Potatoes + Carrots Make Cheese!
Now that you have had a taste of plant-based, non-dairy cashew cheese, you are likely realizing that it tastes pretty damn good! You may have even picked up some others to try from your local grocery or health food store. It’s even worth adding a non-dairy cheese to your next cheese plate unbeknownst to your guests to see what they think. It’s always an interesting conversation starter.
Raw cashews and nutritional yeast are a couple of the most used ingredients in my vegan pantry, I have to keep them stocked as we will use these again in our recipe for part 2.
I know what you are thinking – “Potatoes and carrots, eh Steve? Sure, they make cheese?!?!” To be honest the first time I heard this I thought it was pretty far-fetched as well, as everybody loves potatoes and carrots. If we could make a delicious thick and creamy cheese sauce out of these simple ingredients, then why have we not for centuries? So let the family traditions start now, this is a simple way to add more veggies into your diet and not have to give up anything!
If you are like me than you enjoy a good thick and creamy cheese sauce that sticks to everything! Cauliflower is delicious smothered in it and a simple baked potato is sure elevated when topped with some steamed broccoli and that same sauce! This is a versatile cheese sauce, it can be used as a dip, or smother it all over loaded nachos, put it in your taco, burrito or enchilada, not to mention loaded fries. You can heat it up by adding fresh jalapeno, sriracha or your favorite hot sauce, even some spicy salsa. I have used this sauce over some boiled macaroni and peas for a quick and easy mac n’ cheese.
I never thought about missing cheese sauce after going plant-based – but there does come a time when you have that craving. I ended up at the movie theatre and there behind the counter, staff were pumping that orange deliciousness on some nacho chips. That started my quest for the best plant-based versions and I was astonished to find out that potatoes and carrots make cheese.
It’s almost that simple, carrots for colour, potatoes for texture blended into a thick and creamy cheese sauce that satisfies any finger licking craving! Well of course there are a few more ingredients to give it that tangy flavour, to make it creamy and thick enough to stick to your nachos and don’t forget that glossy shine.
This is my go-to recipe, it has a bit of spice but you can leave that out if you want it to be mild.
I use this sauce on my Loaded Nachos. I spiced a 14 oz can of brown lentils with some nacho seasoning, then put them over some corn tortillas, topped with some diced red pepper and the cheesy sauce, added home-made guacamole, plant-based sour cream, cilantro and scallions for a delicious meal or tasty treat.
Recipe: Creamy Cheese Sauce
1 cup potatoes, peeled and cubed
½ cup carrots, peeled and cut into ½ pieces
¼ cup raw cashews (soaked overnight)
3 tbsp nutritional yeast
½ tsp Hamalyan pink salt
½ tsp mustard
½ tsp tomato paste
½ tsp garlic powder
¼ tsp turmeric
1 tbsp grapeseed oil
2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
¼ cup macadamia nut milk or other plant-based milk
cracked black pepper
1 jalapeno diced (optional)
2 tbsp spicy salsa (optional)
Sriracha sauce (optional) to taste
Place the prepared carrots and potatoes in a small saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil then simmer for 10-15 minutes until you can pierce a fork through the potatoes. In the mean-time put all other ingredients in a blender or food processor. When the carrots and potatoes are done, drain them and then add to the blender (caution hot), mix together to smooth consistency, should still be hot enough to serve here or…
Add some heat – here I like to add a chopped fresh jalapeno, some sriracha or other hot sauce even a couple of tablespoons of spicy salsa, blend again to desired consistency, and taste, if it is too thick add more plant-based milk or water.
Can be reheated stovetop or in the micro, you may want to add a little water. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for a few days once cooled.