Quick & Easy Vegan Cheese
Just 5 ingredients and 15 minutes to make a homemade vegan cheese recipe that is creamy and delicious! This quick & easy vegan cheese recipe is cheaper and better than store-bought!
Servings: wheels of cheese (about 4 inches diameter)
- 2 cup(s) raw cashews softened (see step 1)
- 1/3 cup(s) refined coconut oil melted
- 2 tablespoon(s) green olive brine (the liquid in a jar of olives)
- 2 clove(s) garlic peeled
- 3/4 teaspoon(s) salt
- Optional add-ins: coarsely ground black pepper, lemon zest, crushed red pepper flakes, or chopped fresh herbs (such as thyme, dill, rosemary, parsley, or basil)
- Soften the cashews: Add the cashews to a medium pot and cover with water. Put over high heat and bring to a boil. Boil for about 10 minutes until the cashews are tender. Drain and rinse with cold water. Alternatively, you can soak the cashews, by placing the cashews in a bowl, covering them with water, and allowing the cashews to soak for a minimum of 6 hours or overnight. Drain and rinse before using. Both of these methods will soften the cashews making them easier to blend into a creamy texture.
- Blend the cheese: Add the softened cashews to a food processor along with the coconut oil, olive bring, garlic, and salt. Blend until smooth, creamy, and sticky, stopping to scrape the sides as needed. You want to make sure you blend this very well so that it gets as smooth as possible. It will likely get warm when blending from the friction. I blend mine for about 5 minutes, stopping to scrape the sides.
- Form the cheese: Line two molds (I used these), or two small bowls with a square of cheesecloth. Divide the cheese among the two cheesecloth-lined molds. If you are adding fresh herbs, sprinkle them over the cheese and then use a chopstick or something similar to swirl the herbs into the cheese. I like to keep one cheese wheel plain, and the other with herbs. Smooth the top of the cheese with a spatula and then fold the cheesecloth over the cheese. Refrigerate for a few hours or overnight until the cheese has firmed up. Unwrap and enjoy!
Substitute for cashews: cashews are my preference as they are creamy and mild in flavor, but if you need to substitute them you can use macadamia nuts, blanched almonds, or raw sunflower seeds. All of these nuts and seeds will need to be boiled for about 15 minutes to ensure they have softened. Substitute for coconut oil: coconut oil becomes solid when chilled so this is what firms up the cheese. No other oil will work for this, but if needed you can try substituting vegetable shortening. If you are oil-free you can omit the oil but note that this will be more of a creamy spread and will not firm up in the fridge. Refined coconut oil: ensure you are using refined coconut oil which has no taste or smell of coconut. Unrefined coconut oil has a strong coconut taste which won't be appetizing for this recipe.
Serving: 1 wheel of cheese (recipe makes 2) | Calories: 1028kcal | Carbohydrates: 39g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 93g | Saturated Fat: 41g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 11g | Monounsaturated Fat: 33g | Sodium: 597mg | Potassium: 855mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 1IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 50mg | Iron: 9mg