Do you need to eat gluten-free and dairy-free but don’t want to sacrifice taste? If yes, then you should try out this recipe for dairy free gluten free cheese sauce. This vegan recipe is perfect for those who follow a gluten-free lifestyle or simply want to cut down on their intake of dairy.
This whole foods cheese sauce recipe is gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, and soy free. The result is a creamy, cheesy flavor that tastes great on pasta, pizza, and other dishes.
Keep reading for the best tips to prepare this easy clean eating cheese sauce or use the jump to recipe button below to head straight to the recipe card.
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Why you’ll love this gluten free vegan cheese sauce recipe:
While there are many dairy-free cheeses available in stores, they tend to be pricey, filled with oils, preservatives and fillers, don’t melt well, and the flavor can be lacking. This cheese sauce recipe is:
- Made from ingredients you likely already have on hand
- It’s customizable to your tastes and so, so smooth
- You’ll love having this healthy cheese sauce on hand in your fridge to add to potatoes, vegetables, pasta, and more
Plus, this sauce makes a great vegan cheese fondue recipe!
While I sure do buy myself some store-bought cheese on occasion and enjoy some frozen gluten-free vegan pizza (you should have ZERO guilt over enjoying safe & yummy food!), I find myself prepping this vegan cheese sauce a few times a month and eat it almost daily when I have it in the fridge!
Is vegan cheese sauce gluten-free?
While this vegan cheese sauce is 100% gluten free, not all vegan cheese sauces are. Some homemade versions are made using a roux of wheat flour.
Additionally, some store-bought vegan cheeses may have gluten-containing starches and grains as fillers. It’s so important to always check the ingredient label and be sure that a product fits your gluten-free needs.
Ingredients for gluten free dairy free cheese sauce
This oil-free cheese sauce is easy to make from ingredients you likely already have on hand or can snag from your local grocery store.
However, you can get a really great deal on some of these ingredients (like spices, nutritional yeast, and diced green chilies) at Thrive Market.
To make this clean eating gluten-free cheese sauce recipe you’ll need:
- Yukon gold potatoes. You can use really any white or yellow potato here, but I use yukon gold because I do not have to peel them! You’ll want to peel a russet or other baking potato.
Since potatoes vary greatly in size, I included a weight for the chopped potato.
- Chopped carrot. To save on chopping time, you could also use frozen or canned carrots instead.
- Chopped onion.
- Raw cashews. Be sure that the cashews are gluten-free! While nuts are naturally gluten-free, many are processed on machinery that also process wheat. I buy these raw cashews from Amazon because not only are they a good deal, they are labeled gluten free.
Can’t eat nuts? See below for substitutions to make vegan cheese sauce without cashews.
- Canned diced green chilies. The mild green chilies shouldn’t make this too spicy. If you leave them out, the cheese sauce runs the risk of being too bland. If you’re wary of spice, try using half the amount in the recipe.
- Lemon juice.
- Apple cider vinegar.
- Garlic powder.
- Nutritional yeast. The nutritional yeast is what gives this dish its flavor. Whether or not you use fortified nutritional yeast in this recipe is up to you, but this certified gluten-free nutritional yeast by Anthony’s is my favorite.
In a rush? The smaller you chop the vegetables, the faster they cook!
How to make nut-free vegan cheese sauce
If you must be nut-free, sub the cashews with an equal amount of hemp hearts like these.
Hemp hearts don’t need to boil with the potatoes, carrots, and onions prior to blending. Simply add them to the blender with the rest of the ingredients.
Hemp hearts are a wonderful source of omega fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals.
How do you make vegan gluten-free cheese sauce with nutritional yeast?
This gluten and dairy free cheese sauce couldn’t be simpler to prepare! Honestly, it really is fail proof as long as you have a decent blender!
First, chop all your vegetables. The smaller you chop them, the faster this recipe will come together!
Do you need to peel your potatoes?
Honestly, this is up to you! I don’t peel Yukon gold potatoes as the skins seem to blend up perfectly fine. However, if your blender isn’t fantastic or you are using a different kind of potato like a white baking potato, then I would peel them.
Add your chopped vegetables and cashews into a saucepan, add water until just covered, and bring to a boil.
Once the pot boils, reduce it to a simmer, cover, and cook until vegetables are soft (this takes about 10 minutes).
When done, add cooked veggies and cashews into your blender pitcher and add the rest of the ingredients. Be sure to vent your blender to allow steam to escape since the vegetables are hot. I removed the plastic insert in my lid and covered it with a dishtowel.
Blend on high until very smooth. Time will vary depending on the strength of your blender.
How do I store this cheese sauce?
Cheese sauce can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. I store it in a mason jar with a plastic lid.
To reheat, simply microwave or put in a saucepan and stir while heating. If it gets too thick, feel free to thin it out with a bit of plant milk or water.
This tastes a bit bland, what else can I add to jazz it up?
If you feel this cheese sauce needs a little “something extra” feel free to:
- Use jalapenos instead of green chilies
- add a teaspoon of gluten-free miso paste
- or add another tablespoon or two of nutritional yeast
Scroll down for the printable recipe, and then be sure to download your FREE copy of Gluten-Free Made Easy with beginner tips, an ingredient substitute guide, and some easy 5 ingredient gluten-free recipes!
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Easy Homemade Dairy Free Gluten Free Cheese Sauce
- 1 cutting board
- 1 chef's knife
- 1 medium sauce pan with lid
- 1 high power blender
- 400 grams yukon gold potatoes chopped
- 1 medium carrot chopped
- 1/4 onion chopped
- 1/4 cup raw cashews
- 4 oz diced green chilies canned
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- 1 cup water
- Add chopped potatoes, carrots, onion, and cashews into a saucepan, add water until just covered, and bring to a boil.
- Cover, reduce to a simmer, and cook until vegetables are soft (this takes about 10 minutes).
- Add cooked veggies and cashews into your blender and add the rest of the ingredients. Blend on high until very smooth. Time will vary depending on the strength of your blender. Be sure to vent your blender to allow steam to escape since the vegetables are hot. I removed the plastic insert in my lid and covered it with a dishtowel.
- When done, serve however desired, or store in an airtight container in the fridge.
- ingredient and equipment suggestions & substitutions (including variation for nut-free),
- tips fortroubleshooting, and
- frequently asked questions
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