September 27, 2020

Easy Vegan Recipes

Eat Vegan – Eat Well

7 Ingredient Cashew Queso

3 min read

Easy, cheesy, totally dairy-free cashew queso! This luscious vegan cheese is loaded with flavor and easy to make, with just 7 ingredients.

Hand Dipping a Chip in a Bowl of Cashew Queso

This site is no stranger to vegan queso. I’ve made few versions before from ingredients like sweet potatoes and cauliflower. And while I love both of those recipes, I don’t always have the time or all of the ingredients to make them.

I usually end up making a super simple cashew-based vegan queso, and I figured it was about time I shared the recipe.

What I love about this version is that I always have all of the ingredients on hand — they’re all pantry staples!

What You’ll Need

Bowl of Cashew Queso Topped with Scallions, Cilantro and Hot Sauce, and Surrounded by Chips

  • Cashews
  • Nutritional yeast
  • Hot sauce
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion Powder
  • Salt
  • Water

How to Make Vegan Queso

This stuff whips up in minutes, but you do need to do one prep step: ideally, soak your cashews in water for 4 to 8 hours. I know, that requires a bit more planning for an easy recipe. If you forget to soak your cashews, just boil them in water for 15 minutes.

Once your cashews are soaked or boiled, give them a rinse and stick them into a blending vessel. Something small is preferable, in order to ensure that all of the ingredients get blended. I’m using a Ninja mini food processor.

Don’t have a small blending device? Try doubling the batch size! You can freeze your leftover queso for later.

Add the nutritional yeast, hot sauce, garlic and onion powders, and salt, along with just 1/4 cup of water. Blend everything until smooth, then taste-test the cheese, make adjustments, and thin it with some more water.

Side By Side Images Showing Cashew Queso Ingredients in a Food Processor Bowl Before and After Blending

Grab some chips and enjoy!

Cashew Queso Tips & FAQ

  • Is this recipe gluten-free? It is!
  • Shelf-life and storage: Cashew queso will keep in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 5 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • Is this queso spicy? Can it be made without hot sauce? Your queso will have just a slight kick if you stick with a mild hot sauce like Cholula. I don’t recommend skipping the hot sauce, as it actually adds cheesy flavor. If you absolutely must leave it out, try blending in a few roasted red peppers from a jar and a tablespoon or two of vinegar.

Hand with Chip Covered in Cashew Queso with a Bowl and Bunch of Cilantro in the Background

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Hand Dipping a Chip in a Bowl of Cashew Queso

Cashew Queso

Easy, cheesy, totally dairy-free cashew queso! This luscious vegan cheese is loaded with flavor and easy to make, with just 7 ingredients.

Prep Time 10 minutes

Soak Time 4 hours

Total Time 4 hours 10 minutes

Servings 12

Calories 78 kcal

Author Alissa Saenz

Ingredients

  • 1 cup raw cashews, soaked in water 4-8 hours, rinsed, and drained
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar-based hot sauce, plus more to taste (I use 4 tablespoons of Cholula)
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste

Instructions

  1. Place the cashews, nutritional yeast, hot sauce, onion powder, garlic powder, and 1/4 cup of water into the bowl of a food processor fitted with an s-blade.

  2. Blend until smooth, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.

  3. Thin with anywhere between 1/4 and 3/4 cup of water, depending on desired thickness (I used about 1/2 cup in the batch shown in the photos). Blend again until smooth.

  4. Season the queso with salt to taste, and adjust any other seasonings to your liking.

Recipe Notes

Makes about 1 1/2 cups, but the amount will vary depending on how much liquid you use for thinning.

Nutrition Facts

Cashew Queso

Amount Per Serving (2 tablespoons (1/12 of batch))

Calories 78 Calories from Fat 50

% Daily Value*

Fat 5.5g8%

Saturated Fat 1.1g6%

Sodium 115mg5%

Potassium 146mg4%

Carbohydrates 5.4g2%

Fiber 1.2g5%

Sugar 0.6g1%

Protein 3.3g7%

Calcium 8mg1%

Iron 1mg6%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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