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An Everything Bagel with Vegan Cashew Cream Cheese on a blue plate

Dreamy Vegan Cashew Cream Cheese

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This Dreamy Vegan Cashew Cream Cheese is a great multi-purpose recipe. I love it mixed with diced carrots and sliced scallions and spread on crackers. You can smear it on a toasted bagel, I recommend Dave’s Killer Bread Epic Everything Bagels. You can make a café style veggie bagel sandwich or it makes a great base for stuffed mushrooms.

Ingredient Notes

This recipe uses minimal ingredients:

  • Cashews
  • Cashew Soaking Liquid (or just water)
  • Lemon Juice
  • Raw Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Liquid Smoke
  • Caper Juice
  • Unfortified Nutritional Yeast
  • Ground Black Pepper
  • Salt (fine)

Here is more info about some of those ingredients:

Raw Cashews

Raw cashews aren’t actually raw. Referred to as raw cashews when they are unroasted and unsalted, actual raw cashews are not suitable for human consumption. Cashews are steamed to remove an outer toxin, here’s a more elegant explanation. This recipe uses unsalted, unroasted “raw” cashews. Oh, and cashews are seeds, not nuts.

Cashew Soaking Liquid

You may need more or less than 1/3 cup. Use more for a softer dip style, or if you need more liquid to get it creamy. Use less liquid if you want a firm Philly style cheese, around 1/4 cup, this will set up in the fridge and get firmer.

Caper Juice

Hold back the capers with a fork and use 1 teaspoon of the juice from the jar in this recipe. You can sub pickle juice if you don’t have caper juice.

The Nooch

I always use and recommend unfortified nutritional yeast. The fortified stuff can taste synthetic or vitamin-y. I take this B12 supplement instead of getting it through nooch. Both vegans and non-vegans may have difficulty getting enough B12.

Let’s make Dreamy Vegan Cashew Cream Cheese

Put all ingredients in the food processor.

Turn the food processor on high and walk away. Let it go for about 5 minutes, interrupting to scrape down sides with a spatula in order to help everything get incorporated. You may want to use earplugs if you are staying with the food processor. 5 minutes with the food processor going can be a long 5 minutes.

Place in a glass bowl and chill until cold. It will set up in the fridge and become thicker. If you let it chill overnight, or longer it will become tangier. It’s worth the wait, although, we often go at this with crackers right out of the blender.

nooch, apple cider vinegar, cashews, salt, pepper, lemon, capers and liquid smoke on a white cutting board in front of food processor.
minimal ingredients, lots of tangy, creamy good-good
soaked cashews (“raw” un-roasted, unsalted)
food processor with cashews, unfortified nutritional yeast, black pepper, salt, caper juice, apple cider vinegar, before blending into vegan cream cheese.
before processing
blending for around 5 minutes
creamy and ready to transfer to a glass bowl and chill so it sets up
In its glass bowl, labeled and ready for the fridge, to chill
vegan cream cheese in a glass bowl
After setting up in the fridge

I recommend letting it chill, set up and get tangier overnight, or longer if you can wait. However, when I make this, some of it gets eaten before it makes it to its glass bowl.

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5 from 2 votes

Dreamy Vegan Cashew Cream Cheese

a great versatile, quick recipe for vegan cream cheese
Course Breakfast, Side Dish, Snack
Cuisine American, Vegan
Keyword creamy, tangy
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Optional Chill Time 12 hours
Total Time 12 hours 10 minutes
Servings 8 1/4 cup servings
Calories 191kcal

Equipment

  • Food processor

Ingredients

  • 2 cups unroasted, unsalted "raw" cashews measured then soaked overnight in water, drained, set aside soaking water.
  • cup soaking water from cashews You may need more or less (use more for a softer dip style, or if you need more liquid to get it creamy) use less if you want a firm Philly style cheese, around 1/4 cup, (this will set up in the fridge and get firmer).
  • ¼ cup lemon juice about a lemon's worth
  • ½ teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 1 teaspoon caper juice
  • ½ cup unfortified nutritional yeast
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Put all ingredients in the food processor.
  • Turn the food processor on high and walk away. Let it go for about 5 minutes, interrupting to scrape down sides with a spatula in order to help everything get incorporated.
  • Place in a glass bowl and chill until cold. It will set up in the fridge and become thicker. If you let it chill overnight, or longer it will become tangier. It's worth the wait. However, we often go at this with crackers right out of the blender.

Notes

Nutrition information is approximate.
If you’d like this to be more like a dip (more spreadable and less firm) use 1/2 cup or more cashew soaking liquid instead of 1/3 cup cashew soaking liquid.
If you’d like thicker cream cheese, use 1/4 cup or less of the soaking liquid and be sure to let it set up overnight in the fridge. 
www.planttestkitchen.com

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving of 1/4 cup | Calories: 191kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 296mg | Potassium: 276mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 12mg | Iron: 2mg

For your shopping convenience, this post contains affiliate links.

Looking for more vegan cheese recipes? Try this Green Cashew-Fu Ricotta (a.k.a vegan cashew tofu ricotta), this Yippee-Ki-Yay Holiday Vegan Cheese Ball or this Holy Grail Vegan Cheese Sauce.

Did you make this recipe? Tell me about it below in the comments section.

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