Perfect homemade vegan cheese made with carrot, seaweed, coconut oil, and agar. Simple and nut-free plant-based cheese for all occasions. Get the recipe here.
Looking for a healthy, plant-based recipe? Vegan cheese is made from ingredients like seaweed, carrots, and agar for a dairy-free and nut-free alternative to cheddar. It’s not only delicious but also nutritious. Nutritional yeast provides the cheesy flavor while coconut oil gives it that rich creaminess you crave in your favorite dishes.
This vegan cheese is so good that even people who don’t follow a vegan diet will love it! You can use this recipe to make everything from pizza to macaroni and cheese or just enjoy it with some crackers as an appetizer. The possibilities are endless when you have this dairy-free alternative at your disposal!
The upside of making anything yourself is that you will know exactly what went into it. As a vegan, it’s also a great way to ensure that all the ingredients used are genuinely animal product-free. Vegan cheese has less saturated fats and cholesterol when compared to regular dairy cheese.
Making your vegan cheese is also an excellent way to get around being lactose intolerant but still want the taste of cheese. Vegan cheese substitutes such as soy-based cheese have fewer carbohydrates, which are known as FODMAP. Also, it’s great if you have irritable bowel syndrome often caused by dairy products.
Making your cheese is a good idea because that way, you know that it’s freshly made. Also, it tastes excellent. It is also much cheaper to make your own than to buy. One of the good things about making it yourself is that it is easy to make, so you shouldn’t have too much trouble.
You can make the substitute using potatoes, and just about any should do the trick. It also helps you use extra virgin oil, but if you don’t have it, just about any oil will do. Oil is not mandatory. You can opt not to use it and use water or milk instead, depending on your preference. You can also choose to up the heat a little by adding cayenne pepper.
Also, you can use any temperature water to make the cheese substitute. Whether it’s cold or hot, you will be okay either way. It also helps to measure the yeast with a measuring cup to ensure that you are using accurate measurements. At times you may not find nutritional yeast. In this case, you can use brewers yeast, using equal amounts. This is when it becomes ever so important to weigh the yeast before using it.
When you are making the cheese, be sure to stir it constantly. Also, you can add more nutritional yeast to the mix if you want to make it cheesier. If you want to avoid sticking to the mold you are setting it in, use oil to spray the molding container.
Vegan cheese can be served as a starter for people to dip into it using celery, carrot sticks, or crackers. It can be used in recipes that require cheese, traditionally, such as macaroni and cheese. You can also have vegan cheese with bread rolls or vegetable sticks or crackers.
It is a substitute because it can work well in any recipe initially called for cheese, such as pizza, dips, sauces, and sandwiches. This will depend on the form it is served in. a dip needs melted cheese, while a sandwich or salad relies on slices or cubes of solid cheese.
Using tofu helps us keep this recipe nut-free. Firm tofu is best for giving us the thick batter we need for dairy-free cheese. If you use medium or soft, you will have to reduce the liquid significantly before allowing it to set.
Coconut milk works well because it’s high in fat, creating a creamy final results. Other types of dairy-free milk that you can consider are cashew milk or soy milk.
You will also need half cup of water and two tablespoons of agar-agar powder. This powder will make the cheese firm enough to slice through. It works well in vegan recipes because it is also a vegan alternative. You can either get it as a powder or as flakes. However, if you can’t find agar powder, you can use Kappa carrageenan, using equal amounts.
Its strong umami flavor makes it a lot like cheese, and because of this, it’s an ingredient you can’t afford to do without. To get the cheese-like taste, you will need nutritional yeast. You will also need salt to flavor the cheese and also lemon juice. Lemon juice can also be replaced with vinegar so that you can still get a robust, tangy flavor. Now, one of the characteristics of dairy cheese is that it can melt and become stretchy. To make sure that your substitute has this quality, make sure to use tapioca starch.
You can store vegan cheese in the fridge for up to 5 days. You can also keep it in the freezer for about 3 or 4 months. However, it is essential to make sure that you keep it in a sealed and airtight container. When it comes to the container material, glass is often best as it won’t alter any flavors.
Vegan Cheese (Nut-Free)
- round or square cheese mold
- 1 cup coconut milk
- ½ cup nutritional yeast
- 8 oz firm tofu pressed
- ½ cup pumpkin purée
- ¼ cup dried seaweed
- 1 carrot finely grated
- ½ cup water
- 1 lemon juice of
- 2 tbsp agar-agar powder
- ¼ cup tapioca starch
- Blend firm tofu, nutritional yeast, pumpkin purée, carrot, fried seaweed, water, and coconut milk until smooth.
- Add salt, lemon juice, agar-agar powder, and tapioca starch. Blend until smooth.
- Heat a large saucepan over medium heat. Add cheese mixture to pan, scraping any stubborn mixture from the blender.
- Heat cheese mixture, stirring continuously until it starts to stick together. The mixture should start to turn thick and stretchy.
- Pour mixture into a mold, cover, and refrigerate. Leave to cool and set for at least 2 hours, or overnight.
- When ready, the cheese should be firm to touch. Best enjoyed sliced, shredded, or grated.