Creamy, dreamy healthy nutella is chocolatey, rich and delicious, all while being naturally sweetened for a nutritious alternative to store bought hazelnut spreads. So now you can have your cake err Nutella, and eat it too! Sugar free Nutella for the win!
This recipe was originally published in February 2020. It has been updated to include more tips.
You’ve asked and I’ve answered! This recipe comes to you through a reader request for a HEALTHY, sugar free Nutella!
While there are a ton of homemade nutella recipes on the world wide web, there’s not a whole lot of truly healthy nutella alternatives.
This delicious, sweet treat is not only an easy healthy dessert you can whip up quickly, but its decadent and mouth watering too.
Is nutella healthy?
Although marketed as a healthy breakfast item, in my humble opinion, I would say no. The main ingredients in Nutella include a ton of refined sugar and vegetable oil. In fact there’s far more sugar and oil, than hazelnuts.
Alternatively, this healthy Nutella (aka hazelnut spread) consists mostly of raw hazelnuts, plus dates for natural sweetness, pure vanilla extract, cocoa powder for chocolatey flavour and nut milk for creaminess.
All of which are completely wholesome, refined sugar free and oil free. Yippie!
As an added bonus, this sugar free nutella happens to be gluten free, soy free and vegan, too.
Healthy nutella for the win!
Is nutella vegan?
Most store bought hazelnut spreads are not vegan, as they contain milk ingredients.
My homemade version is not only a healthier, sugar free Nutella, but yes, it’s also vegan. Perfect for everyone!
How to make it
(This is a summary with step by step photos, full recipe measurements and instructions are in the recipe card below.)
Start by preheating your oven, and then gathering your ingredients.
Place the raw hazelnuts on a baking tray lined with parchment paper and bake for 15 minutes. Then remove from the oven. (photo 1)
Place a clean, dry dish towel over top the nuts and using your hands, rub back and forth for about 30 seconds or so to scrape off the skins. They will remove easily. (photos 2-3)
Now remove the dish towel and continue to rub and scrape the skins using your hands, once cool enough to touch, but still warm. (photos 4-5)
NOTE: Most of the skins will come off very easily, but don’t worry if there are a few stubborn ones. As long as you get most of them off, you’re good to go.
Now transfer your skinned hazelnuts to a food processor or high speed blender. (photo 6)
Begin processing, scraping down the sides as needed. The hazelnuts will go from whole to floury bits, to lumpy, and then smooth luscious nut butter. (photo 7-9)
NOTE: If you’re using a food processor, be sure to turn it off every 30 seconds or so to prevent it from overheating. Leave it off for 30 seconds or more and then continue processing. Actual processing time took me about 1 minute. But depending on your appliance, will take anywhere from 1-5 minutes.
Now transfer the nut butter to a bowl and set aside.
In the same processor add the dates and begin processing them, pouring in the milk while the machine is running for a smoother result. (photos 10-11)
NOTE: If using a Vitamix, add both the dates and milk at the same time and process.
Continue processing until smooth. (photo 12)
NOTE: If your blender or processor is not a powerful one, pre soak your dates for 15 minutes and then drain for a smoother date paste.
Now return the hazelnut butter to your food processor with the date paste. Add all remaining ingredients: cocoa powder, vanilla, salt the plant milk. (photo 13)
Pulse several times until incorporated, adding up to 3 more tablespoons of milk if a thinner Nutella is desired. (photo 14)
Transfer your sugar free nutella to a clean glass jar and keep at room temperature for everyday use.
How long does homemade nutella keep?
It was not easy to keep this delicious Nutella long enough to test this. But I’ve gotten as far as 1 week at room temperature in a sealed glass jar with no spoilage. I suspect it will last longer, but who has the patience to try? 🙂
You may also refrigerate your sugar free Nutella for up to 3 weeks. (I hid some in a small container in the back of the fridge, just to make sure!)
How to use your homemade nutella
Oh the glorious options!
- Spread it on toast or make it a PB & N sandwich.
- Top some on waffles or pancakes.
- Sneak some into your favourite smoothies.
- Add some to your favourite oatmeal.
- Dunk fresh fruit, like strawberries.
- Lather it on banana bread!!
- And my favourite way, grab a spoon. 😉
Either will work. However, if you’re using a food processor, make sure to stop and scrape down the sides as needed. Then pause to give your processor a break, every 30 seconds or so to prevent overheating. Leave it off for at least 30 seconds and then resume.
If you don’t have a powerful appliance, make sure to soak your dates for 15 minutes and then drain, before making your date paste. This will help make a smoother date paste.
Yes. Although there is no added sugar, except the natural sweetness from dates, this sugar free Nutella does taste sweet! That said, it does not taste exactly like store bought. If a sweeter Nutella is preferred, you may add a couple tablespoons of maple syrup.
More healthy vegan dessert recipes
- Mini Quinoa Sweet Potato Muffins
- Banana Nice Cream – 3 Flavours!
- Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies
- Sweet Hummus Fruit Dip
- Healthy Peanut Butter Chickpea Cookies
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- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Add the raw hazelnuts in a single layer and bake for 15 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and place a clean, dry dish towel over top the hazelnuts and rub your hands over the nuts to remove the skins. The rubbing back and forth will force most of the skins loose. Do this for about 30 seconds and remove the towel and continue with your bare hands when cool enough to do so. Don’t worry if there are few stubborn skins that wont come off, as long as you get most of them.
- Place your skinned hazelnuts in a high speed blender, like a Vitamix, or in a food processor and process until you get a nut butter. It will go from nuts, to a crumbly flour texture, to eventually a creamy nut butter. Stop and scrape down the sides as needed.
- Now remove the nut butter and set aside in a bowl. To the same food processor, add the dates and begin processing. Then pour in ¼ cup of the plant milk while the machine is running and process until smooth. Scrape down the sides as needed.
- Now add the hazelnut butter back in, along with the remaining plant milk, cocoa powder, vanilla and salt and pulse a few times until blended. You may add an additional 2-3 tablespoons of milk if a thinner consistency is desired.
- Store in a clean glass jar at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.