Soy-free. Dairy-free. Raw. Vegan. Probiotic-rich. Creamy. Delicious! Did you know all these words could describe vegan cheese? If not, you'll definitely want to keep reading!
There's something special about cheese. I don't know anyone who doesn't love it. It tastes great. And it makes people feel good. It's a very comforting food. The decision to go vegan often leaves a hole where this satisfying food once was. Sure, you can buy some tasty vegan cheeses from your local grocery store, but oftentimes they are filled with ingredients whose names shall not be spoken (because they're too hard to pronounce!). As a rule of thumb, if I can't pronounce an ingredient, or wouldn't stock it in my cupboard, I don't tend to eat it very often. I've found that my body prefers foods that are natural, not chemicals created in a labratory to extend shelf life.
That's where raw vegan cheese comes in! Making raw vegan cheeses at home is super simple. There are many recipes out there. You can make raw vegan cheeses with nuts and seeds. Use herbs, seasonings, salt, garlic, and whatever else you'd like to create delicious flavor combinations. You can also let them ferment (sit at room temperature for several hours) to make them probiotic-rich. Let your imagination be your guide The possibilities really are endless!
Being vegan doesn't require you to leave behind the foods you love. With a little creativity, you can have your cheese and eat it, too! While there are many, many recipes out there, some are much tastier than others. I'll share with you a few of my favorites.
- Raw Cashew Dill Cheese- a little taste of heaven! So yummy you'll want to eat it by the spoonful. Guaranteed. This cheese is really creamy and delicious! Non-vegans won't know it's not dairy!
- Raw, Vegan Walnut "Cheddar Cheese"- if you want the soy-free option, just forego the miso. Otherwise, this cheese is a crowd pleaser!
- Raw Vegan Cheddar Dip-this behaves like a creamy cheese. For those who are sensitive to nuts, it's made with sunflower seeds, so you're good! Use it as a veggie dip or on sandwiches.
- Raw Vegan Parmesan Cheese- this is a really big recipe. Really. You can make 1/4 of this recipe and it'll be plenty. You can sprinkle it on pastas or salads.
These are just a few of the cheeses I love. They’re so versatile. Use them in salads, sandwiches, pizzas, pastas, as a dip for raw veggies, in raw or cooked meals…the possibilities are endless. They provide a great flavor kick to any meal. I love the texture of these cheeses as well. You can modify these recipes in many ways to create a perfect cheese! If you want the probiotic qualities in the cheese, let your cheeses sit at room temperature for 12 hours. Lactobacillus bacteria will populate the cheese, adding a gut-friendly probiotic boost to your meal. Test out different herbs and spices to see what effect they have on the cheese. Get creative and find out what works best for you! If you create something you really love, please come back and share with me. I always love trying new recipes!
Happy eating :)