Organic, vegan cottage cheese is a great way to indulge in your craving for dairy without giving up your ethics. Easily made from tofu at home, this faux cottage cheese will not make anyone believe that they are eating dairy but it is delicious in its own right.
Why Not Dairy Cottage Cheese?
Vegans do not use animal products, usually for both ethical and health reasons. Most commercially available cheeses, including cottage cheese, are made with some form of rennet. Rennet is taken from the inside of the stomach of a calf or other baby animal during the butchering process. It is used to coagulate the milk as the first step in cheese making. While there is a vegetable-based rennet available it is not commonly used commercially.
Many commercial dairies, even organic ones, do use certified humane methods of raising the animals, but most vegans prefer to stay away from dairy altogether.
What is Organic Vegan Cottage Cheese?
Vegan cottage cheese is merely a mixture of mashed, organic tofu mixed with other things to give it flavor and the proper texture. There are as many variations of organic vegan cottage cheese as there are people. Try several recipes and experiment to get exactly what you want. There isn't a vegan cottage cheese available commercially, partly because it is so easy to make that there is little market for it.
Which recipe you like the best will depend on how you will be using the vegan cottage cheese. Some recipes result in a cottage cheese with a sweeter flavor so that they can be used with fruit. Others have a savory tang to them for use with herbs and vegetables for a quick snack.
Your vegan cottage cheese will only be organic if everything you put into it is also organic. Be sure to look for the certified organic label on every ingredient you use.
Recipe for Sweet Style Vegan Cottage Cheese
- 14 oz. block of organic, firm tofu
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- Pinch of salt
- A few drops of vanilla
- A pinch of stevia or sweetener of choice
Mash the tofu with the remaining ingredients until it has the texture of cottage cheese. Place in the refrigerator and chill at least five hours for the flavors to develop. Makes two cups of cheese.
This is the perfect vegan cottage cheese to add to pineapple, pear, or other fruit. If you dislike the soy flavor, try simmering it for one minute in a pot of water. This will cook it just enough to remove the raw soy flavor. If you want a creamier product, try adding a few tablespoons of vanilla soy milk.
If you will be using this as the filling in a cheesecake, be sure to add two tablespoons of cornstarch to help it hold together.
Recipe for Savory Style Vegan Cottage Cheese
- 1 14 oz. block of organic tofu
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
- 1 tablespoon chopped chives
- Salt to taste
- 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
Mash the ingredients up with a fork until it reaches the right consistency. You may add more or less olive oil to achieve the correct consistency.
- chopped green pepper
- chopped chipotle
- chopped jalapeno
- 1/2 cup vegan mayonnaise
- chopped fresh garlic
- chopped celery
With either of these recipes you can come up with your own vegan version of the Blue Plate Special, or make blintzes, or just enjoy a healthy, high-protein snack. Vary the ingredients to vary the flavors of this versatile vegan cheese.
You can substitute this in any recipe, cooked or not, that calls for dairy cottage cheese with good results. With organic vegan cottage cheese you can indulge yourself in a healthy way.