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Are you a vegetarian who loves cheese but you’re not sure how to melt it? Or are you transitioning to a plant-based diet and curious about how vegan cheese melts are? Melting vegan cheese is easier than you think and can be just as creamy and delicious as regular cheese. Here’s how to melt vegan cheese in a few easy steps.
Have you ever tried adding vegan cheese on top of a casserole? You expected melted cheese on top, but you ended up with a hard, crunchy topping.
Those days are over!
Whether you’re making pizza, plant-based nachos, cheesy dips, or any other cheesy dish, you’ll have all the knowledge you need to perfectly melt vegan cheese with ease.
So, let’s dive in and learn how to achieve melty vegan cheese perfection.
What is vegan cheese?
Vegan cheese is a plant-based alternative to traditional dairy cheese. It is made from plant-based ingredients, such as nuts and seeds, vegetables, and sometimes coconut oil.
You can find vegan cheese in different forms, such as slices, blocks, or shreds.
But if you’re making a sandwich, roasted veggie or casserole and want to add vegan cheese, how do you melt it?
Plant-based cheeses require some coagulation to melt properly. Here are my favorite recipes to make it happen.
the main ingredient
You will need these ingredients to make this melted vegan cheese recipe. See the recipe card below for specific quantities and instructions.
- Slices of vegan cheese – Use your favorite vegetarian cheese products, such as Daiya or follow your heart. You can use any flavor of cheddar, mozzarella or vegan cheese.
- Vegetable broth — I like to make my vegetable broth by mixing water with Better Than Bouillon Vegetarian Base. It delivers a high quality vegetable broth every time.
- Nutritional Scream — We need to replace some of the cheesy flavor lost by adding vegetable broth, and nutritional yeast is the perfect cheesy flavor enhancer.
How to melt vegan cheese
You can find the complete printable recipe with ingredient amounts below. But first, here are some ingredient explanations and steps to help you perfect this recipe every time.
- Add the cheese slices to a microwave-safe bowl.
- Stir in vegetable broth and nutritional yeast flakes.
- Heat in microwave for one minute.
- Whisk vigorously until it is mostly smooth.
- Continue heating in 15-second increments until the cheese melts.
- Drizzle, pizza etc.
When will vegan cheese melt without coaxing?
You don’t always have to pre-melt plant-based cheese. It will melt naturally under certain conditions, such as:
- Baking at high temperatures. When you’re making a pizza, and the oven is preheated to 430°F/220°C, the vegan cheese will melt nicely.
- Steaming in other ingredients. When you make a vegan grilled cheese sandwich, the cheese sits in between the other ingredients and allows it to steam, which helps it melt.
- covered You can usually cover a casserole with foil while you’re baking it. This foil captures the steam, causing the cheese to melt.
But if you want 100% certainty that your vegan cheese melts, pre-melting is always a great option.
Ways to use melted plant-based cheese
Using melted vegan cheese is incredibly versatile and can create a variety of vegan-friendly dishes.
For example, you can drizzle it over vegan pizzas and quesadillas for an extra cheesy kick. It’s delicious when added to vegan mac and cheese, nachos, and dips.
Just melt the vegan cheese and add it to the dish of choice, and you’ll have a mouth-watering vegetarian dish that’s sure to please.
Additionally, it can also be used as a topping for tacos, burritos, and salads for extra flavor.
Do you want to know about melting plant-based cheese on a sandwich? First of all, I’m a big fan of serving the best vegan sandwiches. Serving them with plant-based cheese makes them even better!
- Fried sandwiches — If you’re serving something like a grilled plant-based tuna melt, the heat from the skillet or griddle may be enough to melt that cheese.
- Burger — When I put a slice of cheese on a vegan patty in the skillet or toaster oven, it melts nicely. If that fails, a quick 20 seconds in the microwave will do the trick.
- cold sandwich – Serving a veggie BLT? Or how about a vegetarian club sandwich. You can simply add shredded cheese, but if you prefer to melt it, be sure to melt the cheese beforehand and drizzle it on top.
Melt the vegan cheese in the oven at 350°F/175°C for hard stuff with the casserole. Most casseroles are baked at this temperature, and it’s not hot enough to spread vegan cheese.
Here’s why. Oven cheese can dry out. Once this happens, it will never spread and go away and expand.
You have two choices for melted vegan cheese in casseroles:
- Add the vegan cheese, but cover the pan with foil
- Add the pre-melted vegan cheese after the casserole is cooked (see recipe card below).
One thing that a pizza can handle that a casserole can’t is high temperatures. Cooking pizza quickly at a high temperature is a great way to encourage your vegan cheese to melt.
For nachos, I like to melt plant-based cheese using the recipe in this post. Melting the cheese first and drizzling it over your nachos is the only way!
The best vegan cheese to melt
Most vegan cheese brands will melt. However, if you can find a block of vegan cheese and shred it yourself, it’s a good option. This is because pre-cut cheeses often come with starch to prevent the pieces from sticking together. These starches can make cheese hard to melt.
It’s important to note that most vegan cheese melts best when sliced thinly to allow steam to escape and help the cheese evaporate.
Recipe for adding vegan cheese
Now that you know all about melting vegan cheese, here are some great recipes for using it:
With the right type of cheese and a few simple steps, you can whip up a creamy, cheesy vegan dish in no time.
Whether you’re vegetarian or transitioning to a plant-based lifestyle, you don’t have to go without cheese. So go ahead and melt away!
Prevent your screen from going dark
Microwave option: Place vegan cheese slices in a microwave-safe bowl. Add vegetable broth and nutritional yeast flakes.
Heat in microwave for one minute. Stir vigorously until it is smooth. Reheat in 15-second increments as needed.
Stovetop Options: Place vegan cheese slices in a small saucepan. Add vegetable broth and nutritional yeast flakes. Cook over medium heat until cheese melts, about 3 to 5 minutes. Stir regularly, until it is smooth.
Drizzle over nachos, casseroles, pizza, etc. (see notes).
(The products above contain sponsored links to products we use and recommend)
When to add melted vegan cheese
Here’s when to add melted vegan cheese to different dishes:
- Nachos — Add your favorite toppings to tortilla chips then drizzle with melted cheese before serving.
- Cooked vegetables and/or baked potatoes — serve melted cheese on the side so everyone can add as much as they like.
- Casserole – When you’re adding melted cheese to oven-baked casseroles, bake the casserole without the cheese for 90% of the baking time. For the last 5 to 10 minutes, remove the casserole from the oven, drizzle the top with melted cheese, and return to the oven. This allows the vegan cheese to melt on top of the casserole, but it won’t burn or dry out.
Calories: 391kcal | Sugars: 32g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Sodium: 1355mg | Potassium: 150mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 125IU | Calcium: 80mg | Iron: 2mg
The nutritional information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator and should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist consultation.