THE BEST VEGAN CREAM CHEESE

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This is The Best Vegan Cream Cheese! Thick and creamy with a slight tang, it’s just like real cream cheese. Made with just 6 plant based ingredient, you can eat all the cream cheese bagels you want and use it in recipe that call for cream cheese!

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Did you ever just crave a cream cheese bagel, buy an expensive one at the grocery store…. just to come home disappointed with how strange it tasted? Yup, me too. I’ve tried so many vegan cream cheese brands but it was just not doing it for me. Some were plasticky, some had a weird texture and some was just… not even close to being cream cheese. Then naturally, I searched up some recipes and a lot of them used cashews. I have a vitamix, so it should come out smooth but it never did and always left a nutty cashew flavour instead of a cheesy tangy flavour. I was never a cheese lover, but I was a die-hard fan of cream cheese bagels. Probably because I grew up eating the ones at Tim Hortons… a lot so I couldn’t give up on cream cheese bagels.

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After experimenting with my Vegan Cheesecake Recipe, I thought "holy moly, I can TOTALLY make something taste like cheese… I CAN TOTALLY MAKE CREAM CHEESE!!”. I tested this recipe 4 times. With different ratios of tofu and cashews, I found this ratio to be the most superior. The cashews gives it the thick creaminess that cream cheese has that the tofu only version was missing.

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The moment I made the 5th variation, I literally ran outside the door and screamed with happiness. If you love cream cheese, your life is about to be changed. Of course, I taste tested it on its own, in dressings and on bagels. It was SO. DANG. DELICIOUS. I made a toasted cream cheese bagel for my boyfriend and he looked at me and said “this is delicious, this is cream cheese”. I basically frolicked with happiness for the rest of the day… yup over cream cheese.

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I really REALLY hope you make this Vegan Cream Cheese because it’s seriously THE BEST and I hope you love it as much as I do because it’s:

  • vegan friendly

  • dairy & gluten free

  • thick, creamy, tangy, cheesy- everything cream cheese is

  • made with only 6 plant based ingredients

  • can be used in place of any cream cheese recipe

  • way healthier than store bought cream cheese

  • super simple & easy to make

  • & makes the BEST CREAM CHEESE BAGELS!

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Tips and Tricks to making The Best Vegan Cream Cheese

  • Use a brand of tofu that tastes neutral. Some tofu’s tend to have that “tofu aftertaste”. My favourite brand is from Sunrise, their Soyganic Firm Tofu has worked the best for this recipe! If you can’t find this exact brand, you can rinse your tofu in hot water for a couple seconds. The more neutral the tofu is, the more it’ll taste like real cream cheese.

  • No need to press your tofu ahead of time, a little moisture is good as it will help it blend smoother.

  • Lemon juice varies in flavour. Some are sweeter & some can have more of a zing. Start with 2 tbsp and adjust accordingly. If you find your lemon juice is on the sweeter side, add more ACV 1/2 tsp at a time.

  • If you don’t have a high speed blender, you can try to use your food processor with cashew butter instead of cashew nuts.

  • Get creative this this cream cheese! This is just a base but there are tons of different cream cheese flavours on the market and you can easily replicate them by adding in seasonings and fresh herbs. I’ll be posting a maple cinnamon cream cheese with kabocha bagels in the near future so keep an eye out for that recipe ;)

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If you recreate this Vegan Cream Cheese please share it and let me know what you think by tagging me on Instagram @lisakitahara, I love seeing all of your tasty recreations!

Method

  1. Remove the firm tofu from the package and squeeze as much excess liquid as you can.

  2. Add in all the ingredients into a high speed blender and use a tamper/spatula to help the cream cheese get as smooth and creamy as possible.

  3. Transfer into an airtight container for storage. Use in cream cheese bagels, in dips and in other recipes that call for cream cheese!

Notes

  • SERVINGS: Approximately 2 cups

  • PREP TIME: 5 minutes

  • COOK TIME: 5 minutes

  • INGREDIENTS: 6

  • DIFFICULTY: EASY

Ingredients

  • 350g pkg firm tofu, drained

  • 2 tbsp lemon juice

  • 1.5  tbsp apple cider vinegar

  • 1/3 c cashews, soaked (40-50g)

  • 2 tsp nutritional yeast

  • 1 tsp sugar

  • 1 tsp sea salt