This meltable vegan mozzarella is super-easy to make, behaves like dairy mozzarella when cooked, and tastes fantastic! The lactic acid gives it a lovely, slightly tangy edge, while the nutritional yeast flakes lend a hint of a cheesy flavour.
This vegan mozzarella is great on lasagne, in panini (it's fab with avocado), and anywhere else you'd normally melt mozzarella. It’s also fab in caprese salad too. I use it in my parmigiana di melanzane and on pizze, such as this vegan sausage and red pepper one...
Vegan mozzarella ingredients
In case you're wondering about the ingredients; the tapioca flour gives the mozzarella a nice sheen and some stretch. Lactic acid imparts a slightly 'sour milk' taste. Nutritional yeast gives a slightly cheesy flavour, and the carrageenan solidifies the cheese, yet enables it to melt when heated.
I should point out though, that this mozzarella is not exactly the same as its Italian dairy counterpart. No plant-based cheese can ever be a carbon copy - but it's a great substitute for anyone wishing to cut down on, or eliminate dairy from their diet.
I realise that there has been some concern of late, and dare I say it, even demonising of carrageenan. However, as far as I know, there is no scientific evidence to support claims that carrageenan is in any way harmful to humans.
Poligeenan however, is claimed to have caused gastro-intestinal inflammation in small lab animals. Again, there is little scientific evidence to back up these claims.
Carrageenan is not the same as poligeenan but if you want to find out more to make up your own mind, then please do check out the research online. In fact, Skye Conroy has a good article (with sources), which can be found on his website, here.
Follow Your Heart has also conducted research on the matter, and their findings also make interesting reading.
As anecdotal 'evidence', I have suffered with IBS for around 25 years, yet I have never once had a flare up after consuming food or drink containing carrageenan.
Of course, this is not proof that it's safe, so you have to decide for yourself whether to consume it or not. I always err on the side of my tummy, so if it doesn't cause problems for my overly-sensitive digestive system, I'm good with it!
If you like my mozzarella recipe, why not try these ones too?
I really hope you enjoy this vegan mozzarella as much as I do. Buon appetito!
Easy Meltable Vegan Mozzarella
- 250 g plain vegan yoghurt
- 80 ml coconut oil
- 2 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 teaspoon nutritional yeast flakes
- 120 ml water
- 6 tablespoon tapioca flour (tapioca starch)
- 1 tablespoon kappa carrageenan
- ½ teaspoon lactic acid powder
- Ice water plus salt to make a brine
- Use a blender to mix the yoghurt, oil, salt, nutritional yeast flakes, and water until thoroughly combined.
- Set aside for 24 hours to culture; it will thicken a little, taste a bit more sour, and look a little curdled, depending on how warm your home is.
- Once it's cultured, pour the yoghurt into a heavy-bottomed, medium-size pan, and whisk in the tapioca flour, carrageenan, and lactic acid until smooth.
- Cut six pieces of cling film, about 30cm (12”) long, and lay them out on the counter or table.
- Add a couple of teaspoons of salt to a large bowl of iced water to make a brine.
- Cook the mozzarella mixture over a medium heat, stirring all the time, until it becomes thick and lumpy. This should take around 5-7 minutes.
- Keep cooking and stirring for another 5 mins until the mixture becomes smooth and glossy, and starts to come away from the sides of the pan.
- Remove the pan from the heat, and place a few scoops of mozzarella onto the centre of a piece of cling film. Flip each side over to cover the cheese, then carefully pick the whole thing up by the ends of the wrap, and twirl to make a sausage shape. Tie each end together to form a ball, and then drop into the brine.
- Repeat for the rest of the mixture.
- Leave the mozzarella in the brine for around 30 mins to cool (the longer you leave the it in, the firmer it will become).
- Unwrap, and use straight away, or store (unwrapped) in some of the brine in an airtight container or plastic bag in the 'fridge for up to a week.
- You can use any neutral oil - e.g. canola, sunflower, rice bran - but as a general rule, I prefer to use coconut oil for most of my cooking (both refined and virgin). This is just my personal preference - the mozzarella isn't going to be affected, either by taste or texture, by the oil you use, unless you use a strongly-flavoured one.
- If you do use coconut oil however, do make sure you use the refined stuff - unless you want your mozz to taste of coconut. I've tried it, it's a singularly odd experience. And not one I recommend!
- Nutritional information does not include brine.
- 1 cup = US cup = 240 ml
- 1 tablespoon = US/UK = 15 ml
- 1 fl oz = US = 30 ml
I'm super excited about your cheese recipes. I haven't tried them yet--but I'm wondering...
If I were to kind of "combine" this recipe with your aged cheddar recipe, so that I could get the melty texture of the mozz with the sharp flavor of the cheddar, do you think it would be disastrous? I'm thinking I would use the same flavorings as the cheddar--the miso and the powders, etc...but then the question is--do I age it? This seems to have a shorter shelf life than the aged cheddar--would I sacrifice the sharp flavor if I only let it sit for a few days versus the few weeks?
Just curious...I miss sharp cheeses something awful. Pizza is not the same without it. That's why I ended up on your site in the first place. 🙂
Thanks for your insights, if you have any to offer! <3
I think that sounds like a brilliant idea... why didn't I think of it?! Ha ha! You probably won't want to age the mozz but even without ageing it, you should still get a really good flavour after a couple of days. And instead of keeping it in brine, perhaps make up a solution of miso and flavourings? I haven't tried it, of course, but I don't see why it wouldn't work!
Do let me know how you get on with it, won't you?! xx
Vegan Cheese without cashews?!?!?! Is it too soon to say I LOVE YOU!?!?!? Thank you, thank you, thank you!
It's never too soon, Kat! Ha ha! Hope you loved it! xx
I have made Julie Hassons version of this cheese and it didn't "keep" very long in the fridge.Can it be frozen without loosing it;s texture??
I've never tried to freeze it, so I honestly don't know whether it would work or not. Maybe you could just make as much as you're going to use in a certain dish, that way you wouldn't need to be concerned with it going off? xx
When heating the mixture I seem to get to the lumpy part but after heating a bit more it dont seem to get it back smooth and shiny and instead it goes all lumpier and non gooey and the oul seems to start cooking the mixture too. Any suggestions? Thanks!!
The only thing I can think of, especially as you said the mixture started 'cooking', is that perhaps your heat was too high. I've never had this happen, so I can't say for sure but maybe next time, once it gets to the lumpy stage (step 6), immediately reduce the heat, and carry on stirring to get it smooth. Good luck, and do let me know how you get on. xx
What lovely recepie, I’ve been looking everywhere for a good melting mozzarella recepie but really want it to be fermented , melting and browning and not using carrageenan. Any advice?
Dobar dan, Mirko!
You can culture some cashew milk with acidophilus powder, and use agar instead of carrageenan. I'll be publishing a recipe for this soon, so if you sign up to my mailing list, you'll be the first to know when it's live! xx
Thank you for the recipe.
Do you test it with Iota Carrageenan ?
All the best.
I've never used iota in anything before, so I really can't say whether it would work for the mozzarella. 🙁 xx
I can´t use carageenan, can I use agar agar instead? Would the quatiities be the same?
Hi Michelle, yep, agar will work fine. In fact, I've been testing out several different mozz recipes I've been playing with recently, and one of them has agar instead of carageenan. Let me know how you get on with it, won't you? xx
I tried this and the flavor turned out wonderfully! My boyfriend is not vegan or even vegetarian and he liked it as well, even though he admitted to being "scared" at first of the idea. The question I had is this:
My cheese turned out a bit slimy even though I left it in the brine for a long time and we ate it the next day. Any suggestions on how to make it a bit more firm and not so slimy?
Hi Danielle, I am so glad you enjoyed the mozz! You could try removing it from the liquid, giving it a rinse, then letting it air-dry for a bit.
(If it's any consolation for your boyfriend, my partner was the same!) xx
Having a hard time finding Lactic acid here in Perth Western Australia.
Is Malic Acid similar or does it change the taste??
I honestly have no idea, Spiv - I've never used malic acid - but you could use a little citric acid instead. You may need to play around with the quantity though, as too much will make the mozz rather lemony! xx
Thank you for your time to reply, the web message ended up in my spam folder, I just found it.
Strange because your emails do come into my inbox.
Just wanted to let you know, perhaps they also end up in the spam folder of other readers....
Thanks for letting me know, Spiv - glad you found it in the end! xx
Do I have to put the mixture into a salt bath or can I just pour into a glass jar and put into the fridge?
You could just use iced water if you want but I find it's better to use brine. xx
Oh, this looks so delicious, Nico! And I love how you explain everything thoroughly, it's like a little but so wise essay to read about everything you cook, whether it's a historical background or ingredients explanation. Always a pleasure to read and more pleasure to cook, knowing that it will always turn out just the way you said it would! Thank you 🙂
That's so kind of you to say so, Mari - thank you! I'm so glad you find what I write to be interesting... and that you have such confidence in my work! 🙂 xx
Ooooh .... this looks amaaazing! Will definitely be giving it a go!
Thanks, Chris - its' so easy to make! xx
This is amazing! It only lasted 2 days as I put it on everything, it was so gorgeous! It was so much easier to make compared to some other recipes, and tasted miles better!! Many thanks!
I'm so glad you liked it, Dorothy! It really is simple, isn't it?! xx
Can I use lemon juice instead of lactic acid for a similar tangy effect? (I know it won't be exactly the same)
Absolutely, Varia! You're right, the lemon juice will give it a slightly different taste to the lactic acid but it will still be fab. I hope you enjoy it! xx
Is there a nondairy substitute for the soy yogurt?
Hi Camille, I am so sorry for not replying sooner - for some reason you ended up in my spam folder! 🙁 But yes, you can use any non-dairy yoghurt, as long as it's plain (i.e. unflavoured). xx