Who knew soaked cashews could be so delicious? I put basic cashew cream on everything from pasta to baked sweet potatoes with pesto to salads, and I even use it to make dips. The flexibility of cashew cream is never-ending and the method works well with other nuts, like macadamias and almonds. With the addition of a variety of fresh herbs and flavors from za'atar with scallions, garlic, and lemon to honey-sesame and even strawberry-lime, it was all so good—leading to this compilation of cashew cream recipes.  

Strain the nut cream in cheesecloth or reduce the water content and you have a base for a nut cheese or spread, like in the version below from The Mexican Keto Cookbook (Ten Speed Press, 2019) by Torie Borrelli, a local integrative holistic nutritionist. Or add in fresh herbs and jalapeños like chef Claudia Sandoval does for a zingy dip.

Remember I said you can try this cashew cream technique with almost any nut or seed and get similar results? We’ve got a hemp milk recipe from Quin Butler here for you too.

Plant-based dairy can easily do all the things we want it to and here are five great recipes to get you started.

Image: Tina Witherspoon.

Golden Cashew Cream

Taking a basic cashew cream and making it golden with a dash of turmeric. Serve Golden Cashew Cream over cooked pasta, use it to dress up a salad, or dip cucumbers in it. Basically, put it on almost everything and you're golden.

Image: Eric Wolfinger.

Vegan Cashew Spread

Dip. in. to. this. Vegan cashew spread from Torie Borrelli gets an added boost of nutrients and smokey, tangy flavor from basic pantry spices.

Creamy Cashew Jalapeño Dip

You'll want to keep this zesty and zingy dip from local celebrity Chef Claudia Sandoval in stock all year.

Quick and Refreshing Hemp Milk

This plant-based milk alternative is great for summer smoothies. Quin Butler from Hungry Vegan Lion shared this version that she uses to make her famous vegan berry ice cream.

About the Contributor
Maria Hesse
Edible San Diego's executive editor is a personal chef and lifestyle designer, podcaster on Modern Casserole, amateur pug photographer, grant writer for Media Arts Center San Diego, and co-author of The Intentionalist Cooks. Find her on Instagram @mariafromediblesd.