Melty Delicious Vegan Cheese…get in my belly!

Vegan MoFo Day #2!!

Holycrap…after a lot of experimenting I did it! I made a vegan cheese that worked well in a grilled cheese sandwich AND nachos. KABAM!! This recipe is based on this one from Sweet Roots. I made the recipe there once exactly as written, but I didn’t like the coconut milk as the base and can only find agar agar powder, so I used soy creamer and agar powder in this one instead! I also used rice vinegar instead of the white balsamic mentioned and used smoked salt instead of liquid smoke.

I think the magic combination is using agar AND tapioca starch, then it’s solid, but still melts. Yay! Here’s a bad picture of the block after setting and me cutting into it:

In case your not convinced, here is some more melty cheesy food porn:

Hungry yet? I thought so. To the recipe!

Melty Delicious Vegan Cheese…get in my belly!

Ingredients

  • 500 ml soy creamer of choice
  • ~50ml soy or non-dairy milk of choice
  • 3 tsp. agar powder
  • 1 tsp. rice vinegar (can probably use any white vinegar, I like the rice one)
  • 2 tsp. smoked salt
  • 4 Tbsp. tapioca starch
  • 1 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes
  • pinch of turmeric (optional, for color)

Instructions

  1. Bring the creamer and soymilk to a boil...but watch it! Both times I made this I looked away for a second and it completely boiled over the saucepan and made a huge waste! It gets very big and bubbly if you don't stir!
  2. Once boiling, remove from the heat briefly to add the agar powder, rice vinegar and smoked salt.
  3. Mix the tapioca starch in a small cup or bowl with a few tablespoons of soymilk and set aside.
  4. Put mixture back on the heat, bring to a boil again, then add the rest of the ingredients, including the tapioca mixture, stirring as you go.
  5. Cook for 10 or so minutes, make sure it comes to a boil at least once, then remove from heat and pour in a Tupperware or other container to set.
  6. After it cools a bit you can store it in the fridge. Mine lasted a bit over a week!
http://vegannomnoms.net/2012/10/melty-delicious-vegan-cheese-get-in-my-belly.html

I ate lots of this:

Nachos are my weakness.

There you have it, my best vegan cheese attempt yet! Have you ventured into the art of vegan-cheese making? Please share! What is your secret ingredient? I still long for re-creating one of those expensive, hard, aged almond cheeses…anyone?

For those interested in more vegan cheese experimentation, here are some vegan cheese-making cookbooks I own:

The Non-Dairy Evolution Cookbook: A Modernist Culinary Approach to Plant-Based, Dairy Free Foods – got this one recently and I like that it’s not all based on nut cheeses, as nuts can get kinda expensive. Need to play around with it more!

Artisan Vegan Cheese – I’ve had this for a bit now and have explored some of the recipes. Haven’t gotten them quite good as everyone who raves about them, but there are def some more recipes I want to try.

The Ultimate Uncheese Cookbook: Delicious Dairy-Free Cheeses and Classic “Uncheese” Dishes – this one’s a classic, I had it since I was a baby vegan. I still like it for the large variety of vegan cheese sauces for every occasion, this one is tested and approved!

Some books about vegan cheese I don’t own yet, but have my eye on:

The Cheesy Vegan: More Than 125 Plant-Based Recipes for Indulging in the World’s Ultimate Comfort Food

50 Delicious Vegan Cheese Recipes (Veganized Recipes Book 3) (eBook)

All Vegan Cheeses Vol.2: 15 Hard Vegan Cheeses You Can Slice and Melt (Planteaterbooks) (eBook)

Käse vegan: 40 Spezialitäten aus pflanzlicher Milch selbst gemacht (German) – author comes from France, the land of cheese, and the book is also available in French.

Käse veganese. Milchfreie Alternativen zur Käseküche (German)

Vegane Käsespezialitäten roh und glutenfrei aus der RainbowWay®-Vitalkost-Küche (German) – all recipes are also raw and gluten-free



  1. oooo…looks SO good. I’m going to have to try this! Thanks for the recipe!

    Kate / Reply
  2. Wow! I’m really impressed with the melty-ness of that cheese. And looking at the ingredients, I’m thinking I *might* even be able to make it myself.

    Question, though…is your soy creamer sweetened? Or what brand are you using? I’m in The Netherlands and we have the Alpro cooking cream, but to me it’s slightly sweet. Not as sweet as coffee creamer, but not totally unsweetened either. Wondering if that would work.

    Mary Worrell / Reply
  3. @Mary – I had the same thought, yay for ingredients that are not too crazy! For the agar I got some from the Asia Market, but there is also a brand called Agartine, that’s basically the same at the normal supermarket.

    For soy creamer I also used Alpro, but it tasted okay to me!

    Nicole / Reply
  4. I’ve just bookmarked this – thanks so much for sharing your recipe!!

    Mandee / Reply
  5. This looks delicious! I have some agar I bought a while ago and have never used, so this might be the recipe I use to break my agar cherry.

    Carol Weaver / Reply
  6. this looks great!

    Sarah / Reply
  7. looks amazing…I’ve yet to make a homemade cheese that will actually melt.

    Laura / Reply
  8. Sweet mary jane! That looks fantastic!

    Joey / Reply
  9. I like the coconut milk cheese, but I cannot deny there is a distinct coconut flavor. I am very curious to try with soy creamer.

    corrinadarling / Reply
  10. I guess I already found my – first plan to cook after MoFo craziness is over- recipe now!

    Looks amazing!

    Cara / Reply
  11. Oh, girl. Bookmarking this one. I love that it can either be sliced or melted. Oh, oh, oh!! 🙂

    Lizzie Bordello / Reply
  12. Congrats on making the round-up. This looks delicious, can’t wait to try it!

    I added this to my “favorites of Vegan MoFo” Pinterest board: http://pinterest.com/vegangela/vegan-mofo-2012/ 🙂

    Angela / Reply
  13. I am so making this in the upcoming days! And can’t help but think about the fact that Daiya also contains tapioca.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Babette / Reply
  14. this looks great – I have tried a mix of this recipe and the one from magic jelly – it sort of melted and I was pretty impressed. Tried another cheese today that was less impressive but more experimenting ahoy! I think agar is important in the setting and melting!

    Johanna GGG / Reply
  15. For aged mature cheeses, I just bought ‘Artisan Vegan Cheeses’ by Miyoko Schinner. It takes a while, naturally. I’m going to start the process tonight and then I’ll blog to share how I get on. In the meantime I might try your recipe though. It looks really good.

    Chef Eva / Reply
  16. Looks so melty and good! I can’t wait to try this recipe on…everything!

    VeganLinda / Reply
  17. @Angela – Thanks for the pin, I must check out your board!

    @Johanna GGG – What is magic jelly?! Sounds interesting!

    @Chef Eva – I had no idea that book even existed, so exciting! I leave America for 5 seconds and a book like this comes out, gah!!

    @Everyone else – Holy crap, thanks for all the love! <3

    Nicole / Reply
  18. Gotta try this! Keeping my fingers crossed I’ll like it too 😉

    Gnoe (@Graasland) / Reply
  19. I tried it yesterday and I will make it again for sure!
    I didn’t try to melt it; this experiment is for tonignt!
    Thank you!

  20. @Spécialiste de l’éphémère

    Glad you like it, let me know how the melting experiments goes! 🙂

    Nicole / Reply
  21. Here I am, again 😉
    So I tried it on a side dish of nachos (nachos, olives, black beans, tomatos, cucumber salsa…).
    It didn’t “melt” like a cheese would, but it doesn’t matter because it was delicious!
    So… I thank you; I will make this recipe again and again.

  22. @Spécialiste de l’éphémère

    Thanks so much for coming back to give your report and the nice words! 😉 Now I want some nachos….

    Nicole / Reply
  23. Thank you so much for that recipe. I made it last night and I’m in love! It’s so tasty and addictive. I served it on nachos last night, on a toast for breakfast this morning, and I finished the rest by the spoonful throughout the day. I halved the recipe because I didn’t have enough creamer. I used regular salt and I put twice the amount of vinegar because I forgot to half its quantity. I also added a bit of miso at the end because I find it adds a cheesy flavour. It was great. Maybe a tad too salty because of the miso though.

    My boyfriend said it was better than Daiya on nachos, more tasty!

    I’ll be making this again and again.

    Babette / Reply
  24. @Babette – Oh man, better than Daiya…that IS a compliment! Thank you!

    Nicole / Reply
  25. I was so excited when I saw this recipe–I had to try it. I really WANTED to like it, but it didn’t work at all 🙁 Could I have done something wrong? I followed your directions, but did you really add the tapioca to the boiling liquid? When I did that, the starch gummed up and got all lumpy and gross. I quickly grabbed my immersion blender and tried to blend it in in the pot and got it more or less smooth and forged on with the recipe. I really wanted a firm sliceable cheese like you had pictured, but mine is NOTHING like that! It is spreadable, I guess, but not sliceable. It is gummy and rubbery and will not slice like yours–a “slice” would not hold together. It is thick and could probably be heated and somewhat “melted” as a spread but I am so bummed. The flavor is good, but I don’t know what I did wrong! Any thoughts?

    Thanks!

    Courtney / Reply
  26. @Courtney – Thanks so much for the comment, and I’m so sorry it didn’t work out! You are correct, it makes more sense to mix the tapioca starch with a bit of soymilk first before pouring it in! That is probably the culprit! I took mine off the heat, then added it, but in general it’s a better idea to already mix the tapioca with some cold liquid so it doesn’t clump. I’ve updated the recipe instructions, so thanks for pointing that out! If you try it again with the new instructions, let me know!

    Nicole / Reply
  27. this is the magic jelly cheese – it is similar to my new roots one but is slightly different – I like how she does the layers too
    http://magicjelly.com.au/blog/2011/11/magic-vegan-cheese/

    Johanna GGG / Reply
  28. oops I mean sweet roots not my new roots

    Johanna GGG / Reply
  29. Just tried this, and it’s currently @ the “setting” stage….couldn’t find tapioca starch so used 2 tbsp arrowroot powder instead….we’ll see how it goes!

    Erik / Reply
  30. Wow, it worked!!! it set quite nicely into a block in the tupperware container… wasn’t a hard cheese, more like a soft camembert style. natuarally, the first mission was nachos, and this melted amazingly! even my dairy-eating gf was impressed by the taste & texture

    THANKS!!!!!

    Erik / Reply
  31. @Erik – Thanks for coming back and posting your results! I’m happy it worked out! I need to go eat some nachos now…nom!

    Nicole / Reply
  32. can agar powder be removed if someone is allergic to it? thanks

    Anonymous / Reply
  33. @Anonymous June 22 – Unfortunately agar cannot be removed as it’s what binds everything together. Otherwise it will just stay liquidy! Sorry!

    Nicole / Reply
  34. Do you have any suggestions to make this recipe soy-free?
    I can substitute rice milk for the soy milk, but I’m not sure what to do about the creamer…

    Thanks in advance.

    Louise / Reply
    • @Louise – I’d just try finding another type of creamer. I know I’ve seen ones made of oat milk before, have a search in the store or online maybe? Otherwise you can try the recipe I linked to in the post which uses coconut milk if you don’t mind the slight coconut taste. Could also try to make your own creamer by soaking cashews and blending them into a cream and using that? The texture might be slightly different, but I’m sure it wouldn’t be bad! If you try it report back and let me know how it goes, would love to know!

  35. Thanks for replying. My 16yo also suggested using cashew cream, which we tried last night. It’s sitting in the fridge and it looks good. We’re hoping for grilled “cheese” sandwiches today!! I’ll let you know later how it turned out 🙂

    Louise / Reply
  36. oooo this looks yummy. I used to buy Daiya cheese, but I need to find a replacement because I found out they started using Carrageenan in their products 🙁 I am going to try this. I already know it will be yummy!

    woahlottainfo / Reply
  37. Can I grate this cheese? I’m allergic to soya & nuts so would love to try this on pizza or toast 🙂

    Nia / Reply
  38. Oh NO!! Where did the recipe go? I refer back to this all the time and the recipe link seems to be broken! (?)

    jaredk3030 / Reply
  39. if you’re still on a hunt for vegan cheese (mine never stops probably, that’s why I stumbled over this here ;)), maybe take a look at gentle chefs Non-dairy cookbook. His recipes look very similar to this one, despite he works in a more “technical” way 😉 One ingredient he uses additionally for example is kappa carrageenan, which also is temperature-reversable.

    Lars / Reply
    • Hah, mine never stops either! I actually just bought the Non-Dairy Evolution Cookbook! I haven’t tried it out yet, but I definitely plan to soon! I even already have a giant thing of kappa carrageenan! Any tried and true recipes from the book your recommend?

  40. Looks amazing, but q for you… do you use unsweetened soy creamer? I’ve only found really sweet and flavoured creamers. 🙁

    4synergy / Reply
  41. This looks great! Do you think it would work to substitute pectin or something else for the agar powder?

    Miriam / Reply

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