This delicious creamy dip is bursting with flavour from the salty and tangy vegan feta and rich pistachios, balanced with zesty citrus and fragrant lime leaves and rosemary. It is the perfect addition to your graze board served with chopped fresh veggies and crackers or crisps. This is such an easy dip that takes just 2 minutes to prepare in the food processor and will delight all of your guests, especially since it is vegan and gluten-free! My non-vegan guests never believe that this dip is actually dairy-free and the interesting flavour combinations never fail to intrigue them!
I started making a version of this tasty dip with real feta before I was vegan but it has changed and developed over time trying out different herb combinations. This particular combo of lime leaves and rosemary sounds bizarre but works SO well! It gives a heady fragrant note to this rich dip and always leaves people asking what exactly is the flavour that they can’t quite put their finger on!
If you are a regular reader of my blog, you will know that I’m not generally a fan of vegan cheese (except perhaps the really expensive artisan vegan cheeses I find on my trips to the UK!). However, I do think vegan feta cheese substitutes are the exception to this rule. I really like the Violife feta cheese (sometimes called "Greek White Block") in particular and always have some in my fridge for eating in sandwiches or on corncakes for a mid-afternoon snack. It works brilliantly for making this vegan version of whipped feta dip adding just the right amount of tanginess and creaminess.
Why You Will Love This Recipe
- Rich, creamy and tangy flavour – this is such an intriguing and delicious flavour combo with a rich creamy texture.
- Quick and easy – it takes just a couple of minutes to make this recipe!
- Versatile – save leftovers in the fridge for using throughout the week on crackers, sandwiches or stirred into pasta!
- Vegan and dairy-free - Great for winning over your non-vegan friends!
- Vegan feta – use your favourite store-bought vegan feta substitute or homemade if you prefer! I love the Violife "Greek White Block" but Sheeze also does a good "Greek Style" block.
- Vegan Greek yoghurt – I use Alpro because that’s all that I can find here in Qatar. There isn’t a huge amount of yoghurt in this recipe so it doesn’t have to be the best vegan yoghurt on the market! However, just make sure it is not a sweet yoghurt – look for sugar free or no added sugar. Alpro plain yoghurt without added sugar also works as do the coconut yoghurts.
- Pistachios – use plain shelled pistachios that have no added ingredients like salt. Make sure to remove all pieces of shell!
- Extra virgin olive oil – since this is uncooked in a dip, I would use the best quality extra virgin olive oil that you use for salad dressings. You could also use coconut oil if you prefer the flavour.
- Garlic and red chilli – use fresh ingredients here. Did you know that red chillis can be kept in the freezer and then just defrosted by running under a warm tap for a couple of minutes? (or used semi-frozen even!)
- Lime or Lemon – use whichever you prefer - both work well! Use a microplane grater or zester to get the lime or lemon zest before cutting it in half to get the lime or lemon juice.
- Kaffir lime leaves and rosemary – this is a great flavour combo but you can use any other fresh herbs that you prefer, especially if kaffir lime leaves are hard to come by where you live (I buy them when I see them and then keep them in the freezer!). Chives, thyme or dill would all work.
Please see the printable recipe card at the bottom of this post for full list of ingredients and their quantities.
How To Make This Recipe
Step One - Place the shelled pistachios and olive oil in the food processor and whizz for a minute or so until they break down into small pieces of pistachio.
This is what it should look like...
Step Two - Add the rest of the ingredients.
Whizz until well mixed. (You may need to stop and scrape down the sides of the food processor a few times with a silicon spatula.)
Scoop into a serving bowl and serve garnished with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkling of black pepper or cayenne pepper and perhaps some more chopped herbs on top.
This is a summary only. Please see the printable recipe card at the bottom of this page for full instructions.
Tips for Success
There are a few key points to remember when making this recipe.
- Do make sure that there are no bits of shell with your pistachios! Once, I used pre-shelled pistachios from the shop and didn’t check them before throwing them into the food processor. When we ate the dip, I kept getting tiny hard pieces of shell in my mouth which totally ruined the dip! So make sure you check them before adding them in!
- To quickly de-stem kaffir lime leaves, fold the leaf in half at the stem and then, holding the leaf parts together, pull the stem away from the base up to the top of the leaf.
- This dip is better served at room temperature rather than straight from the fridge. It is a little too hard when fridge-cold so do remember to take it out for a few minutes and give it quick stir before serving.
I love serving this easy vegan dip as part of a graze board or mezze platter surrounded by vegetable crudites and crackers to dip into it. You could also jazz it up by spreading it on a shallow serving dish and pouring over some roasted tomatoes like in the Ottolenghi tomato and yoghurt appetizer from his “Simple” cookbook.
You could also use this dip:
- spread on toast or as a sandwich spread;
- stirred into pasta with some peas or other veggies;
- added to a bowl of soup to add creaminess and tangy flavour;
- mixed with a little more water and some apple cider vinegar to make a creamy salad dressing.
- Herbs – I love this mixture of kaffir lime leaves and rosemary but you can substitute these for any herbs you like! Chives would be wonderful, as would thyme or dill.
- Deluxe - add roasted red peppers or cherry tomatoes piled on top! Or add some sundried tomatoes to the mixture in the food processor!
- Child-friendly - omit the chilli pepper!
- Oil-free – Omit the olive oil and add a touch more water.
- Vegan feta - You could substitute this vegan feta with firm tofu and nutritional yeast and some more lemon zest but it won't have quite such a strong feta flavour.
- Vegan yoghurt – This gives a lovely fresh tanginess to the dip but if you prefer a richer flavour, you could substitute this with vegan sour cream or vegan cream cheese instead.
You need a food processor to make this recipe. I use a thermomix but any good food processor or blender will do. See my kitchen equipment advice page for more information on my favourite food processors and blenders!
This dip will keep happily in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Just defrost overnight in the fridge and then give it a good stir before serving.
You can replace the pistachios with sunflower seeds for a nut-free version or omit them altogether for simpler plain feta dip.
Sure! I really love the Violife vegan feta so always have that in my fridge, but you can of course replace it with homemade vegan feta if you prefer!
📖 Recipe 📖
Vegan Feta & Pistachio Dip with Lime Leaves and Rosemary
- 100 g shelled pistachios
- 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, plus extra to drizzle on top
- 200 g vegan feta or greek style "cheese|, I recommend Violife
- 1 garlic clove, roughly chopped
- 1 long red chilli, de-seeded and roughly chopped
- 1 lemon, zest and juice
- 6 lime leaves, stem removed and roughly chopped
- 1 rosemary sprig, stem removed
- ¼ cup vegan plain or Greek yoghurt
- 2 tablespoon water
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Whizz together the pistachios and olive oil in a food processor until it becomes a gritty consistency. (TM instructions: 10 secs / sp. 10 then scrape down the sides.)100 g shelled pistachios, 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- Add the rest of the ingredients and whizz until smooth, scraping down the sides with a spatula every now and then. (TM instructions: 1 minute / gradually go from sp. 4-9)200 g vegan feta or greek style "cheese|, 1 garlic clove, 1 long red chilli, 1 lemon, 6 lime leaves, 1 rosemary sprig, ¼ cup vegan plain or Greek yoghurt, 2 tablespoon water, ½ teaspoon salt
- Keeps for up to 1 week in an airtight container in the fridge, or up to 3 months in the freezer.
- Substitute the lime leaves and rosemary for any other soft herbs.
- Substitute the vegan yoghurt for vegan soured cream or cream cheese for a richer dip.
Did you make this recipe? Please leave a ⭐ star rating ⭐ on the recipe card!
If you like this vegan whipped feta dip recipe, you may like these other delicious vegan and gluten-free dip recipes too: