Prepare to have your mind BLOWN by this spicy cashew dressing. Just a handful of ingredients and you have a luscious, flavorful dressing you’ll want to pour on everything!

Jar with spicy cashew dressing, spoon with some of the dressing, roasted cashews, small bowl of nutritional yeast and 3 garlic cloves

I’m a sauce gal. Like, I want my foods to have ALL THE SAUCE, all the flavor, all the time. And I find that many storebought dressings are either 1) not as flavorful and delicious as I want them to be or 2) full of ingredients that I don’t particularly want to be consuming on a regular basis.

Once I started making my own dressings and sauces I never looked back. The flavor and nutrition is just incomparable! And once you start the regular routine of making your own dressings and build up a baseline pantry of different condiments, vinegars, oils, etc. making a sauce from scratch is SO easy.

Best part of this recipe? Only 7 ingredients! (not including salt and pepper)

This spicy cashew dressing is:

  • Creamy
  • Slightly spicy
  • Garlicky
  • Tangy
  • Perfect Balanced
  • Totally addicting
Mason jar with vibrant yellow cashew dressing in it

Here’s what you’ll need to make it:

Cashews: roasted cashews give this a really nice depth of flavor and blend into a creamier sauce

Extra Virgin Olive Oil: there is a difference between “extra virgin” olive oil and “light” olive oil. Getting a good quality extra virgin variety really makes a difference in taste!

Nutritional Yeast: this ingredient is in the yeast family but is not similar in taste or function to regular baking yeast at all. It offers a yummy, cheesy flavor. You can find it in most grocery stores in the baking aisle or online here.

Rice Vinegar: gives the dressing tanginess and acidity. You can use white wine or apple cider vinegar as well.

Maple Syrup: the sweetness in syrup really helps to balance all the other flavors.

Garlic: whole cloves add wonderful flavor and a little spiciness!

Salt: of course we need a little seasoning to help the other flavors come alive, I like to use kosher salt.

Sriracha: this is what give the dressing it’s slight heat. If you don’t like spicy, you could leave the sriracha out but that slight spicy punch is what makes me want to keep digging in for bite after bite!

Water: since this dressing is made with cashews, a splash of cold water helps thin things out!

Equipment you will need:

One thing that completely changed the game for me making my own dressings and sauces is having a really good, high-quality blender.

I use my Vitamix Venturist 1200 with the blender cup attachment. This is by far my favorite kitchen investment, I use it ALL the time.

I also love my Cuisinart 13 cup Elemental Food Processor.

For a slightly more cost-effective option I’ve also used and loved our Nutribullet.

If you’re scared of making this investment, do it. It is SO worth it. You will be making sauces and dressings galore and enjoying every single bite.

How to make this spicy cashew dressing:

It’s really pretty dang simple my friends. Add all the ingredients to a high-powered blender and blend until super smooth and creamy. You may need to adjust with a tablespoon or more of water until your desired consistency is reached.

You can also make this in a food processor but I’ve found my blender gets it much smoother.

If you want you can adjust the taste by adding maple for sweetness, sriracha for spiciness, rice vinegar for tanginess and salt for overall flavor, until you have it JUST the way you like it. (although I’m very partial to the ratios as written and think you will be too!)

If you do not have a high powered blender you may want to consider soaking your cashews for 10-20 minutes in warm water before blending.

Bowl with quinoa, broccoli, sweet potato, kale, hard boiled egg and spicy cashew dressing on top

SERVING SUGGESTIONS:

Oh where do I even begin!?

My favorite way to use this dressing is in a power bowl with your favorite roasted veggies, cooked grain, hard boiled egg or tofu and some massaged kale (pictured above!)

You could also use it in tacos, as a dip for veggies and crackers, as a sauce for grilled meat or tofu or as a salad dressing for Asian chicken salad, cobb salad, kale salad or any leafy greens.

RECIPE VARIATIONS:

Herb: omit the sriracha and add a few handfuls fresh parsley, mint and basil for a creamy herb dressing.

Jalapeno cilantro: add a handful of cilantro and a chopped seeded jalapeno for a spicy cilantro sauce.

Sweet honey: omit the sriracha, nutritional yeast and garlic and replace the maple with honey and the rice vinegar with lemon or lime juice for a honey lemon dressing

Mason jar with a creamy cashew dressing, small bowl of nutritional yeast and a handful of roasted cashews

FAQ

How do I store it?

Keep this dressing in an air-tight jar or mason jar with lid in the fridge for up to a week. If you’re anything like me it won’t last long-it goes on everything!

I have a nut allergy, how can I make this nut-free?

Since the primary ingredient here is cashews, this probably isn’t a great recipe for you BUT you could try using sunflower seeds or pine nuts (which are technically a legume)

I can’t find nutritional yeast, can I leave it out?

Yep! It’ll still be delicious without it. Nutritional yeast adds another layer of savory-ness and “cheesiness.”

What should I do if I don’t have a very good blender?

Soak your cashews in VERY hot water for 20 minutes. Drain, add the rest of the ingredients and blend!

WATCH HOW TO MAKE IT:

Okay friends go forth! And make yourself this incredible spicy cashew dressing! And make sure you leave me a comment and star rating when you do 🙂

Print
clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Spicy cashew dressing in a mason jar with a spoonful of dressing, roasted cashews, garlic cloves and a small bowl of nutritional yeast

Simple Spicy Cashew Dressing (7 ingredients!)

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 1 review
  • Author: Erica
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 cup dressing 1x
  • Category: Dressings
  • Method: Blend
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

You will want to use this simple 7-ingredient spicy cashew dressing on EVERYTHING! Tacos, bowls, roasted veggies, salads and more!


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 1/2 cup roasted cashews
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sriracha
  • 2 large garlic cloves, smashed or roughly chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon each kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup water

Instructions

Combine all ingredients in a high powered blender and blend on high until completely smooth and creamy. You may need to adjust with an extra tablespoon or so of water to reach your desired consistency. Keep in an airtight container or jar in the fridge for up to a week and use on EVERYTHING!


Notes

Nutritional information is an estimate and might vary based on brand of ingredients used.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 2 tablespoons
  • Calories: 112
  • Sugar: 2 g
  • Sodium: 14.8 mg
  • Fat: 10.1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 4.6 g
  • Protein: 1.9 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg