Almond Flour and Almond Butter

Almond Flour and Almond Butter
  • Sumo

I probably get more questions about almond butter and almond flour than anything else, so I decided I better make a post about it. Lovely little almonds become a lifesaver after you go grain free. So, here are the questions that I seem to get asked the most:

Where do I get almond flour?

I’ve tried several different kinds of almond flour. I’ve bought it at Alnatura in Konstanz, I’ve bought it in the States and I’ve bought it at the Apfelbaum Bio Laden in Uster. And you know what I’ve discovered? The ground almonds at Migros or Coop are the exact same thing. There are two varieties of ground almonds:

  • Blanched almond flour is made by removing the skins from the almonds before grinding. This type of almond flour will you give you a finer texture when making baked goods (pictured below, left)
  •  Almond meal is simply ground almonds made from whole almonds, skin and all. It generally has a coarser grain and will give your baked goods a ‘nutty’ texture. It works well for breading chicken and fish, or topping off casseroles, cobblers and more (pictured below, right)

The Migros Alternative


Will using almond flour help me lose weight?

If you take nothing else away from the things I blog about, know this: it’s not about your weight, it’s about your health! However, I do realize that lots of people stumble into the paleo way of eating because they are looking to lose weight. If weight loss is your goal (in addition to better health), it’s a good idea to keep this in mind:

  • Although almond flour is packed with nutrition, like vitamin E, calcium, magnesium and protein (6 grams per 1/4 cup), as well as being fairly low in carbs (6 grams of carb per 1/4 cup), it also contains 160 calories per 1/4 cup and 14 grams of fat. So while it’s an excellent gluten and grain free flour, it needs to be consumed in moderation. If you are trying to lose weight, it is a good idea to keep almond flour baked goods to a minimum. (As is the case with all nuts in general, when losing weight is the goal)

Should I measure, weigh, scoop or dump?

I remember one of the first things I learned about baking was how to measure flour correctly. Doing it wrong could mean a major recipe fail. Almond flour is a little more forgiving, but if you want to get the best results possible, you should still follow a few guidelines:

  • Using Measuring Cups: If you are using measuring cups, it’s best to use the “dip and sweep” method. To do this, dip the measuring cup into the container of almond flour and level it off by drawing a butter knife (or other flat-edged utensil) over the top of the measuring cup. Pouring or dumping the almond flour into the measuring cup will most often result in less almond flour making it into the recipe than what was intended. I’m a lazy cook though, and I am totally guilty of pouring and dumping!

The ‘sweep’


  • Measuring by Weight: If you are following a European or Swiss recipe, you’ll often see ingredients listed by weight instead of in cups. If you’re not from North America, you probably don’t even own measuring cups or know what they are! Using a digital food scale is a great way to measure out your flour. The conversion rate is 1 Cup of almond flour = 100 grams. 


Love my scale!

Can I substitute almond flour cup for cup in recipes that call for wheat flour?

You might get lucky and it might work out with some recipes, but because its weight, fat content and absorption rates are so different from that of wheat and other grain based flours, it does not reliably cross over. Unless you are a whiz in the kitchen (the kind of person who can magically create their own recipes and have them turn out great), it’s probably safer to use almond flour in recipes that were specifically created for almond flour, at least until you are used to baking with it.

How do you store it?

Well, it never lasts long enough in my house for storage to be an issue! Nuts do go rancid so it should be kept in a cool, dry place in your kitchen. If you keep it refrigerated  it will stay fresh for months and even longer if you freeze it. I tried keeping mine in the refrigerator and found that it got a bit clumpy so now I just keep it in the cupboard. I go through it pretty fast so I never bother to transfer it to glass storage jars.

Moving on to Almond Butter

Yeah, I had to put that in big capitol letters to express how much I love almond butter. I was never much of a peanut butter fan so not being able to have peanut butter wasn’t a problem for me when I went paleo. If you are missing your peanut butter though, I think you will find that there are a lot of tasty nut butters out there for you to love. Almond butter is used a lot in paleo baked goods recipes and people are always asking me about where to get it.

What’s it called in German and where do I get it?

Almond butter is called Mandelmus in German. I buy the brand made by Rapunzel, which I have been able to find at just about every bio laden or reform haus that I’ve been into (both here and in Germany). Be sure to get the kind that says 100% Mandeln on the label (no sugar, no extra weird ingredients).  A 500 gram jar costs about 15 francs, so the stuff is not exactly cheap. However, you can easily make your own in about 15 minutes! I’ll give you the recipe, but I don’t have any pictures yet since I already have two full jars sitting in my cupboard at the moment. You will need a food processor to make this.

My favorite brand

Homemade Almond Butter

To make one cup of almond butter, you need 8 ounces (225 grams) of almonds. I use the almonds from Migro with their skins still on (normal looking brown almonds). You can roast them in the oven first if you like for a roasted nutty flavor (but as I said, I’m lazy, so I don’t).

Throw the almonds into your food processor, turn it on and plug your ears. You probably shouldn’t just walk away because you’ll need to scrape down the sides every few minutes. Also, you might want to be around in case your little food processor is not as strong as you thought it was and starts to overheat. I don’t want to be held responsible for any kitchen fires!

It will take about 12 minutes to make a super thick (think paste) texture and then a few minutes beyond that to get to a really creamy and spreadable consistency. I don’t add salt, but you could. This will last several weeks in your refrigerator.

Experiment! Use different kinds of nuts or nut combinations. I’ve made sun butter (with sunflower seeds–closest thing to peanut butter), macadamia nut butter, cashew butter and hazelnut butter. Make your own Nutella by adding some cocoa powder and honey to your hazelnut butter! Homemade nut butters also make great gifts….(yes, that was a hint).

Got any great almond butter or almond flour recipes? Be sure to share them in the comments.

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  1. This is such a helpful post. The difference between almond meal and almond flour so simply explained. Finally. Thank you!

    • You are welcome, Wendy! I’m glad you found it helpful 🙂

  2. I’ve done a lot of playing with almond flour. To include traditional recipes remade using almond flour. Important considerations, almond flour has a high oil content, you will most likely need to reduce the oil in the recipe or blend the almond flour with another, I like using coconut or tapioca flour in addition to almond for desert type food.
    You MUST reduce the sugar content, usually by half, ( I consider this a win win, because of the health factor of almonds and the benefit of less refine sugar in the diet.)

    Keep in mind that one of the things I have done and am still doing is look at the science behind the ingredients, for example gluten is what allows food to hold air like a balloon, which is why so many recipes will call for xanth gum or folding in egg whites to mimic part of gluten.

    • Thanks for the great information Robin 🙂

  3. Thanks for this post! I was about to go crazy earlier when trying to convert cups of almond flour and butter to grams. This seems to be a place where whole foods plant based baking and paleo food prep overlap. Who would have thought!

    • Yep, there is more that we have in common with a whole food vegan/vegetarian way of eating than most people think! Glad you found this information helpful 🙂

  4. Hi
    Can I use this migros almond meal for macaroons ?

    • Hi Shazana,
      Yes, that’s the almond flour I use.

  5. Do you have any experience with substituting almond meal for almond butter in a recipe? It seems like they are both just ground almonds but almond butter seems more oily somehow so I’m never sure if I would need to add oil or how it could work. Thanks!

    • Hi Tina,
      I’ve never tried to use almond meal when a recipe called for almond butter. Yes, they are essentially both just almonds, but the almond butter is ground to the point that the oil is released from the nuts. It’s also really smooth, which I don’t think you could really replicate just by adding oil to almond meal. You could always experiment, but your results would probably depend on what you were trying to make and the texture you were hoping to end up with. Sorry, I’m afraid that’s not much help 🙂

  6. Here’s a question: Can you see any reason why making almond butter with already ground almonds would not work? I have a few packs of ground almonds that I’d like to use up…

    • I think it should work. It will at first turn sort of into a thick paste, but the longer you go it should release more oil and make a butter. If not, add a little bit of coconut oil to get the consistency that you’re looking for 🙂