A creamy homemade healthy vegan Nutella recipe that you can prepare in no time! You’ll just need 5 ingredients to whip up this decadent vegan, gluten-free chocolate hazelnut spread. In less than 20 minutes, you will have a jar full of creamy deliciousness – the perfect treat, almost guilt-free!
I used to love Nutella when I was a kid: this chocolaty, decadent spread has always been a bit of a weakness!
So, when I started to eat healthier, I wanted to find out exactly what I was dealing with.
The History of Nutella
A precursor version of Nutella® (called supercrema – which means super-creamy) was originally created in the 1950s by Italian chocolatier Pietro Ferrero.
Then, in 1964, his son Michele Ferrero transformed his father’s creation into the globally recognized Nutella® that we know and love today.
But, what is it made from? And why should you make it at home?
As much as I think Pietro and Michele’s idea is genius, I also believe that their original recipe has fallen victim to industrial processing.
When I discovered what traditional Nutella was made of, I was in a bit of a shock!
A jar of original Nutella contains:
- 58% Sugar: Yes, you’ve read that right! It’s not a typo.
- 18% Fat: Fats are not bad for you. But the main issue with the fat contained in Nutella is that it mostly comes from palm oil. Palm oil contains over 50% of saturated fat, making it a high-cholesterol food.
And what about nuts? Isn’t that supposed to be the main ingredient as it’s called NUT-Ella, after all?
Well, Ferrero says each jar contains around 50 nuts, which equates to 20-25%.
Check out this shocking image if you want to look at what a Nutella jar contains.
It’s time to get your blender out and turn those nuts into a healthy version of Nutella that is vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, and much more nutritious than the original!
Yes, you can have all the deliciousness of the real deal without the nastiness!
Ingredients you’ll need
You will need a few simple ingredients to make this healthy vegan chocolate hazelnut spread:
- Hazelnuts: The stars of the show! Rich in protein and healthy fats, they will provide your Nutella with its typical nutty taste and bring it to the next level of deliciousness!
- Cashew nuts: My secret ingredient to add an extra layer of sweetness. Cashews are creamier than hazelnuts, giving this recipe a smoother texture and richer taste without the need to load the recipe with sugar. Make sure to use raw, unsalted cashew nuts.
- Dark chocolate: Use good chocolate, as it will determine the quality and taste of your Nutella. I used 75% dark chocolate, but feel free to substitute it with your favorite type of chocolate.
- Cacao powder: Cacao powder helps add an extra layer of chocolate to your Nutella, making it even more irresistible!
- Raw cane sugar: The cashews already provide it with great natural sweetness. However, if you want to add some more sugar for those who like their sweets sweeter, I suggest adding just one teaspoon at a time until you reach your perfect sweetness. You can also add maple syrup or aga
- Vanilla extract: A little touch of vanilla will provide the recipe with a delicate and not-too-sweet flavor.
How to make vegan Nutella
- Toast the hazelnuts in the oven: Place the hazelnuts on a baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 6-8 minutes. Keep an eye on them, as nuts can burn quickly.
I like to keep the skin on my hazelnuts for added fiber, but you can remove it if you want a smoother texture. Simply roll them around and rub them in a clean kitchen towel to remove the skin.
- Start blending: Add the roasted hazelnuts and raw cashew nuts to a food processor or high-speed blender (I used a Ninja Blender here, but a friend tried to make this Nutella with a Cuisinart food processor, and it works great). The art of making nut butter is a tricky one. You need the perfect combination of power and patience. It’s usually better to blend at low speed. If your blender or food processor is too powerful, it can cause the nuts to end up on the side without getting mixed in properly. The blades should create a fine, grainy paste. Keep mixing until you get to a smooth, creamy consistency typical of hazelnut butter. This is crucial. Otherwise, your Nutella will end up being gritty. And remember, depending on your blender, this can take anything between 5 to 10 minutes.
- Melt the chocolate: You can melt the chocolate in the microwave or over a stove. As we are melting very little chocolate, I find melting it in a microwave works best. Add the chocolate to a small bowl, and place it in the microwave for 10-15 seconds at a time. Keep checking, or you’ll end up with burned chocolate (yes, guilty! It happens to everyone…). If you don’t have a microwave and can’t be bothered with creating a double boiler, you can simply chop the chocolate into smaller tiny pieces and add it to the food processor. The heat from the blades will melt it.
- Add the chocolate and cacao powder: Add the melted chocolate to a food processor with the cacao powder. This is also the point to add your sweetener of choice one teaspoon at a time. Process for about 30-60 seconds, taste, and decide if you need more sugar.
- Store: Store in a glass jar or airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 weeks. It’ll probably last longer, but it never did in my house, lol!
How to eat
Well, straight out the jar, of course! But if you’re looking for other ideas, it makes an excellent topping for overnight oats, chia puddings, or pancakes for breakfast. It’s also delicious as frosting on brownies, cookies, and cakes!
It’s also a great healthy snack to have on top of whole-grain bread or drizzled over a sliced banana.
F.A.Q. and tips
Real Nutella contains skim milk powder and whey. These two ingredients make it not suitable for vegans. But don’t despair! My yummy recipe is perfect for vegans, and it’s lactose and gluten-free.
Store in a jar at room temperature for up to three weeks. Yes, you can keep it in the refrigerator, but it’ll become harder and not as spreadable. A tip is to remove it half an hour before you plan to eat it.
No, you don’t. If you don’t have them handy or prefer to go 100% hazelnuts, simply substitute the cashew nuts for more hazelnuts in the recipe.
Your food processor might not be powerful enough but don’t despair. You can add one tablespoon of vegetable oil (like olive oil, hazelnut oil, or coconut oil) or even water to help the blending. If you add a touch of almond milk, as some recipes mention, your Nutella won’t last as long.
That’s normal. It’s because your nuts probably have a high oil content (good natural oils). You can put your Nutella in the fridge for an hour or so to harden it a bit. But when I get a runnier consistency, I eat it as it is. It’s delicious and completely natural.
You can use any sweetener you like: raw can sugar, coconut sugar, agave, or maple syrup. Taste it before adding any amount of sugar because hazelnuts and cashew nuts are quite sweet naturally, and you might not need any additional sweetener at all.
Why I love this vegan Nutella recipe
- Creamy, nutty, and velvety
- Made with whole natural ingredients and no added fat
- Vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free
- So simple to make
- Much healthier than the one you can buy at the grocery store!
More delicious chocolate recipes
You can also check out these healthy vegan snack ideas for more inspiration.
And if you try this healthy vegan Nutella recipe, please leave a comment and a rating and let me know how much you liked it!
Healthy Vegan Nutella
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Place the nuts on a baking tray and roast them for 6-8 minutes and allow them to cool slightly before processing (note 3).
- Place the hazelnuts and cashew nuts in your blender or food processor (see note 4 )and begin to blend. Depending on your food processor, it will take 10 to 15 minutes to reach the perfect smooth liquid consistency. If the hazelnuts and cashew nuts stick to the sides, run a spatula alongside the bowl and keep processing. You will feel like nothing is really happening but be patient, and if your food processor is overheating, turn it off for a few minutes and let it cool down. After a while, the magic will start happening – the oil contained in the nuts will break down, and after a few more minutes, you will have smooth nut butter.
- While the nuts are processing, break the chocolate into small chunks and place them into a heatproof bowl and melt in the microwave, making sure to check every 15 seconds until melted (note 5).
- Once the nut butter is ready and deliciously creamy, add the melted chocolate, the cacao powder, and sugar (or sweetener of your choice, if needed) and blitz for another minute or two.
- As soon as it’s ready, it will be quite liquid, as the nuts will be warm. You can put the Nutella in the fridge for up to a couple of hours for a thicker consistency.
- Store the Nutella in a sterilized airtight jar and enjoy it. You can keep it a room temperature for around 3 weeks or longer (if it stays around that long)!
Did you make this recipe? Tag @gatheringdreams on Instagram. I want to see it!