How To Make {Good Tasting} SunButter

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Have you ever made really good homemade Sunbutter (aka – sunflower seed butter)?

If not, you are in for a treat! As a long-time peanut butter lover (understatement), I have really picky ideas of what sunbutter should taste like. I have made a bunch of variations on this recipe until I finally nailed it with this combo and I think it’s awesome.

The secret ingredient in this How to Make Sunbutter tutorial is Ghee.

Now, I know that kind of sounds like a pain in the butt thing to either have to make something else first or buy something you don’t usually use.  I am telling you that the addition of just a couple teaspoons of Ghee turns ordinary sunbutter into a rich, creamy and yes, buttery treat you will be swiping fingerfuls from every time you open the fridge.

BTW-Aren’t these photos stunning? They are the work of the ever-talented Pamela Bolig, who is slowly, steadily and very patiently giving me photography lessons. She did what I always strive to do (but don’t accomplish nearly enough) with my food photos- she made the dish look as good as it tastes.


  • If you are Vegan, try substituting extra light olive oil. If you want to use organic virgin coconut oil, please note that I have found that it needs a lot more sweetener.
  • Store in a glass container in the fridge for up to two weeks.
  • You may need more salt or more sweetener depending on your taste preference but don’t add more Ghee (or oil) until you have fully processed this as the seeds really need time to release their oils.
  • This Homemade Sunbutter is Paleo and naturally Gluten-Free.

4.8 from 5 reviews
How To Make {Good Tasting} SunButter
1 Tablespoon is 3 Points Plus. 2 Tablespoons are 5 Points Plus.
Serves: 20
  • 1 pound raw sunflower seeds
  • ¾ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 Tablespoon pure maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons ghee (see NOTES for substitution)
  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Divide sunflower seeds up on two baking sheets.
  2. Roast for 4 minutes. Rotate trays and toss seeds. Place back in the oven and roast for another 4 minutes.
  3. Carefully transfer to a food processor (or high powered blender) and add sea salt.
  4. Process for about 1 minute until seeds become powdery.
  5. Process 16 to 18 minutes, stopping every 2 minutes to scrape down the sides. Add the ghee and maple syrup at about the halfway point. Here are some photos of what this looks like. This might sound like a lot but it takes a while for the sunflower seeds to release their oil. If you stop too soon, the sunbutter will NOT be creamy. Trust me on this and be patient.

How To Make Sunbutter from

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  1. Anna-Lynn says

    Could you use room temp palm oil shortening instead of ghee? I have had that in a peanut butter recipe before and was curious if you thought it’d work for this recipe. My daughter and I can’t have dairy or ghee. Thought I’d ask before trying it with the olive oil. Thanks!

    • Anna-Lynn says

      Nevermind…I tried making this this morning using olive oil and it was an epic fail. Followed the recipe exactly and I ended up with a brick of gross tasting paste. I could not even pulse this for 2 minutes before having to stop it as the density of it was overheating my heavy duty Cuisinart food processor. I labored at this for over 2 hours…never got a creamy texture, not even close and it killed my food processor. Now I have to buy more Sunbutter…and a new food processor.

        • Anna-Lynn says

          It’s an 8 cup, and I didn’t even put the whole batch in at the same time, when I saw it wasn’t coming together and kept gumming up my blade I removed half the batch to another bowl with the idea of slowly incorporating it if/when the amount left in the processor finally came together. It just never got past the brick stage and it was like my processor just gave up…haha..It’s a professional one too so I was really shocked it quit. I’ve put it through “worse”. Do you think it was the type of oil used that caused it not to come together? I had read all the comments before attempting this, waited and waited and waited for the natural oils–my seeds were raw organic and not old–but nothing happened. After an hour I started adding the oil figuring I’d been patient enough and hoping that would help it finally start to come together but it didn’t, I just got a brick of paste…any ideas??

          • says

            I think an 8-cup may not have a powerful enough motor. The seeds could also not have been super fresh as it sounds like either because of the motor OR the quality of the seeds, they never released their oils. If you decide to try again, I would even put less in this time – like 1/3 and see if it works. Either way, it must have been so frustrating! I hate wasting ingredients.

  2. Kristy says

    I stirred in some water this morning and noe it is delicious and spreadable. Thanks for the yummy treat.

  3. Kristy says

    I just made a half of batch of this and it tastes delicious but the consistency is a little dry. I added extra ghee and maple syrup which helped but didn’t fix it. I blended for extra time too. I may have added the syrup and ghee too soon. Would that do it or do you have other suggestions for next time?

    • says

      You have to process until the seeds release their own natural oils and that takes a while. It sounds like you may have added the syrup and ghee a little too soon and they were absorbed instead of adding flavor. I would put it back in the processor and keep it going until the oils release and then add the ghee and syrup. Also, depends on what size processor (or blender) you are using and how powerful.

  4. Nancy says

    A-ha! Your sun butter looks so smooth and creamy! I make it similar to your recipe, but I stop the processing in the 5 to 10 minute range and mine always comes out grainy. I don’t know why I didn’t think to just keep going. Now I know it could take double the amount of time, but it will get smooth.

  5. says

    I tried making Sunbutter without a recipe. It started off too dry and then (after a little bit of this and a little bit of that) ended up super gummy. Yuck! Your recipe totally saved the day. Great suggestions on roasting the seeds and using ghee as the oil! Thanks.

  6. Angela says

    I needed Sunbutter for a batch of Sunshine sauce from Well Fed, I just knew almond butter wouldn’t cut it. I found your recipe and it saved the night! I was able to make it while I worked on the other parts of dinner, then it was ready just in time to make the sauce. We hadn’t even had sunbutter yet, it does remind me so much of peanut butter, which I really miss. So I will be making another batch just for snacking as soon as I can get more sunflower seeds. Oh, and the Sunshine sauce was great too, I recommend it!
    Thanks for being one of the many awesome bloggers that share your recipes to take the guess work out of even what may seem ‘basics’ for the rest of us!

  7. says

    This has been my go-to recipe for sunbutter for months, but I never commented. This week I got some store-bought sunbutter on a great sale and discovered something awesome – I like this version SO MUCH BETTER than store-bought!! So thank you for this recipe! I can’t wait to make it again.

    • EverydayMaven says

      Hi Kristy,
      I have tried it with coconut oil and wasn’t crazy about the flavor but you may like it! It certainly “works” in regards to the correct amount of oil so it will just be a matter of personal taste. Good Luck!

  8. Alaine says

    If someone (not me, of course! lol) accidentally bought roasted sunflower seeds, do you think it would still turn out ok? :)

    • EverydayMaven says

      Hi Alaine!

      I am re-posting my response from below to Sarah:

      Hi Sarah,
      You could use a bit of liquid Stevia. I wouldn’t recommend using already roasted nuts as they are most likely roasted in canola or sunflower oil, you have no control over how much oil is on them, they nuts could be very dry and old. There are so many variables that will impact the texture and final taste.

  9. Lisa says

    THANK YOU! I love Sun Butter but hadn’t ever made it with Ghee or Maple syrup… turned out wonderful! I roasted my sunflower seeds on the stove constantly stirring for about 3 minutes and that process worked well to get the seeds nicely brown! Thanks for posting–love the pics too!

  10. says

    quick question…I’m in enjoying my first batch of sfsb…is there any way to thin it out just a bit w/o losing flavor? Or would it be less thick if I continued processing it?

    • EverydayMaven says

      Hi Maureen! If it is too thick, you probably need to process it longer. You could always add an additional bit of oil – start slow with 1 tsp at a time but I recommend processing so the natural oils release before doing that.

  11. says

    I’m so glad you said to be patient…at first I thought I was doing something wrong…and then…voila! it turned into butter. I LOVE IT! Thank you for sharing this recipe.

    • EverydayMaven says

      So glad to hear Maureen! It is really tricky the first couple of times but you just have to stay with it and then the seeds suddenly start to release their oils and it’s an “A-Ha” moment! :)

    • EverydayMaven says

      Hi Sarah,
      You could use a bit of liquid Stevia. I wouldn’t recommend using already roasted nuts as they are most likely roasted in canola or sunflower oil, you have no control over how much oil is on them, they nuts could be very dry and old. There are so many variables that will impact the texture and final taste.

    • EverydayMaven says

      Great question Deborah – I’ll have to measure next batch I make and come back and update. I think it’s 1.5 cups (approximate!) but need to double check.

  12. Willow says

    I just made the sunbutter and it is fabulous! My daughter has been asking me to buy her some since she’s not crazy about almond butter but, instead, I made your recipe. It tastes much closer to peanut butter than almond butter and I couldn’t stop myself from licking the bowl.

  13. Jessica says

    I don’t know what cup size my food processor is. I am going to give it another try. It turned out just took really long!

    • EverydayMaven says

      Yep! This is also a great substitute for PB when you have to feed little kids (often nut-free nowadays).

  14. Leea says

    Followed the recipe to a T and it is the best recipe I have tried (and no I haven’t tried but one or two). None of the others told you about how long the processing would take. My processor is not a straight processor. It’s more of a salad shooter and that makes it a pain but well worth it! Tastes soooo goood!!!

  15. Jessica says

    I found you on Pinterest. I can’t have peanut butter, but am not a fan of almond butter so I was excited to try this recipe. I made it tonight but mine is taking a lot longer than your recipe said. I am going on almost 40 minutes of processing it and it’s just getting to the creamy state but I’ve also had to add about 2 tbsp of ghee and 2 tbsp of maple syrup to help it along. I am using a Bosch food processor which should make this just fine. Am I doing anything wrong, I followed your recipe exactly. Should have I roasted the sunflower seeds longer than 8 minutes?

    • EverydayMaven says

      Hi Jessica,
      That sounds really frustrating! I would not recommend roasting the seeds any longer than 8 min as you don’t want them to burn or get bitter. Do you know what cup size your food processor is?

    • EverydayMaven says

      There is definitely an undertone of sunflower seeds but I don’t find it overwhelming and it’s most like peanut butter in my opinion.

  16. says

    Yes it was a difficult subject to photograph because of consistency and color.. but I appreciate a good challenge! And I can say that is it delicious! Great job Alyssa with the recipe!

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