How do you make vegan cheese?
One product that consumers trying veganism for the first time tend to miss is cheese.
It’s true that there are lots of cheese alternatives on the market now, but many still don’t cut the mustard and are far from what people expect when looking for a replacement to their favourite cheddar, mozzarella, or stilton.
There are two main categories for plant-based cheese:
Nut or seed-based cheese alternatives are typically made from cashews, peanuts, pine nuts, sesame, or sunflower seeds.
Oil based alternatives are pretty much always made from coconut oil.
Other ingredients added include nutritional yeast, tapioca, potatoes, spices, and seasonings.
Vegan cheese typically has a bad reputation as no one has truly replicated the texture and flavour using 100% plant-based ingredients.
There are several alternative cheeses available in supermarkets, most of which are oil based. It’s worth noting that many brands continue to work on improving their products to deliver the best quality to their customers.
This is great for consumers as many rely on recommendations or word-of-mouth to find the best possible vegan cheese out there. Manufacturers should listen up and take note to stay ahead of the competition.
Over the last couple of years, there has been a rise in the number of independent, artisan cheesemongers specialising in plant-based cheese alternatives. These cheeses tend to be nut or seed based. These tend to be sold either online or through specialist stores like London’s La Fauxmagerie.
As products continue to improve in this category, so too does the demand. The global scale of the vegan cheese market is expected to reach $3.9 billion USD by the end of 2024, up from $2.1 billion USD in 2016.