Making Raw Almond Butter in the Spectra 11 Melanger


I somewhat recently acquired a melanger, which is a stone grinder used for chocolate making. It has a motor which turns a belt, which turns a stone base and two stone rollers. It takes things like cocoa beans (in the form of nibs) and ground nuts, and liquifies them into cocoa liquor and nut butters, respectively.

I couldn’t find that many resources online about how to make either of these things with it, so I experimented and came up with some things that work. Before I start, for anyone reading this who is sad that they don’t have a melanger, you can make very delicious nut butters in a food processor by just processing the nuts for 5-10 minutes. My small $25 4-cup Cuisinart has made countless cups of almond butter. The results will be different, however, as I’ll cover at the end.

Okay, back to the melanger. Here’s a recipe that will yield about 4 pounds of almond butter. Feel free to substitute almost any kind of nut; cashew, walnut, hazelnut, peanut, and many more will work.

  1. First, you’ll want to measure 4 pounds of almonds. I’ve found that if you use much more than 4 pounds, the process gets rather slow and you’re better off doing a second batch after removing the first one.For the almonds, feel free to use raw, pasteurized, roasted, salted, unsalted; whatever makes your almond dreams come true. I use unpasteurized almonds, which are only legally obtainable directly from the farmer in the US, because it makes me happy to do so. Generally I prefer unsalted things as well because then I can choose the salt myself (in this batch, applewood smoked sea salt).

  2. Next, pulse them in a food processor (likely in ~30 second batches) until you end up with something mealy / flour-like in texture.

  3. Put this into the melanger slowly, 2 cups at a time. Adding it any faster will likely cause the melanger to seize and you’ll have to take some out. When it becomes smooth and butter-like, it is time to add another 2 cups.

  4. Add anything else you’d like. If you started with unsalted nuts, I’d recommend 1T or so salt (to taste, try smoked). You can also add fun things like flax and/or chia. For 4lbs of almonds, I’d use about 4oz of each added ingredient that you want. It’s done when you want it to be done. I like it creamy, and if you do too, wait for a little gloss (1 to 2 hours).

  5. Unscrew the top, lift up the bowl, and pour it into your favorite container. Refrigerate and enjoy for a long time.
    Garlic for scale.

So there you have it! For what it’s worth, my personal experiment resulted in a 90% yield, such that starting with 4 pounds of almonds resulted in 3.6 pounds ending up in the final container. However, this didn’t include all the almond butter I scraped off with my finger for tasting and before cleaning, which my stomach tells me was no small amount.

Now, someone who has made nut butters before would reasonably ask: why do this in an expensive device when I could just use a food processor (and had to use one anyway)? First, almond butter made in a melanger will be much creamier and smoother than almond butter made a food processor; a blade and a stone are two very different tools. Second, and related to the first, you can very uniformly integrate ingredients like the flax, chia, and sea salt that wouldn’t achieve a small and consistent particle size otherwise. Third, I already had the melanger for chocolate making 🙂 (Also, while not a big sell for me, raw foodies enjoy that the temperature can easily be kept sufficiently low by pointing a fan into the device.)








13 thoughts on “Making Raw Almond Butter in the Spectra 11 Melanger

      1. Bala

        We purchased Spectra 11 melangeur from buy Indian Kitchen dot com online store and they deliver it world wide free express delivery

    1. Bala

      Yes we tried it and had some best result. We bought the it from buy Indian Kitchen dot com online store and they deliver it world wide free express delivery. Was happy with my first batch of coco almond butter

    2. mrooney

      Sometimes I’ll make a batch of almond butter without cleaning the melanger from the last batch of chocolate, or vice-versa, to reduce waste and add a little extra flavor. Were you thinking specifically of making a chocolate almond butter?

      1. disqus_VjvfgMIiFl

        Thanks! I love that it will make nut butters too. The food processor just doesn’t do it justice. Have you been adding any mix-ins to your cacao nibs as they grind?

  1. FN

    Hi! Thank you for a very informative article! Is is not possible to simply put the almonds in whole? Also, what do you add to the cacao nibs and how do you use the end product? Thanks!

    1. mrooney

      Hi FN! The melanger instructions say not to put anything whole in, as it would stress and wobble the machine a lot. Plus, you can do in 2 minutes in a food processor / blender what might take the melanger 2 hours to do, so it speeds up the process a lot. At the beginning, blades are a lot more efficient than blunt stone, until you get into the powder stage, at which point blades are ineffective.

      Are you asking about making chocolate when you refer to cocao nibs? You simply add the roasted nibs, then add sugar and optionally cocoa butter and any other spices / ingredients as desired. If you are interested in chocolate making, definitely check out Let me know if that answered your questions 🙂

  2. joe che

    Hi, I have seen in videos that when running dry the machine leaves a gray powdery dust in the bowl. Has your almond butter ever been contaminated with such stone dust or is this not a problem when the machine is not running dry. Thank you for your help.

    1. mrooney

      As far as I understand it (which is an admittedly limited amount), grinding stone on stone is naturally going to … grind stone … and produce a powdery dust. When you put something into the melanger, you are grinding that material between the stone instead of stone on stone and it isn’t a problem. There could be some dust getting into the product, though stone grinding is thousands of years old so I wouldn’t imagine it has proved to be a particular problem 🙂


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