You don't even know how proud I am of this recipe. I consider myself the queen of dips, the master of appetizers and love greeting my guests with a snack as soon as they arrive. So when we invited our friends over who are vegan, I was met with a bit of a challenge. I couldn't make my go to buffalo chicken dip or my massive cheese & meat boards. So....instead of serving veggie sticks I decided to attempt my own homemade vegan queso. I've had cashew cheeses before and always liked the flavor and texture so I decided to start there.
This "queso" has everything its traditional counterpart has including heat, gooey goodness and flavor. I served it with all the fixins for nachos: homemade salsa (recipe to come!), homemade guacamole (I'll write that one up too!), roasted corn, black beans and jalapeños. For my meat substitute I chopped sweet potato and mushroom and sauteed it in homemade taco seasoning until soft. The entire meal was delish!
I hope you enjoy this as much as we did and I dare you to make it for your next party and we can keep the vegan part our little secret and watch as it gets devoured in minutes! Don't forget to post your photos on IG and tag me @BrandiMilloy and let me know if you're going to try this in the comments below OR if you have a recipe you'd like to see me make! xo
by Brandi Milloy
- 1 heaping cup of raw unsalted cashews
- 1/2 cup nutritional yeast (I found mine at Trader Joe's-this adds cheesy flavor & color)
- 2 tbsp. tomato paste
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp seasoning salt
- 1/2 tbsp. hot sauce like El Pato (you could also seedless jalapeño as desired for heat)
- 3/4 cup-1 1/2 cups of filtered water (start with 3/4 cup and add as needed for desired consistency)
- Soak cashews in cold water overnight or in hot water for a few hours before making recipe. Drain before using.
- Into a high powered blender (like a Vitamix), add soaked & drained cashews, tomato paste, cumin, garlic powder, seasoning salt, hot sauce and 3/4 cup water. Blend until smooth scraping down the sides as needed. Add water in 1/2 cup increments until desired consistency. Add salt and other seasoning as needed. I served my queso with salty sweet potato chips so I didn't need to add more salt.