Recipe: Raw Vegan Cheesecake

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Who doesn’t love a big fat slice of cheesecake? Unfortunately, traditional cheesecake is packed with artery-clogging saturated fats, cholesterol and lots of refined sugar. A slice of original cheesecake at The Cheesecake Factory has 710 calories, while their Brownie Sundae Cheesecake clocks in at a whopping 1270 calories.

And while we’re no strangers to the occasional indulgence, we love having healthy desserts around so we can enjoy them at any time and not feel any guilt. That’s why we love this raw vegan cheesecake. It’s free from refined sugars, relying only on dates and raw coconut nectar for sweetness. And because it’s plant-based, it’s free of cholesterol and packed with healthy fats from the almonds and coconut.

We particularly love this cheesecake because it can sit in your freezer for several weeks, so you can cut yourself a slice whenever the craving strikes. Additionally, this cheesecake is highly customizable, so don’t be afraid to get creative and try out some new combinations. For the crust, substitute walnuts or pecans for the almonds and add some shredded unsweetened coconut or raw cacao nibs. For the filling, substitute strawberries a mixed berry medley for the blueberries. And when you’re ready to eat, top your cake with whipped coconut cream for a creamy, indulgent treat.

Ingredients

  • ½ cup raw almonds
  • 4 Medjool dates
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon of coconut oil, melted

Filling

  • ¾ cup raw cashews, soaked in water for 8 hours
  • ¼ cup coconut milk
  • 1 ½ tablespoons raw coconut nectar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon lemon zest
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ⅛ teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • ⅓ cup blueberries, optional

Topping

  • ¼ cup blueberries + extra for garnish, optional

Directions

  1. Cut a piece of parchment paper to fit the bottom of a 4 inch springform pan.
  2. For the crust, blend all ingredients in a food processor until you have a sticky dough. Press the dough onto the parchment lined pan. Place in the freezer while you make the filling.
  3. For the filling, blend all of the ingredients except the coconut oil and blueberries in the food processor. With the motor running, stream in the coconut oil and blend until you have a smooth, creamy texture.
  4. Pour the filling over the crust. If desired, disperse the ⅓ cup blueberries throughout the batter.
  5. For the optional blueberry topping, mash ¼ cup blueberries with a fork. Pour the berries into a strainer and reserve the juice. Spoon the juice on top of the cake and use a sharp utensil to make a swirl pattern. Top with additional blueberries, if desired.
  6. Place the cake in the freezer for 4 hours to set. Before eating, leave cake at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Recipe Tips

Don’t forget to soak your cashews. That’s how they become soft and lend a creaminess to this cake.

If you don’t have a 4 inch springform pan, you can make these in muffin tins. Simply grease muffin tins or line with paper liners. Add a little bit of crust filling to the base and press down. Top with filling and freeze.

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