This vegan cheese sauce employs the creamy texture of Yukon potatoes and savory flavor of nutritional yeast to deliver a delectable condiment that can be drizzled over dozens of plant-based recipes. Perfect to use in casseroles, as a pizza topper, in pupusas, or as a pasta sauce, this cheesy sauce comes together quickly and can easily be frozen to use at a later date.

By Darshana Thacker Wendel,


  • 1 lb. Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • ¾ cup + 2 tablespoons unsweetened, unflavored plant-based milk
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1½ teaspoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Sea salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  • Place potato pieces in a steamer basket in a large saucepan. Add water to saucepan to just below basket.
  • Bring to boiling. Steam, covered, about 15 minutes or until tender. Remove from heat. Uncover and cool slightly. Transfer one-third of the potatoes to a bowl.
  • Place the remaining potatoes in a blender. Add milk, nutritional yeast, vinegar, and garlic. Blend until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Add the remaining potatoes and pulse until slightly chunky. Serve immediately or store. Sauce thickens as it sits. If necessary, heat and stir in a saucepan over low, adding more milk to reach desired consistency. To store, transfer sauce to an airtight container. Store in the refrigerator up to 1 week or freeze up to 1 month.

Comments (37)

(5 from 11 votes)

Recipe Rating

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Sabrina Kumor

Nutritional Yeast is very good for the body and also helps to absorb other nutrients from your food. It’s loaded with tons of vitamin B.💚🤓


I’m sorry, but nutritional yeast is anything but nutritional. It acts like MSG in your brain. Not a health food!

Elizabeth Greenaway

Sometimes I add sauerkraut to my potato-carrot « cheese » sauce. It adds a cheesy taste ( probiotics I suppose). I find deli non processed sauerkraut best and add about a half cup and some of the liquid before blending. It might replace the Nootch somewhat


I just found this recipe, and I absolutely love it!! I didn't have a quick question, does anyone know what the kcal is for this recipe?


Can I exclude the nutritional yeast?

Jennifer Zarcone

No. Nutritional yeast is what makes it taste like cheese.


I don’t have a steamer basket, can I boil the potatoes instead?


How does a pound of potatoes transfer to cups? I don’t have a scale. Thank you


5 Regular sized potatoes are generally equal to one pound.

Denise Deters

I love this recipe, I add 1 cooked carrot to give it the orange color. I have never put it in the freezer! Could I put it in a mason jar to freeze?


I used some local potato variant (from India), added more vinegar and substituted garlic powder for garlic clove. Delicious :)

Iodine the Cat

Where had this recipe been all my life? If you blend up all the the potatoes equally, you wind up with an incredibly smooth and tasty sauce. Who knew? Thanks a kazillion for sharing this easy and versatile recipe.


Very good! I blended it all because I didn't really want it chunky. My daughter loved it on cauliflower and said it (on cauli) is now her favorite food :). I had to add a little more nooch to get it to the flavor I was imagining. I look forward to trying it in other ways (like on pasta or in a veg casserole). Thanks for the great recipe!


Could you add a teaspoon or so of light miso to add more umami or would it be overpowering?


That sounds good to me! Start with less and add more to taste to make sure it doesn't over power the sauce.

Kelly A Bayley

This is a delicious sauce that was so good that it got my children to smother an enormous amount of steamed broccoli with it and devour it. Win!!!


This cheese recipe is a game changer!!


Why can't I add it to my Meal Planner?


Hi, what could I use instead of the yeast? I can‘t eat it because of histamine… thanks.


You could possibly use Chickpea flour


The yeast is going to be the main source of cheesy/umami flavour so it's probably going to taste pretty different but I would add miso paste starting at 1tbsp.


That was my question. My husband has Crohn's so no nutritional yeast in this house. I'm going to try this without the NY first. Then I'll try it again with miso. Most of the time, recipes are fine by just omitting the yeast. Vegetable bouillion might work too.


Buying plant based cheese can get expensive. This is not as cost prohibitive and makes a fair amount. I might have over mixed this a bit. It has a good rich, mouth feel…. I added some fresh chopped parsley for color and flavor. Would definitely try this in a veggie bake…


Are the potatoes peeled?


Looks like the potatoes have not been peeled in the photo


If you are using Russet potatoes I’d peel them. The peels might mess with the mouthfeel of a sauce. I also throw a little carrot in with the potato to soften. It makes the cheese sauce more of a cheese color, if that is important to someone you’re feeding.


I think that's Ground black pepper on the top of it in the picture.

Liz Turner

Yes, do peel the potatoes. —FOK editors


We love this. It doesn’t taste like cheese, but also don’t have the fat that cheese has. My husband loves it on toast.


I can't get Yukon gold potatoes where I live. What can I use as a substitute?

Johanna W Bisceglia

I'm sure you could use russet potatoes instead. I have another cheese sauce recipe and I've used both types in that one and I can't tell the difference. Happy cooking!


I use red potatoes, which are great tasting as a sauce also.


I’ve used russets and red.


Oh my gosh! So good. Poor over broccoli and cauliflower, add to pizza as a cheesy typing, dip veggies into or add to a veggie bake. So much potential


Just buy a plant base cheese… why go to all this trouble?


Serry... because plant-based cheeses in stores are typically made with a lot of oil, and are not very nutritious. This eliminates the need for oil and makes it not only healthier, but much lower in calorie density.


Serry, as was said, they are pricey and filled with cheap, unhealthy junk. Are you aware this website exists to promote health???

About the Author

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About the Author

Darshana Thacker Wendel

Darshana Thacker Wendel is a whole-food, plant-based chef and former culinary projects manager for Forks Over Knives. A graduate of the Natural Gourmet Institute, she is the author of Forks Over Knives: Flavor! She created the recipes for Forks Over Knives Family and was a lead recipe contributor to the New York Times bestseller The Forks Over Knives Plan. Her recipes have been published in The Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease Cookbook, Forks Over Knives—The Cookbook, Forks Over Knives: The Plant-Based Way to Health, and LA Yoga magazine online. Visit and follow her on Instagram for more.
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