If you’re not vegan or a huge fan of cream cheese, I know what you’re thinking. “Ew, that’s gross, why would you ever want to swap real cream cheese for vegan cream cheese?” I know how you're feeling because I thought exactly the same way before I got experimental with food. A few years ago I would have never thought I'd be making a cashew-based, vegan cream cheese. 

While I myself am not vegan, I do know that being vegan can be quite challenging. It’s a lifestyle that you have to choose day by day. Imagine walking into the kitchen and having someone telling you to make something delicious with a total of only a few ingredients of which meat, dairy, and eggs are out of bounds. I mean, that’s an episode of Chopped right there. Now, multiply that by 3 meals a day and then multiply it again by 365 days a year. You do the math. That is just impressive.

Upon creating this recipe, I felt inspired by those who commit to the daily challenge of choosing a sustainable, total plant-based diet. This recipe combines all of the protein, vitamins, and minerals in cashews as well as nutritional yeast to make a protein-packed version of the all too familiar cream cheese spread you know and love. 

Vegan Cashew Cream Cheese

  • Prep Time:1 day
  • Cook Time:2 mins
  • Total Time:1 day 2 mins
  • Servings:6
  • Medium


  • 3/4 cup cashews
  • juice 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tbsp almond milk soy milk or cashew milk unsweetened
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • chives optional to taste
Lissane Kafie
  • Step 1

    Place the cashews in a container and fill the container with water until all the cashews are covered. Ideally, let them sit for 24 hours. If you're short on time, let them sit for a minimum of 8 hours.

    Lissane Kafie
  • Step 2

    After the cashews soak, drain them and add them into a food processor. Add a tablespoon of nutritional yeast.

    Lissane Kafie
  • Step 3

    Pulse the cashews and nutritional yeast in the food processor until they are completely combined. It will create a course-like texture. At this point, start by adding in the lemon juice.

    Lissane Kafie
  • Step 4

    Continue pulsing and add in the tablespoon of water to reach your desired consistency.

    Lissane Kafie
  • Step 5

    Add a tablespoon of your choice of plant-based milk and continue pulsing. Add more water if needed. Finally, add the salt to you taste preference.

    Lissane Kafie
  • Step 6

    Transfer the cashew cream cheese into a container and mix in your desired amount of chives. Store in the refrigerator for about 1 hour.

    Lissane Kafie
  • Step 7

    Last but not least, serve and enjoy!

    #SpoonTip: try this cream cheese spread with a fresh loaf of focaccia bread or even just a couple of your favorite flavor of Wheat Thins.

    Lissane Kafie

This vegan cashew cream cheese recipe is a more nutrient-dense alternative to your average cream cheese. Vegan or not, I challenge you to be open-minded toward this recipe and have fun in the kitchen creating vegan dishes. Soon you’ll find that you don’t have to be vegan to eat a delicious plant-based meal every now and then. Rather, you'll find how vegan cuisine is an art in and of itself.