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Two-Ingredient Cashew Ricotta (Dairy-Free)

5.0 from 1 vote

I love a good dairy-free ricotta and really like using cashews as the main ingredient. I used to make a fancier version of this cashew ricotta recipe with several ingredients, but then I realized that the extra ingredients weren’t making much of a difference for me. So I tried simplifying it and – whoa! – I like it so much better this way!

a spatula with cashew ricotta on it

Simple, creamy, and easy to make, this two-ingredient cashew ricotta is delicious in recipes that call for ricotta cheese. I tried it in my Gluten-Free Butternut Squash Ravioli, and it was a game-changer!

Why This Recipe Works

When it comes to dairy-free ricotta, texture is key. You can’t have it too thin and runny; you need to keep that consistency of ricotta, which is slightly bumpy and thick. This makes soaked cashews the perfect ingredient, because after just 1 minute in the food processor, you achieve that perfect texture.

This recipe also works because it just takes two ingredients, plus a bit of water and you’re done!

There was a time that I honestly never thought I’d like a dairy-free ricotta until this one. I sort of always thought trying to make “ricotta” without actual dairy would just taste sad. But I’m happy to say that I was wrong, and not only that, but our whole family actually prefers it in many recipes over regular ricotta!

Ingredients for Two-Ingredient Cashew Ricotta

ingredients for cashew ricotta

This has to be my favorite ingredient list!

  • cashews
  • juice from one lemon

Cashews soaked in hot water and the lemon juice are all you need, plus about 1/4 cup of water. Salt and pepper are optional, depending on the recipe and what you’re using it for. But that’s it!

How to Make Dairy-Free Cashew Ricotta

It’s a simple process to make this dairy-free cashew ricotta. First, you soak your cashews in hot water for 5 minutes.

Next, you add the cashews to the food processor along with the lemon juice and 1/4 cup of water.

cashews, lemon juice, and water in a food processor

Process for 30 seconds, then stop the processor and remove the top so you can scrape down the sides with a spatula. Process for 30 more seconds, and that should do it. Stir in a little salt (optional) if you prefer, and that’s it!

cashew ricotta after processing

Frequently Asked Questions

Question: My cashew ricotta is too thick (or too thin). What can I do?

Answer: This is an easy fix, thankfully: if it’s too thick, just add water by the 1/8 cup until you reach the consistency you need. You want it thick enough so that it doesn’t run. If it’s too thin, you can soak about 1/4 cup of cashews and add those to the processor. Repeat until you reach the desired consistency.

Question: Can I use other nuts if I don’t like cashews?

Answer: For this recipe in particular, cashews work best. Alternatively, you could make an almond ricotta, although the processing would be a bit different.

Question: Are there more ingredients I can add to this recipe?

Answer: You certainly can, depending on the flavor you want. Some people like to add onion and/or garlic powder to their cashew ricotta if using it in a lasagna, for example. Others like to add nutritional yeast, which can be used in some recipes in place of grated cheese. While it has lots of nutritional benefit, just know that adding the nutritional yeast will change the flavor significantly, so make sure you like it before adding it in.

Question: How do I store the cashew ricotta?

Answer: You can store your cashew ricotta in in air-tight container in the refrigerator for 5 days, or in the freezer for up to 2 months.

If you like this recipe you can use it in my Gluten-Free Butternut Squash Ravioli or my Gluten-Free Zucchini Lasagna. And if you made it, drop me a comment and let me know how you like it!

Two-Ingredient Cashew Ricotta (Dairy-Free!)

Recipe by Alessandra Macaluso
5.0 from 1 vote
Course: UncategorizedDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time


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  • 1 1/2 cups cashews, soaked in hot water for 5 minutes

  • juice from 1 lemon

  • 1/4 cup water

  • Extra (optional) ingredients to taste:
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

  • 1/4 tsp. fresh ground pepper


  • In a food processor, combine the soaked cashews and lemon juice. Process on high for 30 seconds. Use a spatula to scrape down the sides and check the consistency (it should be slightly creamy, like the texture of regular ricotta). If it needs to thin out a bit, add the 1/4 cup of water and process again for 30 seconds.
  • Transfer from the processor to a storage container. Taste it first, and if you like, add the salt and pepper, and stir to combine. Store in the refrigerator for 5 days, or freeze for up to 2 months.


  • If the texture is too thick, you can add water by the 1/8 cup until you reach the desired consistency. If it’s too thin, you can soak and add cashews by the 1/4 cup.

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Anthony's Organic Whole Cashews, 1 lb, Raw, Unsalted & Gluten Free

Alessandra Macaluso is the author of What a Good Eater! , Lucy the Bee and the Healing Honey, and The Real-Deal Bridal Bible. She’s also a Qigong and Tai Chi instructor, and overall wellness advocate. Her work has been featured in several anthologies which can all be found on her Amazon author page, and she has contributed to The Huffington Post, Scary Mommy, TODAY Parents, and many other online publications.

Alessandra is a northerner-turned-southerner, enjoying the south with her children, Penelope and Ciro, and her husband, Greg.

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