Non-dairy Cheese Part 1: Cashew Yogurt

My goal as a cheese maker is to make delicious cheese for all of my friends, including those who can’t eat dairy due to severe allergies or chronic veganism.  Let’s start cashew yogurt.

Cashew yogurt seems pretty easy.  Just mix together the cashews and almond milk, add heat, culture with existing yogurt and then leave somewhere warm for a few hours.

If you leave the yogurt in the oven for too long, and then forget to refrigerate overnight the yogurt will separate.

If you leave the cashew yogurt in the oven too long, and then forget to refrigerate overnight you get this.










Soak the cashews before blending, otherwise they won’t blend completely.

So let’s reread the recipe and try again.  My first mistake:  I didn’t soak the cashews in water to soften them before blending.  Also, soy milk is recommended over almond milk for making cheese.  So I made these changes and left the yogurt in the oven for a little less time.  The result was a little thin, but actually looked and smelled like yogurt!

Final soy-cashew yogurt
Final soy-cashew yogurt







I would do a few things differently if I ever make cashew yogurt again:

  1. Cashews are soaked in water to make them easier to grind up in the blender.  I soaked these for about 4 hours, and I still noticed some cashew flakes floating around in the end.  Next time:  soak cashews longer.
  2. I used cultured coconut milk as my yogurt starter.  This might have led to some problem getting the yogurt to thicken.  Next time:  use either soy yogurt as the starter or find a vegetarian yogurt culture packet.
  3. I left the yogurt in the oven for about 6 hours to firm up, which may also have led to my thickening problems.  Next time:  leave the yogurt near the light for the full 8 hours.

Next time: cashew cheddar!