You can substitute agave nectar, or maple syrup if it compliments the flavor of what you are using this recipe for.
Measure 1 cup sugar.
Add to 1 cup water and set to medium heat. Bring to a boil stirring sugar until it dissolves.
You have now made simple syrup. Store unused syrup in the refrigerator for future use.
Pour 2 tablespoons of syrup in separate dish and refrigerate.
Add 1 cup raw cashews in blender. Add 1/2 cup cold water and blend until smooth.
Add chilled simple syrup and vanilla. You now have a delicious, slightly nutty, healthier whipped topping alternative.