Raw Vegan Recipe: “Cheesecake”

This is an amazing “cheesecake” in anyone’s book. When I was in Seattle over a year ago, my good friend, Shari, made it and I was hooked! Not only did she make it once but she made it twice. When merm tried it, the reaction was, “This could be in any restaurant anywhere! It is excellent!” Shari had posted the recipe on the forum and I had been thoroughly intimidated. However, when DD was here in the summer, she and I tackled it and, once everything was organized, it really wasn’t the bugaboo I had imagined it would be. Now, with the holidays upon us, this is a perfect dessert for any gathering. No one would guess it is a raw recipe.

All of the photographs are by DD with my camera.

For pictures of ALL the steps, click here.

The full recipe can be found here

Assemble your ingredients for the crust. They are

1 ½ cups pecans
2 oz. cacao powder *(1 oz. = ⅓ cup)
⅓ cup cacao nibs
4 oz. date paste
½ tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. liquid vanilla *(do not add w/dry ingredients)

Crust Ingredients

Put everything in the food processor except for the vanilla (I used vanilla water Shari had sent me). I didn’t have date paste so I used dates I’d pitted.

Starting the Crust
Process the dry ingredients:

Blended Together

THEN add the vanilla.

Putting in the Vanilla Water

Blend just enough longer to incorporate the vanilla water. Pick up some with your fingers and press it together. If you can “break” it in two, it’s perfect.

Just Right

Get out your springform pan. 10″ won’t be any too big for this recipe. If you halve it, adjust the pan size accordingly. Traditionally, the pans are used with the logo facing up so you can read it. Don’t be a traditionalist. Take it out and flip it over. It’s easier to cut and serve later.

Cheesecake Pan with Bottom Inverted

Cover the pan with a thin coating of coconut oil.

Oiling the Pan

Put the crust mixture into the pan

Adding the Crust Mixture

and press it in evenly to completely cover the bottom.

Make It Even!

Get out your washed berries (I used blueberries) and put them evenly on the crust.

Adding the Blueberries

Set the crust with the blueberries aside and get the ingredients together for the filling. If you want to get fancy, do your mise en place.

Ingredients for the filling are:

3 cups soaked cashews
2 cups almond milk (click here for the recipe)
¾ cup agave nectar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
¼ cup liquid vanilla
¼ teaspoon salt

Ingredients for the Filling

Here’s a beauty shot of the agave nectar:

Agave Nectar Beauty Shot
I just had to put that in. It looks so pretty!

Put the cashews into the blender.

Adding the Cashews

Add the almond milk.

Almond Milk

Pour in the agave nectar.

Putting in the Agave

Now, the next ingredient gave me pause but, since I was using vanilla water, I added ¼ cup.

1/4 CUP Vanilla??

Put in the lemon juice

Adding the Lemon Juice

and the salt.

Putting in the Salt

Blend everything together until smooth.

Blending the Filling

Next add

3 tablespoons lecithin granules
⅔ cup melted cacao butter

Adding the Lecithin Granules

Adding the Melted Cacao Butter
Pour the filling into the cheesecake pan, reserving two cups for swirling.

Pouring in the Filling

Smoothing the Top

Add the berries of your choice (once again, mine were blueberries) and 2 tablespoons lemon juice.

Reserved Filling with Blueberries

Blend everything well.

Blending the Reserved Filling

Now, this is where my cheesecake radically departed from what the end result was supposed to be. The filling sets up very quickly and, with all the photographing going on, the part that was blended with the reserved filling didn’t sink in like it was supposed to.

Pouring on the Blueberry Mixture

What happened way, try as I might, I couldn’t get it to swirl. The blueberry filling sat on top in a separate layer.

Ready to Refrigerate

We put it in the freezer long enough for it to chill thoroughly. Then it was time for the unveiling.

I ran the knife around the pan as prescribed.

Run a Knife Around It

Then I loosened the springy part and lifted it off.

Out of the Pan

It shows where I fell short but that was okay. This was a maiden voyage. No perfection expected.

Next, the first piece was cut.

Slicing the Cheesecake

It looked kind of naked sitting there.

Not Garnished
I didn’t have any more blueberries so cacao nibs had to do all by themselves.

Cacao Nibs Garnish

And then there was the first bite.

The First Bite

Smooth and creamy and oh! so delicious!

9 Responses to Raw Vegan Recipe: “Cheesecake”

  1. Eddie Santosh October 28, 2011 at 11:23 am #

    amazing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. cheryl gautier November 17, 2011 at 4:06 pm #

    This looks great and pretty easy to do. I will make this for my Thanksgiving dessert. I hope mine will look and tastes as good!

    • Tommie November 17, 2011 at 4:08 pm #

      Let me know how it turns out! (and drop ship me a slice). :D

  3. Lisa March 15, 2012 at 10:14 pm #

    Fabulous raw recipe, as well as all the others! I especially love the photo instructions. Thanks for putting up this site.

    • Tommie March 16, 2012 at 9:05 am #

      Thank YOU! And you’re welcome!!

  4. Lauren May 3, 2013 at 8:53 am #

    What does the lecithin do?

    • Tommie May 3, 2013 at 10:10 am #

      It’s an emulsifier so it makes the texture like “real” cheesecake. You could leave it out but the end result wouldn’t be the same.

  5. Jennifer February 2, 2014 at 2:10 pm #

    How many blueberries? or other fruit?

    • Tommie February 2, 2014 at 2:54 pm #

      I didn’t have quite enough and I think my container was 12 ozzies. I’d probably double that, at least. Better to have extra.

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