Ricotta is simple to make, but what would you do if you’re allergic to dairy or you’re vegan? You don’t have to feel left out anymore with this soft & Creamy Vegan Ricotta spread! Just as creamy and just as delicious as regular ricotta. Bonus – this vegan version is even easier to make!
My mornings are fairly uncomplicated. Aside from the fact that I’m not at all a morning person, I mean. I know what I want for breakfast and it’s usually not much. Eggs and toast or cereal. I prefer eggs and toast. On a weekend morning though, my favourite breakfast would look like the last picture in this post – a piece of toast with ricotta spread on top, two slices of tomatoes, some chopped onions and parsley and some salt and pepper. Especially that cheese. Lots of cheese.
BUT what do you if you were vegan or you couldn’t eat dairy products? Recently we had visitors over who had grown up loving cheese but had become lactose intolerant later in life. I’m happy to report that I have found a solution.
THIS right here folks! THIS right here is the solution! Whether you like your ricotta soft or firm (personally, I like mine soft), this Creamy Vegan Ricotta is a must have! A must do!
Creamy Vegan Ricotta
- 1 heaped cup of raw whole cashews soaked in water overnight
- 5 oz of firm tofu
- 5 oz of silken soft tofu for soft ricotta OR 5 oz of firm tofu (for firm ricotta)
- Salt to taste about 1/4 tsp for sweet fillings, 1/2 tsp for savoury use
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- Drain the water from the cashews. Add the cashew nuts into your food processor.
- Add the tofu (combination of firm and soft OR all firm), salt, lemon juice and process until you have a paste - just a couple of minutes.
- Serve immediately, or chill for a few hours.
- Can be stored in a container with a tight lid and in the fridge for up to 5 days.
I can honestly say this was one of those creations that I didn’t think I would like, didn’t think would work, but I was pleasantly surprised to be proven very very wrong. As it turns out, this dairy-free, vegan ricotta is every bit as delicious as the real deal! (As an aside, I still also love the dairy ricotta I make. I use this recipe from Served from Scratch to make my regular ricotta from scratch and I LOVE it!). But honestly, you’d find it pretty hard to tell the difference with this vegan substitute.
This creamy vegan ricotta went perfectly with my breakfast toast (and my coffee), and it tasted just as good as ricotta made with milk. Also, it takes a lot less effort to make this vegan version. All you got to do is put everything in the food processor and blend it all together. How easy is that?
So why did I use Cashew and Tofu?
Tofu gives the creaminess to the vegan ricotta. The cashews give a really awesome nutty texture plus an extra level of creaminess. So whatever this ricotta may be, you know it’s going to be creamy. 🙂
While this recipe is for soft ricotta, you could easily make it firm by using firm tofu only. On the other hand, if you only have firm tofu and you want soft ricotta, you can add a plant-based milk to dilute your firm tofu and make soft ricotta. Having said that, I personally prefer adding soft tofu instead of milk, just so that I avoid any off-putting liquid separation that could occur by adding milk.
So by using two types of tofu in this recipe (soft and firm), I make this vegan ricotta delightfully soft without compromising on consistency.
I used this soft vegan ricotta to spread on toast and crackers, but it would also work really well for vegan lasagna! The extra creaminess would be ideal as a replacement for Bechamel sauce. It would work just as well on pizza, as a dip, as a creamy salad dressing, whatever. It’s super versatile!
I have also made the firm vegan ricotta version (with firm tofu only), which is also great on toast! It’s also great to stuff cannelloni. Recently I used firm vegan ricotta for a far more spectacular recipe and you guys can
find out all about it, when I share that recipe in a couple of days! 🙂 Check out that post on the blog now!
If you’re not vegan or allergic to dairy products, chances are you won’t need to make vegan ricotta. However this is the perfect, I mean PERFECT vegan substitute which should come in handy at parties or any time you’ve got guests over who might be either vegan or lactose intolerant. Besides, this is so damn creamy and delicious, even those who can eat regular ricotta won’t know the difference with this one.
Case in point? My husband! He doesn’t much like tofu but he ate this. And loved it. I didn’t tell him it was all tofu until after, and he was speechless! 🙂
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