Make the Healthiest Soaked and Roasted Peanut Butter

Soaked and Roasted Peanuts and Peanut ButterLike other legumes, peanuts contain phytic acid and enzyme inhibitors which impair your body’s ability to access all of the nutrients contained in the peanuts. You can, however, make peanuts much more digestible and nutritious by soaking them in water overnight. While I still do sometimes buy just organic roasted peanut butter at the grocery store, when possible I prefer to soak and roast my own peanuts to to ensure we’re getting maximum nutrients.

While you can make peanut butter with peanuts that have been merely soaked and then dehydrated, I strongly advise against skipping the roasting step if you want your peanuts and peanut  butter to taste like the yummy commercial versions. The roasting step is what really brings out that characteristic peanut flavor. Soaked and dehydrated peanuts taste like beans, not nuts. (Try one next time and you’ll see what I mean.) To get what are (in my opinion) the best-tasting peanuts and peanut butter you must roast as well as soak.

You can make this recipe in any amount you choose. I like to soak and roast in large batches (usually around 4 to 6 cups) to cut down on the number of times I have to use the dehydrator and food processor.

(I have this dehydrator, which I have been very pleased with.)


Raw, shelled peanuts (it’s fine if they still have papery skins)

Unrefined salt (1 tablespoon for every 4 cups of peanuts)

Filtered water

How to Make Soaked and Roasted Peanuts

Pour your peanuts into a large glass jar or other soaking receptacle. The jar or container should be much larger than the volume of the peanuts as they will expand while soaking. Add one tablespoon of salt for every four cups of peanuts. Add filtered water, enough to cover the peanuts plus an extra two or more cups.

Allow the peanuts to soak for about 12 hours. Add extra water if you notice that the peanuts have absorbed most of the available water. It works well to start the peanuts in the morning so they can soak all day, or to start them before you go to bed so they can soak all night.

After the peanuts are done soaking, dump them into a colander and rinse well.

Put peanuts onto dehydrator trays. The peanuts do not need to be in a single layer but do not pile them more than an inch deep.

Dry the peanuts in your dehydrator for 12 or more hours. Since you will be roasting them later, I dehydrate at 155°F. I find it works well to start drying my peanuts at night, so that if they take more than 12 hours I can check on them during the day.

Stop dehydrating when the peanuts are dry. Since you will be roasting them later, it’s okay if they’re not completely dry. (Technically you could roast the peanuts immediately after soaking, but I find that the roasting is much easier when the peanuts are dry rather than wet.)

Preheat your oven to 300°F. Spread peanuts onto a baking sheet. If you are roasting a lot of peanuts you will likely need to separate them into two or more batches. Don’t worry about spreading the peanuts into a single layer but don’t pile them higher than 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch.

Roast peanuts for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, start checking the peanuts for doneness every 3 minutes. When properly roasted the peanuts will be slightly browned and resemble nuts rather than legumes, but the best way to test for doneness is to taste them. They should taste like a roasted peanut, nutty and pleasant, rather than like a bean.

Err on the side of roasting too little rather than too much. The peanuts will continue to cook a bit after you remove them from the oven. If they taste pleasantly roasted they are almost certainly done.

Allow peanuts to cool.

Store your peanuts in a closed container. You can leave them whole for snacking or for adding to Pad Thai, or you can use them to make peanut butter.

How to Make Soaked and Roasted Peanut Butter

Pour peanuts into your food processor. If you have a lot of peanuts you will likely want to split them up into two or more batches.

Cover your ears and turn on your food processor. Grinding peanuts in the food processor is extremely loud for the first thirty seconds so I recommend just walking away for a minute. Once the peanuts have been ground up a bit the sound will decrease significantly and you should be able to stand next to the machine without discomfort.

Run the food processor until your peanuts become peanut butter. This will likely take quite a while, somewhere between ten and twenty minutes depending on the strength of your food processor and how many peanuts you are grinding.

Once the peanuts become butter, turn off the food processor and scrape down the sides of the bowl to reincorporate any stray peanut particles.

Turn the food processor back on and continue processing until the butter reaches your desired consistency. If you let it go long enough it will eventually become very smooth. (This is the way I prefer it.) Turn it off earlier to achieve a coarser consistency.

Store finished peanut butter in a glass jar in the fridge.

Other Posts You Might Enjoy

If you’re a peanut butter lover, you should check out my recipe for chocolate peanut butter coconut ice cream. It’s a great way to use the peanut butter you just made!

If you want to experiment with making other nut butters, I recommend trying out cashew butter. You can find a tutorial in my post how to make cashew butter.

Do you soak and/or roast your peanuts? What is your favorite way to eat peanut butter?


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25 Responses to Make the Healthiest Soaked and Roasted Peanut Butter

  1. julie says:

    HI, can you let the peanuts air dry for a time before putting into roast? And how about adding any oil?

    • Meghan says:

      Julie, I’m a little confused about your question. Do you mean let the peanuts airy dry instead of dehydrating them? As I mentioned in the post, you can skip the dehydrating step if you want, and just go directly from soaking to roasting. If you do this, I wouldn’t recommend letting them air dry, at least not for very long. I think they would start going bad. I’m certainly no expert, however.

      If you dehydrate the peanuts, they should be fine sitting out for a few days if you can’t roast right away.

      As to your second question, I never add any oil. If you grind them long enough the peanuts should become butter on their own.

      Hope this helps!

      • Buzz Miller says:

        I know that my wife (a native Filipina) soaks and then air dries the peanut for a day or 2. Then roast in a little ol with Garlic. We have not yet but will soon) made peanut butter out of them.

  2. Taylor says:

    Thanks for this helpful post! The only thing that I want to point out is that it’s not the best thing to roast peanuts because they contain polyunsaturated fat which oxidizes when heated.

    • Meghan says:

      Hi Taylor,

      I haven’t heard that before. Would you mind sharing your source? I’d hate to give up roasting peanuts.

      • Mark says:

        Hey there, We should be fine if just lightly roasted. (I Just turned vegetarian, and I am eating a lot more nuts. Began soaking and now dehydrating in the oven.)
        I just did some research and found this;

        “One study showed how roasting added the presence of trans fats in sesame seeds, peanuts and various other kinds. There was none in the previously raw and untreated food. Trans fatty acids are known to increase chances of heart disease. It’s a one-two punch combination. They raise LDL or bad cholesterol and lower HDL or good cholesterol.

        If you really prefer roasted seeds and nuts, it would be best to do the preparation yourself. The important things to remember in order to minimize harmful effects are:

        1) Set a low oven temperature, around 160-170 degrees Fahrenheit

        2) Do it for only 15-20 minutes

        3) Dry roast the seeds and nuts, never use oil, as most cooking oil is partially hydrogenated, which means its full of trans fat.”

        ( )

  3. Stephanie says:

    Here is a quote from a source that talks about the correct method for roasting.. “Roasting brings out the flavor of the nuts, and develops their sweetness. It is safe to roast nuts if done at a low temperature-typically a 160-170 degree Fahrenheit oven (at higher temperatures than this, research clearly shows damage to nuts’ delicate fats) for 15-20 minutes will do the trick. Place nuts on a cookie sheet in a single layer. To enhance the “roasted” flavor, try putting a little Bragg’s Liquid Aminos or soy sauce into a spray bottle and misting the nuts before roasting”.

    And here’s the link

    Thanks for this great post, it was just what I was looking for!! 🙂

    • Meghan says:

      Thanks for sharing this, Stephanie. I will keep it in mind the next time I make peanut butter.

      • Erin says:

        I know this is from years ago, but to update, the link she posted no longer works, so I checked around the website for info. They now say that as long as there is more (heat-resistant) monounsaturated fat and/or saturated fat compared to (heat-sensitive) polyunsaturated fat, it’s fine to roast at temps up to 300 degrees 10-20 minutes. Polyunsaturated fat makes up less than 1/3 of the fat in peanuts, so it should be fine.

  4. Kristin H says:

    Is it okay to use raw blanched peanuts for soaking, or is it best if they are just raw?

    • Hmm…I think blanched raw peanuts might be even better than regular raw. I’ve often wondered whether the peanut butter would be even better with the skins removed, but I have never been willing to put in all the work to get rid of the skins! So I’d say go ahead with the raw blanched.

  5. […] homemade peanut butter (soak and then grind with salt and oil or use the more nutritious almond) and not […]

  6. huria says:

    just learned that nut allergens are eliminated when nuts are soaked. i guess the people with allergies could finally enjoy peanut butter.
    does roasting after soaking cause the nuts to reverse back or not?

    • I don’t know, Huria. I have never heard that nut allergens are eliminated when the nuts are soaked. It was understanding that the nuts just become a lot more digestible.

  7. Jim says:

    Very helpful post, especially with some of the additional comments! I am looking forward to start making my own, but instead of a food processor I am going to use my wonder hand mill. It has steel wheels for nut butter.

  8. […] SPROUTED PEANUT BUTTER adapted from Meghan Slocum […]

  9. Alura says:

    I succeeded in making some today and it is amazing! Had about 6.5 cups of raw peanuts (could not find organic, but next time!) and soaked and dried them. They were not completely dry but started to roast at 300. They were in for about half an hour and I turned it down to 200 because I was worried they might get a burnt taste if I forgot about them for a few minutes too long. Not long after they were done, nice roasted flavor! I think I got lucky on the timing.

    I mixed them in a few small batches in my little proccessor with coconut and grapeseed oil, honey, molasses and pink salt,estimating amounts of each based on texture and taste. Took a while to grind from pieces to paste bu after the first round I knew what to expect and the added oils helped things go “smoothly” (pun absolutely intended).

    It came out beautiful! Slightly grainier than the conventional kind but much smoother than any “just peanuts” kind I have bought before. The honey and molasses i
    makes for a different sort of sweet than the conventional stuff but the flavor is great – I don’t want to compare it because it could never replicate a proccessed flavor but it holds it’s own in my eyes (or rather mouth) and I am a very serious peanut butter lover.

    It is in the fridge and does not seem to be separating! And it was a bit stickier and runnier than the commercial kind, but firmed up ever so slightly in the fridge without becoming hard and unspreadable!

    • Lee says:

      Hi Alura. I found your response useful. Great tips. I am researching on peanut butter making and wondering if you would like to share some more information. Thanks

  10. Amanda says:

    I don’t have a dehydrator and I’m not sure about leaving the oven on all it possible to let the nuts air dry in the fridge?

  11. Mel says:

    I’m not sure why it would take 12 hours to dry them in the oven at 170f?! We usuAlly just do it for 4 hours.

  12. gladys says:

    Why do you soak them if you’re going to roast them? are the peanuts still raw? O_O

  13. Hi Meghan,

    I have read about the enzyme inhbitos, lectins and phytic acid and how they reduces our body’s ability to absorb nutrients from peanuts and other legumes, and I was wondering how can we enjoy all the benefits of peanuts. Well, now I know the answer (soaking overnight) and soaking helps even in case of almonds as it removes the toxicivity (due to tannins) of the almond skin.

    As far as peanuts are concerned, I mostly eat them in the roasted from. In India, one can get both salted form and unsalted form of peanuts at good price and this saves us a lot of time, but it is intersting to know about the roasting process. I have tried eating soaked peanuts for quite some days but I don’t like them a lot.

  14. Kris says:

    What if I can only get roasted peanuts in my country. Is there any point of soaking them?

    • No, I don’t believe there is any point to soaking them. The soaking process is supposed to activate enzymes and such to make the peanuts easier to digest, but I assume those would no longer be present after roasting.

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