Quick post today because I’m overdue on sharing a new recipe. I’ve been teasing this almond feta for a few weeks now after posting about it on Instagram, and I finally had the chance to make the recipe again and confirm its awesomeness.
So what exactly is almond feta? It’s a vegan cheese analogue that’s great in cold applications like salads, tartines, or just straight-up snacking! I think you’ll absolutely love the garlicky, lemony, rich flavor.
I make my almond feta using a few main steps:
- Soak raw almonds in hot water to loosen and remove the skins (don’t throw those skins away! Roast them in the oven for a delicious, healthy, crispy snack)
- Blend the almonds into a smooth pulp along with garlic, shallot, and a few other flavorful ingredients (and plenty of salt); and strain some of the excess liquid from the blended mixture
- Bake the almond feta until solid; let cool, slice into cubes, and enjoy!
So yes, it’s a tiny bit labor-intensive removing the skins from the almonds. I’ve seen recipes that call for almond flour instead in order to bypass this step, but frugality won for me this time around. Plus, even though it takes a little while to do it, it’s very fun and easy popping off the almond skins. My recipe is different from other almond feta recipes mainly because it calls for nondairy yogurt. As I learned with my cashew cream cheese, nondairy yogurt is essential for me to feel like a vegan cheese analogue has an authentic flavor that resembles dairy versions.
Give this almond feta a try and let me know how you like it! And tweak the recipe to your own taste, too. Change the seasoning or acidity; bake it longer for a drier almond feta that will crumble beautifully; or bake it shorter for a very creamy result. Make it your own 🙂
Baked Almond Feta
- 2 cups raw almonds
- 1 shallot peeled and roughly chopped
- 2 cloves garlic peeled and roughly chopped
- 2 tbsp plain unsweetened nondairy yogurt (or substitute with 1 tb. additional lemon juice)
- 3 tbsp freshly-squeezed lemon juice
- 3/4 tsp salt (or to taste)
Put the raw almonds in a bowl and cover them with very hot water. Let them sit for 2 hours.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit, and ready an oven-safe ceramic or glass dish and parchment paper (I used a 5-inch glass dish).
Drain the almonds and remove the skins. The skins should pop right off of most of the almonds if you do the entire 2 hours of soaking. Be sure to save them as you can roast them for a crispy snack or add them to smoothies, etc.
Add the almonds to a blender along with the shallots, garlic, yogurt, lemon juice, and salt. Add only as much filtered water as needed to blend (I had to use around 1/2 cup). Blend, stopping to stir and scrape the sides as needed, until a thick, smooth paste is formed.
Pour the mixture into cheesecloth and GENTLY squeeze out the excess liquid. You don't want to remove all of it (which you would do if you were making almond milk) - just enough so that the pulp clumps together but is still moist. Alternately, you can let it drain (without squeezing) out of the cheesecloth overnight in the refrigerator.
Transfer the pulp into the parchment paper-lined baking dish. Bake for 30 minutes, then use a toothpick or sharp knife to poke some holes in the surface to allow the heat to better penetrate the middle.
Return to the oven and bake for approximately 20 more minutes, or until the top of the almond feta is browning and slightly cracking.
Let the almond feta cool before slicing. Use it in salads, sandwiches, and more! Once cooled, store leftovers in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to a week.
For a better texture, you can also add 1 tablespoon of olive oil, but I happen to really love the oil-free version and I know that many of you avoid oil, so I am presenting that version of the recipe.