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Part 1 - Ingredients
The key concept of a vegan cheese is fermentation.
Fermentation allows the ingredient to create new flavours, and also change its components into a curd that will give texture.
Fermentation involves three key elements:
- Sugars serve as nutrient to the bacteria, that will create the lactic acid for flavour and to allow the cheese to age without being contaminated by unwanted microorganisms that could harm your health.
- Proteins allow the cheese to have a texture. The chemical change in the plant milk will curdle and create interesting shapes and textures.
- Fat makes the cheese delicious and creamy, but also help to develop flavours.
Nuts, beans and seeds are rich on those three components and are great to use as ingredients for vegan cheese, but each will yield completely different results.
Cashew is the easiest of all ingredients to work with. It is rich in all three key components, you can use the whole nut in your recipes and it tastes nutty without being overpowering. In opposite, sunflower seeds might impart too much flavour and result a grey coloured cheese.
Coconut milk is an easy way to add fat to your cheeses, while soy milk is a good way to pump up the protein content.
With all this in mind, you can follow our basic recipes and experiment with different ingredients to achieve brand new creations.