The past week has felt like a failed attempt at finding balance. I spent the week before last on glorious holiday with two guy friends in gorgeous Crested Butte, Colorado. It was a vacation in every sense of the word; each day began with a big, home-cooked breakfast, followed by a long, easy-going game of Scrabble with frequent mimosa refills. We soaked in a steaming hot tub at least once daily, surrounded by snow and those mountains, the sleeping giants whose mercurial personalities shifted as the sun rotated overhead. We savored the best pizza of our lives at Secret Stash—it was the kind of food that, once delivered, hushes all conversation except for occasional slips of profanity between bites. I squeezed into my mom’s retro one-piece ski suit and skied down the green slopes, making it down the mountain with all parts intact. In short, it was marvelous.
The following week, last week, was spent in a wretched state of catch-up from the week before. Deadline was rapidly approaching and I worked, hunched over my laptop, from the time I woke up to the time I dragged myself to bed. Warm memories from the last week made it possible to accept the situation, but it is absolutely not how I want to live. By the time I finished working late in the afternoon on Sunday, I sought out some companionship. Sometimes you just have to stop what you’re doing, climb onto the roof with a friend and sip on some cheap Champagne, am I right?
Deadline has passed, and I find myself overwhelmed by other projects (please join The Food Matters Project!), but I’ll make it. This weekend has been all about finding balance: stretching out my poor back with Pilates, dancing around to my friends’ band at a dive bar and tackling the disgusting pile of dishes that is taking over my kitchen.
I’ve already typed up more than I intended, but let me tell you about this pecan butter. The idea for pecan butter came to me on the drive back from Colorado, right after I’d awoken to see mountain goats outside the window. I munched on a cracker, then a couple of pecans that Peach Crest Farm had gifted Matt for Christmas. The Peach Crest Farm pecans are extraordinary; one taste of those fresh, local, organic pecans convinced me that every pecan I’ve ever tasted has been rancid with old age. My grandmother Mimi‘s family owned a pecan farm and she adored pecans. Now I know why.
I munched on a couple more pecans, and another cracker, wishing I could smear the pecans on top like peanut butter. Bingo! Pecan butter. One quick google search confirmed that it could be done, but no one has given pecan butter the attention it deserves.
I’ve tried to make peanut butter before with disappointing result, but not so here. Pecan butter is the least finicky all-natural nut butter I’ve come across. Toasted pecans meld together in a food processor, turning into silky smooth, spreadable nutty goodness with maple undertones, without any added oil. A pinch of salt and a dash of cinnamon at the end make it positively divine.
If you love pecans like I do, you must give this a try. It is truly luscious. Pecans are not cheap, but I assure you that pecan butter is worth every penny. It is liquid gold. Might I suggest that you slather it on a piece of my favorite honey-sweetened banana bread, as I have every morning this week? It makes a healthy breakfast that tastes almost as decadent as a piece of cake.
Homemade Pecan Butter
- Prep Time: 15 mins
- Total Time: 15 minutes
- Yield: 1 cup 1x
- Category: Condiment
- Method: Blended
- Cuisine: American
Pecan butter is easy to make and tastes absolutely incredible! Feel free to to double or maybe even triple the amount of pecans in order to make a bigger batch (you may find it easier to toast the pecans in the oven at that point). Recipe yields 1 cup as written.
- 8 ounces (about 2 cups) high quality pecans, either whole or in pieces
- Sea salt, to taste
- Dash of ground cinnamon (optional)
- Pour the pecans into a large skillet and toast, stirring often, over medium heat until fragrant (don’t let them burn!). This will take about 4 to 8 minutes.
- Pour the toasted pecans into a food processor or high-speed blender and let them cool for several minutes. Then blend the pecans, pausing to scrape down the sides with a spatula often. The mixture will be crumbly at first, but will eventually blend into super-creamy goodness. Be careful not to let the mixture get too hot, which seems to cause oil separation. You might have to stop and let the mixture/machine cool down for a bit just to be safe. The amount of blending time required really depends on your machine—my old food processor took ten to fifteen minutes to turn the pecans into pecan butter, but my fancy Blendtec and Vitamix blenders can turn it into butter in a minute or two.
- Add a pinch of sea salt and a dash of cinnamon (if using). Blend again, taste, and add more salt or cinnamon if needed.
- Pour into a small jar, seal it with a lid, and store it in the refrigerator for good measure. This pecan butter will keep well, refrigerated, for up to 1 month or so—obviously, don’t eat it if you see or smell any signs that it has gone bad.
This pecan butter is only as good as the pecans you put it in it. Seek out fresh pecans from a store with high turnover. Bonus points if they’re local, organic and/or stored in the refrigerator.
Can I palce the pecans in the oven instead of the skillet?
Hi! Sure, you could try that. Be mindful you don’t over roast!
Hi.just read your recipe…have to try this..I’m thinking buckeyes with pecan butter..any ideas on the thought
I don’t have a recipe, sorry! Sounds delicious, though.
I like that idea :)
I’ve made this several times. Your instructions are perfect! Including the note about using good quality nuts. Taste a piece of one of your nuts before proceeding with the recipe. If your nuts are good, following this recipe will yield delicious nut butter.
Jason Nehring Sr
The best Damn thing since Velcro. Have an abundance of Pecans from small one inch up to 3.5 inch . Several kinds . I have not tried making this with each kind yet . Yet. I’ve never heard of it .
I have to say it’s heaven sent.
I added A dash of honey .
Thank you for this . It’s Good just on a spoon.
You’re welcome, Jason! Thank you for your review.
This pecan butter is INSANE. So delicious and decadent and simple to make, yum. :)
Your blog became one of my faves when I went plant-based years ago. You make it so easy because I know everything on your site is going to be good, which I can’t say about many other food blogs. My husband even knows that when I say “it’s from Cookie + Kate!” he’s going to like it, lol.
And I love this pecan butter so much I included it in a blog post about 5 favorite fall recipes I just put together.
Forgive me for the amateur food photog attempts, I’m a newbie + I’m trying, lol. Thanks for the work you do, the consistently-awesome recipes…and for being such a plant-based inspiration for me!
Hi, I’m wondering if i can use the pecan butter to make cookies? I want to use a regular pecan butter cookies recipe and substitute the pecan butter for the butter and pecans but i don’t know if that would work.
Hi Ana! I’m not sure as I don’t know what recipe you are using and haven’t tried it myself to say for sure. If it calls for a nut butter, this would work well as a replacement.
Just made pecan butter yesterday and it’s delicious. I’ll be making chocolate/pecan butter fat bombs this weekend. I’ve been making my own nut butters for years and they are much better and healthier than anything I can buy in the store. Everyone should do their own.
Wondering if anyone has tried using Trader Joe’s toasted pecan pieces? I may try since they come perfectly toasted!
I’ve made this twice now. It’s delicious! Used a smidge of maple syrup and it turned out wonderfully. Thanks for posting!
You’re welcome, Elise!
Fixn to make my pecan butter now ty for the recipe sure it want listless than a week.lol ty again Ruth
What marvelous nut butter this was. It does remind me of the early days when I was still naive and suckling on nuts for some fast moolah. Magnificent nut butter if I say so myself. One may not be worthy of this nut butter as it will only show the faces of which we lack flowing through the compressed oils of the ground pecan nut. Took a star off cuz it wasn’t good.
Very good. I tossed a couple of dates in and it was delicious! My dad sat down with a jar and spoon and went to town!
Sounds delicious! Curious if you blended the dates along with the pecans, or just chopped them up.
Yup just toss them in the food processor with the pecans.
Hello! I did it today. Can I put it in the freezer? Thank you!!
Hi Lourdes! I’m glad you enjoyed it. I haven’t tried freezing it, sorry.
The almond butter was very yummy, but this pecan butter!?!? Wowza!!! I am impressed. I put 2 tbs of maple syrup and 1/2 tsp of vanilla and 1/4 tsp of cinnamon. Tastes like candied pecans! Yum!
That’s great to hear, Vicalee! Thank you for your review.
I found you because after my sweetie made me some flourless peanut butter cookies and wondered if I could make pecan butter cookies because he was shelling some pecans Ian had knocked out of our trees. I went looking to see if anyone had made pecan butter. Thanks. Going to experiment making flourless pecan butter cookies now. (wheat sensitive)
Let me know how they turn out!
I can’t wait to try it. I’m burned out on almond butter and heard almonds are not as healthy as I thought. Not sure if is that is right though.
i have a bunch of pecan trees. Is there a way to process for long term storage.
THANK YOU! This is a GAME changer! So simple, so easy! Pecan butter is the only nut butter I can eat and $10 for a 10 ounce jar is so expensive. (plus it only comes in plastic containers). I will be making my own pecan butter from now on!
Great to hear, Emilia!
Hello! Thank you for this recipe, I can’t wait to try. Right now I have a ton of walnuts to put to use, so I’m wondering if this recipe can be used to make walnut butter? Thanks and keep up the amazing recipes!!
I haven’t tried it, but it may work. Let me know if you try it!