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Vegan Cream (Creamer + Heavy Cream Substitute)

Vegan cream is a perfect dairy-free heavy cream substitute, great for coffee, gratins, stirred into soups, and used anywhere heavy creams are called for!

side angle view of homemade 2 ingredient vegan cream substitute for heavy cream and coffee creamer in a glass jar.

We love making vegan cashew creams, you may already be familiar with our Vegan Cream Cheese, Vegan Sweet Cream, and Vegan Sour Cream, all using cashews. Each has their own uses and are amazing and versatile.

Why We Love This Recipe!

There is nothing better than fresh homemade vegan cream! Especially when it’s quick, easy, and only requires 2 ingredients – cashews and water!

This basic, all-purpose vegan cream recipe is neutral-flavored and can be used as a substitute anywhere dairy creamer or heavy cream is called for. It’s a perfect replacement and works just as well, but is a whole food, plant-based option.

This dairy-free cream can easily be doubled and stored for up to 1 week. Plus, it’s easily customizable with flavors if making a vegan coffee creamer!

cream

Ingredients You’ll Need

  • Raw cashews – be sure to only use raw, toasted will alter the flavor
  • Water – can also sub with unsweetened, plain plant milk

Tip: I know cashews can seem expensive. But making your own, cup for cup is cheaper than store-bought vegan creamer. To keep the cost low I buy my cashews in the bulk section (pref. when on sale) at Sprouts. Trader Joe’s has them too. You can also easily purchase Raw Cashews (affiliate link) online.

Adding flavor: For flavored coffee cream, add a little pure maple syrup, vanilla and/or cinnamon for a delicious flavored tea or coffee creamer!

side angle view of cashews soaking in water in a glass measuring cup.

How To Make Vegan Cream

Soak the cashews: It’s best to soak your cashews in water before starting. There are 2 ways to soak:

  1. Soak cashew in cool water for 2 – 3 hours, drain and rinse (this method is best for digestion).
  2. For a quick method of soaking, let cashews sit in hot water for 5 – 10 minutes, drain, rinse and continue with the recipe.

Blend cashews and water: Place cashews and water into the blender cup and blend until creamy (shown below). Place in a covered container and place in the fridge until ready to use. Or use right away in any recipe calling for vegan cream.

And that’s it, vegan cream made simple and easy!

Top Tips

Why soak cashews? Soaking will help soften the cashews by plumping them up with water and helps the cashews blend easily. Soaking is also said to be beneficial for digestion and mineral & vitamin absorption. If you’re in a hurry, you can still make this vegan cream successfully without soaking. You just may need to add a bit more water while blending.

Recommended equipment. I used my NutriBullet (affiliate link) for this vegan cream. It’s compact, easy to clean, and is great for small jobs like this. A high-speed blender will also work great. I do not recommend using an immersion blender as it’s not powerful enough.

Buying raw cashews. You can find cashews in bulk at Sprouts and other health-conscious grocery stores. You can also find them at Trader Joe’s. I often purchase Terrasoul Raw Cashews online (affiliate link) from Amazon (it’s a 2 lb bag and nice to always have on hand, just store them in the fridge for maximum freshness).

side by side photos showing the process of making vegan cream using small blender.

How To Store

  • Refrigerator: Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 1 week in an airtight container. Be sure to give a good stir before using.
  • Freezer: This vegan cream is freezer friendly and can be stored for 2 – 3 month in freezer safe containers. Let thaw in before using.

Ways To Use Vegan Cream

Thick, but not too thick, this dairy-free cream is great stirred into soups, coffee, or used in creamy baked dishes. Here are a few of my favorite ways to use this easy recipe:

top down view of homemade 2 ingredient vegan cream in a glass jar with items surrounding.

More Easy How-To’s Recipes!

If you try this easy dairy-free cream recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment and rate it below. I love to hear what you think, or any changes you make.

Print

VEGAN CREAM

Vegan cream is a perfect dairy-free heavy cream substitute, great for coffee, stirred into soups and used anywhere heavy creams and creamers are called for! Recipe makes enough for any typical recipe with a little leftover for later.

  • Author: Julie | The Simple Veganista
  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 3/4 cup 1x
  • Category: Cream, How To’s
  • Method: blender
  • Cuisine: Vegan

Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 1 + 1/4 cups water (can sub with unsweetened, plain plant milk)

Instructions

Soak the cashews: It’s best to soak your cashews in water before starting. There are 2 ways to soak:

  1. Soak cashew in cool water for 2 – 3 hours, drain and rinse (this method is best for digestion).
  2. For a quick method of soaking, let cashews sit in hot water for 5 – 10 minutes, drain, rinse and continue with recipe.

Blend cashews and water: Place cashews and water into the cup of a high speed or personal blender and blend until creamy. Adjust the water, adding more to thin as needed.

Place in a covered container and place in the fridge until ready to use. Or use right away in any recipe calling for vegan cream.

Makes 1 3/4 cups (equals 14 servings, 2 tablespoons per serving)

Store: Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 1 week in an airtight container, stir before using.

Notes

This creamer is just thick enough to cling to the spoon, for a thicker cream use 1 cup water, adding 1 tablespoon more at a time until desired thickness (or thinness).

Adding flavor: For flavored coffee cream, add 1 teaspoon vanilla and/or 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon for a delicious flavored creamer!

Recommended equipment: I used my NutriBullet (affiliate link) for this vegan cream. It’s compact, easy to clean and is great for small jobs like this. A high speed will work well too (I don’t recommend using an immersion blender)! Purchase Terrasoul Raw Cashews online (affiliate link) from Amazon, I use and recommend this brand.

Keywords: vegan cream, dairy-free creamer

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41 Comments

  1. Since I see no mention of it in the description or notes, does this mean that it is *not* a cream suitable for whipping into a whipped cream topping? I have yet to achieve good whipped coconut cream from a chilled can, like it seems “everyone” else is doing, and not all grocery stores nearby carry Silk’s relatively new vegan whipping cream.

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      You are correct, this is not suitable for whipping. Have you tried Target’s brand Good and Gather coconut milk? The full-fat one is AMAZINGLY thick and creamy (it’s like coconut cream), and I bet that will whip up with great results. I’ve been meaning to test it myself.

  2. Haven’t tried yet but very interested. I’m looking to sub for heavy cream when making caramel (I don’t want to taste coconut for every caramel batch). Do you think this recipe will work for that? (I’d probably do the 1 C of water for a thicker cream) Thx.

  3. Delicious and creamy! one warning – do not heat this up – it becomes thick and fluffy – which is fine – but not the consistency of half and half or cream.

    thank you for a great recipe!

    1. Wow Thanks for the tip brozoc! I was just about to post the question, “Could I use this cream to make Alfredo Sauce?” but you answered the question for me. Thanks for sharing your experience with this recipe!

  4. Great looking recipe! Will try.
    PS it’s “health conscious” not “health conscience” 😉

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      Thank you for pointing that out! Enjoy the creamer! :)

  5. Can you use this kind of creamer as a milk substitute for a carrot soup?

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      Yes, you can use this as a milk substitute for soups for a thicker soup than if just using milk. You can adjust the water to your liking – you can make it slightly thicker than milk by using more water or keep it on the thicker side. Just be sure to use a high-speed blender for best results (a good blender will create a velvety smooth creamer, thick or thin). Enjoy!

  6. Peter Flynn says:

    Looks great but haven’t tried it yet. Surely it’ll make your coffee taste of cashews, and feel grainy on the tongue. Can I use regular 100% cashew-nut butter from the jar?

  7. Tastes so good, and really simple to make! I used 1 cup of soy milk and a bit of water, cashews and a bit of vanilla, and it was perfect for the strawberry pie I made.
    Thanks!

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      Glad it worked well for you, Robin! Thanks for sharing the details, and enjoy that strawberry pie – it sounds delicious!

  8. Patricia Lunz says:

    Do you have a recipe to make pumpkin spice creamer?

  9. Hi! Can this be used to make cream scones?

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      Yes, this vegan cream can be used in baking recipes. Enjoy your cream scones! :)

  10. After you drain and rinse the cashews, are you saving this water for blending? Or using fresh water not soaked with cashews?

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      Hi Liz, You’ll want to drain the water and use fresh water for blending. Enjoy the vegan creamer!

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