Is arrowroot good for thickening cheese sauce
Vegan cheese | do it yourself (simple recipe)
Vegan cheese is easy to make yourself at home with fewer than 10 ingredients and only takes 10 minutes (without cooling time). This cheese substitute is spicy, tasty and versatile - use it sliced, grated or melted on or over hearty dishes. It's also nut-free and soy-free!
We are in the middle of the “Veganuary”, in which more than half a million people committed to being vegan in January this year. But did you know that giving up cheese is one of the greatest difficulties for many?
Many people cannot imagine life without this tangy treat - but neither do they have to. I already have a (very popular!) vegan cheese sauce, several others Cheese alternatives (listed below in this post) and recently my version of vegan cheese fondue presented. Now it's the turn of my firm vegan cheese.
Spicy, firm, homemade vegan cheese
This is the best (firm) vegan cheese I've tried so far. The recipe is based on my cheese sauce - which has been loved by thousands of people (vegan and non-vegan) since I first posted the recipe on Instagram in 2016!
By exchanging just a few ingredients and one preparation step, you can turn the cheesy sauce into a firm cheese that you can slice to cut, rasps or on his favorite dishes melt can leave. The result is a versatile cheese substitute that is addictive and too 100% nut free is (without cashews).
Best of all is my vegan cheese super EASY is. You need no mixer or some fancy kitchen utensils, just a saucepan and a couple of bowls! In addition, homemade variants are much cheaper than bought ones and almost always taste better!
What is vegan cheese?
It is a cheese substitute for everyone who wants to experience the taste and texture of cheese, but without dairy products.
I always tell new vegans that it can be difficult to find “exact” replicas for “regular” cheese. In a way, vegan cheese is practically a whole new group of foods - so I like to enjoy it for what it is (cruelty free and absolutely delicious when done right!)
After a while the taste buds also change and you no longer have the desire for “real” cheese (made from cow's milk).
This vegan cheese could best be compared to a mild cheddar cheese. It's slightly spicy, with a cheesy taste and a wonderful texture to cut, grate, and melt! It's also an excellent base to vary (see FAQ section for examples).
The ingredients and substitute ingredients
- Coconut milk: Use a can of unsweetened full-fat coconut milk, not a tetrapack or "light" version. Shake the can well and use everything (the creamy part and the water). This doesn't really add a strong coconut flavor. Alternatively, you could try another plant-based milk combined with 4 tablespoons of refined coconut oil (which has no coconut flavor at all). Note that the fat content of the coconut makes the cheese melt better.
- Yeast flakes: This gives the cheese a cheesy flavor and shouldn't be left out.
- Sauerkraut juice: Adds the typical taste and flavor of regular cheese. Alternatively, you can also use another liquid, such as the clear liquid in a glass of olives (reduce the salt in this case) or normal water in combination with 2 teaspoons of lemon juice / apple cider vinegar - in my opinion, the sauerkraut juice gives you the best taste !
- Tapioca flour: Gives the cheese a little "stretch" when it melts (e.g. on pizza, toast, etc.). Alternatively, you can use arrowroot flour.
- Agar Agar: It is important, 100% pure agar agar powder to use and not something with less concentration - like brands that contain mostly maltodextrin and only 30% agar agar. If you have agar flakes, you will need 3x as much (6 tbsp). Alternatively, you can also use kappa carrageenan (available online), but you only need 1 1/2 tablespoons and don't have to boil it for 5 minutes - just heat it with the other ingredients and simmer for a maximum of 1 minute.
- Spices: I use onion powder, garlic powder, smoked paprika powder, and salt. You can also optionally use a pinch of turmeric for a more yellow color.
The Complete list of ingredients, measurements, complete instructions and nutritional information can be found in the recipe at the end of the blog post.
Vegan cheese - step-by-step
Step 1: make a cheese sauce
- Grease the inside of a medium-sized bowl (mine measures 14 x 7.5 cm) with a neutral oil and set aside.
- Put all ingredients except the sauerkraut juice and tapioca flour in a saucepan and stir well with a whisk.
- Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat, stirring frequently. As soon as it starts to simmer, set the timer to 5 minutes and simmer the mixture, stirring occasionally (just boil lightly, not too much!). The mixture will thicken as it simmer.
Step 2: Add the remaining ingredients and thicken
- Mix the lukewarm sauerkraut juice and tapioca flour in a small bowl. Pour the mixture into the saucepan and stir with a whisk.
It is important that the sauerkraut juice is not cold, otherwise the cheese sauce can set quickly due to the agar agar.
- Simmer for an additional minute while the sauce continues to thicken, stirring frequently. Then immediately pour into the prepared bowl / bowl (the mass begins to solidify quickly - so work quickly!), Press down gently with a spatula and smooth the surface.
Step 3: Chill the vegan cheese until it is firm.
- Let cool at room temperature until the shell is just slightly warm but no longer hot, and then let cool in the refrigerator for at least three hours (or overnight) until the cheese has hardened completely. Now you can enjoy it!
Here are a few suggestions on how vegan cheese can be served / used:
How do you store homemade vegan cheese?
Leftovers can be covered after they have set up to 5 days in the refrigerator be kept. You can also put the leftovers in an airtight, freezer-proof container Freeze for up to 3 months.
Can I refine / flavor the cheese substitute further?
Yes, you can definitely experiment with different flavors (another reason this is the best vegan cheese ever). I like to experiment with adding different herbs, spices and condiments.
For example: Italian herbs, extra paprika and a few drops of liquid smoke for a smokier aroma, a pinch of cayenne / chilli powder and some red chilli flakes for spiciness, truffle or miso paste for extra umami, etc.
Does vegan cheese even melt?
It really depends on what cheese substitute you are using. But yes, it is entirely possible to melt vegan cheese - which this recipe does.
In this recipe, the coconut fat from the coconut milk helps melt the plant-based cheese, while the tapioca flour makes it stretchable as it melts. Although this vegan cheese doesn't melt as much as "real" cheese, I'm still satisfied with the result. See the before and after photo:
Recipe Notes & Variations
- You can get it straight from the fridge rub or freeze it for 5-10 minutes beforehand. It works either way since the coconut cheese is quite firm, but the freezing time can make it a little easier. That's because I added ingredients that melt the cheese a little.
- For a stronger "cheesy" taste, you can adjust the amount of Slightly increase the yeast flakes.
- Take care of the agar-agar and tapioca starch to measure accurately. Even the slightest increase / decrease can change the texture and result of the plant-based cheese quite a bit.
- As already mentioned, please note that some agar brands differ in strength and composition. Just make sure you take a brand that does consists of 100% agar-agar.
Other vegan cheese recipes
As you can see, vegan cheese is easy to make yourself - should you try my recipe, it would be very nice of you if you would leave me a comment and a rating below. You are also welcome to post a picture on Instagram or Facebook and include me in it @elavegan and link #elavegan so I can see your post.
- See the blog post for a video for easy visual instructions. Grease the inside of a medium-sized bowl or container of your choice (mine is 14 x 7.5 cm) with a neutral oil and set aside.
- Put all ingredients except the sauerkraut juice and tapioca flour in a saucepan and stir with a whisk.
- Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat, stirring frequently. As soon as it simmer, set the timer for 5 minutes. Simmer over low heat (do not boil too much!) And stir occasionally, as the mixture thickens the longer it cooks.
- Mix the sauerkraut juice with the tapioca flour in a small bowl. It is important that the juice is not cold (otherwise the cheese sauce will partially solidify). Pour the mixture into the saucepan after 5 minutes and stir well with a whisk.
- Simmer for another 1 minute (it will thicken even more, so I recommend stirring frequently). Then immediately pour the cheese sauce into the prepared bowl (it will set quickly, so please proceed quickly), press down gently with a spatula and smooth the surface.
- Let cool until the bowl is just slightly warm but no longer hot, then place in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours (or overnight) until the cheese is firm. With Crackers enjoy!
Video of the recipe
- Canned coconut milk: Do not use a tetra pack or light coconut milk (the result will not be good). Shake the can and use everything (the creamy part and the water if it has separated).
- If you're scared of a coconut flavor (I didn't notice any) you can go with Experiment with another plant-based milk and add 4 tablespoons of refined coconut oil Add. The refined coconut oil has no coconut flavor at all. In this case, reduce the amount of plant milk by 4 tablespoons.
- Agar Agar: It is really important, 100% pure agar-agar powder to use and not the agar-agar, which consists mainly of maltodextrin and only 30% of agar-agar. If you have agar flakes, you need to use 3 times the amount (6 tablespoons).
- Note: You could go with Kappa carrageenan (available online) experiment instead of agar-agar. The difference will be that you will have to use less (only 1 1/2 tablespoons instead of 2), and you won't have to simmer for 5 minutes. Simply heat it up with all the other ingredients and let it simmer for a maximum of 1 minute.
- Sauerkraut juice: It gives the vegetable cheese flavor and flavor, similar to normal cheese. You can also use an olive brine (the clear liquid in a glass of olives and reduce the salt) or just use water with the addition of 2 teaspoons of lemon juice or apple cider vinegar. In my opinion, you get the best taste with sauerkraut juice.
- Tapioca flour: You can use arrowroot meal instead. It gives the vegan cheese a little "stretch" when melting (on pizza or toast).
- The vegan cheese however, it only melts slightly. If you want it to melt even more, choose kappa carrageenan as it gives a better result. A coconut milk brand with more fat also leads to a better melting result.
- Color of the cheese: I use American yeast flakes that are colored yellow with B vitamins, so my cheese is also yellowish. Since German yeast flakes are mostly gray (without B vitamins), I suggest using a pinch of turmeric powder.
- The nutritional information applies to 1 piece (approx. 60 grams) if you cut the cheese into 8 pieces.
The nutritional information is approximate and has been calculated automatically
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