spread · vegan · vegetarian

Basil and Herb Cashew “Cheese” Spread

I made this dip/spread on Mother’s Day last year and it was a big hit! Rich in basil and lemon flavor, this spread works well on bread, crackers and vegetables. It is both vegan and raw.



  • 1 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked for 4 hours in plain water
  • 1 teaspoon crushed garlic
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, or more
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley

Drain and rinse cashews. In a food processor, blend cashews until chunky – use your “S” blade. Then add garlic, lemon juice, salt and pepper, and herbs. Blend until smooth. Taste to check for flavor, adding more garlic, herbs and/or salt and pepper. If cheese has become to thick you may add a few splashes of water.
The black spot on the photo above is ground pepper. The original recipe calls for large ground pepper to be encrusted on the top of the spread. My attempt wasn’t pretty but it tasted very good.
To mold the “cheese”, take a large measuring cup, dish or anything that is round, and fill the mold with plastic wrap. If you wish to encrust the top, add pepper to the inside of the mold. You can even add fresh herbs, if you like.
Then scrape cheese into the mold & fold the plastic wrap tightly around the bottom. Place on a plate and refrigerate before serving. I kept mine in over night and it enhanced the flavor immensely.
Serve with bread, toast, chips, crackers or veggies.



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