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Cashew Queso, Easy 3‑Ingredient Vegan Dip

Veg­an Cashew Que­so is delec­table and so sim­ple to make! It’s creamy and spicy. And, for some­thing with zero cheese — it’s VERY cheesy! lol 

cashew queso in a clear glass bowl
Post may con­tain affil­i­ate links. See my Affil­i­ate Disclosure.

When you take that first creamy bite, it’s hard to believe it’s veg­an que­so. This scrump­tious dip is Whole30 com­pli­ant, dairy-free, sug­ar-free and grain (gluten)-free! When you taste it every spicy, cheesy que­so crav­ing will be satisfied.

The Ingredients

  • Raw Cashews (not roast­ed, not salted)
  • Nutri­tion­al Yeast
  • Frank’s Hot Sauce — The fla­vors in this sauce elim­i­nate the need for ingre­di­ents like smoked papri­ka, gar­lic pow­der, onion pow­der, chilis, chipo­tle adobo sauce or lemon juice. You could add extra of any of them if that’s more to your lik­ing, but I don’t find it to be necessary.
  • salt
  • water
nutritional yeast in a bag and in a bowl
This is the brand I usu­al­ly buy, on Ama­zon [affil­i­ate link]. Brag­g’s is anoth­er good brand and I have seen it occa­sion­al­ly at Walmart.

What is Nutritional Yeast and Why Use It?

The yum­my, cheesy fla­vor in Veg­an Cashew Que­so comes from nutri­tion­al yeast [affil­i­ate link].

Nutri­tion­al yeast is a deac­ti­vat­ed form of yeast. It is the same strain of yeast that is used in bak­er’s yeast and brew­er’s yeast, except that the bac­te­ria that cause ris­ing and fer­men­ta­tion are no longer alive. 

It’s grown specif­i­cal­ly as a food prod­uct and is very pop­u­lar in veg­an cook­ing. It’s the per­fect addi­tion to pro­vide nut­ty “cheesy” fla­vor to Cashew Queso.

cashew queso in a clear glass bowl

Nutri­tion­al Yeast is loaded with vit­a­mins, min­er­als and nutri­ents, too. It’s high in pro­tein and a good source of fiber, mak­ing your veg­an que­so a dreamy and healthy snack­ing option. Gluten free tor­tilla chips nev­er had it so good!

It’s also low in sodi­um and calo­ries and is gluten‑, sug­ar- and dairy-free. I always buy flakes [affil­i­ate link], but it can be found as gran­ules or pow­der, too, I think.

*Affilate Link

cashew queso in a clear glass bowl

How to Serve Vegan Cashew Queso

It makes my taste buds do a hap­py dance every time I get to eat this Veg­an Cashew Que­so and I don’t feel like I’m miss­ing out on any­thing! Use it for dip­ping all your favorite snacks and veggies. 

It’s great on pret­zels, crack­ers, car­rots and cel­ery. Dip in apple slices and home­made sum­mer sausage or use it as a tasty sub­sti­tute for sour cream to top a dairy free and deli­cious­ly per­fect baked potato! 

Dunk these DELISH Keto Chick­en Nuggets in the creamy cheesi­ness of cashew que­so and you’ll nev­er look back!

This smooth, thick veg­an cheese dip is excel­lent when you want a cheesy snack with a spicy kick. Or use it when you’re mak­ing a health­i­er ver­sion of your favorite casseroles, mac and cheese and cheese-driz­zled veggies. 

Cashew Que­so has a love­ly creamy tex­ture and “cheesy” fla­vor.  It’s good for all things dip­ping and it’s sen­sa­tion­al for top­ping burg­ers. Home fries and sweet pota­to fries are per­fect dip­pers for this del­ish veg­an dip, too.

Can I Make Cashew Queso without the Hot Sauce?

Can I leave the Frank’s Red sauce out of cashew que­so?

Absolute­ly! If you’re look­ing for veg­an cheese sauce with no spice what­so­ev­er, sim­ply leave the Frank’s sauce out of your Veg­an Cashew Que­so. That’s a good option for mac and cheese, zoo­dle pas­ta, cheesy cau­li­flower or oth­er creamy, cheesy casseroles and dishes.

Is there a spicy sub­sti­tute for Frank’s Red sauce in this recipe?

Yes. Try adding 1 to 2 tea­spoons of South­west­ern Sea­son­ing instead of the Frank’s sauce. Start with one and increase until you get the heat lev­el you want.

How to Make Cashew Queso Dip

cashews, nutritional yeast, hot sauce and water in a smoothie blender
  1. To soak cashews, put them in a con­tain­er and cov­er with water. 
  2. Allow them to sit for at least 30 min­utes, up to 24 hours. 
  3. When you’re ready to make Veg­an Que­so, drain the cashews and add them to the blender with all the oth­er ingredients. 

Three-ingre­di­ent easy is the best kind of recipe! Don’t you think? I hope you enjoy this deli­cious veg­an que­so recipe as much as I do. No mat­ter where you are in your nutri­tion­al jour­ney, it will enhance your favorite dish­es and leave you feel­ing sat­is­fied. Enjoy!

cashew queso in a clear glass bowl
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Cheesy Hot Sauce Dip

Cashew Queso

  • Author: Glen­da Embree
  • Total Time: 5 min­utes
  • Yield: 1 cup 1x


This sauce/dip is excel­lent when you want a snack with a spicy kick.  It has a love­ly creamy tex­ture and “cheesy” fla­vor.  It’s good for dip­ping veg­gies, corn tor­tilla chips and it’s sen­sa­tion­al for top­ping burg­ers.  Use it for mac n cheese, in casseroles and as the per­fect dunk­ing sauce for gluten free chick­en nuggets.


Units Scale
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked and drained
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 3 Table­spoons Franks Red Hot Sauce
  • 2 Table­spoons *nutri­tion­al yeast
  • 1/2 tea­spoon salt


  1. Soak the cashews in enough water to com­plete­ly cov­er them.  Allow them to sit for at least 30 min­utes.  I often put them in water, stick the con­tain­er in the fridge and go to bed.  You can eas­i­ly soak them up to 24 hours.  What­ev­er works in your sched­ule.  The longer they soak, the soft­er they will be and the smoother they will blend.
  2. Place all ingre­di­ents in the blender cup/pitcher of a high-speed blender.
  3. Pulse the blender a few times to get things started.
  4. Set blender on high and allow the sauce to become smooth and creamy.
  5. Store in an air­tight con­tain­er in the refrigerator.
  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Cook Time: 0 min
  • Cat­e­go­ry: Dips, Condi­ments
  • Method: blender
  • Cui­sine: Amer­i­can

More fabulous and healthy Homemade Condiments

All these deli­cious condi­ment and sauce recipes are Whole30 com­pli­ant, Paleo, sug­ar-free and dairy-free. 

Southwest Dressing in White Pitcher on concrete counter with limes, cilantro, spices and blue print fabric
Homemade Avocado Ranch Dressing

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