Cheese sauce is a must-have when it comes to many of your favorite dishes! Whether it’s comfort food bathed in ooey gooey melty goodness (hello mac ‘n cheese!) or a light drizzle over a plate of steamed veggies, this go-to topping needs to be ready in a pinch. With just two ingredients and a cooking element, you’re good-to-go with our Vevan dairy-free cheese sauce. Learn how to make our easiest recipe like a pro, and beware: things may get a little saucy!
What can you substitute for cheese in a sauce?
Whether you’re old or new to the dairy-free scene, you know traditional cheese sauce ingredients like milk and cheese require substitutions. But what? Good things come in threes, as Vevan offers three delicious cheese options for your dairy-free cheese sauce:
- Ched – for a sharp, rich, and bold taste, check out Ched when you need a sauce for mac n’ cheese or perhaps a game-time pretzel tray
- P’Jack – as peppery heat and creamy perfection collide, our P’Jack is perfect for Mexican dishes like these vegan tacos with a zesty cream topping
- Mozza – achieve a smooth, creamy and oh-so-dreamy cheese sauce for Italian-inspired dishes like this white lasagna
No matter which flavor profile you desire, these three dairy-free cheese sauces have your back – and your taste buds – covered!
Can you melt dairy-free cheese?
As you ponder which dairy-free sauce to try first, you may also be wondering how dairy-free melts, especially when compared to dairy cheese – a common question for sure! Dairy-free cheese does melt, but it melts differently than its dairy counterpart. If you’re baking dairy-free cheese, it must be heated at higher temperatures for the creamiest and best results. Expect to bake dishes at 425ºF or higher to experience that gooey perfection.
When seeking to melt cheese for your dairy-free cheese sauce, whether on a stovetop or in the microwave, expect it to take longer than would be required for cheese of the moo moo variety. Also, plan to stop and stir often, letting the heat do the work of getting that melt just right!
Your new favorite dairy-free cheese sauce recipe
As noted above, this dairy-free cheese sauce recipe seems too easy to be true.
What you’ll need:
- 2 cups Vevan dairy-free cheese – Ched, P’Jack or Mozza (or maybe a combination!), either Shreds or Melts.
- ¼ – ½ cup water or milk alternative – if choosing a milk alternative, be sure to select an unsweetened version; see instructions below for amount
- Our foodies in the test kitchen like using the stove, so if you take that route, you’ll need a saucepan and a whisk or stirring spoon. However, Vevan melts great in the microwave, too; just remember to use a microwave safe bowl.
- For a thicker dairy-free cheese sauce, use about 2 cups of cheese with ¼ cup milk alternative or water. For a thinner dairy-free cheese sauce, use about 2 cups of cheese but add an extra ¼ cup of liquid (½ cup total).
- If you’re cooking on the stove, add your ingredients to the saucepan and adjust the heat to medium-high. Stir occasionally for about 6 minutes, or until the cheese is fully melted and the liquid is fully incorporated. For the microwave method, we recommend using a microwave safe bowl with handles that don’t get hot, since you’ll be stopping and stirring multiple times. Start by adding the ingredients to your bowl and cooking on high for 1 minute. Stir, then continue to alternate cooking and stirring in 30-second increments until the cheese is fully melted (exact time will vary but expect at least 2 minutes total cooking time).
- Adjust to taste, adding more liquid (1 tsp.) or cheese (1 tbsp.) at a time to thin or thicken your sauce, according to your preference. If you don’t have enough cheese to make it thicker (please tell us this never happens!), you could substitute 1 tsp. of corn or potato starch instead.
Optional: It’s also easy to create your own unique dairy-free cheese sauces when you spice things up! Seasonings like black pepper, fresh or granulated garlic, chili flakes or other favorites help you develop a unique flavor for your specific dish. Also consider adding chopped chives or other fresh herbs to complement your creation
Leftovers? While we rarely expect leftovers for such insanely delicious meals, our dairy-free cheese sauce can be reheated for a future meal. Simply follow the instructions above and heat until warm and bubbly, stirring or whisking occasionally and adjusting with more liquid or cheese as needed to get the texture you crave.
Get saucy, the dairy-free way
Our dairy-free cheese sauce is easy, versatile, and magically melty in minutes! Show us how you’re using it in your favorite dishes (be sure to tag us @vevan.foods) or download our cookbook for new inspirations – awesome sauce!