There are a few plant-based ingredients that make all the difference when it comes to cooking without meat and dairy. Cashews are one of those ingredients. These fantastic little nuts are so much more than a party food, salted and resting in a bowl. Rather, they can give incredibly creamy, thick consistencies to vegan dishes and are an excellent material from which to make vegan cheese. Check out these five ways to make raw dishes starring cashews:
1. Vegan Cheese
Those who love their cheese, but are looking to cut back on the animal products, should go for cashews. These nuts help give a creamy texture to dishes and are an ideal substitute when making raw, dairy-free cheese. There are so many flavors of cashew cheese to make. Try Kick Ace Extra Sharp Raw Vegan Cheddar Cheese Ball and Mint Coconut-Cashew “Cream Cheese” Spread.
Nut milk saves the day for the plant-based eater. You can use cashew milk just like you would regular milk for several types of raw dishes. Pour it over cereal and use it in smoothies. You can find cashew milk for sale at some grocery and specialty stores, but better yet, make your own. The process is easy. Check out these articles on how to make homemade hazelnut cashew milk and how to make the ultimate homemade cashew milk.
You’ve got to love the classic, good old peanut butter, but if you’re looking for something different, try making cashew butter instead. Use cashew butter in these Vegan Ginger Chocolate Cups with Sesame-Cashew Butter and Caramel.
Cashew cream can help transform a vegan dish and give it a creamy, rich consistency, especially for raw desserts. It helps balance out the rich chocolate in this Chocolate Raw Vegan Mousse Tart with Lemon Cashew Cream. Cashews make delicious frosting; try it for this Raw Gingerbread Cake with Cashew Cream Cheese Frosting and this Raw Carrot Cake with Cashew Cream Cheese Frosting.
Cheesecake is such a rich, delicious dish, and one that is hard to give up if you eat a vegan or predominantly plant-based diet. Luckily, cashews make the perfect cheesy filling for cheesecake that is just as luscious and heavenly as dairy cheesecake. Try these vegan versions made with cashews: Raw Vegan Cherry Cheesecake, Orange Vegan Chocolate Cheesecake, Blueberry Cheesecake, or Chocolate Heaven Cheesecake.
Lead image source: Raw Carrot Cake with Cashew Cream Cheese Frosting