Today I present to you a life-changing recipe for Cashew Nacho Cheese. This nacho “cheese” is inspired by an appetizer my husband and I shared at one of our favorite restaurants, which happens to serve all raw vegetarian food dishes. Our first meal at this restaurant was seriously unforgettable mainly due to the fact that we were in disbelief the entire time that we were actually consuming raw, plant-based food. We ordered the nacho cheese and chips to start off and we were floored. Total stadium snack bar nacho nostalgia. But how? No cooking? No actual cheese?
That weekend, I set out on a mission to crack the cheese-less nacho cheese code. And I discovered the keys to achieving that classic nacho cheese flavor are in the cashews for creaminess and bulk, diced green chilies from the can, and a curious ingredient called nutritional yeast. Not only is nutritional yeast a source of protein and vitamins, when added to dishes, it produces a nutty cheesy flavor that’s sure to fool any real cheese lover. I’ve found it in the natural or organic food section of my local grocery store. You can also grab some right here on Amazon.
This Cashew Nacho Cheese is amazing on virtually any savory dish. Besides the obvious chip and dip setup, it’s also a veggie dip, pretzel dip, sandwich spread, use it to spice up your meat or fish, or top your scrambled eggs with it!
With Super Bowl fast approaching, you’re going to want to grab the ingredients to make this on game day. Coming up later this week, I’ll share one of my favorite game day recipes that uses this Cashew Nacho Cheese.
- ¾ cup roasted cashews, soaked in a bowl of warm water for at least 20 minutes
- 7 ounces can of green chiles, not drained
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup water
- Juice of ½ lime
- 1 ½ tablespoons nutritional yeast
- Place all ingredients in a food processor. Process until smooth and creamy. Give the cheese a taste and add salt and pepper if needed.
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This recipe was featured in my Clean Eating Adventure series. Interested in more clean eating recipes? Check these out:
- Tuscan White Bean Spinach and Quinoa Stuffed Red Peppers
- Chocolate Raspberry Overnight Oats
- Roasted 8 Vegetable Soup
- Zucchini Noodles with Kale Almond Pesto
- Tropical Island Green Smoothie
- Brussels Sprout, Sweet Potato, and Lentil Sauté
- Banana Hazelnut Breakfast Quinoa
- Lemon Rosemary Shortbread
karen @ joyfuldinners says
I bought some nutritional yeast for a recipe and never made it, so I am all set for making this delicious looking sauce. Thanks!
Perfect! It’s one of those ingredients that I only use a couple times a year. But it gives dishes an amazing cheese-y flavor!
Kristi Broughten says
Ahhhh-mazing! Especially for my new dairy-free lifestyle!
Yesss! The best dairy-free cheese ever!
Casey Ortiz says
I just made this and something is missing. I can’t figure out what. It kinda just tastes like spicy cashews with a hint of nooch.
Hi Casey, did you use canned green chiles? I’ve found that ingredient to be key in giving it a nacho cheese flavor!
Love this recipe! It can be easily altered to suite ones own taste but I love it as is!
Thanks so much Christy! So glad you like it!