My vegan Parmesan recipe has no oil or nuts, is oil-free, and fits perfectly into your whole food plant-based diet. It’s one of my favorite vegan cheese substitutes.
Best of all it has a depth of flavor that breathes life into your pasta and soups. It’s so easy to make your own vegan parmesan cheese and live a vegan lifestyle.
It’s not easy to find a nut free version of vegan cheese, though there are a few store-bought brands popping up.
Oats for the win for everyone, but especially those with a nut allergy!
You need to make this vegan parmesan cheese recipe right now!
Grocery staple prices are going sky-high, so I wanted to give you an inexpensive homemade plant-based Parmesan that you can make in minutes. Get more of my pantry staple recipes.
It’s oil-free, gluten-free if you use gf oats, nut-free, soy-free, and there’s a salt-free option so it fits in most people’s eating plans.
My version just uses three ingredients that you have in your pantry right now: nutritional yeast, rolled oats, and salt or salt substitute.
What is vegan parmesan cheese?
Vegan parmesan is a dairy-free alternative to traditional parmesan cheese.
There are 2 distant kinds, one that looks like strands of grated cheese that melt and the other that reminds me of old-school kraft in a green canister.
This vegan recipe is the latter, more of a rough powder that adds flavor and texture to your favorite salads, soups, and pasta dishes.
Both kinds add a cheesy flavor to your dishes and are healthier and vegan alternatives to traditional cheese.
How can oats possibly taste like regular parmesan?
Magic! No, just kidding. As you toast the oats the aroma and flavor transform.
First, it just smells like oats, then a little toasty, and finally, it smells darker and nutty.
That is the only secret to this recipe. Be sure to smell your oats along the way to catch them at the right time.
Add in the nutritional yeast for that cheese funkiness and salt flavor in this easy vegan cheese.
Ingredients in vegan parmesan
In this vegan Parmesan cheese recipe, nutritional yeast and rolled oats are the main ingredients.
The only other ingredient is salt, or a salt substitute, to give it the salt bite you expect from a parm.
Nutritional yeast has a cheesy flavor that makes this vegan Parmesan cheese taste just like real parmesan cheese!
Can I add nuts to this vegan alternative?
If you’d rather have a nut-based version you can grab my almond parm recipe or you can add some slivered almonds or raw cashews to this oat recipe to make it a little richer.
You could also add in some raw sunflower seeds if you wanted to.
Can I make this salt-free?
I’m Kathy, queen of recipe options, so of course, you can!
If you don’t eat salt or are trying to cut back on sodium you can easily make this salt-free. Just add your favorite salt substitute.
Can I make this without nutritional yeast?
You can be it will not taste quite the same since it’s the main cheesy flavor in the recipe.
With that said you could add one or more of the following little by little, to taste, but if you don’t use all dry ingredients, you’ll need to store it in the fridge or freezer.
- miso to add umami
- vegan lactic acid for adding cheesy flavor
- garlic powder
- onion powder
- mixed dried herbs
- dried lemon zest
- lemon powder
- ground mustard to make it extra sharp
What is the equipment needed?
You can use any blender or food processor, but I recommend using the smallest you have.
No small options? Then triple the recipe and it will blend better in a larger vessel.
How to make vegan parmesan
The rolled oats are toasted until they smell (and taste) nutty. Then the toasted oats and nutritional yeast are pulsed together in a food processor or blender.
You want to pulse until it looks like the regular dry parm. That just means don’t grind it to a fine grain powder.
If you do it’s not the end of the world, you just won’t have all the texture.
If you have any questions about how to make vegan parmesan cheese, please leave a comment below and I will do my best to answer you.
As is the recipe makes a plain parm, you can make it pop with Italian herbs, chilies, miso, lactic acid, and so much more.
I want you to think of this as a base for your fun experiments. You can make a 1/2 recipe that is specific for a soup or stew.
How do I store this vegan substitute for parmesan cheese?
If you make the recipe as is or with dried herbs you can store it in an air-tight container on the counter or in your pantry.
That’s one of the things I love about having it on hand!
If you add any wet ingredients like miso you will need to keep it in the fridge or freezer to make it last. Or you could make just enough for one meal if you want.
How can I use oat parmesan?
I love it in a vegan Cesar salad, on top of a plate of spaghetti with marinara sauce, and sprinkled on roasted veggies or baked potatoes.
You can also use it as a breading or part of a coating for tofu, tempeh, cauliflower, and pop in your air fryer.
Is there a commercial vegan parm you recommend?
While it’s not oil-free Violife makes my fav store-bought vegan parm. I use a fine grater because it’s a solid block.
Also, it melts too!
Vegan recipes to use this pantry staple on:
- Homemade Vegan Pasta
- Slow Cooker Lentil Vegetable Soup
- Vegan Pasta Cheese Sauce
- Air Fryer Pasta Chips
- One Pot Veggie Vodka Sauce
- Slow Cooker Vegan Sausage Mushroom Ragu
- Lentil Quinoa Bolognese Sauce
- Slow Cooker Pumpkin Lasagna
- Creamy Vegan Tomato Soup
Whole Food Plant Based Oat Parmesan Recipe: Nut-free, Soy-free, and Oil-Free
- 1 Blender
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 1 cup nutritional yeast
- 2 teaspoons salt or salt substitute , or to taste
- Toast the rolled oats in a saute pan over midium heat until they begin to smell nutty and turn a few shades darker.
- Add the toasted oats, nutritional yeast, and salt or salt sub to you small blender or food processor.
- Pulse until the oats break down into tiny pieces, but still have some texture.
- Store in an air-tight container on the counter or in your fridge.