You’d never guess this creamy vegan spinach dip was dairy free! Deliciously addictive, easy to make, and perfect for all kinds of celebrations.
This stuff brings back so many memories. As a kid, I would devour spinach dip at gatherings. How could I not? Creamy, salty, spinachy dip that you dip bread (okay, or veggies) in? There’s so much to love about this stuff.
If only my family had a recipe for vegan spinach dip when I was a kid. I’d have gobbled up that stuff twice as fast.
Yup, I said it! This dairy-free version of spinach dip is better than the original.
Creamy Cashew Dip
Cashews make a mean vegan dairy substitute. In fact, I use them to make straight-up cashew cream, which is my favorite all-purpose dairy replacement.
In this dip we’ll be using cashews to replace the sour cream and mayonnaise you’d find in conventional spinach dip. Here’s how:
Use Raw Cashews
Raw cashews have a neutral flavor. Surprise: they don’t really start tasting nutty until you roast them! So raw cashews when blended up are ideal for replacing dairy in lots of recipes.
Soak the Cashews
Most of us will need to soak our cashew in water to soften them up for blending. I say “most” because if you have a super high-powered blending device, you might get away with skipping this step.
How to Make Vegan Spinach Dip
Start by rinsing and draining those raw cashews. Now stick them into a food processor bowl along with some seasonings: garlic powder, onion powder, and a couple of crushed up bullion cubes. Blend everything to a smooth paste with some water. Be patient! This can take a few minutes, and you may need to stop the machine from time to time to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
Now add some more water and lemon juice, and blend the mixture again until smooth. It should be about the consistency of sour cream.
Now for the good stuff. We’re using frozen spinach. Be sure to thaw it out (microwaving is fine for this) and squeeze out as much excess water as you can — I like to firmly press mine into the bottom of a fine mesh strainer to do this.
Once the spinach is good and dry, add it to the food processor bowl, along with some chopped scallions and water chestnuts. Pulse the food processor until everything is well mixed.
Now taste-test your dip. If you’d like you can season it with some salt and pepper — just be careful not to overdo it, as those bullion cubes are pretty salty.
Serve your spinach dip with some bread or veggies for dipping. I topped mine with a few extra scallions, just for garnish.
Vegan Spinach Dip FAQ & Tips
- Is this dip gluten-free? it is!
- Your spinach dip will keep in the fridge for 2 to 3 days. Store it in a sealed container. It also freezes great and should be good for at least 3 months if it’s sealed up.
- Can fresh spinach be used? I’m sure it can, but I’m not sure exactly how much you’d need. If you want to give it try, I’d recommend finely chopping the spinach and steaming or boiling it for a few minutes to wilt it. Let it cool, squeeze out the excess water, and then add the cooked spinach until the amount seems right (about 1 1/2 to 2 cups of cooked spinach should do it).
- Is there a substitute for the cashews? Possibly, but I haven’t tested any. Raw, unsalted macadamia nuts sometimes work in place of cashews. You might also have luck with raw sunflower seeds, though I can never get these to blend up completely smooth.
- Help! I forgot to soak the cashews! Try boiling them for 20 minutes instead. They probably won’t blend up quite as smooth as if they’d been soaked.
Vegan Spinach Dip
You'd never guess this creamy vegan spinach dip was dairy free! Deliciously addictive, easy to make, and perfect for all kinds of celebrations.
- 1 1/2 cups raw cashews, soaked in water 4-8 hours, rinsed, and drained
- 3 vegetable bouillon cubes (or enough bouillon to make 3 cups of broth), crushed
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 3/4 cup water, divided
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 (10 ounce or 283 gram) package frozen spinach, thawed
- 1/2 cup chopped scallions (about 3 scallions)
- 1 (4 ounce or 113 gram) can water chestnuts, drained and finely chopped
Place the cashews into the bowl of a food processor fitted with an s-blade. Add the bullion cubes, onion powder, garlic powder, and 1/4 cup of water.
Blend the mixture to a smooth paste, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
Add the remaining water and lemon juice. Blend everything again until smooth and creamy.
Squeeze the spinach to remove as much excess water as possible, then add it to the food processor, along with the scallions and water chestnuts.
Pulse the food processor until the ingredients are well-mixed, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
Taste-test the mixture and season it with salt and pepper to taste, if desired.
Transfer the dip to a serving bowl and serve it with bread or veggies.
Makes about 2 cups of dip.