The best Vegan Mozzarella cheese that melts, browns, stretches and is insanely creamy like the finest mozzarella di bufala you have ever had. Quick and easy to make as long as you have a little bit of time for the settling period. Shred it, fry it, slice it – whatever you like, either way, you’re going to love it!
One of the ingredients I missed the most when going all out vegan was cheese. Specifically, fresh mozzarella cheese since it’s one of my favorites and pairs so flawlessly with countless recipes especially grandpa’s heirloom tomato and cucumber salad. And of course the best Vegan Pizza Dough, Vegan Bolognese, or combined with the ricotta in this Vegan Lasagana, or on this amazing Tomato Bruschetta.
In a nutshell this plant based cheese is perfect for any dish you use regular mozzarella on. You’re going to fall in love, I guarantee it!
What is Vegan Mozzarella?
So what’s the stuff made out of you wonder? For this recipe, I used raw homemade cashew milk, and firm tofu, as the main ingredients. Full fat coconut milk can be substituted for the cashew milk, although the cashew milk provides a way better neutral flavor, in my opinion. The cashews get super creamy and have no aftertaste at all.
Agar agar is used as a healthy thickener, while nutritional yeast is added for a burst of nutrients and amazing flavor. Added is a bit of coconut oil, tapioca, sea salt, and garlic powder to help even out the flavor and texture for mozzarella perfection.
How to Make Homemade Vegan Mozzarella:
- Blend – Place all the ingredients in a powerful blender and process until smooth.
- Simmer – Simmer for a few minutes until a thick stretchy texture is achieved.
- Chill – Place in ramekins or molds, then transfer to the fridge until set. Enjoy!
Tips and Usage
- Storage – Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week. You can freeze, if desired, in an airtight container for up to 2 months. I tend to not freeze it because I use it up so quickly.
- How to use it? – You can use it on my Neapolitan Pizza Dough, in this Italian Tomato Salad, Lasagna, grilled cheese, Caprese salad, pasta bake, quesadillas, etc. However you use the traditional style mozzarella, you can use this plant based cheese in its place.
- What is tapioca? – A plant called “cassava” has storage roots where a starch forms. Tapioca is the starch removed from the storage roots of these plants. Great for a thickening agent.
- What is agar agar? – Agar agar is often used as a thickener and it works wonders. It’s actually created from red algae and is a jelly-like substance.
- Can I shred this vegan cheese? – Yes, but to properly shred this cheese, you’ll need to freeze it for about 15 minutes first. You can shred it without freezing it, but it’s way easier and a smoother job if you freeze it first.
- Make it smoky – For a little bit of a different and seductively smoky flavor, you can add in 1-2 teaspoons of liquid smoke when blending. Start with a little bit and increase to taste. If the smoky flavor is too strong for your taste, just reduce the amount of liquid smoke used next time.
- Make mini mozzarella balls aka bocconcini – Simply use a silicone ball mold to make some tasty bocconcini like you see at the store. You don’t have to oil the silicone molds, so you’re good to skip that part. Alternatively just use a measuring tablespoon to scoop out little balls.
- Is Mozzarella Cheese Vegan? The regular kind that you’re used to getting in the store is not. Dairy is used in its production. This includes all forms it might come in. The most popular being mozzarella balls, in a cheese block, or shredded. None of these are your friend. Many grocery stores and health food stores are selling quite a few cheese alternatives that are totally plant based. However, I tend to like less processed options and use them as much as possible, which is why this recipe was born and is my favorite choice.
- How to Brown Dairy-Free Mozzarella in the Oven? There are a couple of ways to accomplish that perfect cheese browning in the oven. I just cook my pizza at a very high temperature on a pizza stone and it will naturally brown. Alternatively, you can throw it under the broiler for a couple of minutes, making sure to keep a close eye on it so it won’t burn.
More Italian Recipes
Best Vegan Mozzarella Cheese
- 2 cups cashew milk (or full fat canned coconut milk)
- 1/3 cup firm tofu crumbled
- 1/4 cup refined coconut oil
- 3 tbsp tapioca
- 1 tbsp + 1 tsp agar agar
- 1.5 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 3/4 tsp garlic powder
- optional: for a smoked version simply add about 1-2 tsp liquid smoke into the mix
- To a powerful blender add the cashew milk, tofu, coconut oil, tapioca, agar, nutritional yeast, yeast and garlic powde. Process until smooth and creamy.
- Transfer the cheese mixture to a small saucepan and bring to a simmer whisking often. Cook for approximately 5 to 10 minutes until tick and creamy.
- Transfer the cheese mixture to lightly oiled ramekins or lidded glass containers and refrigerate until set, at least 2 hours or overnight. (To make nice round mozzarella balls use large round silicone ice cube trays, no need to oil those at all. I used a measuring spoon to scoop out little balls once set).
- How to shred vegan mozzarella: - To properly shred this cheese, you’ll need to freeze it for about 15 minutes first. You can shred it without freezing it, but it’s not as easy to accomplish.
- Make it smoky - For a little bit of a different and seductively smoky flavor, you can add in about 2 teaspoons of liquid smoke when blending. Start with 1/2 teaspoon and work your way up from there. If the smoky flavor is too strong, reduce the amount of liquid smoke used next time.
- Make mozzarella balls - Simply use a silicone ball mold to make some tasty mozzarella balls like you see at the store. You don’t have to oil the silicone molds, so you’re good to skip that part. Alternatively just use a measuring spoon and scoop out little balls once the cheese has set in the fridge.
Vegan Cheese:go premium!Love recipes, hate ads?
$9.99/year. No ads.
Can you use something other than tofu?
I’m sorry Marianne, the tofu is very important for texture here.
I’m allergic to soy. Can I substitute or skip the tofu in the mozzarella cheese?
I’m so sorry about that, I have not tested the recipe without the tofu, for now it’s a really important ingredient for texture. I’ll have to play around with it and figure out the perfect ratios without tofu and I’ll update the recipe card if it turns out great.
Pretty incredible mozzarella, we added liquid smoke and used it on pizza. I could eat the whole thing just like that, thank you fo sharing this awesome recipe with us.
Could I substitute sunflower seeds for the cashews? I am allergic to them and I have subbed them with other dishes just not sure with this one.
Michele, I have not tried making this with sunflower seeds. However in theory it should totally work so I hope it’s a success for you if you give it a try. Definitely let me know how it turns out! ~ Florentina
Is the recipe possible or can be adjusted somehow if we don’t have agar agar? Thank you
Technically you can swap for extra tapioca and it will be fine, I personally really like adding the agar-agar gelatin for the texture but you can get back without. Le me know if you give it a go ~ Florentina
The Ingredient list calls for salt, but it’s not mentioned in the Instructions. Thanks.
ohhh you can just throw it in there or omit it even you want a salt-free version 🙂
Ah, I just now noticed that the first step lists “…nutritional yeast, yeast and garlic powde…” I’m guessing the second “yeast” was supposed to say “salt”. If I had been paying closer attention the first time, I could have made sense of it without bothering you. =] Thanks again.