Homemade Chocolate Hazelnut Spread or No No Nutella

| February 17, 2011 | 2 Comments

I wonder how many Americans—Yanks, that is—discover Nutella for the first time while visiting Europe. That’s where I enjoyed it first. Lovely stuff and like much lovely stuff, it can be addictive.

Homemade Nutella or Chocolate Hazelnut Spread is no less addictive, just fresher, and the use of freshly roasted nuts along with a premium cocoa powder raises the bar for flavor. It’s a simple list of ingredients: hazelnuts, sugar, vanilla, hazelnut oil, cocoa powder and a pinch of salt.

Every time I roast fresh hazelnuts and grind them in a food processor, the perfume emanating from the bowl is almost levitating, like when the aroma of cooking bacon or fresh-hot coffee pulls cartoon characters out of bed and floats them down to the source.

Chocolate Hazelnut Spread after processing

Chocolate Hazelnut Spread on Croissant

Homemade Chocolate Hazelnut Spread

There are many recipes on the Internet for “homemade Nutella”. Mine is an adaptation of one that appeared in the Los Angeles Times. As in all simple recipes, the quality of your ingredients will determine the quality of your result. By all means, don’t scrimp on the cocoa powder. I used Dagoba, which is produced here in Oregon. Although it is a premium brand now owned by Hershey, I don’t know how far it is distributed. Scharffen Berger would be an excellent alternative, as would others of high quality.

  1. 2 cups (480 ml.) toasted hazelnuts
  2. ½ cup (120 ml.) unsweetened cocoa powder
  3. ¾ cup (180 ml.) powdered sugar
  4. 1 teaspoon (5 ml.) pure vanilla extract or vanilla paste
  5. ⅛ teaspoon (.625 ml.) salt
  6. 3 tablespoons (45 ml.) hazelnut oil or more if necessary
  • Preheat the oven to 400 °F.
  • Place the nuts on a rimmed baking pan and roast until fragrant, about 10 minutes. Don’t let them burn or they will be bitter.
  • Remove nuts to a damp kitchen towel, fold edges over nuts and place the baking pan on top for 10-15 minutes.
  • Remove pan from towel and rub the hazelnuts in the towel to remove as much of the skins as possible.
  • Place the hazelnuts in the bowl of a food processor and process with the steel blade, scraping down the sides as necessary until you have a smooth paste. This could take as long as 5 minutes.
  • Add the remaining ingredients and process until smooth. It should be the consistency of smooth peanut butter. If it is too thick, add a little more oil.
  • Remove the spread to a covered container and store in the refrigerator until needed. It will thicken as it cools. Bring to room temperature for it to become spreadable.
  • This should keep about a week if refrigerated.

Bon appétit

— Charles

Tags: , ,

Category: Condiment

About the Author (Author Profile)

Music, food and photography are at the center of Charles’ life. He performed with the Dallas Symphony, Dallas Opera and was assistant principal bassoonist with the Fort Worth Symphony for more than 20 years. When Charles and Victor moved to Baltimore, Charles created Lone Star Personal Chef and Catering Service and taught cooking classes at Williams-Sonoma. Now in Salem, Charles is a Realtor with Coldwell Banker Mountain West Real Estate, taught cooking classes for children at the A.C. Gilbert Discovery Village, and owns and operates Charles Price Photography. Charles and Vic enjoy entertaining and frequently host dinners as fundraisers for local non-profits and charities

Comments (2)

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  1. Barby Dressler says:

    OK – with this recipe, I can see my 2011 holiday gifts to family and friends all coming together! Cute jars, homemade fresh “nutella” — can’t wait to try it!

  2. I want this. Right now. Coffee and croissant and all.

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