Adventures in Nut Butter – the problem with pecans

Olde Tyme Nut Butter MachineThe fact is, I’m nutty for nut butters. Recently, I’ve taken that nuttiness to a new level and I ordered a used commercial quality nut butter machine for myself. The main object of the purchase is to be able to make nut butters for myself, but I’ve also decided to start a very small business making some nut butters to sell at the local farmer’s market.

I’d like to start with just a few flavours, blended in delicious recipes, all  sugar-free and healthful. My top picks to start with are:

  • Almond Butter
  • Pecan Butter
  • Cinnamon Almond Butter
  • Chocolate Hazelnut Butter
  • Spiced Pumpkin Seed Butter 

Everyone’s got their favourite nut and their favourite flavours, but based on surveying people I’ve decided that these are the best options to start with.

But pecans are so expensive right now! Holy smokes, this might really foil my plan. 

The thing about nut butters, and pecans in particular, is that when you make nut butter the volume of the nuts decreases by half. Here’s a photo of 3 cups of chopped pecans, which only makes a little more than 1.5 cups of pecan butter. And of course when you make nut butters, some of the volume is invariably lost by sticking to the sides of the machine, spoon, etc. so there’s a little further reduction in weight because of this.

chopped pecans

3 cups of pecans, 365g

Pecan Butter

1.5 cups of Pecan Butter, 342g

I’ve got to crunch some numbers to see if it’s realistic to market nut butter or if the price point will just be too high.

But the pecan butter is particularly delicious, a real winner. And I’d like to also make a special Pecan Pie Butter flavour, a recipe that I’m perfecting, but again that won’t be feasible if the price point makes the item unattractive for purchase.

After crunching some numbers, I don’t think that I could sell pecan butter for less than $2 an ounce! That’s pretty pricey. I might be able to bring the price down on the blend for the pecan pie butter, but it still needs some tweaking to figure out the exact recipe, portions, and costs.

It sure is tasty though!!!

In the meantime, if you’re dropping by, I’d love to hear from you! What’s your favourite nut? What flavours appeal to you? What would you be willing to pay for a specialty item like pecan butter?


5 thoughts on “Adventures in Nut Butter – the problem with pecans

    • Though I won’t be able to make you any seed butter in my machine, I’m perfecting the spiced pumpkin seed butter recipe and it can be made in a food processor and is reall delicious. I’ll let you know once I’ve got the recipe down.

      • mmmm!! I don’t have a food processor but it’s very tempting…maybe I’ll have to buy a small one!

  1. Saw you on MFD and was intrigued by your baking – I started following your site a couple months ago. I wanted to suggest you contact local farmers who maybe have Pecan trees. Although they are expensive in the stores etc… a friend of mine’s mom has so many pecans every year she doesn’t know what to do with them! You might be able to pick them yourself in places or people might be happy to let you take them off of their hands. Wish I lived close enough to buy some nut butters! I am a huge fan (of the butters and your recipes!)

    • Thanks, Heather! I’ll be ordering in bulk soon which will definitely help the price. I don’t think pecans grow too well in my neck of the woods but I’ll look into it. I’ll probably be putting up some of my nut butter recipes soon too; most of them can be made in a good food processor.

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