Finally a dairy-free cheese worth trying

Following a plant-based diet as always been my first choice. My body just thrives on fresh fruits and veggies, healthy fats, whole-grains and plant-based proteins. However, if you had to ask me whether I could transition to a vegan diet, I would admit that I’d miss cheese the most! That is, before I discovered Violife.

(Want some healthy treat recipes? Here they are)

Have you heard of Violife?

Whether you’re a vegan, vegetarian or simply need to cut out dairy products for health reasons, I’m pretty sure you’ll love the taste of Violife dairy-free cheese. Founded by a group of foodies (and health fanatics) in Greece who believe that cheese is all about family, love and good times together, they made it their mission to create the most amazing tasting 100% vegan, non-dairy, non-GMO range of products that look and taste just like cheese. And I must say, they got it right and I’m not surprised they’ve won awards for being the best vegan cheese on the market.

The flavour and texture is very similar to cheese and some of the products are even tastier than cheese, so they stand out on their own. In fact, even though my hubby isn’t a vegetarian, he’ll often pick Violife over cheese when we’re making toasted sarmies on weekends. The good thing is, Violife has a similar consistency to cheese when it’s melted too, so it really is a great product.

Why it’s a great addition to your diet  

Every product in the Violife range is made from coconut oil which is known for improving blood cholesterol levels and lowering your risk of heart disease. Its unique combination of fatty acids can have profound positive effects on health. For example, it contains Lauric Acid known to kill bacteria, viruses and fungi, which helps to stave off infections. Coconut oil is also known to help decrease appetite and increase fat burning…. Bonus!

Because Violife doesn’t contain any allergens, GMO’s, palm oil or gluten, it can be eaten every day to form part of a healthy lifestyle. Yep, you read right, it can be eaten every day. I must admit, I was a little nervous about this as it’s still regarded as a high-fat food. However, when I chatted to the distributor of Violife in SA – VFoods – they reminded me that the medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) in coconut oil increase energy expenditure compared to the same amount of calories from longer chain fats, which means that it’s a fat that helps to burn fat. Coconut oil appears to be especially effective in reducing abdominal fat, which is the dangerous type of fat we all need to get rid of.

Quick meal ideas

  • For a healthy mid-week lunch, I enjoy a Caprese sandwich on rye bread. I use the Violife Mozzarella flavoured slices with fresh basil pesto and tomato or I have a grilled Violife toastie with the herb flavoured slices and a bacon substitute - but this is just an occasional treat.
  • On busy shoot days when I need a quick morning or afternoon snack, I’ll have creamy Violife on crackers – and it’s delicious! I like the original flavour but there’s also tomato & basil, hot peppers and tzatziki flavours in this range.
  • We also keep a stash of grated Violife at home for homemade vegetarian pizzas, pitas or wraps. There’s nothing more delicious than a pita stuffed with grated Violife, olives, fresh tomatoes, cucumber, lettuce or spinach and grated carrot.
  • Another favourite recipe is to pop a variety of veggies such as butternut, zucchini, onions and vine tomatoes into the oven in a casserole dish and roast or bake them together with grated Violife.

Here are some more quick - and freezable - meal (and treat!) ideas for you to try.

Did you know?

Violife is available at Woolworths under their own label! Next time you’re in the store, see their dairy-free slices and dairy-free cream cheese.

For more info on where to find Violife, visit www.vfoods.co.za/violife/