The Best Salty & Savory Vegan Feta Cheese
4.86 from 7 votes

Yes, vegan cheese can be successfully made at home! This recipe for homemade vegan feta cheese uses a combination of extra firm tofu, white miso, and other seasonings, to create a delightfully salty, savory vegan feta. For best results, allow the tofu feta cheese to marinade for at least 4 hours in the fridge, but preferably overnight.

Falafel, greens, and vegan feta cheese are piled into a round serving bowl.

In many ways, the most hard-working recipes in my arsenal are every day, DIY staples.

By “staples,” I mean good dressings and dips, homemade proteins, and homemade vegan cheeses. These foods aren’t a meal on their own, but they can become the backbone of many different meals.

One of the staples I’m making most often is my DIY tofu feta. This salty, savory vegan cheese has found its way into so many of my recipes. It adds flavor to this barley salad, my tofu feta kale salad, and my pizza pasta bake.

Lately, I also love throwing it into simple grain bowls or using it to make a salad more protein-rich. No matter how you use it, you won’t regret having a batch in the fridge at the start of a busy week.

A zoomed in, overhead shot of a springtime salad that's been piled with herbed tofu feta cheese.

(Homemade) vegan cheese, please

Isn’t it nice to live in a time when there are so many store-bought vegan cheeses to choose from? Vegan cheeses that are becoming more and more authentic and appealing with each passing year, too.

Before there were commercial options, however, there was the challenge of making dairy-free cheese at home.

This led me to a few tried-and-true vegan cheese recipes that I use to this day. Some of them, including my best cashew cheese recipe, vegan ricotta cheese, and vegan cashew parmesan cheese, are household staples that I make almost every week.

Others, like my vegan queso and vegan yellow cheese sauce, are perfect for topping bowls of chili, baked potatoes, nachos, and more.

I love bagel sandwiches for weekend brunch, and for those, I can’t get enough of my vegan cream cheese recipe. It’s made with a nutrient-dense tofu base, just as this vegan feta is.

Why tofu?

Why use tofu as a base for vegan feta?

Texture, first and foremost. Tofu has a dense, yet crumbly texture that’s pretty comparable to regular feta. (To the naked eye, it also looks similar!)

Two white bowls have been filled with a vegan sheet pan gnocchi meal. They're topped with crumbled vegan feta cheese.

As a registered dietitian, I’m always encouraging my clients to sneak in plant protein wherever and however they can. Tofu is an exceptional vegan protein source.

Using tofu as the base for homemade vegan feta means a dairy-free cheese that will also easily add some protein to your pastas, salads, bowls, and sheet pan dinners.

Tofu is also a good source of healthful fatty acids, anti-inflammatory phytonutrients, and vegan calcium. Win, win, win.

What type of tofu should I use?

I use extra firm tofu to make the feta, rather than firm. But either variety will work in the recipe. I don’t recommend silken tofu, which is too soft.

Tofu has a neutral flavor, which makes it a perfect canvas for the briny, salty, lemony marinade in the herbed tofu feta recipe.

How to make vegan feta cheese

The process of making the vegan feta cheese is so simple and mostly hands-off. Here are the steps.

Press your tofu

Your tofu won’t need a long press for this recipe, but it’s worth pressing it for about 30 minutes. Longer is fine if you like.

I have a tofu press, but you don’t need one. I used two plates and some tea towels to press tofu for years! This tutorial shares a little more about this simple technique.

Pressing helps tofu to absorb the flavor of a marinade and to retain a firm, chewy texture.

Tofu has been crumbled and cubed. The prepared protein is served on two small plates.

Crumble or cube your tofu

I like to prepare my vegan feta in one of two ways: crumbled or cubed. Crumbled feta is great for pizza, salads, and for finishing plates of pasta. Sometimes I add it to tabbouleh.

An overhead image of a leafy green salad with plant-protein in a white bowl.

Cubed tofu feta works well in this pizza pasta bake, in bowls, and in traditional Greek salad. I make a vegan Greek salad with chickpeas that’s a summertime favorite, and I always use the cubed version of my tofu feta in there.

An overhead image of a crisp green salad with romaine lettuce, tomatoes, olives, red onions, and pita wedges. It's served on a white, rimmed plate.

Once the tofu has been crumbled or cubed according to your preference, it’s time to marinate it.

White miso and a clove of garlic and lying in a small, white pinch bowl.

Mix your marinade

The marinade that you’ll mix together for tofu feta consists of ingredients that are supposed to create salty, savory flavor. I use miso and nutritional yeast, which are both packed with umami (the sixth flavor, also sometimes articulated as savoriness).

A thick marinade is being mixed in a white bowl. A spoon rests in the mixture.

The marinade also has plenty of lemon juice, some water, salt, and garlic, if you like. Sometimes I add garlic to my tofu feta, and sometimes I prefer the flavor without.

The same goes for herbs. You can use dried oregano in the vegan feta cheese if you’re craving that flavor. I make the herbed tofu feta variation often, since oregano is one of my favorite herbs.

A round, white ramekin has been filled with small cubes of a vegan herbed tofu feta cheese.

Marinate the tofu

Once the marinade is mixed, you’ll pour it over your prepared tofu.

I like to do this in a storage container with a lid. I add the marinade, cover the container, and give it a good shake to distribute everything. It’s easy to simply transfer this to the fridge and then allow the flavors to meld.

I think that vegan feta cheese tastes best when it marinates overnight or even for two nights. That said, four hours is sufficient time for flavorful vegan feta if that’s as much time as you have.

Cubes of tofu are being submerged in a thick marinade. They're held in a clear storage container.

Store or enjoy

At this point, the vegan feta is ready to eat or to store until you’re ready to use it.

Vegan feta cheese ingredients

Tofu

I generally use regular firm tofu for the vegan feta. However, extra firm tofu works well in the recipe, too.

White miso

White miso plays a big role in creating the salty, savory flavor of the tofu feta marinade in this recipe. It gives the tofu both saltiness and an umami that’s essential to the overall feta effect.

I like to use sweet white miso in this recipe and others, but if you have brown miso at home, that will work, too.

Lemon juice

…and plenty of it. Be sure to use freshly squeezed.

Red wine vinegar

It seems a little redundant with the lemon juice, but it adds a different kind of acidity to the recipe. Worth the extra ingredient, I promise!

Herbs

If I make the herbed version of my tofu feta, I typically use dried oregano. I always have it at home for pasta sauce and pizza, and I think it works well with the long marinating time than fresh oregano.

In place of the oregano, you could use Herbs de Provence or dried basil.

What does vegan feta taste like?

Great question!

I think that store-bought vegan feta tastes a lot like regular feta, honestly. It has that very vibrant, salty, acidic quality that I remember.

This DIY vegan feta cheese is a little different. It’s not quite as salty, and the lemon juice gives it a slightly sweet/sour quality in addition to the acid.

Here’s what you can expect the flavor to be like:

  • Lemony
  • Salty
  • Savory
  • Cheesy (thanks, nutritional yeast!)
  • Tangy

How long does tofu feta keep for?

Fortunately, the vegan feta cheese keeps well. In fact, it becomes only more flavor-forward over time. You can store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to five or six days.

When I make the feta, I usually serve it directly from the container in which I marinated it. No need to discard the marinade that’s in the container. It will continue to flavor the tofu and work its magic as the days go by.

A dish of pasta, vegetables, and vegan cheese.

How should I serve herbed tofu feta?

However you like! Or, however you’d normally serve tofu. Some of my favorite places to put it:

  • Salads
  • Pasta
  • Pizza or grilled flatbread
  • Vegan Greek salad
  • Stuffed pita (with veggies and chickpeas)
  • Mediterranean wraps (usually greens, tofu feta, white beans, grape tomatoes, and olives)
  • Simple lunch bowls
  • Tofu scramble
  • Vegan frittatas (I’ve been using Just Egg to make these lately!)
  • With roasted seasonal vegetables (a great way to add plant protein to any vegetable-centric dish)
A small, white round ramekin has been filled with cubes of marinated tofu and dried herbs. It sits on a white backdrop.
Falafel, greens, and vegan feta cheese are piled into a round serving bowl.
4.86 from 7 votes

The Best Salty & Savory Vegan Feta Cheese

Author – Gena Hamshaw
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Marinating time 4 hours
Total Time: 4 hours 15 minutes
Yields: 6 servings

Ingredients

  • 14-16 ounces firm or extra firm tofu, pressed gently to remove excess moisture (400-450g; 1 standard-sized block)
  • 3 tablespoons white miso (45g)
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (60ml)
  • 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons water (45ml)
  • 1 small clove garlic, finely minced (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast (10g)
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano (optional, for herbed version)

Instructions

  • Press the tofu for about 30 minutes before using to remove excess moisture. Crumble the tofu with your hands or cut it into 1-inch cubes.
  • In a mixing bowl, whisk together the miso, lemon juice, and vinegar; you'll have a thick, smooth paste. Add the water and whisk till smooth, then whisk in the garlic, nutritional yeast, salt, pepper, and oregano. 
  • Place the cubed tofu in an airtight container (preferably one that's wide enough to allow tofu to rest in a single or double layer) and pour the marinade over the tofu. Shake to distribute the marinade over the tofu, then cover the container and transfer it to the fridge for at least 4 hours, but preferably overnight. The tofu will become more flavorful as it marinates.
  • Serve the vegan feta with salad, pasta, in a grain bowl, or however you’d normally enjoy feta cheese.

Enjoy this easy vegan staple!

xo

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    5 Comments
  1. What red wine vinegar do you use? There’s so many on the market! I just ordered the white miso that you use, so I’d like to know what red wine vinegar you use, thank you!

  2. 5 stars
    Tried this recipe two weeks ago and I’ve actually left the tofu to marinate for 5 days and omg – the flavour was simply next level! Thanks so much for sharing, been looking to try a tofu feta recipe for a while ✌

  3. Just wanted you to know that when you have lamented writer’s block and have posted simple recipes like this on your blog, that is when I love your blog the most. Most people also have full lives and it’s often only these these recipes that I actually make! I love your tofu egg salad recipe for example!