Healthy Homemade Cinnamon Sugar Nut Butter
Love cinnamon toast crunch? You’re about to fall head over heels with this rich and creamy homemade nut butter that has just 6 ingredients and is so easy to make! It’s low in sugar, and paired with high fibre sprouted grain bread, this healthy cinnamon sugar nut butter makes for a nostalgic (and nutrient-dense!) breakfast or snack that really satisfies.
I have a confession to make: I did not like cold cereal as a kid. The only thing I liked about boxed cereal was the toys they came with. So I would beg for whatever cereal had the best toy, use my tiny little hand to dig it out and then let the box of cereal go stale in the cupboard. Needless to say, because of this, I was not allowed to buy cereal all that often.
But I know how much folks love some cinnamon toast crunch, and I get it, because I was a HUGE fan of cinnamon sugar toast for breakfast. So I’m delighted to once again be partnering with Silver Hills Bakery this year – maker of my favourite sliced bread ever – to create this healthy homemade cinnamon sugar nut butter, inspired by your love of CTC cereal and my love of cinnamon sugar toast!
Are nut butters a healthy choice for kids?
Everyone in the family is going to LOVE this cinnamon sugar butter. The first jar I made lasted about 3 days and my kids sniff suspiciously at pretty much every recipe I make, so that’s BIG. This cashew and pecan nut butter is creamy, packed with healthy fats and minerals such as energizing copper and iron and makes a great toddler-friendly snack spread on toast.
I really wanted to give this nut butter a bit of toddler-safe crunch, so I’ve added a tablespoon of sugar to the butter. If that seems like a lot, it actually works out to less than 1g of sugar per 1 tablespoon serving. In comparison, a bowl of Cinnamon Toast Crunch has 12 grams of added sugars per serving.
If you’re feeding this to kids under 2, or you just want something totally sugar free, you can absolutely skip the sugar and it’s still delicious. It’s also worth mentioning that we should never give nut butters to children directly off the spoon – it’s a major choking hazard (for adults too, actually!). Instead, always serve nut butters spread onto crackers, apple slices, and of course, sprouted grain toast.
I know I don’t chat about family nutrition that often, but March is Toddler Nutrition Month so I thought I would share a few more common nutrition questions that I get around feeding toddlers. Have a question? Feel free to leave it in the comments!
Your toddler nutrition questions, answered!
Yes! Whether omnivore or vegan, parents need to ensure their children eat a well-balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables, proteins and healthy fats. Read my post on how to feed a vegan or vegetarian child.
It is recommended that children under two are not given any added sugars at all. Naturally occurring sugars in fruit are safe and healthy. For children over 2 years of age, the recommendation from the American Heart Association is to limit added sugars to no more than 24 grams of added sugars (6 teaspoons) daily. Which honestly, is more than I would typically recommend for a toddler on an everyday basis. Instead, I opt for low daily added sugars with the occasional sweet treat like a cupcake or ice cream.
For children over the age of one, only unsweetened calcium-fortified soy milk is recommended as it is the most nutrient-dense plant-based milk alternative, with more protein and healthy fats than other alternatives. Read more about what to look for in a healthy milk alterative.
How to make your own nut butter
Making homemade nut butter is actually really easy, you just need a good food processor! DIY nut butters make the freshest, most flavourful topping for your toast. You can explore any combination of nuts and seeds you wish, and play with the flavours, incorporating your favourite spices like cinnamon, cardamom, or even turmeric!
There are just three simple steps for a delicious DIY nut butter:
- Toast the nuts and seeds in a 350 degree oven for 8 – 10 minutes, until you see the oil glistening on the surface. This step dramatically cuts down on food processing time. You can absolutely make raw nut butter but it will take much longer as you’re relying on the heat generated by the motor to mobilize the oils.
- Place toasted nuts and seeds in your food processor and let it run, scraping down sides whenever it starts to climb up the walls of the food processor. It will go through a stage of flour, then paste, before it becomes a creamy butter-like consistency.
- Only when the butter-like consistency has been achieved, add desired flavouring or sweeteners and mix by hand. And think twice before adding a lot of liquids, such as maple syrup or vanilla as liquids cause nut butters to thicken and seize, which means extra processing time for you.
Healthy Homemade Cinnamon Sugar Nut Butter
- 1 cup raw cashews
- 1 cup raw pecan halves
- 1 tablespoon pure cane sugar
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract, or seeds of 1/4 vanilla pod
- ⅛ -¼ teaspoon salt, see note
- Food Processor
- Preheat oven to 350° F (175° C). Prepare a small rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Place cashews and pecans on baking sheet and toast for 8-10 minutes until the oil starts to glisten on the surface of the cashews and they turn a light golden brown. Let cool for a minute before carefully placing them in your food processor.
- Process nuts until a butter forms. Be patient. It goes from a flour to a paste to a butter in about 5-7 minutes depending on how strong your motor is. Scrape sides of the processor occasionally if the nuts start climbing up the sides.
- Once fully smooth creamy, transfer to a resealable glass jar and stir in cinnamon, sugar, vanilla and salt. Enjoy right away, or store, covered, in the fridge for up to 1 week.