Most cream cheese is not vegan. The US Food and Drug Administration define traditional cream cheese as a soft and uncured cheese that may or may not contain rennet. However, all traditional cream cheeses contain at least 33% milk fat with a moisture content of less than 55% and a pH range of 4.4 to 4.9.
Cream cheese is naturally not matured and meant to be consumed fresh. It is not compared with hard cheese varieties like Grana Padano, Cheddar, or Parmesan Parmigiano.
Can Cream Cheese be Vegan?
The good news for vegans is that many brands sell vegan cream cheese. You don’t need to worry about getting vegan cream cheese as you can also make vegan cream cheese at your home with simple ingredients like raw cashews, lemon juice, garlic, coconut cream, white vinegar, salt, and a few others.
Vegan Cream Cheese Brands
It is made from 100% vegan ingredients. The cream cheese is free from gluten, soy, nuts, and lactose and is fit for vegans and vegetarians. You can have it with snacks or use it as an ingredient in vegan recipes.
The Kite Hill cheese is almond-based and 100% dairy-free. It is made using guar gum, salt, enzymes, mushroom extract, and citric acid. Kite Hill is a 100% organic and vegan brand. So, relax and consume its goodness.
Rated as top tier and the best vegan cream cheese by numerous users, Tofutti is way better than many vegan cream cheeses available in the market. Some vegans even rank it better than non-vegan cream cheese. You can have as much as you want because it is gluten-free and made with non-dairy ingredients.
It is another famous vegan cream cheese substitute. It is made with organic cashews, water coconut cream, sea salt, and cultures. The cream cheese is USDA organic certified and 100% vegan.
Made from vegan enzymes and natural vegan flavors, Daiya’s plain cream cheese can be used as a spread or a non-vegan cream cheese substitute in recipes. It is a bit costly than other vegan cream cheese but has a great taste and extra-creamy texture.
The dairy-free vegan cream cheese is best for people with gluten allergies. The ingredients include cashew nuts, filtered water, sea salt, lemon juice, and L. acidophilus.
Vegan Cream Cheese Recipe
Vegan Cream Cheese Recipe
- Bowl (Medium Sized)
- 1½ cups raw cashews (225 grams)
- ½ cup coconut cream (120 ml) (full fat & unsweetened)
- 1 tsp. distilled white vinegar
- 1 tsp. onion powder
- 1 tsp. salt
- ½ tsp. dried dill (optional)
- Soak the cashews for 1-2 hours before starting the recipe. Drain before using.
- Add drained cashews, coconut cream, lemon juice, white vinegar, onion powder, and salt to the blender and crush at high speed.
- Push the cream cheese down to the blades if you have a stick attachment. You can use pulse mode or a spoon/spatula to push the mixture down 2-3 times.
- Continue blending until the mixture gets smooth.
- Transfer the contents to a bowl and add the dill if you want.
- Keep the cream cheese in the fridge overnight for 1-2 hours in the freezer if you are short on time.
- The cheese will have a firm texture after it is chilled.
- Fat: 15.5g
- Saturated Fat: 4.8g
- Sugar: 1.9g
- Carbohydrates: 9.3g
- Protein: 5.3g
- Sodium: 303mg
- Fiber: 0.9g
What is Vegan Cream Cheese Made of? Vegan Cream Cheese Ingredients
Vegan cream cheese is made from cashews/almonds, coconut oil/cream, sea salt, lemon juice, garlic, and other ingredients. The ingredients vary from one recipe to another.
Is Cream Cheese Vegetarian?
It is vegetarian if it contains dairy but free from animal rennet. Many vegetarians don’t eat products having animal rennet. On the other side, some are okay with it. It comes down to your personal beliefs and how strictly you follow a vegetarian diet.
Is Philadelphia Cream Cheese Vegan?
Yes. Kraft Heinz launched a vegan variety of its famous Philadelphia cream cheese in the US in December 2022. The launch was covered by CNN. The report clears all doubts but make sure you pick the vegan version shown below and check the ingredients.
Is Arla Cream Cheese Vegan?
No. Arla cream cheese is not vegan. It is made with cow milk and is suitable for vegetarians.
Is Betty Crocker Cream Cheese Frosting Vegan?
Some varieties may be vegan, for example, Classic Coffee, Indulgent Chocolate Fudge, Luxurious Salted Caramel, and Zesty Lemon. But you must check the labels and ingredients before buying, as some Betty Crocker cream cheese frosting may contain dairy items.
Is Lactose-free Cream Cheese Vegan?
It may or may not be vegan. Lactose itself is non-vegan because it is found in milk and milk products. You must check all the other ingredients in a lactose-free cream cheese to be 100% sure.
Is Wawa Veggie Cream Cheese Vegan?
No. It is not vegan. However, there are plenty of items that can be made vegan. Check out PETA’s guide on ordering vegan at Wawa.
Is Pillsbury Cream Cheese Frosting Vegan?
Some Pillsbury cream cheese frostings are vegan. They have a long product list, making it quite difficult to evaluate each product and ingredient. So, check the labels and ingredients on a particular product before buying.
Is Duncan Hines Cream Cheese Frosting Vegan?
Yes. It is vegan. The good part is that it offers many vegan creamy frostings. Vegans can have the following variants (PETA approved).
- Dark Chocolate Fudge
- Coconut Pecan
- Salted Caramel
- Lemon Supreme
- Fluffy White
Common Cheeses and if they are Vegan or Not
- Feta: It is not vegan because it is made with sheep or goat milk.
- Cheddar: Authentic cheddar is never vegan. It is made with cow milk, rennet, and salt.
- Ricotta: Traditonal Ricotta is not vegan. However, since ricotta is a soft cheese, it can be made without animal milk and rennet.
- Parmesan: It is not vegan. You can, however, have its vegan substitutes or make vegan parmesan with our quick recipe.
- Grana Padano: No, it is not vegan because it is made with cow milk.
- Mozzarella: Authentic mozzarella is not vegan as it is made from animal rennet and milk.
- Goat Cheese: Goat cheese is not vegan because it has goat milk as an ingredient.