Learn how to make cashew cream like a pro! It's a versatile vegan staple that makes dairy-free cooking a dream. Turn it into yogurt, pasta sauce, cheese and more!
Cashew cream is a great alternative for those who avoid dairy. As long as you’re not allergic or intolerant to tree nuts, cashews are a blessing when it comes to a plant-based or dairy-free diet.
Cashew cream can be used in countless dishes, both sweet and savoury! It's is a clean and healthy alternative to heavy cream. So, it's perfect for making anything from creamy pasta sauces to puddings and even vegan cheese!
Health Benefits of Cashews
Cashews offer some great nutritional value, especially if you eat a plant-based diet!
Cashews are a great source of monounsaturated fats, which are known to protect against heart disease and cancer.
Vitamins & Minerals
Cashews are a good source of many vitamins and minerals, including magnesium, potassium, zinc, iron and copper, as well as vitamin A, biotin and vitamin E.
Protein & Carbohydrates
Although cashews are a great source of beneficial fats, they are actually lower in fat than most nuts! In fact, they have a higher protein and carbohydrate content. Because of their high protein, carb and fat content, they make a perfect satiating snack. They are also great to use in vegan cooking for this same reason.
Where Do Cashews Come From?
Cashews grow in tropical climates and are native to the coastal areas of northeastern Brazil. They are a tree nut, so of course, they grow on trees. But, did you know they are really the seed of a fruit called the cashew apple?
The cashew nut we all know grows at the bottom of this fruit. It's also encased in a hard shell that contains caustic oils. We never see cashews in their shells because these caustic oils are toxic. Not to worry, the cashew seed itself does not contain these toxins, and soaking or lightly roasting your raw cashews will help to remove any residue. Although I should note, roasted cashews will not work for this recipe. Using soaked, raw cashews will give you the best and smoothest results.
Uses For Cashew Cream
Cashews are great for making cream sauces! With this easy Cashew Cream, you can easily satisfy those cravings for creamy vegan pasta, casseroles and more! It's perfect for making delicious plant-based Alfredo, mac and cheese and basically any other cream-based sauce of your desire.
Cashews are the base of many delicious plant-based cheeses. They can make a creamy yet firm cheese, and they don't have an overpowering flavour. So, cashews can make a milder dairy-free Brie or take on sharper flavours. You can also turn this recipe into a yummy cream cheese!
Once you have this cashew cream base whipped up, it's almost effortless to turn it into sour cream or cream cheese. All you need to do is add a few simple ingredients, and it's transformed!
Just like sour cream, turning this cashew cream into yogurt is incredibly easy! All you need to do is add probiotics, a bit of natural sugar and let it ferment overnight. You can then use it as is or add more sweetness, fruit or flavour. Here's the full recipe for Homemade Cashew Yogurt.
If you love creamy salad dressings, this vegan cashew cream will be your best friend! It's perfect for making dairy-free versions all you're favourite dressings like Caesar, ranch and poppy seed. Simply add some more liquid (oil, vinegar or water) spices, a bit of salt and voila!
Dips & Condiments
Cashew cream really is the perfect substitute for nearly any dressing or dip. You can turn it into a variety of creamy dipping sauces such as garlic, dill, ranch or chipotle. It can even become a vegan mayonnaise or aioli!
Another great thing about making a batch of plain cashew cream is that it's even effortlessly turned into milk! All you have to do is add water; the more you add, the thinner it will become. You can even make flavoured milk by blending it with soaked dates, cacao powder, cinnamon or vanilla.
You can add a squeeze of lemon and a bit of natural sweetener (I like using maple syrup) to easily turn this into a dessert cream. Use it as a topper for pie, crumbles and hot chocolate. Or turn it into pudding, tarts, vegan cheesecake or peaches and cream!
There's nothing like a cream-based soup to warm the bones! This cashew cream makes it easy to make creamy plant-based soups and chowders. You can use it in place of heavy cream or add a little water to use in place of milk.
How to make cashew cream
Making cashew cream is surprisingly easy! All you need is two ingredients and a few pieces of equipment.
Equipment You Will Need
You don't need much to make cashew cream. There's no nut-milk bags or cheesecloth required!
To make extra smooth cashew cream, you do need a good, high-speed blender.
Colander / Strainer
You will need to rid of the soaking water and rinse your cashews. A strainer or colander works best for this.
Kettle / Stove & Pot (Optional)
If you need cashew cream in a pinch, you will also need a way to boil water to soak your cashews quickly.
Glass Jar / Container
If you're planning to store your cashew cream for a few days, you'll need a sealable jar or container to store it in (preferably glass).
As mentioned above, you only need two ingredients to make cashew cream.
Of course, you will need cashews, and I must add, they need to be raw. Roasted cashews are much too hard and will not give you a smooth consistency.
Water is the only other ingredient you will need. You can make your cashew cream a thicker consistency by adding less water and a thinner consistency by adding more.
Apple Cider Vinegar (Optional)
Apple cider vivegar is an optional ingredient. You can add a tablespoon to your soaking water to further break down toxins and compounds that are hard on the digestive system. It also helps to soften the cashews a little more, making them easier to blend.
Making Your Cashew Cream
Although making cashew cream is relatively easy, I know it can seem a little intimidating at first. All the soaking and blending had me hung up for far too long. However, these really are the two keys to get a perfectly smooth cashew cream. And once you do it a few times, you’ll find it’s not all that time consuming or difficult.
Step 1 - Soak
There are two ways you can soak cashews. The preferred method is overnight or for eight to twelve hours. Simply place your cashews in a bowl or glass container, cover with water and place in the fridge to soak.
The second is more if you're in a pinch and need them soaked right away.
Bring a few cups of water to a boil (enough to cover your cashews), pour over the cashews and let them soak for twenty minutes to a half-hour.
Also, adding about a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to your soaking cashews is a great practice. The enzymes and acidity present in apple cider vinegar further break down toxins and compounds that are hard on the digestive system. It also helps to soften the cashews a little more.
Step 2 - Strain & Rinse
Once your cashews are soaked, they should be nice and soft. It's normal that the soaking water turns a little murky. This isn't anything to worry about, and you're going to toss it anyway!
Pour the cashews into a colander or strainer over a sink and rinse the cashews well. Shake the colander to get any excess water out.
Step 3 - Blend
Next, add your soaked, rinsed and strained cashews into your blender and add fresh, filtered water. I usually add just enough to almost cover the cashews (about 1 + ¼ cup). I find, this makes the perfect consistency for yogurt, pudding and pasta sauce. If you're making a firmer cheese, you may want to add less water so it becomes a thicker consistency.
After you add your cashews and water to the blender, blend for thirty seconds to a minute. Or until it's blended into a smooth cream.
If your blender isn't very high-powered, or you're having trouble getting a perfectly smooth cashew cream, add another ¼ cup (totalling 1.5 cups). Blending the cashews with warm water will also help to get a smoother blend.
And keep in mind, the more water you add, the thinner and more milk-like it will become.
Step 4 - Use or Store Your Fresh Cashew Cream
Use your cashew cream right away to make creamy pasta sauce, salad dressing, yogurt, sour cream, and so much more!
If you're saving it to use later, place your cashew cream in a sealable jar and keep it in the refrigerator.
How Long Does Cashew Cream Last
When storing in a sealed container in the refrigerator, cashew cream will last up to seven days. If you know you won't use it up by then, you can always turn it into cashew yogurt to make it last another seven days!
THIS RECIPE IS...
Recipes To Use Your Cashew Cream In
If you try this Cashew Cream recipe, let me know how it turns out by leaving a comment and/or a rating below! And make sure you're following along on, Pinterest, Instagram and Facebook for more wildly nutritious recipes!
How To Make Cashew Cream
- High Speed Blender
- Strainer / Colander
- Kettle / Stove Top & Pot (Optional)
- 2 cups Raw Cashews
- 1 + ¼ cup Filtered Water (plus extra for soaking)
- 1 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar (optional)
- Add 2 cups of raw cashews to a bowl or sealable container.
- Next, pour in enough water to cover the cashews fully. You can add a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to improve digestibility and further soften the cashews for blending.
- Let the cashews soak overnight or for eight to twelve hours.*If you are in a pinch and need your cashews soaked right away, soak them in hot water for 20 - 30 minutes.
- Once your cashews are soaked and softened, pour into a colander to strain the soaking water. Rinse the cashews well.
- Add the cashews, along with 1 + ¼ cup of fresh water, to a blender and blend until smooth (usually about 30 seconds to a minute).
- Once your cashew cream is blended and smooth, you can use it right away or store it in an airtight container for up to seven days.
*If your blender isn't high-powered or if you're having trouble getting a smooth cashew cream, add a little extra water (warm will help even more) and blend for at least 30 seconds.
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