June 2, 2023

Plant-Based Whole30 Parmesan Cheese

You’re gonna love this Plant-Based Parmesan Cheese! An easy way to add nutty, savory flavor to any salad, protein, vegetable, or side dish! It takes 5 minutes to make and is a great vegan alternative for a parmesan cheese flavor without the dairy. Plus, it’s Whole30 and gluten-free.

Plant Based Parmesan-Cheese Ingredients

This “cheese” uses six simple ingredients to create a cheesy flavor. It quickly combines macadamia nuts, cashews, nutritional yeast, garlic powder, onion powder, and salt. Use a food processor to pulse them together into a delicious crumbly texture. Make sure not to overblend the mixture so you don’t end up with nut butter instead!

This plant-based parmesan cheese achieves a deep, full flavor by using a combination of half macadamia nuts and half cashews. However, if necessary, you can opt for either all macadamia nuts or all cashews. Also, the recipe is written using unsalted nuts. If using salted nuts, be sure to omit the additional salt from the recipe.

Don’t be afraid to mix it up!

Experimenting with different nut mixtures and chopped herbs is a great way to customize your “cheese” to vibe with whatever you’re pairing it with. Try adding a teaspoon or more (depending on how herby you’d like it) of finely chopped rosemary, dill, oregano, or thyme for a deliciously stunning culinary experience.

Try it on our Grilled Romaine Caesar Salad for an easy-to-make, elevated side or as a topper for your favorite plant-based power bowls! Also, potatoes. Any potato.

Plant-Based Parmesan Cheese

Recipe & photos by Autumn Michaelis

Plant-Based Whole30 Parmesan Cheese

Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes


  • 1/2 cup unsalted macadamia nuts
  • 1/2 cup unsalted cashews
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/5 tsp salt (omit if nuts are salted)


  • PULSE all the ingredients in a food processor until well combined. Don’t over blend, or you will be on your way to making nut butter.
  • STORE in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.
Autumn Michaelis wearing an apron and holding a bowl of fresh salad smiling at the camera.

Autumn Michaelis

Autumn Michaelis is an ACSM Certified Exercise Physiologist, with a B.S. in Exercise Science from BYU. Though exercise was her first love in the health world, nutrition has become her passion. She created the blog Wholefoodfor7, sharing easy and budget-friendly Whole30, Paleo, and gluten-free + dairy-free recipes for families. In August 2022, Autumn released the newest Whole30 Endorsed cookbook, Whole Food for Your Family. She is mom to 5 boys (yes 5!) and when not in the kitchen can be found adventuring, hiking, and tearing up the dance floor.