Dairy Free Cheese Sauce

Dairy Free Cheese Sauce from http://meatified.com. Allergy friendly recipe that is gluten free, paleo and AIP friendly.

I’m going to go ahead and admit that – much to the annoyance of Mr Meatified, who in a former life was comprised of about 47% chocolate peanut butter cups – I don’t have much of a sweet tooth. At all. I am impervious to pastries, couldn’t care less about chocolate and am more likely to order two appetizers than bother with dessert out. In many ways, that means I’m lucky: I’ll never need to do any kind of sugar detox in my life. Now, before you all start pelting me with green-tipped bananas, I am clearly not perfect, never fear! I’ve never felt the need to slay a sugar dragon, but in my pre-Paleo life, I was definitely in need of some help. If a 28 day Dairy Detox had existed, one of my friends should have been shoving me to the front of the sign up line.

See, I spent years as a vegetarian, from my teens through to college, but I grew up with very little understanding of what was actually healthy. I totally believed in “healthy whole grains” and that cheese was a legit protein source. I was also broke. As a result, a scary proportion of my meals were comprised of pita bread, hummus and cheese. Maybe not all together, but still. Aside from the occasional stir fry, there was nary a vegetable in sight when it came to my tiny two-burner kitchen.

What’s that got to do with this recipe for a dairy free Cheese Sauce? Well, it means I’m a bit of a snob when it comes to anything that claims to be a  “cheese” substitute. They’re usually something I steer clear of totally because they never taste like you hope they will. But this recipe is one of my game changers! This dairy free Cheese Sauce is thick, creamy and has a delicious savory flavor that makes it super versatile.

Taco Salads that are nightshade free and AIP friendly, using the dairy free Cheese Sauce from http://meatified.com. Allergy friendly recipe that is gluten free, paleo and AIP friendly.

Our favorite ways to enjoy this dairy free Cheese Sauce lately have been as part of AIP taco salads using the nightshade free Taco Seasoning from Nourish and as a topper for loaded baked sweet potatoes. We’ve even made allergy friendly “cheeseburgers” by using this sauce as a burger topping. But the possibilities are endless! You can use this as a queso-type dip, as a topping for roasted vegetables or as a rich and delicious sauce to pair with your favorite vegetable noodles.

Bacon Mushroom Dairy Free Cheeseburgers from http://meatified.

This Dairy Free Cheese Sauce will keep in the fridge for a week or so and actually freezes and thaws really well. I like to freeze about a 1/2 cup at a time so that it’s easy to whip up taco salads, nachos or cheeseburgers whenever the mood strikes!

PS: if you can’t have coconut products, check out the coconut free version of this recipe!


Dairy Free Cheese Sauce {aip, paleo}

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5 from 1 review

  • Author: Meatified
  • Yield: About 2 1/2 cups / 600 ml 1x




BLEND: Add all the ingredients to a blender (my inexpensive Ninja does this just fine!) and blend until completely smooth, scraping down the sides a few times if necessary. If your coconut milk is particularly cold, the sauce will at first appear to be full of little white lumps, due to the solidified coconut fat. Don’t worry! Just keep blending: it will take a little longer with very cold coconut milk, but it will emulsify and become smooth after a minute or so. When this happens, I like to give my blender a break by scraping down the sides a few times, too.

WARM: Pour the sauce into a small saucepan and heat gently until warmed through before serving as a dip, on top of taco salads, as a baked potato topper or more!


If you’re looking for a coconut free version of this recipe, it’s here!


Dairy Free Cheese Sauce from http://meatified.com. Allergy friendly recipe that is gluten free, paleo and AIP friendly.


  1. Yum! I can tolerate regular potatoes, so I made it with a sad little roasted one sitting in the fridge. Delish! We’re thinking it would be a good base for a “potato” soup made with some celery root cubes, onion, bacon…….

  2. can you use olive oil instead of avocado oil? or does the avocado oil make up a lot of the taste for this?

    1. The avocado oil is there for texture, it helps give a creaminess and to give a “melty” mouthfeel, so you could sub it for another oil. I used avocado oil because it’s pretty light / neutral, so olive should be fine — but I would recommend you choose a lighter olive oil over extra virgin, which has a stronger taste that might come through a little too much. Hope that helps!

  3. I’ll have to give this recipe a try! And let you know how it goes. I’m was a former “dairy-a-holic” so I’m looking forward to this. 😉 Thanks a bunch!

    1. Yup! It’s a completely different yeast (cerevisae, not candida) and anyway has been deactivated since it’s dried. So nothing to worry about!

      1. I’m allergic to yeast, as well as candida, so if I can’t use it here, what should I substitute with?

        1. I’m afraid there isn’t a simple substitution for the yeast here, since it’s what imparts the “cheesy” flavor here.

    1. It will easily last a week in the fridge in an airtight mason jar and it freezes / thaws really well!

  4. I’m new to AIP and I’m seeing lots of recipes containing white sweet potatoes. I’m in NC and our standard grocery stores sell a variety of orange sweet potatoes, but nothing white. I went to my local International Mkt today, but was clueless what to buy. They had Japanese white, but the label said they are sweet. None of the others said anything about being white and they didn’t look white. Any help in knowing what to buy is greatly appreciated!

    1. I hear you, Stephanie — I live in the middle of nowhere and have to drive an hour just to get to stores in a relatively small town! There are actually way more varieties of sweet potato out there than people realize! Usually when people refer to “white sweet potato”, they’re talking about a variety called Hannahs. They have a tan color skin and the inside is a creamy color that turns a pale yellow when cooked. Here’s what they look like on the outside. They actually look similar enough to the usual orange sweet potato varieties that sometimes my husband buys the wrong ones! I’m afraid I’m not familiar with NC grocery stores, but here I can buy them in Safeway and Sprouts stores. I hope that helps a little!

    2. Yes, the Japanese sweet potatoes are the ones I use. I can find them year round at Whole Foods. The only other place I have found them is Trader Joe’s in the fall.

    1. You can omit them, but they’re integral to the umami / savory flavor that gives the sauce its “cheesiness”, so that wouldn’t be ideal. If you do omit the yeast, try adding some extra garlic powder and perhaps a seasoning like an Italian blend for a savory addition. It won’t be the same, but you’ll still have a nice creamy textured sauce.

  5. Hello can you substitute the sweet white potato with an alternative, lm in Sydney Australia, unfortunately I’m having trouble to source it as I would really like to make this recipe. Thank you

    1. Hmm, there isn’t really a swap for this that would turn out exactly the same as the white sweet potato varieties are starchy without being overly sweet. Orange sweet potatoes would work but would make this likely too sweet and normal potatoes are out if you’re on the AIP. I haven’t tested this myself, but I think you might be able to make this work with a milder winter squash like butternut or kabocha squash. Let me know if you give that a try!

    2. Hi Tee Kay. I’m often in Sydney as hubby lives & works down there during the week. Our white sweets are the ones with the purple skins. Have found them in About Life and the Eveleigh farmers market if that helps.

  6. Is it 240 g of raw sweet potato or is it 240 g after I have cooked it? I can’t wait to try this recipe! 🙂

    1. It’s 240 g of the cooked sweet potato, weighed after cooking. I find the easiest way is to roast a couple of white sweets, then scoop out the flesh once they’re cool enough to handle. Hope that helps!

  7. Just wanted to say that I was pretty skeptical about this cheese sauce…however, I just made it and it blew me away! I was SOOOOO missing cheese this totally hit the spot! Thank you!

    1. Yay, so glad you enjoyed it! (Did you see this “cheeseburger” post?). I hear you on being sceptical: I was myself at first! But this stuff works in so many easy recipes that it’s great to keep to hand. It freezes well, too!

  8. can i use vegetable broth instead of chicken? I am a vegetarian now I have to try skipping dairy 🙂 hormone stuff.

    1. I haven’t tried that myself, but I don’t see why not! Just make sure your broth is mild and not too heavy on stronger flavors like mushroom or tomato.

  9. Yabba dabba do! This sauce is the best! I use it ALL the time on everything! I’ve given it to non AIP friends and they cannot believe it isn’t cheese. I’ve just finished making a double batch so I had to come online to let you know how good it is! I freeze it in small jars and then microwave it when I need it. I boil the sweet potato (I use the yellow one as it’s more common here) in the bone broth, then strain off any extra for drinking. My 16 year old son loves it over veges also. Thank you!

    1. Yay, I’m so happy you enjoy it 🙂 And thank you for stopping by to tell me! I especially appreciate the info about using yellow / orange sweet taters, because people ask me about whether that would work or not fairly often and I haven’t tested it myself. I was concerned that they might make it a little too sweet, but that doesn’t sound to be the case at all. So thank YOU! 🙂

  10. This sauce is so tasty! Thanks for sharing it!! I didn’t have white sweet potatoes on hand, so I used canned pumpkin purée. It was awesome!!

    1. So glad you enjoyed it! And thanks for letting me know about the pumpkin variation 🙂 You can also make this with normal orange sweet potatoes, I’ve since found, although the sweetness does come through a little so you may want to up the garlic and salt, to taste.

  11. Thanks for sharing these amazing recipes, Rach! FYI, Kal Nutritional Yeast is totally fortified. Ingredients say “folic acid and b12.” But Amazon carries Sari non-fortified.

    1. They have two cans! One says “imported” and “non fortified” (the green label) and the other says “made in the USA” and “fortified” (the blue label). I know because I have both sitting in my pantry after I bought the fortified by mistake at Sprouts, who sells both.

    1. The beverage type of coconut milk is going to have a different texture or thickness, depending on what is added to the coconut milk. You could use the boxed version if you like, but you may need to adjust the volume you use as it’s likely to be much thinner than the canned coconut milks.

  12. Hi Rachel and everyone here,
    So hopeful that this will be Ah-Maz-Ing! I really miss cheese burgers the most going gluten and dairy free. I hate letting my kids have a little cheese knowing our dairy industry and worrying how they will digest it since I rarely have it in the house. I’m planning to surprise everyone with a Christmas movie night appetizer. Thanks so much!

  13. This tastes so good over spaghetti squash noodles and browned ground beef, with a green onion garnish!

  14. I clicked both links to the nutritional yeasts, but they both say “fortified” on the cans. I have yet to find a non-fortified one. Please help! Thanks!

    1. Phooey, it seems Amazon has swapped out products, I’ll take a look and see if I can get them updated! The non-fortified brand I use personally is KAL, but you have to be careful since they make BOTH fortified and non-fortified. I’ve linked to them both here so you can see the packaging The can with the blue writing is fortified and the can with the green writing is labelled as both “imported” and NON-fortified. Another non fortified brand is made by Sari Foods but I haven’t personally tried this one myself. Hope that helps!

  15. I’m about to try this and am excited! I’ve tried alot of dairy free cheese recipes and haven’t found one I like. I’m wondering why it matters whether the nutritional yeast is fortified or not? I only have fortified. I’m also going to try to do a version with russet potatoes and one with regular pink sweet potatoes. That’s all I have but I will keep in mind that my recipe won’t be exact. Thank you so much for the recipe!

    1. They type of nutritional yeast you use won’t affect the flavor, I just generally recommend the unfortified as some people can have problems with it and the synthetic vitamins added. If you don’t, no biggie! 🙂 I’d love to hear how the russets work out, I’ve not tried that out myself!

    2. Ok, so I made a version with the orange flesh “regular” sweet potatoes and it’s way too sweet! Duh right. I had to try. So then I made a version with russet potatoes, I know not AIP but if you can tolerate them then you should try it if you can’t find the white sweet potatoes. I think it works really well. I do want to find your white sweet potatoes and repeat the recipe but just so everyone knows Russet Potatoes do work! I also used fortified nutritional yeast and I think it’s fine as well. Thank you so much! Sorry for changing ingredients but I know you get a million questions on substitutions and thought I’d share my results.

      1. That’s really helpful, thank you for sharing! I think the extra starch from the russets could perhaps lend itself to a richer, gooey-er sauce, almost like a queso?

  16. I didn’t realize that there was an option for non fortified nutritional yeast. So thank you for bringing that to my attention. 🙂

  17. I wonder if you could use yuca root or malanga as a sub for the white sweet potatoes. Not sure if I can find them close to me. I can’t wait to try this recipe!. Thanks.

    1. Maybe! I’m actually not familiar with using those ingredients myself, but you could also try something like butternut squash for a slightly less starchy version!

    1. I make it without any kind of milk in my coconut free version – here’s that recipe! It is a little thinner, but that just makes it great for nachos and drizzling in general 🙂

  18. Loved this and it took my grass fed Polish sausage to the next level. My new go to thrill while on the AIP diet. Thanks so much!

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