Chef Michael Symon came up with this Parmesan cheese substitute once his health needs called for avoiding dairy—and it's simply delicious. 

"I'm not going to claim that this stuff tastes exactly like real Parmigiano-Reggiano," Michael says. "Because there's only one thing in the world that tastes like it—and that's real Parmigiano-Reggiano! But if you have to avoid dairy in your diet and you still want to add a nutty, savory, salty, and 'cheesy' flavor to food, this nut-based vegan alternative is amazing. It is so easy to make that I always have a double or triple recipe stashed in my fridge, where it will last for weeks."

For more of Michael's gluten-, dairy- and sugar-free recipes, check out:
Healthy Sweet Potato Pancakes With Wilted Greens
Dairy-Free Mac & Cheese With Roasted Vegetables
Mom's Lasagna Made Gluten-Free With Potato "Noodles" & Meat Sauce
Easy Pomodoro Tomato Sauce
Avocado Chocolate Mousse

Adapted from Fix It with Food by Michael Symon. Copyright © 2019 by Michael Symon. Used with permission by Clarkson Potter. All rights reserved.


  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt


Serves: Makes 1 ¼ cups


In a blender or food processor, pulse the cashews, nutritional yeast, garlic powder, and salt until the mixture has the consistency of fine crumbs and resembles freshly grated parmesan cheese, about 10 times. Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.