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How to Make Vegan Pepper Jack Cashew Cheese

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This is an incredibly simple recipe, but when making this, work quickly and without interruptions if possible. The cheese sets fast and needs your complete attention!

How to Make Vegan Pepper Jack Cashew Cheese


  • 1/2 package pectin
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 to 2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon agar powder (optional, makes for an even firmer cheese)
  • Canned green chilis and pimientos, for stirring in before it sets (causes shorter shelf life)


  1. Lightly oil half (6) of a cupcake tin rounds.
  2. Use your blender to combine 1/2 package of the dry pectin (about 4 1/2 teaspoons) and the agar powder (optional) with the water and lemon juice.
  3. Pour water mixture into a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium high heat while stirring constantly. Set to low heat and let simmer while you grind cashews, nutritional yeast, salt, garlic powder, and onion powder until very fine in food processor or with your high-speed blender. Do not over process and make nut butter.
  4. Mix 1/2 cup water with the small calcium packet from the pectin package and set aside.
  5. Pour the boiled water mixture over the ground cashew mixture into the power blender. Blend until smooth and creamy. It’s gonna thicken quickly, so immediately add 1/4 cup of the calcium water and the crushed red pepper flakes and pulse until all combined. Immediately pour the hot cheese into the prepared cupcake tin(s).
  6. Refrigerate uncovered for an hour. Turn mini cashew cheeses out onto a plate (upside down) and let set uncovered in the refrigerator for another 4-5 hours. 1 serving of cashew cheese is half of one mini round, which is the perfect amount for 1 grilled cheese sandwich or 1 quesadilla. This recipe makes 12 servings of cheese. Don’t forget to store the rest of your pectin and calcium water for the next batch. Calcium water stores well in the refrigerator and the pectin will store in your pantry indefinitely. Cashew cheese keeps for about a week in the refrigerator and freezes well.





Somer McCowan has been cooking since her early teens. A self-taught chef, she has always been passionate about experimenting with food and inventing delicious recipes. Through whole vegan food, Somer reversed a severe autoimmune illness. She has worked in the food industry in the U.S. and Australia, including bakeries, several restaurants, and a juice bar. It wasn’t until she became vegan, however, that she truly blossomed in her own kitchen. Check out her blog Vedge Out .



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49 comments on “How to Make Vegan Pepper Jack Cashew Cheese”

Click to add comment
David Houston
1 Months Ago

My pectin did not come with a packet of calcium. Also, the amount of water was a little ambiguous. Step 2 and 4.

3 Years Ago

The constant pop-ups and videos are fucking annoying, not to mention slow down my computer considerably. It takes FOREVER to get through a page because of this. Get that shit out of here. You\'re probably losing people in spades. No one wants to spend this much time looking up a damn recipe!!!

02 Jan 2015

I second that. It\'s impossible to navigate this site without losing your mind or giving up. It\'s beyond annoying, it\'s insufferable.

Robert Chase
11 Feb 2015

You are right on

4 Years Ago

Aww crap I was going too fast and not reading closely enough and dumped full amount of calcium water in, is there any replacement I can use so I can still use the other half of the pectin?

Alvin Maniti
4 Years Ago


Rakhi Shah
4 Years Ago

What does 1T mean - 1Tsp or 1Tbsp?

Lisa Richter
28 May 2014

T is tablespoon and t is teaspoon, usually

Rakhi Shah
28 May 2014

Thank you so much Lisa Richter! :)

Dara Hildibrand
4 Years Ago

I have made this and it is quite wonderful

Eric Ivancic
4 Years Ago


Angelica Ruiz McBeath
4 Years Ago

Gabby Ruiz

Ornella Haja
4 Years Ago

Rebecca Orford I see your point but I don't agree with it. Most people are aware of the 3different textures of cheese (soft/medium/hard). They didn't call it cashew hard cheese or cashew cheddar...

Rebecca Orford
4 Years Ago

I'm the agent for a UK veggie chef, and we've had a discussion about cashew cheese. He reckons - and I agree - that really it needs to be described as something else, so peoples' expectations of 'cheese' aren't dashed. Describing it as (for example) an almond pate might make more sense and there's no chance of setting up expectations to be knocked down when it doesn't have the texture or taste of 'cheese'. Just my two pennyworth. This looks/sounds nice, though. :)


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