Prep 10 mins
Cook 5 mins
This is the simplest and best tasting vegan cheese sauce recipe we've found. We got it from our cousin Diana P. who got it from who knows where. We like it best for nachos. It works well for mac'n'cheese as well as enchiladas or any recipe that calls for a cheese sauce.
- 1⁄4 cup raw cashews
- 1 1⁄2 cups cold water
- 2 ounces pimientos (half of a 4 oz. jar)
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast flakes
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1⁄2-1 teaspoon salt
- 1 (4 ounce) can diced green chilies (optional)
- Rinse cashews with hot water while combining the remaining ingredients (except chiles) in a blender.
- Add cashews to blender and process on high for 1-2 minutes.
- Cook in a sauce pan over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thick.
- Add chiles and serve or use in other recipes that call for cheese sauce.
I think the reason this includes lemon juice is because many vegan cheese sauce recipes call for something called Rejuvelac, which is made by soaking whole wheat grains, letting them sprout a day, grinding them with water and then letting the resulting mixture ferment a day on the counter before straining. It's kind of sour, but it's not at all like lemon juice. My advice is, if you're not making Rejuvelac, leave out lemon juice. I've made many vegan cheese recipes, and if I don't have a batch of Rejuvelac on hand I just deal with i and omit it. They all come out well. Real secret is the nutritional yeast. That's what gives it the cheesy flavor. Also, if you soak the raw cashews for at least 2 hours before making recipe, this sauce will come out much smoother, almost like melted Velveta. Also reduce the water to a 1 to 1 1/2 ratio (cashews to water). You can add additional water to thin if you need to..much easier to thin a thick sauce than to thicken up a thin sauce. You can leave out cornstarch if you follow this method, and best of all, you don't have to cook it if you prepare it this way... perfect for raw food enthusiasts. Several dashes of tumeric will make it yellow, if you're concerned about aesthetics.
Absolutely the best cheese sauce ever!!! I went vegan 8 months ago... that's when I found this recipe and have been making it ever since. I must have made it at least 20 times and most of the time they're double batches. This sauce is so amazing!!! Everyone who's tried it cannot believe that it's non-dairy. Neither of my sons are vegan yet they eat it constantly... I can hardly keep it in the fridge. I use it as a spread for my veggie burgers, with chips and pretzels as a dip and on all of my mexican food... especially my breakfast burritos. It tops off many rice and bean dishes as well. Great on a bagel with some sliced cucumber, onion and tomato and a squeeze of lemon juice with some hot sauce. I follow the recipe to the tee... sometimes I will add a bit more water just to thin it out a bit if I'm using it as a sauce. I thought that I would die without my cheese when I went vegan but, this has truly saved me... it's the best!!! Thank you PhrostyWindow for posting this recipe!!!
I made this last night with a few small changes - so amazing! I prefer red peppers to pimientos, so I sauteed 1 small-med red pepper in olive oil for a few minutes to soften it, then added it into the mix. I also used organic veg broth instead of water for a bit of extra flavor... So unbelievably good, fast & easy! I made vegan burritos with spelt tortillas, spicy veggies, refried beans & homemade guacamole, and poured this cheese sauce on top... I can't say enough about how delicious this is! THANK YOU