Thursday, August 8, 2013

Crazy Good Vegan Cheese Sticks!

Oh my goodness!  I am shocked at how great these baked cheese sticks turned out!  As I have mentioned before, real cheese products are hard to emulate.  But these prove me wrong!

Cheese was one of the most difficult things to give up for me, so I have been playing around with vegan cheese products to create something delicious.  I truly believe that this recipe is the best thus far! 

Best of all, I learned something regarding cooking today:  Trust your instincts! If you think certain ingredients will pair well with your main ingredient, go for it!  Trust those taste buds!

I knew that the vegan cheese lacked certain elements than real cheese has.  So, i added a touch of almond milk and liquid smoke.  Simple additions can make a ginormous difference!

Vegan Cheese Stix

You can use any vegan shredded cheese you like.  I opted for Follow Your Heart Pepper Jack because it has the most flavor.

vegan cheese shreds
1 tsp liquid smoke
2 tsp unflavored almond milk (or soymilk)
1/4-1/2 panko crumbs
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tbsp melted vegan butter
2 tsp egg replacer powder mixed with water

Preheat oven to 350.  Heat sauce pan on low-medium, add in the vegan cheese, liquid smoke and almond milk.  Stir frequently until has almost all melted.  Transfer to bowl and stir in 1/2 tbsp panko crumbs in order to create a stick form.  Set up 3 bowls.  One containing a mixture of panko crumbs, basil, oregano and garlic powder.  One with the egg replacer and one with the melted butter.  With edge stick, start out with dredging in egg replacer, then panko, then butter and then a bit more panko.  Repeat until all the sticks are done.  Place on baking sheet and bake for about 20 minutes.  Serve with your favorite marinara.

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