When I went vegan, one of the first questions I had was what kind of cheese do I put on pizza now?! I tried store bought vegan cheeses and wasn’t a big fan at first ((they’ve grown on me now)), so vegan parm (and tofu ricotta) saved the day.
Vegan parm gets its cheesy flavor from nutritional yeast and rich goodness from cashews (or other nuts if you want.) And it does sort of taste like “
real” Parmesan cheese, but better. And less stinky.
As my (non-vegan) little sister says, “vegan parm is good on anything.” Pasta, pizza, rice, beans, tofu, salad, soup, potatoes, even popcorn…you get the idea. It can make plain jasmine rice the best thing ever (especially paired with sriracha) or push salad from pretty good to really delish. Every person I’ve offered it to (vegan or not) has liked it.
The best part is, it’s super easy to make! Just throw some cashews, nutritional yeast, salt, and garlic granules or powder into a food processor and pulse/blend until a fine meal forms. (Don’t over blend or it’ll start getting nut-buttery.) These are the rough ratios I go with (I don’t always measure/just eyeball it), but you can tweak it to your liking. When my partner makes it, he sometimes does equal parts cashews and nutritional yeast/adds onion powder and pepper. You could probably try other nuts too, but cashews are my fave so I haven’t.
Make it! If you don’t like it, don’t tell me because I don’t want to know. Just kidding. Mostly.
- 1 1/2 cups plain cashews
- 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp garlic granules or powder
- Combine ingredients in a food processor and pulse/blend until a fine meal forms.
- Store in an airtight container in the fridge.
- Don't stress over your ratios--this recipe is flexible.
- You can use salted cashews, just add less salt.
- If you don't have a food processor, you can use a blender, it may just come out a little chunkier because it usually doesn't grind as evenly.
I discovered/slightly adapted this recipe from Minimalist Baker, who also adapted it from other bloggers. Who knows who came up with the original idea for vegan parm, but whoever you are, I’d love to get your autograph and
take you out on a date buy you a coffee.