Vegan ricotta cheese is made with cashews or almonds and is perfect for a diary-free lifestyle! Vegan ricotta is incredibly creamy, delicious and perfect as a dip or in vegan lasagna!
Vegan ricotta cheese is super simple to make with 6 ingredients!
For a soft cheese it is best to soak the cashews in water for about 2 hours first. Then drain the water, add fresh water and a bit of flavorful nutritional yeast, lemon, salt and vinegar right before blending! Easy as pie! Although, is pie really that easy???
For most of you that are finding this recipe you probably are looking for a fabulous vegan ricotta cheese to make in place of dairy cheese, Right? This is a fabulous recipe to add to lasagna, pasta, this spaghetti squash pizza casserole and even dribbled on gluten-free pizza in place of mozzarella cheese! When you do replace other cheese with this vegan cashew ricotta cheese, enjoy that it has a creamy spreadable consistency!
But if you are here for the purrrrdy pictures and stumbled up this recipe at random, let me explain what vegan cheese is and why anyone would want to substitute the diary for nuts.
A vegan diet is one that eliminates all animal products. This includes meat, poultry, eggs, butter, honey, animal milks and cheese. There are so many fantastic vegan options these days and you can find already prepared nut based vegan cheese at most specialty grocery stores.
With allergies being at a high rise, vegan cheese is becoming more popular to use in place of dairy. It is also so easy to create! Other benefits are that vegan cheese is more easily digested and its natural high fat (from nuts) is perfect for a Paleo and Whole30 diet!
To get the cheesy flavors, I like to add nutritional yeast and some nutritional yeast can contain traces of gluten. Bobs Red Mill is a safe source and can be found here. So just double check the ingredient source or package first.
I have this vegan ricotta cheese recipe in my 30 Irresistible Healthy Gluten-Free Snacks e-book, topped on toast with roasted bruschetta! It is so delicious and I make it frequently that I just had to share it here with you! The ingredients are also the base used in this vegan cashew cheese dip, which has gotten rave reviews at my mommy happy hours! To turn it into a vegan ricotta, less ingredients are used and I strain it through a cheese cloth for either a thicker dairy-free ricotta, or do it slightly to obtain a slightly less liquid consistency. If you strain a lot of the water out, it will form into what resembles curds.
Let me tell you it is so delicious spread on toast or crackers and served even with roasted butternut squash! The endless capabilities using this vegan ricotta cheese could go on-and-on!
This vegan cashew ricotta cheese is:
Creamy, flavorful, soft, dairy-free, made without whey, slightly sweet, made with cashews (or you can use almond slivers), the perfect filling for lasagna, cannoli, cheesecake and is similar to Mascarpone!
It is also fabulous beaten smooth and mixed with condiments or sugar, cinnamon, chocolate or strawberries and served as dessert!
Vegan Cashew Ricotta Cheese (6 Ingredients!)
- Soak 2 cups of unsalted cashews in 2 cups of water (or until the nuts are fully covered). Cover in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours to soften. When the cashews are ready drain the water then add cashews to a blender with salt, nutritional yeast, white vinegar, lemon juice and 1 cup of fresh water. Blend until smooth.
- Using a cheese cloth and a large bowl, put the cheese cloth over the bowl and pour the cashew mixture on the cheese cloth. Close the sides of the cheese cloth and squeeze out the water. You can make it to your consistency and squeeze a little bit or squeeze a lot of water.
- Pour the ricotta cheese from the cheese cloth into an airtight jar and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.