Homemade Vegan and Dairy-Free Almond Cheese

Homemade Vegan and Dairy-Free Almond Cheese

The Spruce / Ashley Marti

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 40 mins
Refrigerate: 12 hrs
Total: 12 hrs 50 mins
Servings: 6 to 8 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
152 Calories
14g Fat
5g Carbs
4g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6 to 8
Amount per serving
Calories 152
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 14g 18%
Saturated Fat 1g 7%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 2mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 5g 2%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Protein 4g
Calcium 49mg 4%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

If you're expecting homemade almond cheese to taste like cheese made from cow, sheep or goat's milk, you'll be disappointed. But if you want a vegan, lactose-free, dairy-free substitution that's similar to cheese, then this slightly sweet, tangy and creamy almond cheese is for you.

Once you try this basic recipe for almond cheese, you can begin experimenting and perfect your own version of almond cheese, which is a fun project. Below are links to other almond cheese recipes–try them all to find the one you like best. The recipe that seems to have inspired most of the almond cheese recipes out there is almond feta cheese with herb oil published by Vegetarian Times.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup whole raw unsalted almonds (skin removed; see notes about blanching and/or soaking almonds below)
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup water

Steps to Make It

Blanch the Almonds

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Homemade Vegan and Dairy-Free Almond Cheese ingredients

    The Spruce / Ashley Marti

  2. Blanched almonds are almonds that have their skins removed; you can have someone else do it for you or do it yourself. First, start by boiling water over the almonds and let the almonds soak for a few minutes.

    almonds in a bowl with water

    The Spruce / Ashley Marti

  3. Drain and rinse the almonds and then rub the almonds with a towel or just use your fingers to peel and pop the skin off.

    almonds with the peels removed

    The Spruce / Ashley Marti

  4. Removing the skin before making almond cheese gives the cheese a smoother texture and lighter color that looks like cheese. You can make the cheese with the skin on if you prefer.

    peeled almonds in a bowl

    The Spruce / Ashley Marti

  5. Soak the blanched almonds in cold water for 24 hours before making the cheese. Cover and place in refrigerator.

    almonds in a bowl with water

    The Spruce / Ashley Marti

  6. Drain and rinse the almonds well.

    drain the almonds using a metal strainer

    The Spruce / Ashley Marti

Make the Cheese

  1. Put the blanched almonds in a food processor or high-powered blender with the lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and water.

    almonds in a food processor with lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and water

    The Spruce / Ashley Marti

  2. Blend until smooth, about 5 minutes.

    almond, lemon juice and oil mixture in a food processor

    The Spruce / Ashley Marti

  3. Scrape the mixture into double-layered cheesecloth lining a colander.

    almond mixture strained using a cheesecloth

    The Spruce / Ashley Marti

  4. Gather the cheesecloth tightly around the almond mixture and secure into a bundle by using a rubber band or string to tie the top. Give the bundle a few gentle squeezes to remove liquid. Leave the bundle in the colander and place in the refrigerator overnight over a bowl or rimmed plate to catch any liquid that might drain. Refrigerate for at least 12 hours. This helps the texture of the cheese become firmer.

    squeeze the liquid from the almond mixture in the cheesecloth

    The Spruce / Ashley Marti

  5. Discard any liquid that drains out. Carefully peel the cheesecloth off of the almond “cheese." The “cheese” will have a consistency similar to cookie dough. At this point, the almond cheese can be eaten immediately as a spread or refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.

    Homemade Vegan and Dairy-Free Almond Cheese, on a cheesecloth

    The Spruce / Ashley Marti

    Variation

    • For a slightly different end product, the cheese can be baked before serving. Shape in to a round about 3/4-inch thick, and refrigerate for 12 hours. Then, bake at 300 F for 30 to 40 minutes. After baking, the top will be dry and slightly firm. The inside will still be creamy.
    • The cheese can be flavored by adding seasonings such as fresh garlic, fresh herbs, and spices. Some recipes flavor the cheese with nutritional yeast. You can add these ingredients at the beginning when you are blending ingredients in the food processor or blender.
    • You can also drizzle olive oil and fresh herbs over the almond cheese after it bakes.