version, and I just couldn’t bring myself to pay $10+ (with shipping) per jar from the Sunbutter website. So, I picked up some roasted sunflower seeds — at around $2.99 for a pound, I think it was — and set out to make my own.
I am now a total sunflower seed butter convert. Not only was it easy to make, and much more economical to make myself, but it tastes totally yummy. If you haven’t tried sunflower seeds or sunflower seed butter before, then it’s difficult to describe the flavor. It’s kind of like peanut butter, but not really. As B said when I had him taste test my first batch, “it’s really a different kind of flavor, isn’t it?” Yes, it is, and it’s delicious with some of that sugar free jam, slathered on a banana, or just eaten with a spoon.
In addition, sunflower seed butter is rich in Vitamin E and Thiamine (B1) and is a great source of protein. It’s a great alternative to peanut butter, too!
recipe yields approximately 3/4 cup
Notes: You can use raw seeds, which may retain more nutritional value, or buy the seeds raw and roast them yourself. If you’re using unsalted seeds, then you may want to add a bit of salt to taste. I’ve sweetened this version, and you can easily leave the sweetener out completely or add more if you want a sweeter result. Use coconut oil in place of the canola oil for a different flavor profile.
1 cup roasted, salted sunflower seeds
2 Tbsp. canola or other light tasting oil
1 Tbsp. xylitol (optional)
1. Place the sunflower seeds into a food processor and process on high until finely ground. Add oil and sweetener (if using) and continue to process until the mixture comes together and starts to stick to the bottom and sides of the processor bowl. Use immediately or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator between uses.