Vegan cheeses haven’t had much of a good press within the food industry lately, with complaints regarding lack of taste and rubbery textures. However, manufacturers have realised that although many people have given up dairy as part of a vegan diet, they would like a tasty alternative.
Vegan cheeses can be made from a variety of different ingredients, including germinated rice, coconut, soy milk and tofu. The flavour has improved so much that nowadays restaurants such as Zizzis and Pizza Express now offer vegan cheeses alongside their dairy products.
You can buy vegan cheeses in many supermarkets, however some are only available online or at specialist vegan stores.
Here are ten of the best vegan cheeses:
Sainsbury’s Deliciously Free From Cheddar-Style with Chives 200g – £2.25
Sometimes you don’t want to go traipsing round specialist markets for a particular product which is why we like this vegan cheese from Sainsbury’s. Just pop it into your trolley with the rest of your vegan buys. This dairy-free range has proved to be so popular that Sainsbury’s has increased the amount of products available and this is one of our favourites. Made from coconut.
Violife Block Cheese Alternative 200G – £2.30
An established vegan brand since the 1990’s, this is as close to the original thing as you’ll get. It slices nicely like hard cheddar, you can grate it and it melts beautifully too. It’s made from coconut oil so has a creamy texture and there are other flavours including hot pepper and smoked.
Bute Island Sheese Blue Style Cheese 200g – £2.50
Miss that rich, creamy texture and tang of a good blue cheese? You have to try this brand – Sheese, made on the Isle of Bute, there are so many flavours, if you love a good cheeseboard at the end of a meal, you have to check these out, there’s Wensleydale, Strong Cheddar, red and white cheddar, Edam-style, Greek-style, mature and mild cheddar. Made from coconut oil.
Violife Mediterranean Cheese Alternative Style Block x2 200g – £2.60
Halloumi is one of the most difficult cheeses to replicate without using dairy products, but Violife has given it a good go. You cook it exactly as you would halloumi, grill or fry it and it crisps up well with a lovely soft texture inside. A good alternative.
Tofutti Creamy Smooth, Original 225g – £2.85
For those who love cream cheese this product from Tofutti is pretty much perfect. Great for dairy-free icing on cakes, spread on crackers or use for sauces. Made from tofu and soybeans.
Follow YH Smoked Gouda Slices (200g) – £3.29
This product goes to show that vegan cheeses do not have to be boring. There are loads of varieties – smoked Gouda, pepper jack, Provolone, garden herb, and American style slices and mozzarella. Made from coconut oil and potato starch.
MozzaRisella – Organic ‘Vegan Mozzarella Cheese’ 200g – £3.99
Looking for a cheese that melts like mozzarella on pizzas then look no further. This is one of the best-selling vegan cheeses and is even used the well-known pizza restaurant Zizzis on their vegan pizzas. It can also be used on its own in salads and starters and is made using organic germinated brown rice with a touch of oregano and lemon juice.
No-Moo Sauce Twin Pack (2 x 100g) – £4.49
The problem with a lot of vegan cheeses is that they do not melt well in order to make a good sauce. This brand makes tons of vegan products, including eight kinds of vegan cheeses, and this No-Moo sauce is not just dairy-free but nut-free too. Great for a vegan carbonara, lasagne or vegetable pies. Made using rice flour and potato starch.
Macadamia Truffle Vegan Chease – £11.95
A lot of hard work has gone into preparing this luxurious cheese that is made using the finest white truffle oil and macadamia nuts. It is also very good for you as it contains probiotics and has a unique flavour and texture.
Creamy Classic Cashew Vegan Cheese Spread – £11.97
A deliciously creamy vegan cheese that is perfect for dips and crudités or simply spreading on crackers. Made from organic cashews and a hint of garlic, this vegan cheese has a smooth texture and is very moreish.