Cheese. If following a whole-foods, plant-based lifestyle is new to you, I probably don’t need to say more. Cheese. Please. I remember what cheese was like ~ salty, creamy deliciousness that overpowered the flavor of every other food and somehow made everything seem to taste better. Almost every drool-worthy savory recipe plastered across Pinterest is oozing with cheese. You would think it was a near impossibility to cook without it. We are creatures of habit and we tend to crave foods similar to what we are used to. And so, we try to recreate the look, feel, and taste of the foods we are familiar with.
One small problem: no matter what you make it with, cheese made without dairy will never be the same as regular cheese. Yes, you can buy vegan “cheeses” full of strange chemicals and flavorings that help them closely imitate cheese, but it’s obviously not healthy, whole, real food. Yes, you can follow one of thousands of different recipes online for vegan “cheeses” that promise the moon, but it will never really taste like cheese. Sorry. It’s just not going to happen. Soooo…while I would like to tell you that I have finally discovered the world’s best recipe for vegan cheese, I’m afraid I would be misleading you. But don’t look so sad!! I have some good news for all of you who insist on drizzling (read: dumping) a beautiful cheesy looking sauce over your next whole-food, plant-based masterpiece.
Vegan Cheesy Sauce. No dairy. No nuts. No soy. Salty, creamy whole-food, plant-based deliciousness. It’s not cheese, but it looks and feels similar to melted cheese and it tastes good, it just doesn’t taste like cheese. Make some to dip in for the next football game. Make macaroni and cheese. Drown a baked potato and some steamed broccoli in beautiful, golden sauciness. No stomachache. No guilt. Just Yum.
The three main ingredients are baked potatoes, roasted butternut squash, and nutritional yeast. The potatoes form the creamy, sticky base. The squash produces the vibrant, golden color (if you’re afraid of squash, you can use steamed carrots instead). The nutritional yeast gives a hint of a nutty, cheesy flavor. Play with the rest of the ingredients to give it your favorite flavor. Try mixing in some pico de gallo, cumin, and chili powder at the end to give it a Mexican flair. Share your favorite combinations in the comments!
- 5 baked potatoes, skinned
- ½ butternut squash, roasted and skinned (about 1 cup)
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 tsp sea salt
- ¼ cup nutritional yeast
- 1½ - 2 cups plant-based milk (adjust for desired consistency)
- Puree all ingredients in a food processor until smooth.
- Refrigerate or warm in saucepan at low heat.