3 Dairy-Free Cheese Sauce Recipes (Paleo, Whole30, AIP)

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What’s Inside: Looking for the best dairy-free cheese sauce? Here are three recipes to make on repeat. Plus, they’re Paleo, Whole30, and AIP! 

The Best Dairy-free Cheese Sauces To Make On Repeat (Paleo, Whole30, AIP-friendly) via Food by Mars

The Best Cheese Sauce Is Dairy-Free!

When I first eliminated dairy from my diet many moons ago, I felt a lot of things. I felt way better, I saw less skin breakouts and irritations, and my digestion improved, to name a few. But, I also felt a dairy-shaped gaping hole in the depth of my soul. And so began the search for dairy-free substitutes to be able to enjoy the foods I missed most like mac and cheese, ice cream, and, of course, a good ol’ cheese board.

Just getting started on AIP (or need a refresh)? Here's an easy 1-week meal plan using some of my most popular AIP recipes to make it stress-free and delicious.

This post is all about the sauce, though, because cheese sauce can be used in so many different ways. Between pouring it on veggies, gluten-free pasta, veggie noodles, and using it in casseroles, it’s become quite a staple in my fridge because it’s easy to make and delicious!

The three best dairy-free cheese sauces highlighted in this post are my go-to’s, and two of them are AIP-friendly, meaning they’re nut-free, vegan, and packed with veggies. This is also a great way to get kids or picky eaters to consume more veggies (in a sneaky way).  

Bonus: Download The 20-minute AIP/Paleo Meal Prep System: Flexible Meals Everyone Will Love (Even The Picky Eaters)

…Cue the evil laugh – muahaha!

The Best Dairy-free Cheese Sauces To Make On Repeat (Paleo, Whole30, AIP-friendly) via Food by Mars

What You Need To Make Dairy-Free Cheese

  • Nutritional Yeast: Different from bakers or brewer’s yeast, this is a pivotal ingredient in dairy-free cheese recipes. It provides a cheesy-like taste. This is the brand I use.
  • Lemon Juice or Vinegar: This helps with that little bite that cheese has and brings something acidic to your recipe.
  • Cauliflower, Nuts, Coconut, or Potato: Something that will be creamy in texture whether it be from fat (nuts, coconut) or starch (like potato or arrowroot starch).

The Best Dairy-free Cheese Sauces To Make On Repeat (Paleo, Whole30, AIP-friendly) via Food by Mars

Ways To Use Dairy-Free Cheese Sauce

The Top 3 Dairy-Free (and Vegan) Cheese Sauce Recipes

Coconut-Cauliflower Cheese Sauce
4.35 from 29 votes
Coconut-Cauliflower Cheese Sauce recipe
This nut-free, AIP-friendly cheese sauce is a staple in my recipes! It's easy and delicious.
Get the recipe
Classic Cashew Cheese Sauce
4.78 from 27 votes
The Best Dairy-free Cheese Sauces To Make On Repeat (Paleo, Whole30, AIP-friendly) via Food by Mars
This vegan cheese sauce recipe is a staple in my fridge. It's easy to make and even more delicious to eat!
Get the recipe
Sweet Potato Cheese Sauce (AIP, Dairy-Free, Paleo, Whole30)
5 from 4 votes
creamy shrimp over zoodles
This easy coconut-free sauce is so creamy and dreamy! It's AIP, Paleo, and Whole30.
Get the recipe

More Healthy, Dairy-free Recipe Collections

4.83 from 28 votes
The Best Dairy-free Cheese Sauces To Make On Repeat (Paleo, Whole30, AIP-friendly) via Food by Mars
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Sweet Potato Cheese Sauce (+ more Dairy-free Cheese Sauce Recipes)

This easy coconut-free sauce is so creamy and dreamy! It's AIP, Paleo, and Whole30.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Course: Sauce
Servings: 6


  • 2 cups cooked and cooled white sweet potato (skin peeled off)
  • 1 cup+ water
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes
  • 1/2 juiced lemon or 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder


  • Blend all ingredients in a high-speed blender until your sauce forms, add more water as needed to loosen and use in cooking or store for up to 5-days in the fridge.


This Sweet Potato Cheese Sauce Recipe was adapted from Rachel’s delicious one @meatified!
Trying to get back to eating healthy again (+ for good)? Check out the Nourishing You Membership and get weekly done-for-you Paleo/AIP Meal Prep Plans with Grocery Lists delivered to you + Nutrition coaching and community to make this lifestyle easy
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Recipe Rating

  • RamyaMarch 31, 2020 - 2:57 pm

    will be making all soon for me i dont eat dairy at home will tag you on twitter drooling over my samsung galaxy j4 love your recipes making me hungry Thanks RamyaReplyCancel

  • Aimee MarsApril 28, 2020 - 5:37 pm

    I can’t wait to try these different cheese sauces! Anytime I’ve tried to make a dairy-free one before they’ve never tasted good, but these look delicious.ReplyCancel

    • Alison MarrasMay 7, 2020 - 7:03 pm

      all the goods to try!! yay, hope you enjoy!ReplyCancel

  • JenApril 28, 2020 - 6:20 pm

    Definitely going to try the sweet potato cheese sauce first. It looks delicious. Perfect for that classic mac and cheese crazing. ReplyCancel

  • BethApril 28, 2020 - 6:30 pm

    We made the sweet potato cheese sauce. It is so yummy! I’ll definitely make it again!ReplyCancel

    • Alison MarrasMay 7, 2020 - 7:03 pm

      awesome!! thanks for sharing, Beth!ReplyCancel

  • Taylor KiserApril 28, 2020 - 6:49 pm

    They all sound so delicious! Looking forward to making them!ReplyCancel

  • CookiliciousApril 29, 2020 - 5:44 am

    Oh gosh..your pasta looks amazing..drooling just looking at the picsReplyCancel

  • MarisaSeptember 7, 2020 - 1:34 am

    What brand of nutritional yeast do you use? I’m trying to find a non-fortified one.ReplyCancel

    • Alison MarrasSeptember 10, 2020 - 12:31 am

      I use Bragg’sReplyCancel

  • Claire FletcherNovember 16, 2020 - 4:04 pm

    This recipe is amazing! We replaced the sweet potato with butternut squash because that’s what we had on hand it turned out amazing. Highly recommend making this! Perfect for pasta, as a sauce or even for nachos! ReplyCancel

    • Alison MarrasNovember 21, 2020 - 11:47 pm

      Perfect and easy swap! Thanks for sharing, Claire!ReplyCancel

  • Bintu | Recipes From A PantryNovember 19, 2020 - 5:01 pm

    I have been looking for a delicious dairy free cheese sauce and these sound so good – will certainly be giving them a try.ReplyCancel

  • JessNovember 19, 2020 - 5:07 pm

    Wow! I don’t even know which one to start with first. They all look amazing!ReplyCancel

  • KechiNovember 19, 2020 - 5:28 pm

    I will definitely be trying this dairy-free cheese sauce! I just started eating less dairy, so I need all of these.
    Thank you so much for sharing!ReplyCancel

    • Alison MarrasNovember 21, 2020 - 11:45 pm

      My pleasure, hope you enjoy it!ReplyCancel

  • ShelleyNovember 19, 2020 - 6:20 pm

    These are all so clever! I can think of so many uses for them – way beyond just draping them over pasta – and I was excited to see that you had some yummy suggestions, too! Thanks for the inspiration!ReplyCancel

  • Jessica FormicolaNovember 19, 2020 - 6:29 pm

    I love this sauce and I want to put it on everything! Perfect for when my friends that have a dairy sensitivity come over!ReplyCancel

  • BethJanuary 7, 2021 - 5:22 pm

    This looks so delicious and perfect for my daughter! I can’t wait to show her this recipe! So excited!ReplyCancel

  • ShashiJanuary 7, 2021 - 5:28 pm

    Oooh I love these sauces – so easy and tasty and -seeing Im lactose intolerant, these are perfect for me! Thank you!ReplyCancel

  • veenaazmanovJanuary 7, 2021 - 6:03 pm

    This is definitely amazing. Perfect recipes.  Cant wait to try them all. Cheesy options are my all tie favorite.ReplyCancel

  • JessJanuary 7, 2021 - 6:17 pm

    Will definitely be making this on repeat!ReplyCancel

  • YvonneApril 12, 2021 - 11:02 pm

    Delicious and easy! I made the cauliflower sauce. It is by far the most delicious and easiest “cheesy” like recipe I’ve ever come across. I put it on breaded Italian seasoning chicken and some pasta. This is a keeper. ReplyCancel

hey thereI'm Alison

I believe your healing journey with real food can be a stress-free lifestyle, filled with joy and flavor.



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