Cocoa hazelnut spread (Vegan homemade nutella)

Do you remember those lovely ghugras from my previous post?  Here is another gem where that came from!

I was on a short vacation to Bangalore.  My parents had moved homes, so we were helping mom sort books and other things. We had simple, home cooked meals while I was at home, and most of the days Jr.H and I spent exploring Bangalore’s wonderful restaurants.  I carried double chocolate cookies and plain ones for my parents that were appreciated hugely and will soon make appearance here.  Jr.H and Jr.P say cookies taste better when sandwiched with nutella and so it is fair to give you an awesome and easy recipe for a vegan one, right? The recipes for the cookies will have to wait.

This recipe is again taken from ‘A pinch of this, a handful of that’.  Use high quality dark cocoa powder for best results.  I love hintz dark cocoa powder and swear by it.  This time there are no modifications.  The recipe given in the book is just perfect for chocoholics!  My jar got over in a few days as we kept wolfing down spoonfuls of it!  The original recipe is titled ‘chocolate hazelnut spread’ but I used dark cocoa powder, hence the name.

Recipe : Cocoa hazelnut spread (Vegan, homemade nutella)
(Reproduced with permission from ‘A pinch of this, a handful of that’ by Rushina Munshaw Ghildiyal)

Time: 40 minutes | Makes: 300g of chocolate spread


1cup sugar
1 vanilla pod
2 cups whole raw hazelnuts
¼ cup unsweetened dark cocoa powder


Place the sugar and vanilla pod in a coffee grinder and powder.  (I use seeds from a vanilla pod and save the sticks in my sugar jar.)

Sift it through a sieve into a bowl. Grind any remaining large bits again and repeat. Reserve.

Put a dry kadhai or wok on medium heat. When hot, roast the hazelnuts for about 10 minutes, till you get the aroma of roasted nuts and they darken slightly. Set aside to cool.

(If you are using hazelnuts with skins, you will have to peel them. To do this, place cooled hazelnuts between two sheets of newspaper and rub, till most of the skin comes off.)

Place the prepared nuts in a blender and process. As their oils are extracted, they tighten up into a mass that looks like it will break your blender. Keep your blender going though, and soon you will see, almost like magic, that they will become liquid (about 7 minutes).

Add the cocoa powder and half the powdered sugar mix and continue to blend, till well combined.

Taste for sweetness and add sugar if required. (Any leftover sugar can be used in other dishes; the vanilla adds a lovely flavour to anything–even coffee.)

Once you have achieved the sweetness you want, transfer your chocolate spread into an airtight jar and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 months.

Stir before using and spread on anything from bread to cakes and even rotis!

Errr…. may I add cookies to that list?

Now for the winners!  In my last post I had promised to giveaway a set of foodles to my readers – one framed set for residents in India and one for those residing out of India.  I used random number generator to determine the winners.

Well, here they are!

Winner from India – Perzen Patel

Winner from abroad – Madhu

Winners are requested to send an email to sunshinemomsblog(at)gmail(dot)com for further details.

This contest is now closed. 


Harini is a vegan food photographer, writer and recipe developer. She also loves feeding birds, reading, watching crime thrillers, and travelling amongst other things.

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  • Nandhini

    Hi Harini,
    Today I tried this Nutella vegan version of yours. But forgot a step of powdering the sugar(I use the sugar I get in US Grocery store) and added it with Hazelnut paste. After grinding it many times still that I feel a grainy sugar in the spread. Can you suggest anyway to make a smooth paste?

    • Harini Prakash

      Hmmm… I doubt. The step won’t happen if the sugar is suspended in something that is already a thick paste. 🙁

  • Jasminder

    Hi, where did you get hazelnuts in Bangalore?

    • Harini Prakash

      I could tell you places in Mumbai but am not sure about Bangalore. I know FoodHall and Godrej Nature’s Basket Outlets will have it though.

  • ellie @ fit for the soul

    Ohhhhh this is gorrrrgeous! I never tried vegan nutella, but I’m so curious now. Your photography is just beautiful. 😀

  • alkadixit

    what is the Hindi name for hazelnut and what is its substitute?

    • Harini Prakash

      Hazelnut does not have a name in Hindi. There is no substitute taste-wise, but almonds also make a great spread with cocoa.

Leave a Reply to Jasminder