Raw Vegan Cheese

by Susan on February 4, 2009

cheese

Life got exciting today. I made my raw food recipe for raw cashew cheese and it turned out great! I have been preparing raw food for some time now but the cheese, the ones that you  have to make and set-up for a day, seemed a little daunting. Well, as my friend Michael often says, sometimes you just have to pull the bands back and let them fly. I’m glad I did. A few handfuls of cashews, some rejuvelac, and a little patience turned out a delightful cheese spread that is a welcome addition to any raw diet.

If you are wondering what rejuvelac is, it is a fermented liquid made from sprouting wheat berries that is said to be high in enzymes, friendly bacteria, vitamins and minerals. It is known as a health drink. If you have been following this site,  you know I am sprouting a lot of wheat berries these days. I decided to put some of those sprouted wheat berries to work, make some rejuvelac and then, the cheese.

Rejuvelac

  • 1/2 C sprouted wheat berries (sprouted just until tails start)
  • 4 C filtered water

Place the wheat berries and the water in a jar. Leave in a warm place for 24-48 hours. You will see a little fizz. The liquid should be a little tart but not smell off.

cheese-and-crackers

Cashew Cheese

  • 2 C Cashews
  • 1/2 C rejuvelac

Cover cashews with water and soak overnight. Drain off water. Place cashews in Vitamix and process with rejuvelac until a smooth paste forms. You can add a dash of celtic sea salt. Line a strainer with 2 layers of cheese cloth. Spoon mixture into the cloth. Set in a warm place and let set for 24 hours. Form into the shape you want. I coated the outside with cracked pepper. Put in refrigerator to finish setting. Store in the refrigerator for about a week. Serve with Onion Sunflower Seed Flat Bread.

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{ 109 comments… read them below or add one }

Amy November 9, 2011 at 12:10 am

Thank you so much for your inspiring recipes Susan. I was so excited to make my cashew cheese today. It tastes amazing, however the consistency is nothing like yours. Mine was goopy and hard to work with. I used organic rye berries to make my rejuvelac and organic raw cashews. Also what warm area do you leave your cheese in for the 24 hours. Do you know where I may have gone wrong? Do you show pictures of what yours looks like step by step in your cook book? Thanks, Amy

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Susan November 9, 2011 at 9:06 am

Amy….you need to make sure that it is warm enough. If it is colder in the house, I set it by or on top of the dehydrator. Also, did you refrigerate it to let it set up? If it is still too wet, you can put it in the dehydrator for a bit. I have not had this problem so these are just suggestions. Good luck!

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Amy November 9, 2011 at 11:57 am

So you have your dehydrator running when you put the cheese beside it? My house is quite cool so the only warm spot I could think of was my oven. I don’t have a temp guage for my dehydrator so I set the oven to under 100 degrees for a minute then opened the door to let some of the heat out and put the bowl in there to sit. I continued to warm the oven a couple times a day and would take the cheese out when I did so. I also let it set in the fridge. My cheese looked like yours does in the middle, but did not harden on the outside. thanks!

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Erika November 10, 2011 at 6:23 pm

Hi I am willing to givr this a try but I can not tolarate gluten. Are this wheat berries the same as the wheat in well…breads and flours? Or is it like wheatgrass, which doe not have gluten. Can I make Rejuvelac out of something else?

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Susan November 10, 2011 at 6:29 pm

It is not wheatgrass. It is the actual wheat grain. You can make rejuvelac out of many other grains.

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Erika November 10, 2011 at 6:25 pm

I can not tolarate gluten. Are this wheat berries the same as the wheat in well…breads and flours? Or is it like wheatgrass, which does not have gluten. Can I make Rejuvelac out of something else?

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Lizzy November 15, 2011 at 3:18 am

This cheese is so good. My first time making it. I did make it in my cuisinart food processor. No problem very smooth. I followed the instructions and when I finished the cheese I put it in the fridge and got it cold for a day and tried it on a cracker and thought okay whats the big deal even though it acts and looks exactly as cream cheese. Well the big deal is that this cheese taste better and better everday that it sits in the fridge. It taste cheesier! It’s wonderful! I have had it in the fridge for two weeks now and I have half left. It is wrapped in plastic wrap. It doesn’t get watery inside the wrap. And for only two cups of cashews it made a big loaf. Thank you so much Susan for this recipe. I will make this cheese forever.

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Liesbeth December 7, 2011 at 3:47 pm

Hi Suzan,
I find this cheese really wonderful, I make it every 2 days to have always some cheese available. I also make rejuvelac every day, and love it as well. Was wondering if you have any other recipes with rejuvelac, maybe sweet ones even. Would be great if you have some suggestions.

Liesbeth

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Jackie January 28, 2012 at 7:13 pm

This is my “Go To Cheese” . I use this for everything. It’s very versatile, just use different herbs and seasonings for the “crust”. Walnuts, cinnamon and raisins added to the mix make a nice dessert cheese. Very yummy with apples. Rejuvelac is started and nuts are soaking!!

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Jaime January 31, 2012 at 1:38 pm

If I wanted to use probiotics or bacteria capsules instead of rejuvelac, what type or brand would I use?
THANK YOU!!!:) (new to raw food cooking)

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Jim February 11, 2012 at 9:35 pm

I have recently learned how to make almond milk with great success. I was wondering if the water used to soak the almonds in and then toss down the drain might be useable for making rejuvelac?

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misty March 28, 2012 at 12:13 pm

is this gluten free? i assume not since its made from wheat berries…?

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Susan March 28, 2012 at 2:44 pm

You can make rejuvelac from buckwheat, quinoa or other grains that are gluten free.

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lily June 25, 2012 at 1:13 am

hi, can you use kefir instead of rejuvelac to make the cheese?

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latrice August 14, 2012 at 1:15 pm

THIS lOOKS DELICIOUS!!

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carol Prichard August 19, 2012 at 11:32 pm

Susan the cheese looks fantastic. Where I live every place is warm Hot and humid. Should I make concessions for this?

carol

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Manisha September 13, 2012 at 3:10 am

I made cashew cheese following your recipe. It came out great. I made one of my friend, who is not vegan, taste it without telling her what it was. And she said.. hey its cheese. Thank you for sharing this!!

I have one question though. The cheese was not hard cheese. It came out to be somewhere between cheese spread and hard cheese. Any idea how to make it hard other than freezing it?

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Susan September 13, 2012 at 10:57 am

This recipe does not make a hard cheese. Cheers!

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JL September 25, 2012 at 4:20 pm

Great recipe thank you- its delicious! My kids love harder cheese that they can cut into pieces. Any suggestions on what I can do to make more of a harder block of cheese? Your advice would be greatly appreciated! :)

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Lesley October 21, 2012 at 12:24 pm

I made the raw cashew cheese with rejuvelac only I used raw almonds instead. It probably wasn’t as creamy as cashews would be but I thought it came out great. I had some on toast and it was delicious.
I’m not vegan, but I use a lot of vegetarian and vegan recipes for health reasons and I”m very happy with your recipes. Thank you.

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Lina November 4, 2012 at 1:26 pm

The final result looks just great on photo. Big BIG thank you!!!
But would be even greater to see all the steps in photographs.

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Susan November 4, 2012 at 2:18 pm

Thank, Lina! As time permits, I will be adding more photos and even video. Cheers!

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Robin November 23, 2012 at 10:20 pm

i read that rejuvelac can be made from cabbage. could that then be made into cheese? do different starters for rejuvelac produce different flavors or work differently in recipes?

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Susan January 31, 2013 at 1:14 pm

I don’t have any experience making it from cabbage. You would have to refer to the source where you read that. Cheers!

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Sue January 31, 2013 at 1:11 pm

I have read that you can use the liquid from fermented vegetables instead of the rejuvelac which could be cabbage in the form of sauerkraut. That would have to be home made or unpasturised sauerkraut though as many of the bought ones have been pasturised which kills the cultures required.

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Susan January 31, 2013 at 1:14 pm

You can also use probiotics. Would probably be easier. Cheers!

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Maya D April 23, 2013 at 2:35 pm

I made the rejuvelac, but just to make sure, this recipe includes the liquid ONLY right? Not the actual wheatberries… so we would had the liquid the resulted from the rejuvelac making process with the soaked cashews. I didn’t soak cashews but my rejuvelac is ready: what can I do to keep it good for two days from now? Can I just take the rejuvelac liquid and put it in the frige without the wheatberries?
thanks for answering!

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Jan Carpenter June 1, 2013 at 1:49 am

For anyone who is interested, I see several comments about rejuvelac and making it. Some of the best rejuvelac comes from quinoa. The cashew cheese is quite good when you make it with quinoa. You might want to try this as a substitute for those of you who are trying to maintain a gluten free diet.

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Paul June 18, 2013 at 11:01 pm

Thank you for the recipe! We’ve been making rejuvilac on a regular basis and the cheese turned out awesome. Now we have a sensible replacement to dairy. So nice! Thank you.

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julie July 18, 2013 at 7:14 pm

Can you use water kefir starter? I make kefir pop and thought it might work> anyone try it yet?

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Susan July 20, 2013 at 12:23 pm

I have not tried it. Anyone?

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Sharon August 8, 2013 at 5:56 pm

Susan do I leave the cheese in the cheese cloth when I put it in the refrigerator to set up?

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Sharon August 8, 2013 at 6:06 pm

Hi Susan, what can I use to shape the cheese and do I leave it in the cheese cloth? Enjoying your recipes. Thanks for your help on this journey.

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Nicole December 4, 2013 at 5:23 am

What is the consistency like? Like mozarella? Because it looks like mozarella.

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cate thomas December 5, 2013 at 7:34 pm

hi:)) great! when I make rejuvelac from sunflower seeds and that just be accident has been in the frig for 10 days, is it simply ”more probiotic’ or not to use? doesn’t have bad odor, am highly allergic to mold, mildew, chemical sensitive… thanks for thinking!

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lizbeth April 14, 2014 at 1:32 pm

Has anyone tried this sans the rejuvlac and just left it out at room temp? I just made a cashew-sunflower blend. All i added was water,salt, and a touch of vinegar. I’m pretty certain i’ve made vegan cheeses like this before but then it’s been a long time since i’ve done this.

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claudia August 26, 2014 at 9:54 pm

I have made quinoa rejuvelac before and loved that the quinoa sprouted so fast! But organic quinoa is a little expensive and it was just so sad to through away the grains after making rejuvelac. Thats why I decided to sprout organic brown rice (cheaper). Can you eat the sprouted grains after making rejuvelac? In all the recipes that I have read, it says to dispose of them but I dont understand why you cant just toss them in a salad.

I would appreciate if the help

BTW I am totally and absolutely obsessed with your roasted garlic cashew cheese :) <3

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Susan August 30, 2014 at 12:26 pm

Claudia, I tend to compost the grains. Just a personal preference. Cheers!

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Susan February 15, 2009 at 2:13 pm

Yes…all of the water that is produced is rejuvelac. You can use a smaller jar, just use a little less sprouted wheat berries.

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