This Vegan Buffalo Sauce is spicy, tangy, and creamy. Perfect for using as a Buffalo Dip or drizzling over a veggie burger. Thin it out and toss with tofu or cauliflower to make easy Vegan Buffalo Wings!
Growing up I never, ever ate spicy food, and boy was I missing out! Thankfully I've changed my ways and adapted my taste buds over the years. Now I appreciate a good kick of spice and I especially love Buffalo Sauce. Most buffalo sauces contain loads of butter, so to make this buffalo sauce vegan and oil-free, I've substituted cashews. The result is a tangy, spicy, creamy, and absolutely delicious sauce that's perfect for dipping or can be thinned out to toss with tofu bites or cauliflower.
You'll love this recipe it's
- Spicy & Flavorful
- Quick & Easy
- Oil-Free / Butter-Free
- Vegan / Dairy-Free
- Perfect for dipping
Is hot sauce vegan?
Yes! In almost all cases, hot sauce is vegan because the main ingredients are cayenne peppers, vinegar, and seasonings. Always check the label if you're unsure. But Frank's Original, Tabasco, Cholula, and more are all vegan!
Is Buffalo sauce vegan?
Buffalo sauce is normally made with hot sauce, butter, and some additional seasonings. Therefore, in most cases, homemade or restaurant buffalo sauce is not vegan. (Frank's Buffalo Wing Sauce is made with "natural butter type flavor," which is apparently vegan but doesn't sound very healthy). However, buffalo sauce can easily be made vegan by substituting vegan butter. I wanted to create a healthier buffalo sauce without butter, so I used cashews to add the rich creaminess.
What can I substitute for the cashews?
If you don't want to use cashews based on a food allergy, cost, or any other reason, try subbing with blanched almonds, sunflower seeds, or unsalted macadamia nuts.
Is this a spicy vegan sauce?
Yes! This vegan sauce is spicy! If you're not used to spicy foods, proceed with caution. I like to make this as a vegan dip to go on the side of Tofu Nuggets so that people can choose the amount of spice that's best for them. This is especially important when you're sharing with kids! To make the sauce less spicy you can add more cashews or decrease the amount of hot sauce.
How to serve
- Pair as a dipping sauce with Air Fryer Tofu or Easy Baked Tofu Nuggets
- Top a veggie burger
- Add to a chickpea wrap
- Make a buffalo chickpea dip
- Toss with Tofu Nuggets or cauliflower for Vegan Buffalo Wings
- Drizzle over a salad for a spicy kick
- Dollop on rice and beans or anything that needs a little extra spice!
- hot sauce (I use Frank's Original Hot Sauce) -- Use your favorite hot sauce, ideally something tangy and flavorful!
- raw cashews (unsalted) -- This will add a little creaminess and mellow the heat just a tad. The cashews take the place of butter.
- granulated garlic -- For a little more flavor.
- maple syrup -- For a touch of sweetness.
- white wine vinegar and apple cider vinegar -- For a little extra tang and acidity. In testing this recipe, we found that using just apple cider vinegar was too overpowering, but not using any took away a layer of flavor that we missed. So we decided on 1 teaspoon of each vinegar. However, if you just had to choose one, I would only use white wine vinegar. Any neutral vinegar could replace white wine vinegar, but don't use balsamic.
How to make
- Start by soaking the cashews for 30 minutes or boiling them in a small pot for 10 minutes.
- Rinse and Drain the Cashews. Add the Cashews and all of the other ingredients to a high-speed blender and blitz to combine.
- If you want a thinner sauce (better for tossing with vegan "wings") you can add a little more water and blend again.
- To thicken the sauce (better for dipping), simply return the sauce to the small pot and heat over medium-high, stirring continuously, for two to three minutes. Keep in mind that the sauce will thicken up a bit after it cools.
- Serve and enjoy right away!
How to store
- Store this healthy buffalo sauce in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to a week or the freezer for up to 3 months.
- For individual serving sizes, you can pour the sauce into an ice cube tray. Freeze and then transfer the buffalo cubes to an airtight container or freezer bag.
More delicious vegan condiment recipes
- Oil-Free Vegan Pesto
- Vegan Chipotle Mayo
- Vegan Creamy Italian Dressing
- Creamy Balsamic Dressing
- Vegan Almond Ricotta
Vegan Buffalo Sauce
- Add the cashews to a small pot with water and boil for 10 minutes. Drain and rinse.
- Add the cashews and all of the other ingredients to a high-speed blender. Blend until smooth.
- Serve right away and enjoy or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week or the freezer for up to 3 months.
- For a thinner sauce (better for tossing with vegan "wings") add another ¼ cup water.
- If you need to thicken the sauce you can return it to the small pot and heat over medium-high, stirring continuously for 3 to 5 minutes.
- This sauce is very spicy! For a less spicy sauce, decrease the amount of hot sauce or increase the amount of cashews.