5 Minute Vegan Parmesan Made From Almonds
Looking for a nourishing, dairy free sprinkle to add a hit of umami to your favourite pasta dishes? This 5 minute vegan parmesan, made from almonds, couldn’t be simpler or more delicious! Just 4 ingredients, with a lovely texture, and it keeps for weeks.
I 100% grew up with that green shaker of “parmesan” cheese for sprinkling over spaghetti. As a child in small town Canada, that cheesy, salty hit imprinted on my tastebuds long before I knew what parmigiano reggiano even was. So when it came time to ditch dairy and go plant-based, recreating a vegan parmesan cheese was a top priority to me.
As was creating something nutrient-dense, which many storebought vegan cheeses aren’t. Which is totally fine, but if I can make something delicious that also gives me a nutrient boost? Even better! I believe that healthy and delicious are not mutually exclusive…which is why every single recipe in my cookbooks, like Good For Your Gut, are designed with flavour top of mind.
But let’s get back to the vegan parm, shall we? I immediately thought almonds – a favourite of this dietitian for their protein, calcium and fibre.
Almonds are a super versatile addition to plant-based recipes because they have a slightly sweet, but otherwise neutral flavour that can take on so many different personalities. Ground up quickly, with a couple of umami boosters you probably already have in your pantry, they are a fantastic dupe for that classic shaker-style parmesan, with one key improvement: a lovely texture that doesn’t just melt away.
What you’ll need to make this vegan parmesan cheese recipe
To make vegan parmesan, all you need is 4 pantry ingredients and less than 5 minutes of your time!
- Almonds: I use blanched, slivered almonds as they are inexpensive and skinless so they look more like parmesan
- Nutritional yeast: nutritional yeast adds a cheesy, umami flavour and it’s packed with vitamin B12, an important nutrient for those eating a plant-based or vegan diet
- Garlic powder: alliums = umami…and this is the ingredient that really adds depth to the flavour
- Salt: because, yum. And you may not realize this but parmesan is actually salty!
Why almonds are so good for you
I use a lot of cashews in my recipes because they make delicious creams…but almonds are also deserve a strong showing in your plant pantry! In addition to making delicious parmesan or vegan ricotta cheese, they are a great snacking nut and are delicious roasted, in trail mixes, or in your favourite baked goods. Plus, they have a ton of nutrition benefits.
- A quarter cup of raw, whole almonds contains 7.6 grams of plant-based protein.
- Almonds are also a high fiber food, with 4.5 grams of fiber per ¼ cup
- Almonds are rich in minerals, with 97 mg each of magnesium and vegan calcium, in addition to 1.1 mg of plant-based zinc and 1.3mg of iron per serve.
- Almonds also contain plant sterols for heart health, choline – an important nutrient on a plant-based diet – as well as healthy monounsaturated fats.
How to use this vegan + dairy free parmesan
I will put this vegan parmesan cheese on pretty much everything! While it doesn’t have a melting texture, it’s gentle crunch and umami-rich flavour goes with so many of your favourite meals.
Try it sprinkled over your favourite pasta recipe, like my easy hummus pasta, or on vegan pizza. Toss kale or romaine with my yummy vegan caesar salad dressing and sprinkle with almond parm for a quick vegan caesar salad! Sprinkle over roasted vegetables like my roasted Brussels sprouts, or a yummy mash like my sweet potato cauliflower mash.
Tips, Tricks + Substitutions
- Because this vegan parmesan doesn’t contain any perishable ingredients, it will keep for weeks in the fridge!
- Don’t have blanched almonds? You can absolutely use raw almonds, the parmesan will have a more golden brown colour from the ground skins. You could also use almond meal in a pinch, but it will have a much softer texture.
- Make this recipe your own! Try it with a little pinch of lemon zest, chile flakes or onion powder.
- Out of almonds entirely? Make it with cashews..just be sure not to overblend so that a cashew butter forms.
More Vegan Cheese Recipes
5 Minute Vegan Parmesan Made From Almonds
- 1 cup blanched, whole or slivered almonds
- 4 teaspoons nutritional yeast
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- food processor or high-speed blender
- Place almonds, nutritional yeast, garlic powder and salt in a small food processor or blender. Pulse until it looks like the consistency of fine parmesan.
- Place in a resealable glass jar and store in the fridge for up to 1 month.