One of the foods that I really, and I mean really really miss after going vegan is a classic cream cheese bagel. As a kid I would absolutely load cream cheese onto my bagels. Definitely not healthy. There is something about the creamy and tangyness of the cream cheese that I really missed. I was craving a cream cheese bagel recently and had one for brunch at a cute smoothie bar. It was good, but I knew it could have been better. I knew that the secret was to actually culture the cheese. There are a lot of recipes for vegan cream cheese that just require you to blend all of the ingredients and it’s good to go, but to me it’s just not the real thing. That method is great if you just want to whip up a quick bagel, but it still yields a sweet cream cheese due to sweetness from the cashews.
If you want a vegan cream cheese that literally tastes like the real thing, then look no further. I’m so proud of this recipe because my favourite recipes are the ones that you can easily re-create into a vegan version, without any bad ingredients, while still yielding a perfect result. Most store-bought vegan cream cheese is filled with refined oils, processed soy, and other nasty ingredients. And really, they just don’t taste like real cream cheese. So please enjoy this recipe for easy, simple, and super healthy vegan cream cheese, and make sure to let me know what you think!
A few notes:
- Use a good quality vegan probiotic. I used 2 50 billion cfu capsules, and this is all that I experimented with. You very well may be able to get away with using a small cfu count, so feel free to experiment.
- Use a wooden or plastic spoon to mix the cream cheese, because there is a chance that using a metal spoon may cause a reaction with the probiotics and, preventing your cheese from culturing!
- 1 cup cashews
- 1/2 cup water
- 3 tbsp lemon juice
- 3/4 tsp salt
- pinch of pepper
- 2×50 billion vegan probiotic capsules
- 1 tbsp chives, finely chopped
- 1 tsp dill, finely chopped
- 1/2 tsp basil, finely chopped
- 1/2 tsp parsley, finely chopped
- Blend the cashews, water, lemon juice, salt, and pepper in a high-powered blender for a few minutes until perfectly smooth.
- Transfer the cashew mixture to a small glass dish. Break open the probiotic capsules and mix them in with a wooden or a plastic spoon. Using a metal spoon can possibly cause a reaction with the probiotics, preventing your cheese from culturing, so avoid using one! Mix until the probiotics and the cheese is well combined.
- Cover the dish with a cheese cloth and allow the cheese to sit for 24 hours in a room temperature or warm location.
- After 24 hours, the cheese will have turned slightly tangy. Mix in the finely chopped herbs and refrigerate the cheese until it is cold and firm.
- Serve on top of bagels, with veggies, and much more. Enjoy!