If you’re craving that spicy, melty goodness of nacho cheese but don’t want the dairy, sodium, or yucky processed junk, then this is the recipe for you. In fact, we don’t think anyone will ever be able to tell this is vegan. By using a base of vegetables and nuts, you get an ultra-creamy dip made with real, whole-food ingredients plus healthful fats and plant-based nutrients.

Prep: 10 minsCook: 20 minsTotal: 30 mins
Servings: 8 servings (2 cups total) 1x


  • ½ cup raw cashews
  • 1 medium Yukon Gold potato, peeled and cubed (1 cup)
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled and chopped into small pieces (1/2 cup)
  • 1 (4-ounce) can diced roasted green chiles
  • ½ cup unsweetened non-dairy milk, such as cashew or almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil or olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne (feel free to add more for a spicier sauce)
  • ¾ teaspoon salt + more to taste
  • Fresh cilantro and lime wedges for garnish, optional


  1. In a small bowl, place the cashews. Pour boiling water over the top to cover completely. Cover the bowl with a plate or kitchen towel and allow the nuts to soak while you prepare the vegetables.
  2. In a small saucepan, place the diced potatoes and carrots. Cover the vegetables with water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, until vegetables are soft, about 20 minutes, depending on the size of the pieces.
  3. Drain the cashews and vegetables. Place the drained cashews, potato, and carrot in the container of a food processor or high-powered blender.
  4. Add the drained green chilies, non-dairy milk, oil, lime juice, and spices; blend on high, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl/blender, as needed. Process until the sauce is uniformly smooth. Add additional non-dairy milk, if desired, to achieve your desired consistency. Keep it thick for dipping, or make it thinner for drizzling.
  5. Store leftovers in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Stir again before serving.

Nutrition Information

  • Serving Size: ¼ cup
  • Calories: 91
  • Fat: 6 g
  • (Sat Fat: 1 g)
  • Sodium: 295 mg
  • Carbohydrate: 9 g
  • (Fiber: 1 g
  • Sugar: 2 g)
  • Protein: 2 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg


© The Real Food Dietitians