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Eat Well Jun. 20. 2014
Condiments

Classic Cashew Cheese, Three Ways

Jun. 20. 2014
Condiments
McKel Hill

McKel Hill

MS, RDN, LDN, Dietitian

Classic Cashew Cheese is still one of the most popular recipes on Nutrition Stripped that is requested for sharing and a personal staple in my kitchen. In case you’re new to the whole “cashew cheese” thing, it’s simple. It’s blended raw cashews with a mix of seasonings and spices and a touch of lemon juice made to resemble a cheese spread, sans dairy. All three of these take less than 10 minutes to make and you can use it in almost anything that needs a little kick of creaminess or cheesy flavor. The Classic Cashew Cheese recipe was a hit from the start,and in light of that I’m sharing three new varieties – a Sun-dried Tomato, Olive, and Truffle Cashew Cheese.




FREE BONUS: GET THE DOWNLOADABLE DIGESTION TIPS EBOOK FROM MCKEL HERE!

These 3-in-1 recipes are my top favorite variations on my Classic Cashew Cheese recipe – a sweet but bold sun-dried tomato cashew cheese, a salty olive cashew cheese, and finally a favorite in our home, truffle cashew cheese. All three of these can be used in the same way with some subtle variations which I'll share below for examples. Universally, all three of these dips go well with raw veggie sticks, your favorite gluten-free cracker, or stirred into warm fluffy quinoa, millet, or rice. I've talked at length about why I love using cashew cheese, and it's a great way to sneak in healthy fats, fiber, and protein especially for those practicing a dairy-free lifestyle. Below is each "recipe" of what you'll be adding to the original Classic Cashew Cheese (and be sure to check that post for step by step photos too!). Make these ahead of time to always have them stocked in your fridge- follow my batch cooking and meal planning guide to help.

Classic Cashew Cheese, 3 ways
Recipe Type: dip
Author: McKel Hill, MS, RD, LDN
Prep time:
Total time:
Serves: 36+ (3 batches)
The basic classic cashew cheese recipe, with 3 variations. Olive, sun-dried tomato, and truffle-style. Raw VGN GF Paleo
Ingredients
  • 1 cup raw cashews (soaked for 1hr or more)
  • ¼ cup filtered water
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 Tbs. lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 Tbs. white wine (wine you'd drink) or use 1 Tbs. raw apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbs. dijon mustard
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
  • SUN-DRIED TOMATO //
  • 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
  • OLIVE //
  • 1/3 cup green and kalamata olives, chopped
  • TRUFFLE //
  • 2 tablespoons white or black truffle oil
  • 1 teaspoon truffle sea salt (instead of salt used in original recipe)
Instructions
  1. Simply add all ingredients into your Vitamix or high speed blender and blend until thick and creamy.
  2. ADD the noted ingredients to make each individual cashew cheese listed in the blog post.
  3. It will be the consistency of thawed or stirred cream cheese. This will further harden after it's been chilled.
  4. Store in the refrigerator for up to 5-7 days.
  5. Enjoy!

 




FREE BONUS: GET THE DOWNLOADABLE DIGESTION TIPS EBOOK FROM MCKEL HERE!

Sun-dried Tomato Cashew Cheese

This one is perfect for all of your Italian dishes that need a little extra love without adding dairy to the mix. For example add it to zucchini noodles or stirred into quinoa/brown rice pasta for a thick sauce.

  • 1 recipe Classic Cashew Cheese + 1/2 cup sundried tomatoes soaked in the water used for soaking cashews in the original recipe. Blend the water and sun-dried tomatoes to get a soft paste, stir and blend with the remaining cashew cheese. Adjust sea salt to taste.

Olive Cashew Cheese

I love using olive tapenade for a condiment, stirred into pasta or grain dishes, or eaten plain with crackers. In this version of cashew cheese, the creamy cashews mixed in takes olive tapenade to a whole new level and makes it easier to spread. It's also a great balance between the naturally sweet cashews and salty olives.

  • 1 recipe Classic Cashew Cheese + 1/3 cup of your favorite mixed olives. I like using kalamata olives and green olives. Just roughly chop, pit and blend into the original cashew cheese. Adjust sea salt to taste.

Truffle Cashew Cheese

This one by far is my favorite version of all the cashew cheeses I've ever made. I put it on anything and everything, especially potatoes! I love this one on fresh green salads, potatoes, stirred into quinoa or pasta, and as a dip with fresh veggies.

  • 1 recipe Classic Cashew Cheese + 2 tablespoons truffle oil (white or black truffle) + 1 teaspoon truffle sea salt (instead of normal sea salt used in original recipe). Blend all ingredients together.

I hope you all enjoy this one! I have a hunch you'll really love these recipes that go with these dips really well:

xx McKel

p.s.

Love Classic Cashew Cheese and want even more healthy recipes and tips to live whole and eat well? Get the Nutrition Stripped Cookbook with almost 100 delicious whole food recipes not on the blog! Get your copy here.

The Recipe

Serves 36+ (3 batches)

Print

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup raw cashews (soaked for 1hr or more)
  • ¼ cup filtered water
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 Tbs. lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 Tbs. white wine (wine you’d drink) or use 1 Tbs. raw apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbs. dijon mustard
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
  • SUN-DRIED TOMATO //
  • 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
  • OLIVE //
  • 1/3 cup green and kalamata olives, chopped
  • TRUFFLE //
  • 2 tablespoons white or black truffle oil
  • 1 teaspoon truffle sea salt (instead of salt used in original recipe)

Directions:

  1. Simply add all ingredients into your Vitamix or high speed blender and blend until thick and creamy.
  2. ADD the noted ingredients to make each individual cashew cheese listed in the blog post.
  3. It will be the consistency of thawed or stirred cream cheese. This will further harden after it’s been chilled.
  4. Store in the refrigerator for up to 5-7 days.
  5. Enjoy!

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  • merilyn

    thankyou mc kel, always nutritious and looks delicious! cheers! m:)

  • TRUFFLE cashew cheese?! Have I told you I love you??

  • Kymelle

    These look amazing!! My son can’t eat cashews but he can have macadamia nuts. Do you think it would work with these or other nuts? Many thanks.

  • I just made the sun dried tomato cheese. Loved it!! I didn’t have yeast or apple cinder vinegar. I used pomegranate balsamic vinegar in its place. Phenomenal!

    • Amazing! I love the way your improvised- so glad you enjoyed these and thanks for sharing the recipe with friends/family!

      • sarah

        Can I ask about the yeast used in the cashew cheese?
        My son is on a gluten/dairy/soya free diet, he is supposed to be yeast free sugar free
        can you make cashew cheese without yeast please?

        He has a re current yeast problem so hence we try to avoid it!

        Many THanks

        Sarah

        • Please re-read the part where this is not an active form of yeast! Nutritional yeast is fine for those who can’t have “yeast”, also check out my pantry page for more information to learn about it 😉 M

          • Tracy Tebb

            If you could please add the information about the yeast as a note on the same page as the recipe itself that would be wonderful. I am not able to find the pantry page in the navigation list. Thanks Tracyxx

          • Hi Tracy, whenever a word is bolded you can actually just click on it to get the info! Super simple 😉

  • Cashews are some of my favorite nuts! I eat them not only because they’re very tasty and also because they’re protein rich (since I’m into sports and I’m constantly looking to supply my body with more proteins). Thanks to this recipe i found a new way to enjoy cashew’s incredible flavor and for that you have my sincere gratitude!

  • Valerie

    I was wondering, as a dip like in the pictures…is it too much fat for an appetizer maybe if I have guests?

  • Elohim

    Made the Cashew Cheese with Olives tonight. Very easy and tastes great with homemade FlaxSeed crackers!

  • jessie

    Hiya, so I made 2 different cashew cheese recipes this weekend to test out which ones I liked best. Your ingredients worked best together and loved consistency compared to some other recipes which are too dense, but just one thing: 2 TBS truffle oil is WAY too much for 1 cup cashews. It was so strong I had to add another cup cashews and it was still a bit too strong (according to my 3-4 testers as well). I’s say 1/2-1 TBS per cup cashews. Still, this is my fave recipe- I added some soy probiotic yoghurt for bitterness 🙂

    • jessie

      sorry I meant I made *3* different cashew cheese recipes this weekend! 😛

    • So glad you enjoyed it! The truffle oil you use and the strength depends on the brand- always go with your taste and checking seasoning as you go along! Something I always preach 😉

  • These all look SO good. I’m SO glad I found these recipes (and your site!) when I was googling cashew cheeses! It’s my daughter’s second birthday this weekend and I really wanted an awesome cashew cheese to make for guests!

    Plus, I am in love with your name (is that weird? haha)!!

    • Thank you so much dear, you’re so kind! I’m so glad you shared this with your loved ones and the little ones 🙂

  • How does the cheese ferment in only 5-7 days? What makes it ferment?

  • alexis

    does it come out similar or same if you use different types of nuts? any suggestions?

  • Dana

    Can this be stored in the freezer and thawed later?

  • Love this recipe. I make it often to take to parties or too keep as a spread for sandwiches. As long as I don’t utter the word cheese as a descriptor to my fiance he loves it 😉

  • I found your website while searching for Cashew Cheese that a client would like for an appetizer on their wedding dinner. Why on earth would you call this a cheese? Its a spread, a butter, a tapenade!!! Cheese has dairy in it, period!

    I love your website and will return often for more recipes and happenings!

    Aloha from Hawaii.

  • Tammy

    Do I have to refrigerate the cashew cheese? I make it all the time, but want to take it backcountry camping to use over pasta and see no reason why it has to be refrigerated. Thanks!

  • Teri

    I followed the recipe and experienced the citrus and vinegar flavor overpowering the nutritional yeast. I added more garlic and yeast but it didn’t help…so some folks might want to experiment with the amounts of these ingredients.

  • Sharnette Newson

    This is a great idea and i never knew about it. This is more of a question than comment. What do you use in making this that makes it cheese like?

  • Ellie James

    Since I’m allergic to citrus, can I prepare the cheese without lemon or is that ingredient absolutely necessary? Thanks.

    • McKel Hill

      Yes you can still make this without lemon!

  • Christine

    I know it says”serves 36+” but what is a serving size, a tablespoon or more?

    • McKel Hill

      About a tablespoon! Realistically I eat about 3 tablespoons per serving! ><

  • Simsy

    hi McKel
    Just a quick question what can I make this cashew cheese recipe without nutritional yeast? or can I substitute Nutritional yeast for something Else?

    Simsy

    • McKel Hill

      You can make it without, but nutritional yeast gives it that cheesy flavor we’re after! Plus, it’s loaded with protein and B vitamins, not an active form of yeast.

  • Alice

    The favorite of my husband , the sundries tomato .
    The texture is wonderful , very tasty , with celery sticks or zucchini .
    Thank you

    • McKel Hill

      You’re welcome Alice, so glad you and your husband enjoyed these dips!

  • Louis

    I’ve been making this cheese for years. My favorite use is as a topping for a baked potato.

    • McKel Hill

      Oh yummmm Louis!

  • Nanna

    I followed each step religiously and it tasted BAD. Like, BAD. I wasn’t expecting a cheesy flavor and i’ve tried similar recipes but this one turned up horribly. I used apple cider vinegar and the combination of that with the nutritional yeast tasted like a week-old stinky sock. Sorry, maybe i did something wrong but this was not goot at all ????

    • McKel Hill

      Oh yikes! I’ve never had anyone have it turn out bad sorry for that. A couple things to troubleshoot- if nutritional yeast was bad or old, it’ll ruin this dish, that could’ve been one thing. Also, check how fresh the cashews are, if nuts/seeds go rancid it’ll taste horrible. Hope that helps and best luck for the next try!

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