This is the best homemade vegan sour cream recipe out there! The flavor was perfected next to real sour cream and is the perfect dairy free substitute.
It's hard to nail that tangy, yet creamy flavor when trying to make a non dairy sour cream. Most take effort and time, but this substitute it fast, easy, simple and tastes amazing!
This recipe was originally published on 4/5/14
This vegan substitute for sour cream will be your new go to. It's amazing how much it reminds me of the real thing! Other than my vegan ranch dressing, I think this is my favorite plant-based creation yet!
Is Sour Cream Vegan?
Unfortunately sour cream is made with, you guessed it, cream. Cream is dairy and is most definitely not vegan.
Thankfully there are a number of options nowadays for dairy free sour cream. There are a few good store bought brands, but the best vegan sour cream is made at home!
The texture is smooth, thick, and creamy, while the flavor is perfect with just the right amount of tang. With just 4 ingredients and 5 minutes you can make your own homemade vegan sour cream!
I have made SO many trials of sour cream. While creating a recipe for my plain yogurt (because none I can find out there replicate the stuff I used to eat as a kid!), one of my failed trials resulted in a pretty darn good sour cream! So here we are, sharing it with the world.
Luckily you don't need too many ingredients to make your own non dairy sour cream, it's a pretty simple recipe. Here's what you'll need:
- Slivered almonds
- Lime juice
- Distilled white vinegar
How to Make Vegan Sour Cream
It is so easy to whip this recipe up, you'll never go back to store bought! Here's what to do:
- Blend all ingredients until smooth.
- Let it set in the fridge over night.
Sour cream is one of those things that just seems to go good on pretty much anything! Here's some ideas of how to use this vegan substitute for sour cream:
As a garnish:
- Vegan nachos
- Vegan taquitos
- Mexican taco bowls
- Healthy breakfast tacos
- Black bean sweet potato tacos
- Bean and cheese burrito
- Ultimate vegan burrito
- Easy vegan enchilada casserole
- Vegan bean chili
- Tequila lime soup
- Creamy potato soup
- Loaded baked potato
- Vegan latkes
More sour cream uses:
- Use as a spread for sandwiches
- A base for other dips, try mixing with my healthy vegan bean dip
- Serve with oven fries, veggie sticks, or crackers as a dip
- Mix it with my Mexican Cole Slaw for a creamy version
- Don't forget to soak the nuts even if you are using a high speed blender. It is part of the overall end flavor.
- You can soak the cashews overnight or boil them for 30 minutes if you forget.
- Do not use lemon in place of lime. Lime is the key to get the perfect flavor.
- Do not substitute the vinegar with another kind such as apple cider vinegar, it's too sweet. The distilled white vinegar is essential for the final result. If you sub it, the flavor will change.
- Add more vinegar if you want it more tangy but dairy sour cream is more of a neutral than sour flavor.
- The more it sets the more cultured like it will get, I recommend overnight.
- To make a nut free version, you can try subbing silken tofu for the nuts! Do the same amount, so 1 ½ cups plus 2 tablespoons.
- Seal the plant based sour cream in an airtight container for up to 7 days in the fridge.
- You can also freeze vegan sour cream for up to 3 months.
- The best way to freeze it is to cover the top of the sour cream itself with plastic so it touches it and forms a barrier from freezer burn.
- Seal in a freezer safe airtight container or bag and keep for 3 months.
- You can also freeze it in ice cube trays before transferring to the airtight container for individual servings.
- The texture may change a bit if frozen, just whisk or blend the defrosted sour cream to get it back to the right consistency.
There are loads of vegan sour cream recipes out there, with a few different base ingredients. Often used are cashews, tofu, non dairy yogurt, coconut cream, and tahini. In this recipe I used cashews, almonds, lime juice, and white distilled vinegar.
If you aren't going to make your own sour cream, and need a quick and easy sub, the best thing I can think of is plain yogurt. Much like I said above when I shared this vegan sour cream recipe was actually a result from a failed vegan plain yogurt recipe trial, they are pretty close!
Homemade sour cream will last in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days, and in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Everyone's picture of 'healthy' is different, so it depends on your dietary needs. Standard sour cream is made with dairy and in turn contains some fat, cholesterol, and lactose. This homemade sour cream recipe uses plant based ingredients to create a healthier version.
More Dairy Free Recipes
Finding solid vegan versions of traditional sauces and dressings can be tough. I've had a bit of success recreating the classic favorites into plant based whole food versions, here's some of our favorites:
- Homemade Ranch Dressing
- Vegan Whipped Cream
- Homemade Vegan Cream Cheese
- Vegan Cheese Sauce
- The Best Vegan Bechamel Sauce
- Vegan Alfredo Sauce
- No Butter Vegan Buffalo Sauce
The Best Homemade Vegan Sour Cream Recipe
- 1 ½ cups raw cashews , soaked overnight (see note, includes nut free idea)
- 2 tablespoons blanched slivered almonds , soaked overnight (see note, includes nut free idea)
- 1 cup , plus 1 tablespoon water
- 2 tablespoons lime juice (see note)
- 5-5 ½ teaspoons distilled white vinegar (see note)
- Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth
- Put in an airtight container and let set in the fridge overnight.
- you must soak the nuts even if you are using a high speed blender. It is part of the overall end flavor. You can soak the cashews overnight or boil them for 30 minutes if you forget. Caution, some blenders won't be able to get a smooth result due to their lack of power.
- Do not use lemon in place of lime. Lime is the key to get the perfect flavor.
- Do not sub the vinegar with another kind. Apple cider vinegar is sweeter and not as tangy. The distilled white is key for the final result. If you sub it, the flavor will change. Add more vinegar if you want it more tangy but dairy sour cream is more of a neutral than sour flavor.
- This recipe makes 2 ½ cups. Serving size is ¼ cup.
Recipe by Veggies Don’t Bite, visit our site for more great plant-based recipes.
Nutrition and metric information should be considered an estimate.
Amazing! Perfect for a dollop on tacos!
I just made this and it tastes amazing!! I can’t wait to pair it with my vegan Mexican flautas!! Thank you for sharing your recipe! 🙂
I'm so happy you liked it! Thanks Mariana!!
Hi! Do you blend the cashews in the water they have been soaked in? Or do you dump that water and measure out a fresh cup of water to blend the nuts in? Thanks!
Hi Stephanie! Drain and use fresh water. The flavor needs to be crisp and clean. Hope you like it!
Super creamy and delicious! I could still taste cashew, but then again, it's mostly cashews, lol. I agree, it tastes much better than any tofu based one I've tried. Well use this recipe from now on!
So happy you liked it Nina! Thanks for the great review! You can add more of the lime juice and/or vinegar if you still taste a hint of the cashew. It really does alter depending on the batch of cashews you use, sometimes they are stronger than others.
I'm excited about making this recipe. I usually do the tofu with the lemon juice and red wine vinegar. Which I like but it makes too much and I end up having to throw most of it out. So I plan on making this and freezing it in ice cube trays so it doesn't spoil.
I hope you like it Laura!! I love the idea of freezing it in ice cubes. The texture when it defrosts may be a bit off but just give it a good whisk and it should smooth out!
How many grams do you consider a serving ?
Each serving is about 1/4 cup. I can guess that is about 60 grams.
I’m confused on how much white vinegar to use
Hi Terri. It's a range. start with the lowest in the range, which is 5 teaspoons, and then add more if you want it tangier. The range is from 5 teaspoons to 5 1/2 teaspoons. Hope that makes sense!
How long will this keep in the fridge?
Hi Leslie! About 5-7 days. Flavor is best within that time frame.
Just did this recipe & put it in the fridge to set overnight. Can’t wait to try it! 🙂
Yay!! Hope you like it!
Do you have to use raw cashews?
Hi Geneva! Raw cashews are what give this the creamy texture and flavor it needs so if you sub those then you will lose the base of the recipe.
Hi there, I can't get blanched slivered almonds. Would blanched almond meal work? If so, how much should I use and would I need to soak it?
Hi Catherine, I have not tried the almond meal, but you could give it a shot. I would go by the weight I give which is 17.5 grams. I'm not quite sure if the consistency or smoothness would come out the same, I would try without soaking first since soaking almond meal isn't the same as soaking almonds and since it is not hard like almonds are you probably don't need to soak at all. Let me know if you try it and how it worked!
Going to try with walnuts lol. Because its the only nuts I have in the house right now.
Hi Rochelle! I haven't tried those but let me know how it works out!