Nut-Free Vegan Cheese Sauce

| 05/18/2015 | Reply

Vegan cheese can be a problem. One of the issues many vegans (or their family members) have is an aversion or allergy to tree nuts and/or soy. Either condition makes it almost impossible to enjoy good tasting cheese as a vegan, because most are made with a cashew or soy milk base.

To the rescue comes an unbelievably tasty, easy to make, and totally genius way to make vegan cheese – with potatoes and carrots!! Don’t believe me? Take a gander at this wonderfulness.

vegan cheese without nuts vegan cheese nachos

What follows is my modified version of the original recipe, one I kept seeing splashed all over a vegan food group I participate in. People were raving about this stuff, so it got my attention.

As you know, however, many of the things folks “raved” about in the past were actually only mediocre to downright disappointing, so I approached the whole thing with trepidation. How in the world would a vegan cheese made from potatoes and carrots really taste?

When I made it the first time, I followed the recipe exactly. That is how I do things, so I know what it is I may need to change if a recipe is in the mediocre category. Kind of reminded me of the cheese sauce in a recipe from a 2008 post on VegNews for macaroni and cheese, except that one has cashew nuts in it.

Anyway, after whipping the cheese up which took mere minutes, I have to say I was pleasantly surprised! It was pretty good, actually. Yukon Gold potatoes

In anticipation of the nacho fest I had planned for the weekend, I was looking for a particular flavor profile… and I really hate to disappoint my taste buds. I needed to add more oopmh. I was also concerned that would be way too salty to eat with tortilla chips that ALREADY had salt on them. However, saltiness is an individual thing and if you prefer more salt, go for it.

When I made the recipe the second time, I put my own spin on things, and came up with this deliciously kick-ass version of potato-carrot vegan cheese, spiced perfectly for the nachos I hungered for.

I specified Yukon Gold potatoes because they tend to be less “starchy” and have a smoother, creamier texture than russet potatoes. I think sweet potatoes would be another great option for this cheese!

Once you peel the potatoes and the carrots, then cut them into 1/2″ chunks. Cutting your vegetables uniformly ensures that they are all cooked equally. Place vegetables in 3 cups of water and bring to a boil.  Cover and simmer for about 15 minutes or so until soft, but not mushy.

vegan cheese4

In this version I added 1/2 cup of cooking water, all the remaining dry ingredients with one extra Tablespoon of nutritional yeast, one teaspoon of agave nectar, and a couple of Tablespoons of fire roasted diced green chiles. Use hot or mild chilies or jalapenos as your taste buds can tolerate. We like spicy stuff around here, so I used the hot ones. Don’t get a cheap store brand, because they tend to be too vinegary.

vegan nacho cheese dip

Anyway, they came out perfectly and everyone was happy. Try making some nachos too – we used the cheese sauce, added black beans, salsa, chopped tomatoes, vegan sour cream, and some of the leftover green chilies, and man oh man were they delicious.

potato carrot cheese vegan nachos

Thank you Vegan on a Penny for a great recipe!

Nut-Free Vegan Cheese Sauce
Created by:
Recipe Type: Appetizers/Snacks
Cuisine: Vegan
Number Servings: 6
Prep Time:
Cook Time:
Total Time:
Made this vegan cheese for the kids while visiting my cousin a few days ago. Though they watched me make it, somehow it didn't register that there was no milk in it. Organic tortilla chips, black beans, salsa and this cheese made a delicious snack. The little brats ate everything and smacked their lips... that was when I reminded them they'd just eaten some "nasty vegan food." How can you use this vegan cheese? Since it has a southwestern flavor, it will go great in tacos, burritos, or on black bean burgers. The original version is really good over vegetables, or in macaroni & cheese. The uses for this vegan cheese are pretty much limited only by your imagination. Make the original recipe by eliminating the starred (*) ingredients.
What You Need
  • 2 cups Yukon Gold potatoes, chopped into ½" pieces
  • 1 cup carrots, chopped into ½" pieces
  • ½ cup (or more) of the vegetable cooking water
  • ⅓ cup avocado or olive oil
  • 1.5 to 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • ½ cup (+ 1 Tablespoon*) nutritional yeast flakes
  • ¼ teaspoon granulated onion
  • ¼ teaspoon granulated garlic
  • ⅛ teaspoon white pepper *
  • ½ teaspoon vegan chicken-style seasoning broth (powder)
  • 2-3 Tablespoons diced green chilies or jalapenos (canned) *
  • 1 teaspoon agave nectar *
  • Dash of cayenne pepper (optional)
How to Do It
  1. Bring 3 cups water to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium, then add potatoes and carrots and simmer about 15 minutes, or until soft.
  2. Remove vegetables to blender along with all the other ingredients, and blend on high about 60 seconds, until the cheese is totally smooth.
  3. Add more of the cooking water by the Tablespoon if it won't blend well, or looks TOO thick, because the cheese will thicken once it sits.
  4. Remove from blender to serving bowl and top with additional diced chilies, or put into storage container with cover and refrigerate.
  5. Vegan cheese can be stored in the refrigerator for about a week.
  6. To serve, zap in microwave for about 30 seconds and stir well.

Get exciting new soul food, Cajun/Creole and classic American recipes done vegan! Check out WHY VEGAN IS THE NEW BLACK: More than 100 Meat and Dairy Free Meal Ideas Your Whole Family Will Love.

Why Vegan is the New Black - delicious vegan soul food Creole Cajun and American recipes by Deborrah Cooper

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Category: Appetizers & Snacks

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