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How to Make Vegan Cheese at Home

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It's always more fun to DIY. Every week, we'll spare you a trip to the grocery store and show you how to make small batches of great foods at home.

Today: McKel Hill of Nutrition Stripped makes a cheesy, cheese-free spread that you can eat on anything from salads to potatoes to sandwiches.

Cashew cheese is perfect for dairy-free living -- and for anyone who wants to try something new. Not only does is this creamy, cheesy spread made using gluten-free and vegan ingredients, but it comes together quickly and it's endlessly versatile. Non-dairy lovers, rejoice!

This “cheese” has been a staple of mine in the kitchen since I stopped eating dairy. What makes this recipe especially delicious is the nutritional yeast, which contributes to the cheesy flavor and also, yes, adds nutrition. 

More: Nutritional yeast is also the magical ingredient in vegan pesto.

Consider this fair warning: cashew cheese is so delicious you may find yourself wanting to consume the whole bowl. If you’re looking for creative uses for cashew cheese, here are a few ideas: 

  • Dollop it onto baked potatoes, salads, fresh pasta, or scrambled eggs.
  • Use it as a dip for vegetables, fruits, or crackers.
  • Make a quick salad dressing with a tablespoon of cashew cheese and a couple tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. 
  • Make a cheese sauce with 1/4 cup cashew cheese, 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard, and 1/2 cup of almond milk.
  • Simply spread it onto sandwiches, cracker, wraps, and toast.

More: So you've ate your fill of cashew cheese and crackers. Now, make vegan chocolate pie for dessert.

Classic Cashew Cheese

Makes 1 1/2 cups

1 cup raw cashews
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons white wine
2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard


Soak the cashews in 1/4 cup of water for 20 minutes to 1 hour. Add all ingredients to a high-speed blender or food processor and blend until thick and creamy. 

Use at room temperature or chill for at least 20 minutes. Store the cashew cheese iin an airtight mason jar or container and enjoy it for up to 1 week. 

See the full recipe (and save and print it) here.

Photos by McKell Hill

Tags: Sauce, Cashew, Cheese, Nut, Vegan, Gluten-Free, DIY Food, How-To & Diy, Small Batch