Father’s Day recipe: “Not-ella”

As a child I used to love the popular commercial chocolate-hazelnut spread, probably because my dad was also a big fan of it and could eat it by the spoonful. With it being Father’s Day in the UK this weekend I thought that it might be fun to create a homemade alternative – it’s safe to say that the shop-bought jars are not too healthy and laden with sugar and dairy, but this recipe is free from refined sugars and additives, and is so delicious that it will still be loved by dads everywhere!


1 cup hazelnuts

¼ cup maple syrup

¼ cup water

2 tbsp cacao powder

2 drops vanilla essence


Makes 1 small jar

Preparation time: 15 minutes


  1. Bake the hazelnuts on a baking tray at a medium heat for around 5 minutes – keep checking them as nuts are notoriously easy to burn!
  1. Once they are done, the nuts’ skins should come off quite easily. Try to get as many off as possible – I like using a sieve to toss them in as this scrapes the skins off for you.
  1. Transfer the nuts to a food processor and blitz until they form a powdery texture. Add in the remaining ingredients and continue to process until they form a smooth consistency – you may need to scrape down the sides or blades during this step to ensure that it is all mixed evenly.
  1. Spoon the spread into a small jar and store in a cool place for a couple of weeks. I like to serve mine on top of porridge, spread generously over toasted sourdough, or used as a dip for apple slices.

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