Are you someone who follows a dairy-free diet and is wondering if you can eat parmesan cheese? The answer is not straightforward, and it depends on the source of the cheese and your dietary restrictions. In this article, we will discuss the various aspects of parmesan cheese and its compatibility with a dairy-free diet.

What is Parmesan Cheese?

Parmesan cheese is a hard and granular cheese that originated in Italy. It has a nutty and savory taste, which makes it a popular ingredient in many dishes worldwide. Parmesan cheese is made from cow’s milk, but some varieties may also contain sheep or goat milk.

Is Parmesan Cheese Dairy-free?

Unfortunately, parmesan cheese is not dairy-free as it contains milk as its primary ingredient. It means that people who are allergic to milk or lactose intolerant cannot consume it. However, some brands market vegan parmesan cheese alternatives made from plant-based materials like nuts or soy.

Vegan Parmesan Cheese

Vegan parmesan cheese uses alternative ingredients like cashews, almonds, or nutritional yeast to replicate the flavor of traditional parmesan cheese. These vegan options have become increasingly popular among people who follow a vegan or dairy-free lifestyle.

Nutritional Yeast-Based Vegan Parmesan Cheese Recipe

  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 cup cashews (unsalted)
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (to taste)


  1. Add all ingredients to a food processor.
  2. Pulse until the mixture becomes a fine crumble.
  3. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a month.


In conclusion, parmesan cheese is not dairy-free and contains milk as its primary ingredient. However, vegan parmesan cheese alternatives are becoming increasingly popular and can be made from plant-based ingredients like nuts or nutritional yeast. If you are following a dairy-free diet, it is essential to check the ingredients of the parmesan cheese before consuming it.