Last updated on November 25th, 2022 at 10:23 pm
What is Ricotta?
Ricotta is a traditional cheese product made from whey, a byproduct of cheese making. It is thick, creamy and a little sweet and salty at the same time.
Why We Love Making Cashew Ricotta
Making your own vegan ricotta is so easy and the result is crazy versatile. I use this cashew ricotta in my eggplant involtini, on toast with bananas and berries, as a base for savoury tarts, on pizza...you get the idea.
- super simple to make
- naturally gluten-free
- useful in both sweet and savoury recipes and
- creamy, customisable and completely yum!
Ingredients & Substitutions
Cashews. We are using raw cashews here. You can make ricotta with macadamias or try blanched almonds like on my Pizza Bianca.
Sugar and salt. I use a little sugar and salt for that slightly sweet, slightly savoury vibe.
Dairy-free milk or water. I made a cashew ricotta for Nourish magazine and simply used water. Here we're using dairy free milk - soy, cashew or almond - for a richer cashew ricotta. Both work great.
Lemon juice. A little splash of citrus to lift the flavours. You can also use apple cider vinegar - I would start with half the amount if you're using cider vinegar, taste and adjust.
Onion powder and garlic powder. If I am making this ricotta specifically to go in a sweet dish, I sometimes leave the garlic out. The onion powder has a slight sweetness to it, so I generally always use it.
Nutritional yeast. Bring on the umami! If you don't have nutritional yeast, you can add the same amount of a light miso paste.
How to Make Cashew Ricotta
You'll find full instructions and measurements in the recipe card at the bottom of the post.
Step 1. Soak cashews in water overnight or for at least 2 hours. For a sweet cheat, you can soak your cashews in boiling water for 10 minutes.
Step 2. Drain your cashews really well.
Steps 3 and 4. Throw the ingredients into a blender or food processor and process until smooth. Taste and adjust flavours to your liking.
To thicken your cashew ricotta, pop it in the fridge for a few hours.
Your homemade cashew ricotta will keep in a sealed container in the fridge for 5-6 days. Alternatively, you can transfer it to a freezer safe container and freeze it for up to 3 months. Thaw it in the fridge for 24 hours or at room temperature for a few hours.
Like I said, this vegan ricotta is really versatile.
- Serve it on crusty bread with tomatoes and basil with a splash of olive oil
- Dollop it on pizza
- Use it as a dip
- Stir through finely chopped fresh basil, parsley and some lemon zest and serve it in pasta
- Spread it over sweet potato toast (yup...it's a thing)
You can. I have made almond ricotta for my vegan white pizza and I've seen vegan ricotta made with macadamias.
Either. I've made this in both and it's worked out pretty much the same. If I had to choose, I'd say the blender is a touch quicker.
Want more sauces, dips and spreads? Try these vegan options:
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Creamy Cashew Ricotta
- blender or food processor
- 1½ cups raw cashews
- ½ cup dairy-free milk or water
- 2 tablespoon lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ tablespoon nutritional yeast
- ½ tsp garlic powder optional
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- Soak cashew in water overnight or for at least 2 hours. For a sweet cheat, you can soak your cashews in boiling water for 10 minutes.
- Drain your cashews really well.
- Throw the ingredients into a blender or food processor and process until smooth. Taste and adjust flavours to your liking.
- Store in the fridge covered for up to 5 days.