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Smoked Cashew Cheese

This smoked cashew vegan cheese is sweet, creamy and very moreish. Full of heart-healthy fats, vitamins and protein. The cheesy dairy free taste comes from nutritional yeast and the smokiness is provided by smoked paprika. It’s quick and easy to make as it isn’t fermented.

The consistency is a bit different to normal cheese – it’s best described as being similar to processed cheeses with a jelly like texture. This is one of the best tasting recipes on the site and perfect for health conscious people/vegans and everyone else. It has just the right combination of creamy cashews, smokey paprika, sour lemon, spicy cayenne pepper and saltiness to be irresistible. If cheese stops you from going vegan try this recipe today! It slices and when baked at a low temperature it melts and goes golden.

A slice of Smoked Cashew vegan Cheese

Smoked Cashew Vegan Cheese Recipe

  • Total time: 15m
  • Yield: 12 servings
  • Calories: 90 cal


  • 1 cup / 150g  Cashews
  • ½ cup / 40g  Nutritional yeast
  • 1 tbsp Smoked paprika
  • 1 tbsp Maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp Agar agar powder
  • 1 clove of Garlic
  • Lemon juiced
  • ¼ tsp Turmeric
  • ¼ tsp Cayenne pepper
  • 1½ cups / 350ml Water
  • a pinch of Salt


  1. Place half the water and everything else apart from the agar agar into a blender.
  2. Blend until smooth.
  3. In a pan put in the remaining half of the water and the agar agar.
  4. Simmer for 5 mins stirring constantly. Make sure no lumps of agar agar form at the bottom.
  5. Take off the heat and stir in the cashew mixture until combined.
  6. Pour into a mould and then chill for 2 hours.
  7. Enjoy within 3 days and keep chilled.

Smoked Cashew Vegan Cheese Video Recipe

I lined the pan with parchment paper purely for aesthetic reasons. I was hoping to get some nice paper lines like you often get on traditional cheeses. You can just use a normal pan and it comes out easily enough without lining or greasing. Take a look at our sunflower seed cheese to see how it will come out in a normal dish or ramekin. I think it turned out really well with the paper folds in the cheese, makes it look more appealing to me and the paper can be used to wrap it up when stored in the fridge. The video has a typo with the amount of cashew nuts – it should be one cup.

Smoked Cashew Vegan Cheese Platter

Apple cider vinegar aslo works well in place of the lemon or lime juice. Agar agar is a natural product extracted from seaweed. It comes in several different forms – powder, flakes and bars. In this recipe I use powder as it’s the most potent. If you are using the flakes you will need to double the amount. Similarly, for bars you will need to add more, but I’m not sure the exact amount as I’ve never used bars.

Smoked Cashew Vegan Cheese Close up

Even if you’re not vegan this cashew cheese is a great healthy alternative that is good for the planet and good for you. No need to soak the cashews – the only nuts I don’t soak are cashews and macadamia nuts. Cashews are a soft nut so even a 500w small jug can blend them smooth. They also don’t have the absorption issues that other nuts, such as almonds have if not soaked/sprouted.

Easy recipe Smoked Cashew Cheese Vegan

For any comments/questions/help with this recipe post on the message boards.
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About the author

Bastian Nest and Glow

I'm a former office worker that quit long days in London to move to the countryside and share natural recipes and lifestyle tips.


  • I made this yesterday and it tastes delicious! The consistency is more along the lines of what I remember that velveeta stuff to be. I’m tickled with the agar, as it’s my first attempt at any type of solid “cheese”.

    I was unable to get it to melt, though, after slicing some super duper thinly and placing on top of some stuffed mushrooms and baking at 425 degrees for 30 minutes. It got brown around the edges and was a bit wobbly if touched while still hot, but didn’t do any actual melting. Any further helpful hints to help in that arena?

    Thanks for sharing all you do. You are greatly appreciated!

    • Thanks Linda, glad you like agar – I love recipes with it also – it’s becoming an essential ingredient. I find it melts best at lower temperatures 150c but the melting isn;t directly comparable to real cheese. If you are looking for a runnier melting cheese I would recommend the cashew mozzarella pizza. This cheese I usually just have sliced and solid.

  • Appreciate your response and the additional recipe. Will try it out for my next melt-able cheese experiment. We live and learn with each attempt, that’s for sure! :o)

    I was led by the statement you made in your second paragraph about it specifically being good for melting, which is why I chose to make it to try in my recipe. This sentence, specifically: “It slices and melts so is a great replacement in recipes for normal cheese.”

    Grateful for the tasty adventure opportunities, nonetheless. Thanks for your time and shared knowledge. Peace.

    • Thanks for that – you are right my sentence there is misleading. I’ve updated it now. While it does melt a bit and brown it isn’t just like normal cheese. It’s more like normal low fat cheese – where it melts a bit and browns but doesn’t go runny. It’s been so long since I’ve cooked with any normal cheese I forgot what it was actually like!

      • Tried it sliced thinly and layered on a grilled cheese sandwich today and it was perfect! Real cheese used to melt a touch too much for my liking when it came to the sandwich scene. This version is just right minus the gooey mess in the pan. Yay!!

        • Excellent! Glad that a grilled cheese sandwich came out well with this, I think you’ve given me an idea for another recipe. Happy Cashew cheesing 🙂

  • This stuff is totally addictive and easy to make. Much better than the high oil and fat vegan cheeses that shops sell. Perfect on a cracker. Please make more like this so I can make a vegan cheese board!

  • I just wanted to clarify the amount of cashews used. The written recipe states 1 cup, whereas the video states 1 1/2 cups. Could you help, please? It looks so fantastic I don’t want to mess it up!

    • Hi Stephanie, it’s 1 cup of cashews 🙂 sometimes I make mistakes on videos (its much harder than it looks to make these videos and check your own work!) so the recipe should always have the right amount. I’ll add a note in the recipe, thanks for pointing it out 🙂

  • I have just made this cheese. It tastes delicious but seems a bit softer than the photo. I had to use Agar flakes instead of powder – would that make a difference

    • Yes – I believe the flakes are not as potent so you need twice as much. This is the same as the bars. Although even if it didn’t set as firm I bet it still tasted good 🙂

    • Yes, the flakes are not as potent so I always use the powder. See the 2nd last paragraph in the recipe about the different types of agar. 🙂

  • Hello, This looks beautiful and I love that the color is naturally derived! Could you tell me what size mold you used? I am thinking of making it into a block and just wanted to compare.

  • Has there been an issue with setting? It’s been two hours and mine isn’t set. What can I do in the future to get it to set better?

    • Hi, sorry to hear that I haven’t had any issues with it not setting. Did you use the powder form of agar-agar and boil it for about 5 mins while stirring? You can still try to get the cheese to set by melting again with some more agar agar. The only person that I’ve heard of having issues with it not setting used baking powder as agar agar was lost in translation.

  • Hello, my name is Fabian I am from Uruguay and the products that have the recipe of vegan cheese here are difficult to get.
    I wanted to ask what product could supply maple syrup and nutritional yeast?
    If you can!
    Your paguina enchants me.
    Sorry for my faults but I’m using the google translate!
    Thank you!

    • Hi Fabian, no worries that makes perfect sense. For the maple syrup you can use any other sweetener you prefer – but you may need to adjust the amount. Nutritional yeast is more difficult to replace, but yeast extract or marmite do a reasonable job. If you can get any of them there? If you are in Montevideo there seems to be some health food shops that may stock them 🙂

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