Sunday, November 6, 2011

Vegan Cream Cheese

I think one of the biggest challenges to living with food allergies is the cost. Cooking gluten & dairy-free isn’t cheap. Everything I buy pre-made—from salsa to bread to cream cheese—can easily cost up to triple the price. So as often as I can, I try to make things from scratch to reduce the cost to my pocketbook.

Which means that these days I make my own salsa, bread and cream cheese.

If you go to to the store today an 8oz. tub of vegan cream cheese costs around $4. That’s not an outrageous price but if you eat a lot of cream cheese… that can really add up. This homemade recipe I’m sharing today makes about 16oz. of cream cheese and costs under $3. Definitely a better bargain. (And if you start shopping for these ingredients in bulk… the price will go down even further.)

Part of the fun of making your own cream cheese is that you can mess around with the flavor to make it taste however you’d like. This version has a slight nutty flavor that’s both fresh and light but if you want to get creative try adding a little fresh basil or  rosemary, nutritional yeast or honey. The possibilities are endless.

Vegan Cream Cheese
by Laura Friendly

Makes: about 16 oz.
start to finish: 10 minutes
  • ½ cup cashews, soaked overnight in water
  • 1 14oz firm tofu,
  • 1 to 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tsp agave nectar
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • ½ tsp xanthan gum
Drain tofu and place between several paper towels or cheese cloth and squeeze out excess liquid and set aside. (the tofu will brake up into pieces during this process.)

Drain the cashews and pat dry with a paper towel. Put cashews into a food processor and blend until it becomes a paste. Add in the tofu and blend for about 3 minutes until it becomes a very creamy texture.

Add in the lemon juice, agave, apple cider vinegar, salt and olive oil. Continue to blend for another 2 minutes. Add in the xanthan gum and blend for about 1 minute. The mixture should start to thicken up.

You can use the cream cheese right away, but allowing it to refrigerate for a couple of hours allows the flavors to blend and makes it taste even better.


  1. Cream cheese without the cream or the cheese? I love it.

  2. that sounds like it would make perfect cream cheese.! lovely!

    Richa @ Hobby And More Food Blog

  3. This is great! I will definitely try that out, since in Switzerland vegan cream cheese is not widely available, and yet too expensive to order online :/
    Would it be possible to use this instead of store-bought vegan cream cheese in a cheesecake? That would be fabulous! :D

  4. Hello Florence. This would be perfect to use in a cheesecake! Please let me know if you give it a try.