Cheesecake. Don’t know where it came from or who came up with the whole egg, cream cheese, sugar concoction. I know I miss it and it was Jon’s favorite dessert. How could a raw vegan ever have cheesecake ever again?!
The crazy answer to any creamy sauce with raw foodies. The basic recipe for Raw Vegan Cheesecake seems to be consistent across the internet and is easily adjusted to accommodate any flavor.
adapted from this recipe
- 1 cup raw nuts of your choice (I used a combo of brazil and almond)
- 1 cup medjool dates, pitted and chopped
- 1/4 cup shredded, unsweetened coconut
- 3 cups raw cashews soaked overnight or a couple of hours minimum (I soaked mine for 9 hours)
- 1/3 cup honey + enough agave (≈1/5 cup), to make it 1/2 cup total sweetener
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (could use lime or orange too)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
- 2 T coconut butter (or additional 2 T coconut oil if you don’t have this)
- Shake or two of sea salt
- Pinch of stevia
- Start with making the crust first by blending the nuts in a food processor or VitaMix until well broken down (stop before you make nut butter!). Then add the dates and mix until well incorporated and it sticks together. Sprinkle the pan with the dried coconut and press nut/date mixture into a 9″ spring-form pan, set aside.
- Drain the cashews from the soaking water, rinse again, then blend them along with the sweetener, water, lemon juice, vanilla, coconut oil (& butter if any), and salt until very smooth. You can adjust the flavor as needed here.
- Pour filling onto prepared crust, tap on the counter to remove bubbles and smooth the top. **I poured half of the mixture in, then layered sliced fresh strawberries and topped with remaining mixture.**
- Place into the freezer for a minimum of 3 hours or until very firm or even slightly frozen. This cheesecake is best taken from the freezer 10-15 minutes before serving so it is still cold and firm. It will separate perfectly from the pan when it’s frozen.
- Top with fresh sliced strawberries (shaped like hearts!), raspberry sauce (see recipe link above), lemon zest, raw chocolate sauce, mint/honey/lime sauce, dried fruit, or a zillion other things.
**Cacao powder would make this an awesome chocolate cheesecake. I would start with 1/4 cup and work from there, additional liquid may be needed.
You can always adjust the sweetener to fit your dietary needs; I think I’ll have to try this with coconut nectar. The original recipes usually call for about 3/4 cup coconut oil, but since cashews are pretty fatty I did what I could to reduce the fat content of the cheesecake. Even though this is all healthy fat this should probably be eaten in moderation. It’s a ridiculously easy recipe with endless variations. It’s not an exact taste replication, but it’s a delicious dessert reminiscent of cheesecake. I think raw recipes are so fun because they are so easy to play with. I have never not adapted a recipe, because it’s so easy to make it just the way you want it for whatever mood you’re in.