Did you know there are entire schools that are now dedicated “peanut free” zones? Pretty crazy that an allergy has become such a dangerous epidemic that is segregating school systems. I myself can’t eat peanuts, nor my mother, or brother and clearly most children living in America. I”m going to skip the part where I theorize why,when, and how we became this way and offer up some alternative solutions. Since there are also a lot of you out there with tree nut allergies lets venture into the lone and forgotten sunflower seed. It’s a much better substitute for peanut butter in recipes and you can buy raw hulled sunflower seeds for super cheap! Love that. So instead of shelling out upwards of $7-$8 for sunflower seed butter let’s get thrifty and make it ourselves. I’ll even share with you my families favorite grain free chocolate chip cookie recipe using sunflower butter. Read on my lovelies…
Homemade Sunflower Butter
- 16 ounces (1 lb) of raw sunflower seeds
- 1 tsp Himalayan or fine sea salt
- 2 tsp raw honey (or 1 packet pure stevia for sugar-free version)
- 1/4-1/2 cup nut oil or mild flavored oil (walnut oil, flaxseed oil, grape seed etc)
Preheat the oven to 350F
Place the sunflower seeds on a sheet pan so that they lay in one layer. Roast in the middle rack for 8-10 minutes or until lightly golden and fragrant. *Optional to roast the seeds but if you do the flavor will be much deeper. You can also slow roast them on the lowest setting of your oven for 6-8 hours to retain more nutrients or keep them raw
Place the roasted sunflower seeds, salt, honey (or stevia) and 1/4 cup of oil of choice into a food processor. Pulse for 1 minute to get the mixture going. When it starts to form a paste run the motor for 2 minutes at a time (stopping to give the motor a break and not heat the mixture) until a smooth paste is formed (takes about 10 minutes total). If you find the mixture very dry continue to add more oil 1 tablespoon at a time until desired consistency is reached.
Store in a glass container in the refrigerator.
Sunflower Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Gluten-free, Tree Nut-Free, Dairy Free, Paleo
- 1 cup homemade sunflower butter (recipe here)
- 1/2 cup coconut sugar (or turbinado or raw sugar)
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
- 3 oz dark chocolate (70% cocoa or greater), cut into chunks
- 1/4 cup banana chips (optional but my favorite)
- Preheat oven to 350°F. In a medium bowl, stir together first 5 ingredients until blended. Stir in chocolate.
- Use a 1 ounce disher to portion out 8 cookies (or use two tablespoons and shape into a ball per cookie) onto parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until lightly browned. Let cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes. Remove to a wire rack and let cool for 15 more minutes.