Vegan Pimento Cheese w/ Homemade Dairy-Free Cheddar Cheese

Vegan Pimento Cheese w/ Homemade Dairy-Free Cheddar Cheese

Difficulty: 3/5 (5 being hardest)
Spice Level: 1/3 (3 being spiciest)

Prep & Cook Time: 2 hours + 30 minutes
Servings: 8

The Challenge: Pimento Cheese

Pimento cheese is on every Southern menu it seems this day and is having itself a renaissance! When I was just a vegetarian, /i loved this creamy, tangy, salty spread. I mean its cheddar cheese, cream cheese, and mayo...so yeh pretty frikin awesome.

Problem. It is verrrry not vegan. So, I thought oh yeah that would be fun to torture myself to make. Well, may trial + errors later, we have a relatively simple pimento recipe anyone can tackle!  And oh yeah...its HEAVENLY!!! (angel emoji here).

To make this, we first had to figure out how to make our very own shredded cheddar cheese. It is a crucial part. Recipes call for sharp cheddar normally, so how to make sharp cheddar that can be shredded? Enter agar agar. A seaweed-based gelatin replacement we can use to create a cheddar block that can be shredded. Its vegan BAM. We created a delicious cashew-based cheddar that was so firm it could be shredded. So awesome!!

Then, we mixed that with vegan mayo + cream cheese along with some pimentos (canned red pepper) to make a PERFECT PIMENTO CHEESE. Pair with pretzel sticks, crostini, or your favorite dipper for an absolute treat!!!!

Let's get into it.

 

Ingredients:


Cheddar Cheese

  • 5 tsp agar agar powder + 1/2 cup water
  • 1.5 cups raw cashews
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 tbl tahini paste
  • 1 tsp white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp yellow mustard
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted

The Rest

  • 6oz vegan cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup vegan mayo
  • Spices: 1/2 tsp garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon onion powder, 1/4 tsp red chili flakes, 1/8 tsp white pepper, 1/3 tsp salt
  • 1/2 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced (optional)
  • 1/2 cup diced pimento, drained
  • pretzel sticks or favorite dipper

Equipment You'll Need:

Cutting Board . Sharp Cutting Knife . Measuring Cups . Measuring Spoons . Food Processor . Mixing Bowls . Medium Pot . Loaf Pan . Mason Jar . Spatula


Before You Cook:

  • Wash and cut all fresh ingredients
 1. Start by bringing 2 cups of water to a boil. Pour on cashews and soak in a bowl for 30 minutes.

1. Start by bringing 2 cups of water to a boil. Pour on cashews and soak in a bowl for 30 minutes.

 2. Once the cashews are done, mix agar agar powder with water and bring to boil. Whisk until agar agar powder is well mixed. Immediately (while still wet) transfer to a food processor.

2. Once the cashews are done, mix agar agar powder with water and bring to boil. Whisk until agar agar powder is well mixed. Immediately (while still wet) transfer to a food processor.

 3. Mix all the cheese ingredients in food processor until smooth. 

3. Mix all the cheese ingredients in food processor until smooth. 

 4. Add the cheese mixture to a loaf pan. Spread evenly. Place in freezer for 30 minutes, then refrigewrate for another 90 minutes so its completely set.

4. Add the cheese mixture to a loaf pan. Spread evenly. Place in freezer for 30 minutes, then refrigewrate for another 90 minutes so its completely set.

 5. Right before the cheese is done, mix together the mayo, cream cheese, and all other ingredients from "The Rest" sans pretzel sticks. Set aside.

5. Right before the cheese is done, mix together the mayo, cream cheese, and all other ingredients from "The Rest" sans pretzel sticks. Set aside.

 6. Use a cheese grater to great your cheese block. To not crumble it, grate down, pull the bloc off, grate down again.

6. Use a cheese grater to great your cheese block. To not crumble it, grate down, pull the bloc off, grate down again.

 7. To serve, gently fold in the grated cheese to the other mixture. I use a spatula and am very delicate so the cheese doesn't break down too dramatically! Serve with your favorite dipper!

7. To serve, gently fold in the grated cheese to the other mixture. I use a spatula and am very delicate so the cheese doesn't break down too dramatically! Serve with your favorite dipper!


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