Going without cheese isn't easy. Ricotta cheese has a dairy-free option. Whether you're vegan, on a low-fat diet or just cutting out dairy, this recipe will help you get your cheese fix without breaking your diet.
Healthy and light, this ricotta cheese substitution is great for pasta dishes like lasagna, manicotti, and ravioli, and it also works well in vegetable bakes and casseroles. This is also refreshing as a cool and creamy addition to a fresh salad. While most recipes with tofu call for you to drain it, you do not need to do so for this recipe; just open the box!
Choosing Tofu for Dairy-Free Ricotta
There are two major types of tofu: silken and regular tofu. They come in a variety of textures: extra-soft, soft, medium, medium firm, firm, extra-firm, and super firm. Non-silken tofu is also known as Regular tofu. This recipe specifically calls for extra-firm silken tofu. You may find that silken tofu is packaged differently than regular tofu, which means silken tofu may be in a different area of the grocery store. Because silken tofu does not require refrigeration, you may have to look harder to find it. You'll also find both solid and crumbled varieties of silken tofu. The best option to go with is drained and crumbled. Although this recipe lists instructions to mash the tofu with a fork, buying it crumbled will help the remaining ingredients combine with it better and create a more uniform consistency which some prefer with ricotta cheese. Some vegan ricotta cheese recipes call for blending, but this one does not. If you like a more smooth texture, you can blend the ingredients together.
Storing Dairy-Free Ricotta
Dairy-Free ricotta cheese has a very short shelf life unlike regular ricotta cheese which can hold up to 1-2 weeks after being opened, but this dairy-free ricotta option only keeps for up to 3 days. If you don't plan to eat the entire portion during this short time, cut the recipe down to the perfect amount for you.
For strict vegans who do not consume honey, using agave nectar works as well.
- 2 12-ounce blocks Silken Tofu (extra firm)
- 1 teaspoon honey (or agave nectar)
- 2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
In a small bowl, mash the tofu with a fork or crumble with your hands.
Mix in the remaining ingredients until well combined.
Ricotta will keep for 3 days in an air-tight container in the refrigerator.