Cashews are a type of tree nut that is commonly used in cooking. They can be eaten raw, roasted, or Salted cashew nuts and are a good source of protein, fiber, and vitamins.
If you want to make a vegan cashew cream or any other dish that calls for soaked cashews, you may be wondering how to soak cashews and what the best method is.
This blog post will explore different ways to soak cashews and share our recommendations for the best way to do it. Soaking cashew is a simple process that can yield delicious results, so let’s start!
Also Check: How to Sprout Cashews [and Nutrition Benefits]
The importance of soaking cashews
Before we get into how to soak cashews, let’s find out why it is important to soak them in the first place.
When raw cashews are soaked before you turn them into roasted cashews, this phytic acid is broken down, allowing them to be absorbed properly and providing your body with the minerals it requires.
Phytic acid is a substance found in plant seeds that binds to minerals and hinders their absorption.
Eating foods containing phytic acid binds to the minerals in our gut and prevents them from being absorbed into our bloodstream. This can lead to mineral deficiencies, which can then cause health problems.
Cashews are also high in enzyme inhibitors in addition to phytic acid. An overabundance of these inhibitors may make it difficult to digest the nut.
When you soak cashews, you neutralize some of these enzymes, which allows them to be digested properly. You may struggle to digest nuts if you experience a heavy feeling after eating them or if you find nuts in your stool.
It can also make them more flavorful and easier to blend into smooth, creamy textures. Cashew cream, for example, is a popular dairy-free alternative perfect for making sauces, soups, and desserts.
Soaking raw cashews before using them in recipes that call for roasted cashews or cream is easy and can make all the difference in the final dish.
How to soak cashews?
The soaking process is crucial to getting the most out of these nuts. These raw nuts are rich in nutrients, including vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. However, if you don’t soak them properly, you won’t be able to access these nutrients. So how to soak cashews?
Cold or room temperature water is the best way to soak them. While this method takes the longest, the plus side is that the soaked cashews will retail their full nutritional value.
Apart from this, there are also some other traditional and quick soak methods that you can use to soak the cashews. Let’s check them out.
The overnight method
Soaking cashews with the overnight method is the best way to ensure that they are properly hydrated and ready to use in recipes.
The overnight soak also helps to soften the cashews, making them easier to blend into smooth sauces and dips. It makes them easier to mix in a high-speed blender.
To soak cashews overnight, place them in a bowl with enough water to cover them completely.
Cover the bowl with a plate or lid and let it sit on the counter overnight. In the morning, drain the soaking liquid and rinse the soaked raw cashews before using them in your recipe. Soaking cashews overnight is an easy way to prep them for use in all kinds of recipes.
Hot water method
The hot water soak method is one of the quick soak methods to soften cashews. The hot water only takes about 30 minutes to work its magic and create perfectly softened cashews. All you need for this method is a pot of warm water and patience.
First, bring the pot of water to heat. Then, please remove it from the heat and add the cashews. Allow them to soak for at least 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
After 2 hours, drain the water and rinse the cashews with cold water. You’ll notice that they’ve doubled in size and are much softer than before. Now they’re ready to be used in any recipe.
Soaking cashews in hot water is quick and easy, but it does have one downside. Hot water can cause the cashews to lose some of their flavor.
If you prefer your cashews to be extra flavorful, try soaking them in cold water overnight instead.
Quick soak method
Quick-soaking is the best way to ensure that the nuts are tender and flavorful. To quick-soak cashews, bring a bowl of water that has been boiled. Add the cashews and let them soak for 10 minutes.
After 10 minutes, drain the water and rinse the cashews with cold water before using them in your recipe. You can soak cashews this way compared to them being soaked overnight.
So if you don’t have a lot of patience, this is how you soak cashews fast.
What can you make with soaked cashews?
Soaked cashews can make savory dishes, such as curries, stir-fries, and sautés.
They can also be added to morning granola and other fresh fruit or used as a dessert topping.
In addition to being eaten whole, cashews can be ground into a paste or flour.
This versatile ingredient can add a roasted flavor and be used in sweet and savory dishes, making it a staple in many kitchens.
Let’s see what else can be made with soaked cashew nuts.
Vegan cashew cream
Cashew cream is a versatile vegan ingredient that can be used in a variety of dishes. It’s made by blending them with water and has a creamy, rich texture. Cashew cream can be used as a dairy-free alternative to regular milk in recipes.
It can also be flavored with spices, herbs, or sweeteners to create various dishes. Overall, cashew cream is a healthy vegan option that is high in protein and low in fat. It’s also relatively easy to make home with just a few simple ingredients.
Most commercial vegan cashew cream is made by blending raw cashews with water in a high-speed blender to create a smooth, thick mixture. These differ a lot from homemade cashew cream.
The cashew cream recipe is simple. The cashews are first soaked in water for several hours (or overnight) to soften them.
This step is important because it helps the blender break down the nuts more easily, resulting in a smoother final product.
Once the cashews have been soaked, they are drained and rinsed before being added to the blender and fresh water.
Depending on the recipe, other ingredients, such as salt, spices, and sweeteners, may be added at this point.
The ingredients are then blended until they form a creamy, uniform mixture. The final consistency of the cream will vary depending on how much water is used and how long it is blended.
For a thicker cream, less water can be used, or the mixture can be blended for a longer period. More water can be added, or the blending time can be shortened for a thinner consistency.
And hence this is how you can have your homemade vegan cashew cream.
To not let it get spoiled, it is prudent that you freeze cashew cream in your freezer.
To make cashew milk, cashews are blended with water and then strained to remove any solids.
The ratio of cashews to water can vary depending on how creamy or thick you want the final product to be, but a typical ratio is one part cashews to four parts water.
Once the cashews have been blended, the milk can be flavored with sweeteners like honey or sugar or spices like vanilla or cinnamon. For a savory version, salt can be added instead.
Cashew milk can be enjoyed on its own or used as a dairy-free alternative in recipes that call for milk or cream.
It will thicken when heated, so it’s especially well-suited for use in soups, sauces, and gravies. You can also use it to make whipped cream or combine it with almond or plant-based milk as per your preference.
Vegan sour cream
Many people think vegan sour cream is made from tofu, but it’s most commonly made from cashews!
The process is pretty simple: raw cashews are soaked in water until they’re soft, then they’re blended with other ingredients like lemon juice, vinegar, and salt. The resulting mixture is thick and creamy, just like traditional sour cream.
Some brands also add thickeners or emulsifiers to ensure a consistent texture. While sour cream doesn’t have the same tang as dairy-based sour cream, it’s a delicious and versatile condiment that can be used in all sorts of recipes.
Vegan creamed spinach
This dish is one of the popular choices for vegan cooking. However, to begin making vegan creamed spinach, you’ll need to gather your ingredients.
You’ll need sauteed spinach, water, cashews, garlic cloves, nutritional yeast, salt, and pepper. Once you have all your ingredients, you can start preparing the dish.
To make creamed spinach with cashews, you’ll first need to cook the spinach. You can do this by steaming it or boiling it in water for a few minutes.
Once the spinach is cooked, drain it and place it in a food processor. Add the cashews, garlic cloves, yeast, salt, and pepper to the food processor and blend until smooth.
Serve the creamed spinach with cashews immediately or store it in the fridge for later. Enjoy!
FAQ about soaked cashews
Do you have any further questions regarding the soaking cashews? We have answered some additional questions below.
How long do cashews need to soak?
Cashews need to soak in the fridge overnight or for 5-8 hours during the day. This long soak time allows the cashews to absorb water, which helps to plump them up and soften them so they’ll be easier to blend.
Soaking also helps to remove some of the phytic acid, which can make nuts difficult to digest. As a result, soaking cashews before using them in recipes such as cashew cream is essential for achieving the best texture and flavor.
How do you soak raw cashews?
To soak raw cashews, place them in a bowl and cover them with water. Let the cashews soak for at least 2 hours or overnight if you have the time.
Drain the soaking water and rinse the cashews before using them in your recipe. Soaking cashews is a simple way to make them more enjoyable to eat and can also help improve their nutritional value.
Can you soak cashews for too long?
Yes, you can soak cashews for too long. The smell and taste of cashews will deteriorate if they have been soaked too long. A slimy, almost gel-like consistency will also develop in the water.
This is a sure sign that you’ve soaked the nuts for too long and should discard them.
So, the next time you’re making a dish that calls for cashews, be sure to soak them for the correct time. Your taste buds will thank you!
How long can you soak cashews in the fridge?
Cashews can be soaked and stored in an airtight container inside the fridge overnight for up to 2 days. Remember that the longer you soak them, the softer they will become.
As a result, you may need to adjust the cooking time for recipes that call for soaked cashews. However, soaking them for a few hours should not impact the flavor or texture of most dishes.