During the warmer months of the year, I find myself gravitating toward dinner options that use the most amount of fresh produce with the least amount of effort.
A lot of times that means I’m whipping up veggie-heavy sandwiches or entrée-sized salads, but sometimes the stars align and I realize I have everything in my kitchen to whip up a quick, easy, satisfying, and delicious burrito bowl dinner. A burrito bowl dinner is made exponentially more delicious by the addition of cashew “cheese” sauce.
If you’re living that dairy-free lifestyle, chances are you’ve seen about a million iterations of this sauce before. But what’s the one thing that sets this recipe apart from a lot of the other versions you’ll find on the internet?
This cashew “cheese” sauce comes together in a food processor, instead of a blender. This is all thanks to the KitchenAid® 9-Cup Food Processor’s super sharp S-blade and high speed option.
For a smooth and creamy cashew sauce, it needs some extra time to chill and thicken in the refrigerator. Because of this, you’ll want to make the cashew “cheese” sauce before you do anything else. So let’s hop to it!
First, soak raw cashews in water for four hours, then drain. Then to make the sauce, all you have to do is add the drained cashews, nutritional yeast, turmeric (if using; it’s really only for color), garlic, onion (if using), salt, lime juice, and 2/3 of the water to the bowl of the Food Processor.
Process on high speed for 4-5 minutes, then add the remaining water and process for 1-2 minutes more. Transfer the sauce to a small jar and cover with a lid. Refrigerate for a minimum of 3-4 hours. The sauce will keep for up to five days as long as you’ve got it in an airtight container.
A quick note on the onion: I prefer the flavor of the sauce with the onion, but it will give the sauce a slight texture. If you want a super duper creamy sauce, omit the onion and add a heavy pinch of onion powder instead.
Once your sauce has chilled, you can start preparing the rest of the components for your burrito bowls. Cook your rice. Heat your black beans. Boil your corn (or roast it, if that’s your thing). And then layer everything together in a bowl.
I like to add a big scoop of the rice and top it with beans (along with a bit of their soaking liquid) and corn, then layer on the remaining toppings, but you can layer yours however you prefer.
Enjoy the assembled bowls immediately with a side of tortilla chips and/or a citrus margarita.
Other ways to enjoy this cashew “cheese” sauce: drizzled over these Vegetarian Farro Soft Tacos as a dairy-free option at a Mexican Fiesta or in place of the cheese and sour cream in this 7 Layer Dip.
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Black Bean Burrito Bowls with Cashew “Cheese” Sauce
Makes 4 servings
For the cashew “cheese” sauce
1 cup raw cashews, soaked for four hours
3 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric (optional, for color)
2-3 garlic cloves
1/2 small onion (optional)
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
Juice of 1/2 lime
3/4 cup water, divided
For the burrito bowls
1 cup brown rice, cooked according to the package instructions
One 29-ounce can of black beans, heated
Sweet corn, cooked (I like to boil it, but roasted corn would be delicious)
Grape tomatoes, halved
Romaine lettuce, roughly chopped
1 large avocado, quartered
1 lime, quartered
Your favorite salsa
Discard the soaking water and add the cashews to the container of the KitchenAid® 9-Cup Food Processor fitted with the S-blade.
Toss in the nutritional yeast, turmeric, garlic, onion, sea salt, lime, and 1/2 cup of the water.
Blend on high speed for 4-5 minutes, scraping down the sides as needed.
Once blended thoroughly, add the remaining 1/4 cup of water and blend for 1-2 minutes more, just until the mixture is smooth and creamy.
Transfer the sauce to a jar and seal with a lid. Refrigerate for 3-4 hours before using so the sauce has time to chill and thicken (it will thicken considerably).
When the sauce has chilled through, start prepping the rest of the ingredients to make the bowls. Cook the rice, heat the beans, prepare the corn, etc.
Once you have everything prepared, simply layer the ingredients in a bowl. I like to start with rice, beans, and corn, then add the remaining toppings.
Enjoy with a side of tortilla chips. And maybe a citrus margarita, too.
*The Contributor of this post has been compensated by KitchenAid for this post, but this post represents the Contributor’s own opinion.*