Creamy, Zesty "Cheese" Dip

August 30, 2015
Photo by Bobbi Lin
Author Notes

Make this sauce at your own risk: It's smoky, tart flavor is absolutely addictive, and once you try it, it'll be hard to stop smothering your veggies, burritos, nachos, baked potatoes, and salads. It's your new favorite cheese sauce, except it's magically dairy free, thanks to the creaminess of blended cashews! —Gena Hamshaw

  • Prep time 3 hours 10 minutes
  • Makes 1 1/2 to 2 cups
  • 1 cup raw cashews, cashews, soaked for at least 3 hours, drained, and rinsed
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons water
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
In This Recipe
  1. Blend all of the ingredients together in a food processor or a high speed blender till smooth. If you use a food processor, stop frequently while blending to scrape the sides of the machine down. The queso sauce will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days, and it can be frozen for up to a month.

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Gena is a registered dietitian, recipe developer, and food blogger. She's the author of three cookbooks, including Power Plates (2017) and Food52 Vegan (2015). She enjoys cooking vegetables, making bread, and challenging herself with vegan baking projects.