This how-to guide will take you from a handful of ingredients to the most delicious vegan Parmesan cheese! It’s salty, it’s cheesy, and perfect for sprinkling on everything! Only 4 ingredients and a couple of minutes required.
This recipe was originally published in March 2019. It has been updated for content and photos.
What is Vegan Parmesan Cheese?
Vegan Parm is a finely ground seasoning typically containing a nut or seed, nutritional yeast, salt and other seasoning, if desired.
I didn’t invent the concept, but I’ve adapted this recipe from other vegan bloggers to suit my own taste and needs. In my humble opinion, this is the best vegan parmesan cheese I’ve ever tasted!
How to make it
(This is a summary with step by step photos, full recipe measurements and instructions are in the recipe card below.)
Gather your ingredients. All you need is cashews, “nooch” and salt, with optional garlic powder, if you’d like. Pictured below is a triple batch (we go through a lot) of my recipe which you’ll find towards the bottom of this post. Feel free to make a single batch, double or triple, to suit your needs.
Add all the ingredients to a food processor and process until a fine meal is reached. This should take about 10-15 seconds, depending on your appliance. (photos 1-2)
Transfer to a clean and dry jar or container to use on EVERYTHING!
There you have it. Perfectly delicious, salty, “cheesy”, slightly garlicky, vegan Parmesan cheese. So simple, there’s just no reason not to try this.
What to use it on
This vegan substitute for Parmesan cheese can be used on almost anything!
Here’s some of my favourites:
Sprinkle it on your POPCORN!
Layer it on your favourite pasta dishes or veggie noodles, such as:
- Veggie Bolognese Zucchini Noodles
- Vegan Penne Alla Vodka [Healthier Than Grandma’s!]
- Penne Aglio e Olio (Pasta w/ Garlic & Oil)
And lastly, (one of my favourite options)…grab a spoon!
How long does it keep?
I typically make a triple batch and keep mine refrigerated for up to 4 weeks with no issue or spoilage.
I’m sure it would last even longer than that, if you manage not to consume it that quickly. 😉
What substitutions can I make?
If you don’t have cashews, I’ve successfully made this with blanched almonds and pine nuts with similar results.
For nut free, you may use raw sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds/pepitas to replace the cashews with similar results.
For no nutritional yeast, you may use other seasoning such as mushroom powder, onion powder, basil powder and more garlic powder, if you’d like. Keep in mind this will reduce the cheesiness, but it will still provide that umami deliciousness you’re after.
For low sodium, simply halve the salt, or salt to your taste.
- Make sure your jar or container is completely clean and DRY to prevent any spoilage from moisture when storing you vegan parm.
- Store in your refrigerator to preserve freshness.
- Do not use fresh herbs or spices. This will prevent your “cheese” from keeping fresh, and will spoil sooner.
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- Add all the ingredients to a food processor and process until a fine meal is achieved.
- Store in an airtight container or jar in your refrigerator and serve sprinkled over your favourite dishes.