Written by Sophia Marchese.
News flash: it’s 2018! Who needs cheeses of the past when we have delicious vegan cheese brands that don’t promote poor health, environmental destruction, and animal cruelty?
The future has arrived, my friends. Smart watches, virtual assistants, self-driving cars… and VEGAN CHEESE.
And not just any vegan cheese. Not the kind that tastes subtly like plastic or the kind with that weird flavor you can’t quite put your finger on.
No, I’m talking the real deal. The kind of vegan cheese that makes you wonder why cheese made from cow’s milk was ever even a thing (but really… fermenting bacteria with baby cow’s milk to make cheese—why is that a thing?!).
Anyways… back to my point. Vegan cheese that’s darn good. Vegan cheese produced by a company named Violife Foods.
This groundbreaking non-dairy cheese company is based out of Greece and is recently spreading its cheese (no pun intended) all over the United States after years of growing a name for itself overseas. Even Pizza Hut knows what’s up and began using Violife for their vegan pies!
Mozzarella, cheddar, gouda, provolone, parmesan, blue cheese, feta, Mediterranean style and (last but not least) cream cheese. Violife has all of the cheesy classics.
And while there are multi-faceted arguments against coconut oil, it’s important to note its ability to raise “good cholesterol” levels, as well as its combination of fatty acids that have positive health effects.
The fatty acids in coconut oil, known as medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs), have the ability to provide a long-winded boost of energy and increase fat burning. MCTs are absorbed at a quicker rate compared to the long-chain fatty acids (like those found in “real” dairy and other animal products) meaning that the body’s cells can produce more energy. More cellular energy means more energy overall, and an increased ability to burn fat as fuel.
That’s not to say we should go eat a block of cheddar before a killer workout, but it’s one of the many reasons I prefer Violife over other vegan cheese brands on the market such as Daiya.
Fortified with B12
Another reason I really like Violife is because each product is fortified with B12, a water-soluble vitamin necessary for bodily functions such as DNA synthesis, red blood cell formation and proper neurological function.
Many people are scared away from a vegan diet due to fear of developing a vitamin B12 deficiency, which can lead to some serious health risks. Some of the side effects associated with being deficient in B12 include nerve damage, depression and memory loss.
The good news is vegans can get B12 with supplementation and by eating foods that have been fortified with it. Bring on the Violife Foods!
Savor the flavor
By now you may be thinking, “Okay this is great and all, but how does it taste?”
Let’s just say Reid has caught me in the fridge folding Violife Smoked Provolone slices into little bite size pieces (like I used to when I was a kid) and savoring each bite with a satisfied, somewhat guilty smile across my face.
In no way am I suggesting this method, as these slices are much better served up on a sammie or melted on a piece of toast. But what I am saying is that this stuff is good. Really good.
I’ve read some mixed reviews on Violife products, but every product that I have tried has blown me away with authenticity and flavor depth. Not to mention their cheeses are also very forgiving, such as their parmesan wedge and mozzarella block cheese which both shred beautifully with a cheese grater. Talk about a pizza night upgrade!
Breaking down the cheese
We’ve had the pleasure of trying the mild cheddar, smoked provolone, mozzarella and parmesan. Here’s a quick breakdown:
Mild Cheddar: Extremely mild, but with the satisfaction of a “classic” cheese taste. This one makes really delicious grilled cheeses, and goes especially good with an avocado spread!
Smoked Provolone: The smoky taste is not at all overpowering and definitely leaves you wanting more, if smoked flavor is something you’re into. It’s super creamy and resembles a mild provolone cheese opposed to those sharper in flavor. This one also melts well!
Mozzarella: Although this one is not yet available in our local stores, our favorite pizza joint down the street makes their vegan pies with Violife Mozz! When I discovered this place and their vegan menu, I drifted into melty, stringy, cheesy heaven. It’s by far the best vegan pizza cheese I’ve ever had, with a light and sweet flavor.
Parmesan: Although we prefer making our homemade parm out of nuts, I really enjoyed the Violife version. It’s also quite nutty, and in my opinion, tastes like the real deal! It’s very easy to work with and I can’t deny that I admire its authentic parmesan shape.
Unfortunately, many of the Violife non-dairy cheeses have not yet hit our local markets. We would love to hear your feedback or personal reviews of their other products in the comments section below!
Violife Foods brand is a great dairy alternative for when you’re caught in the cheese trap. Their diverse selection of vegan cheeses provide versatility in different types of recipes, and the products that I have personally tried have all met my flavor expectations. Although delicious, these products are simply not whole foods—such as a delicious and nutritious homemade nut cheese—so I would definitely save them for an occasional treat or lazy pizza night.