When you’re switching to a vegan diet, there might be a struggle to recreate your favorite non-vegan pantry essentials into a plant-based version. Things like vegan cheese, rich sauces, yogurt, vegan sour cream and others can sometimes be found at a store but it’s still rare that you can buy wholesome (and delicious!) vegan condiments. So you have to figure out how to make them yourself!
Today I’d like to share a recipe for one of my most favorite vegan condiments – sour cream. This version is made from cashews – after soaking, they get incredibly creamy consistency. The only 4 other ingredients are – water, lemon juice, salt and pepper. And without soaking, this sour cream takes only 3 minutes to make. How easy is that?
This recipe is not a new invention and there are many vegan cashew sour cream recipes around the web. However, most of these recipes use way less lemon juice and the sour cream has a mild cashew taste to it. Not that it’s bad, but I was dedicated to creating an extra tangy version – sour cream that I remember eating when I was little.
I’m Latvian and, trust me, we LOVE using sour cream. We eat it with roasted veggies, add a dollop in soups, use as a dressing in salads and more. That’s another bonus of this vegan sour cream – its’ use is very versatile and it goes well with almost any savory foods. I also find that mixing in some fresh herbs gives this sour cream another delicious layer of flavors.
And a quick nutrition note – cashews are rich in magnesium and we all need an extra dose of it, especially in the cold seasons. Magnesium is heavily involved in the regulation of our nervous system and helps to ease the seasonal depression and anxiety. It also plays an important role in muscle movements and protein formation. I’m always trying to include more magnesium-rich foods during the autumn and winter as my nerves tend to get wracked up during the dark season.
Ok, enough talking. Let’s get to the recipe. 🙂
Vegan sour cream
Makes about 1 ½ cup
- 1 cup (150 g) cashews, soaked for at least 3 hours in a cold water or 20 minutes in a hot water
- ¾ cup water
- ¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- ¼ – ½ tsp Himalayan or sea salt (use ¼ tsp if you prefer less salty, but I went for ½ tsp)
- a pinch – ¼ tsp black pepper (I went for ¼ tsp)
Optional extra additions:
- fresh, chopped herbs like spring onions, parsley or other (for a herb version)
- Drain the cashews and put them into a high-speed blender (I used NutriBullet) along with the rest of the ingredients. Blend for about 2 minutes until smooth and creamy. Taste and adjust the salt and pepper if necessary. You can add more water if you prefer a thinner consistency.
- You can eat it straight away but I’ve noticed that this vegan sour cream tastes the best when it’s kept in the fridge for at least an hour after making – it gets thicker and the flavors become richer.
- If you want to create the herby version, at this point you can also stir in fresh, chopped herbs.
- Keep in the fridge for up to 7 days and freeze any leftovers (they’ll keep in the freezer for up to a month).