Cheese contains a lot of fat, salt and, as you know, is made from animal dairy. Are you looking for a good alternative to cheese? Below you will find an overview with the necessary alternatives for cheese.

“How do I replace cheese?”

A few years ago, I decided to completely stop eating meat and fish. A piece of cheese and a boiled egg in time still went in. Not very often, but occasionally. When I visit friends or family. Bit of that idea.

And although I still don’t eat completely plant-based – as good as at home, I am a little more flexible outside – I can leave the cheese on the side these days.

  • I usually turn blocks of cheese at a birthday or party and see if there are other (vegetable) snacks that appeal to me (tomato, chips, toast with hummus)
  • I don’t get cheese at home, then I can’t eat it either

But how?  – “How do I replace cheese?”

Logical and also a bit challenging, because I grew up with cheese from home. On my bread a slice of a young cheese, as a cube with the drink, through the pasta. It makes your meal immediately creamy.

In the meantime, I have found the necessary alternatives for cheese and I would like to share my favorites with you.

My reason why I (almost) no longer eat cheese?

  • As mentioned, cheese contains a lot of fat and salt. A block of cheese probably doesn’t hurt in time, but I try to pay more attention to the amount of fat and salt I get in a day. There are healthier alternatives for investing your sandwich.
  • Dairy farming has a significant impact on the environment – it contributes 4 percent to the world’s CO2 emissions.
  • I suffer from acne when I eat cheese or drink cow’s milk. So it was a pretty easy choice for me to limit the amount of cheese. In the beginning, I had a bit more trouble leaving cheese, but there are so many alternatives that I don’t miss it anymore.
  • I no longer want to contribute to animal suffering.  Cheese is made from cow’s milk and cows are regularly given antibiotics and hormones and their calves are taken from them when they are just one day old. I do not like that though, which is an important reason why I look at vegetable alternatives.

And all this makes me increasingly looking for the necessary alternatives to cheese. Below I show you the necessary alternatives to replace a block of cheese for worthy substitutes. Below you will find an overview

Overview of alternatives to cheese

1. Cashew nuts

Cashew nuts prove to be the perfect ingredient to make the most delicious vegetable cheeses. Recently I ate at the restaurant Mr & Mrs. Watson in Amsterdam and they are known for their delicious homemade vegan cheeses. Among other things, I ate the vegan goat cheese and was amazed by the delicious taste. It’s still a bit of a search, but nowadays restaurants are increasingly experimenting with vegetable cuisine – and therefore also with vegan cheese.

A good alternative to cheese is, therefore, the use of cashew nuts. In many cases, keep in mind that you soak the cashew nuts in a bowl of water for at least 2 hours beforehand. The cashew nuts become softer and are therefore easier to process, for example, to make a cheese sauce. For example, you can make a vegan cheese fondue with it or one of the recipes below that I have made before:

  • Vegan lemon bars – filled with coconut milk and cashew nuts (instead of cream cheese)
  •  Vegan cheesecake – which also includes cashew nuts (instead of cream cheese)
  • One-pot pasta with green asparagus – you can easily make the Parmesan cheese in this one-pot pasta vegetable by grinding 50 grams of roasted cashew nuts together with 2 tablespoons of yeast flakes and a pinch of salt in a food processor. You then get a kind of Parmesan crumbs. Delicious, definitely worth a try.

2. Noble yeast flakes

Noble yeast flakes are dried and inactive yeast with a white-yellow color. In the past, you could only buy a can of nutritional yeast (also known as nutritional yeast) at mainly health food stores, but nowadays also more and more often at the usual supermarkets (AH, Jumbo, Ekoplaza, Plus, etc.). The texture of nutritional yeast flakes is dry flakes, the taste is savory and is often compared to that of Parmesan cheese. Not entirely natural, but it comes close.

How do I replace cheese for nutritional yeast?

  • Sprinkle a few tablespoons of nutritional yeast flakes over the pasta instead of Parmesan.
  • By grinding two tablespoons of yeast flakes with two tablespoons of unroasted cashew nuts and a pinch of salt in the food processor. You can then divide this over an oven dish and let it cook for a few minutes in the end. Gives a delicious taste to the dish.
  • Sprinkle over the pizza at the end.
  • By replacing the cheese in the risotto with a few tablespoons of nutritional yeast.
  • By making a vegan cheese sauce – like my vegan mac & ‘cheese’ recipe

3. Tofu as an alternative to cheese

Seasoned pieces of tofu can be a tasty alternative to white cubes of cheese, those cubes that you often find in salads. Drain a block of tofu well and then cut it into small cubes.

Marinate the cubes of tofu with a dash of vinegar, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, nutritional yeast, and some herbs such as oregano and thyme and you have a tasty alternative to cheese cubes in a salad. The cubes may not taste like cheese, but once they have been incorporated into the salad, it is a great and savory substitute for cheese ( here you will find a recipe).

4. Vegan cheese

In addition to all the possibilities to give your twist to a vegetable alternative, there are also more and more vegetable cheeses and cream cheese on the market. I do not think most variants become one-to-one immediately like cheese from a cow, but it is getting close. Some brands you can find in the supermarket:

  • Violife cheese
  • Wilmersburger cheese
  • Vegan cream cheese from Jumbo own brand

As you can read, there are already plenty of vegetable alternatives to cheese on the market. Have you ever considered replacing cheese with a vegetable alternative?  What is your favorite alternative? 

Maria Elenas, a busy mom with 2 young kids, lover of books, travel and great food. Cooking from scratch as simply as possible. Writer, Blogger and Photographer.
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