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Feb 23

Vegan Goat Cheese Stuffed Oven-Roasted Tomatoes

Playing favorites isn’t fair.

No one ever said life was fair.

Everything I made for my vegan French book club dinner was good (I was kind of shocked)…. but we all have favorites, even if you won’t admit it.

 

This is mine.

 

These vegan Goat Cheese Stuffed Oven-Roasted Tomatoes could probably get by on their looks alone.  That isn’t why they were my favorite.  I’m not that shallow.

They were my favorite because of the cheese.

 

Inspired by this recipe from Alain Coumont, founder of Le Pain Quotidien cafés in France, I decided to take his concept and make it vegan.  (Coincidentally, Le Pain Quotidien offers many vegan dishes.)

Everyone has some sort of vegan “cheese” they use in recipes.  Often it’s cashew-based.  Sometimes with nooch or any array of vegan products.  It never really tastes like cheese.

 

With the exception of this tofu-based cheese.  Tofu makes a GREAT sub for creamy cheeses like ricotta and goat cheese.  (It made a helluva ricotta in this Eggplant Rollitini.)

This particular vegan version of tofu-cheese is a goat cheese.  I swear to you – you would NEVER miss the real thing.  The book club didn’t balk at all!

Goat cheese has a tanginess that was captured well with the lemon juice in this tofu creation.  The miso lends a salty-sweetness to it, which helps bring out the cheesy side of the nutritional yeast.

 

Fantastic taste aside, the other plus to this recipe is that it’s easy… yet it looks impressive.  There is a decent list of ingredients for the cheese, but you simply toss it all in the food processor.  I love a one-bowl recipe!

Just be careful not to cut through the tomatoes when you scoop out the middles!

_______________________________________________________________________________________

Vegan Goat Cheese Stuffed Oven-Roasted Tomatoes

  • 12 small-ish tomatoes
  • 1 16 oz. pkg firm tofu, pressed
  • 2 T extra virgin olive oil
  • 1.5 T yellow miso
  • 1/4 C nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 C freshly-squeezed lemon juice (~1.5 lemons)
  • 1/4 C yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano powder
  • 3-4 T finely chopped basil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

 

Pre-heat the oven to 425.

Slice off the top 1/2 inch of each tomato and reserve the tops. Carefully scoop out the tomato cores and seeds. If necessary, cut a very thin sliver off of the bottom of each tomato to help them stand up straight. Arrange the tomatoes in a 9-by-13-inch glass or ceramic baking dish.

Crumble pressed tofu into the bowl of a food processor.  Add remaining ingredients for “cheese,” except the basil. Process until smooth.  Add basil and pulse briefly to combine.

Spoon the “cheese” mixture into the tomatoes, filling them just to the brim. Cover with the tomato tops and drizzle lightly with additional olive oil.

Bake the tomatoes for 30-35 minutes, until beginning to brown in spots and the cheese is hot. Let stand for at least 15 minutes. Serve warm. (They’re also good leftover!)

Notes:

  • I do not have a tofu press.  Instead I drained the tofu, cut it in half horizontally, and wrapped it in paper towels.  Then I stacked a load of cookbooks on top and let it press for 10-15 mins.
  • The cheese mixture can be made up to 2 days in advance.  In fact, they are better on day 2 once the flavors fully marry.  If you do this, do not add basil until just before you bake.

***

Tomorrow is Eggplant Bruschetta!  Next week is the Salade Niçoise with Tempeh “Tuna”… then you’ll have a fully vegan-ized French-themed party spread! :)

What’s your favorite “veggi-tized” recipe?  Or is there one you’d like to see made vegan/vegetarian?

What other dishes would you use a vegan goat cheese for?  I’m making another batch this weekend!

 

68 comments

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  1. Claire @ Live and Love to Eat

    Looks AMAZING – I think it would be great as a spread on a panini, or in a pasta, or baked in a casserole… can’t wait to try it myself. Any substitutes for the miso?

    1. Laura

      Spread on a panini is a GREAT idea!

      Miso is hard to sub… I’d try soy sauce (add 1-2 tsp at a time) with a little tahini if you have it on hand.

  2. Lindsay @ The Lean Green Bean

    i’ve made tofu cheese to go in stuffed shells and my hubby had no idea! ps i just got my first container of nutritional yeast ever to try!

    1. Laura

      Cool! I can’t wait to see what you think of it. Not an exact cheese replica, but I love the taste.

  3. Lee

    I’ve made lasagna with vegan cheese. Jason thought it was ricotta. He was shocked that it was tofu.

  4. Meg

    Love this girl :) They are so adorable :)

  5. Kiri W.

    Does it actually specifically taste like goat cheese? I’ve had glorious vegan mac’n cheese, but nothing as intensely flavored as goat cheese. And trust me, that mac’n cheese is my favorite thing in the world.

    1. Laura

      It’s not perfect, but it really was close. I don’t think the recipe was missing anything.

      I’ve never had vegan mac that I liked… do you have a good recipe?

      1. Kiri W.

        I’m waiting for my friends’ mom’s recipe – it is orgasmic!

  6. Jamie @ Thrifty Veggie Mama

    Have to try this! I love goat cheese!

  7. Alayna @ Thyme Bombe

    Goat cheese is the only cheese I eat anymore. Love it melted into an omelet or topping a crispy bagel. I’ve gotta make these, my husband loves roasted tomatoes above all things and I bet he won’t even notice that the cheese is tofu-based.

    1. Laura

      It is the best cheese around! Let me know if you try these – and if he notices. :)

  8. janet @ the taste space

    I agree that my cashew-based sauces never truly taste like cheese but they are delicious in their own right. I haven’t tried making it with soy but your recipe may tip me over when I find super flavourful tomatoes this summer. :)

    1. Laura

      I should have clarified – I like the cashew cheeses, but they are the “real” thing (IMHO). :)

  9. Cait's Plate

    I’ve actually never had REAL goat cheese yet (it’s on my list of things to try) – but I’m sure the vegan substitute would be delicious on just about anything!

    1. Laura

      Really?! I want to hand-deliver a block of it to you right now! Try the Cypress Grove Purple Haze if you can find it!

      1. Cait's Plate

        Okay! I’ll keep my eyes peeled for it! Thanks for the suggestion!

  10. Hayley @ Oat Couture

    I’ve never tried Vegan cheese, well apart from one time in NYC but I’ve never bought or tried making any myself. This is sooo getting bookmarked for when I live in an area where I can actually buy the ingredients ie civilisation! Not long now! 3 more months max and then it’s back to Landannn! Whoop!

    1. Laura

      That’s so exciting!!! You’ll have to tell me more about the move soon. :)

  11. Keith Higg

    I’m totally making this tonight! A reason to break out the firm tofu that’s been hiding in the back of the fridge! YUM!

    1. Laura

      Check that expiration date. ;) Let me know how it turns out!

  12. Heather @ Better With Veggies

    Yum – I haven’t tried to make a goat cheese yet, it sounds great. I actually have found several cheesy recipes that taste very realistic (my hubby still eats cheese and has agreed). The Mac N Cheese from Mama Pea gets rave reviews and the Truffled Cashew Cheese I made last week was gobbled up at our party on Saturday (it reminds me of a slightly firmer Camembert). I’ll have to give this goat cheese a try, might be a nice salad topper occassionally. Or how about in lasagna?

    1. Laura

      I will make an exception for your Truffled Cashew Cheese. Really want to try that one out!!!

  13. Suzi

    Oh girl this is another good one. The miso, lemon and nutritional yeast, this is great. sdounds like it might come close to the feta taste. I am going to try this today as I happen to have those ingredients. Thanks!!

    1. Laura

      It could! I’d add a little more salt for a feta taste… and maybe blend everything except the tofu, then crumble the tofu by hand so you don’t lose the feta texture.

  14. Carol @ Lucky Zucca

    You are so, so creative in the kitchen!

  15. Parita @ myinnershakti

    I never in a million years would’ve guessed someone would have made goat cheese vegan! So neat. I am definitely going to have to try this one of these days because goat cheese is one of my absolute favorites, and if you say it tastes close to the real think, I believe you!

    P.S. Why did we not hang out more at Ga Tech?!?!

    1. Laura

      For real! I ran into a cheese-eating friend at WF tonight who made ‘em this afternoon and said it was legit!

      P.S. I have NO idea. :)

  16. Mattie @ Comfy and Confident

    Yum! I am loving your vegan substitute for goat cheese! So creative! The whole dish looks fabulous.

  17. RavieNomNoms

    Oh my goodness! Those look amazing! They look so very similar to a tomato that I make but it was with part skim mozzarella! I definitely want to try it with the goat cheese. What a flavor addition that must be!

    Looks wonderful my dear!

    1. Laura

      Thank you! I love how quickly they came together.

  18. Roz@weightingfor50

    HI Laura, just found your blog via your comment on Fran’s site. LOVE your blog…can’t wait to scroll through and bookmark some of your stellar looking recipes. All the best!!!

    1. Laura

      Thank you so much for stopping by and commenting! I hope you find some good idea here – do let me know if you try anything out. :)

  19. Rachel @ My Naturally Frugal Family

    YUM! I make vegan ricotta all the time for lasagna and vegan cheese for mac and cheese…but this looks so delicious (I have to be shallow and go on looks since I can’t actually taste it).

    Well done Laura.

    What was the book you all were reading.

    1. Laura

      Thanks!

      It was “The Sharper the Knife, the Less You Cry.” Mini-review posted here: http://www.sprint2thetable.com/2012/02/sesame-root-veggie-fries/

  20. Tina @ Best Body Fitness

    Just so you know…I expect you to make these for the next potluck we have. ;)

    1. Laura

      Consider it done! :)

  21. Sarah @ The Smart Kitchen

    You are so smart. :)

    1. Laura

      Oh, Ms. Smart… I don’t hold a candle to you. :)

  22. Candy @ Healthy In Candy Land

    Laura, Laura, Laura. How did you know that goat cheese is one of my favorite foods in the world? And that I am drastically reducing the amount of all cheeses I consume? This is the best gift you could have given me today. (Yeah, it’s been one of those days that can definitely be made better with food.) I don’t do tomatoes, but the options of other veggies & dishes to stuff/smother/dip are endless. Hallelujah!

    1. Laura

      Because I’m stalking you, of course! :)

      Try it in red peppers! Maybe add some lentils or quinoa for bulk?

      Hope you have a better day tomorrow.

  23. Caroline

    Perfect and simple! I would definitely enjoy just eating goat cheese plain, but it would taste even better when served like this! x

  24. Cucina49

    Tofu cheese? Interesting. I’m a little skeptical, but the photos speak for themselves–this looks good!

    1. Laura

      Don’t be a skeptic! ;)

  25. Bridget

    This recipe is brilliant! I can’t wait to try it.

    1. Laura

      Thank you! Please let me know if you do. Happy (almost) Friday!

  26. Sara @my less serious life

    stuff anything with goat cheese and its delicious, no? ;)

  27. Khushboo

    This is such a great idea- despite being an avid goat cheese lover, I want to give this method a go! I’m not a vegan but I’m all for trying new recipes!

    I love squash & goat cheese salads so I’m tempted to try using butternut squash or pumpkin in lieu of the tomatoes!

  28. Lauren @ Oatmeal after Spinning

    Wow, I am kind of dying over these tomatoes. I had the best vegan “cheese” I had ever tasted at a restaurant on Valentine’s day (they called it Vegan Boursin cheese) and am dying to replicate it. I wonder if this would be close? I have never bought yellow miso, only red. And I barely ever used it- it just sat in the back of my fridge forever. It might still be there…
    I just got a tofu press last week, so I am dying to use it ALL THE TIME. Thanks for sharing this!!

  29. sportsglutton

    It might be unhealthy vegan food, but that goat cheese tomato thing there does sound good.

    1. Laura

      It’s not even unhealthy! That’s the beauty of tofu. :)

  30. Baker Street

    Gorgeous clicks Laura!

  31. Lori Lynn

    Hi Laura – the dinner party sounds awesome. And these stuffed tomatoes perfect! I’ve made a similar ricotta-style cheese by putting the tofu through a ricer. But I haven’t tried it with miso. I am definitely stealing that idea, I bet miso gives the cheese another layer of umami flavor. Thanks and Congrats on a well-deserved TOP 9 today!
    LL

    1. Laura

      Thank you so much! I bet a rice worked beautifully as well. I love how tofu can take on flavors so easily.

  32. Laura | A Healthy Jalapeño

    WHat a genius idea… they look amazing and I am obsessed with goat cheese. Love what you have going on here on your site and congrats on Top 9!

    1. Laura

      Goat cheese has always been my favorite too! Thank you so much for stopping by and commenting. :)

  33. Kristina

    I’m so excited I found your recipe! I need to try out your vegan goat cheese, that’s one of my favorite cheese’s and I have missed it soooo much since I stopped eating a lot of dairy, it looks really good stuffed into those oven roasted tomatoes, yum!

    1. Laura

      Dairy has been one of the most difficult things for me to give up as well. I would have thought meat was harder! Thank you for commenting, and I hope you enjoy it if you do try!

  34. Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love.

    Vegan goat cheese?! What a fab idea! These look amazing!!

  35. Rochelle (@AcquiredLife)

    I saw the “vegan” and “goat cheese” and thought “How?!?” What a great idea, I’ll have to try it myself.

    1. Laura

      Please let me know if you do! I loved being about to recreate the tangy creaminess.

  36. Ashley F.

    Wow – these look amazing. I’ve been hesitant to try tofu cheese – I just prefer cashew and almond based cheeses, however, I don’t think I can pass up making these!

    1. Laura

      Thank you! When you are looking for a creamier, more dense cheese like ricotta or goat, I think it has to be a tofu replacement. I’d be interested to see what you think!

  37. Nancy/SpicieFoodie

    Hi Laura,

    What a great recipe. I’ll have to try it soon, love vegan meals. Thanks for participating in the YBR.

  38. Priscilla @ShesCookin

    Stuffed cherry tomatoes are the bomb and make a healthy appetizer. I’m not a fan of tofu cheese, but I’ve been meaning to try silken tofu as a substitute for creamy cheese. Pinned to my Special Diets board on Pinterest!

    1. Laura

      Thanks! These were bigger than cherry tomatoes, but that is also an great idea!

  39. Winelady Cooks

    These tomatoes look absolutely delicious. I’ve never tried tofu, but these look so good I would definitely try it. I don’t think it will make a difference.

    Thanks so much for sharing,
    Joanne

    1. Laura

      I honestly don’t think the tofu was even detectable, but would love to hear your feedback if you do try it! Thanks for stopping by! :)

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