Recipe ReDux: Vegan Cheesecake

This month’s Recipe ReDux theme is Spring Cleaning. It’s all about using those things you find in the back of your cupboard that you’ve maybe been ignoring for a little too long. For me, this usually includes an insane amount of nuts and some chocolate that has “bloomed” some time ago. Well, that’s a pretty good place to start, don’t you think?
Another item I’ve had in my pantry forever and rarely use is coconut oil. I know, I know, it’s a wonder ingredient that you can use anywhere, blah blah blah. But the thing is, I don’t like coconut. Like, at all. So I use the oil sparingly, and occasionally I’ll try it out in a recipe and the flavor is so strong and overpowering to me that I simply cannot eat it. This is not one of those recipes. This recipe hides the coconut flavor wonderfully, allowing me to slowly use up this pantry item, one spoon at a time.
Anyway, I took one of the many bags of cashews I usually have on hand, soaked them, and put them through a food processor with some maple syrup, vanilla, coconut oil, and lemon juice. Then I poured the mixture over some melted then re-hardened chocolate deliciousness (you’d never know that chocolate had looked all funny just a few moments before!), stuck it in the freezer, and called it cheesecake. Surprisingly, it does feel a lot like cheesecake. Just chalk it up to the magic of cashews.
I’ve made this cheesecake as a single, whole pie before, as small individual sized cakes, and this time, as something in between. The cashews and chocolate make for an incredibly rich cake, so I highly recommend lightening it up with fresh strawberries. I also strongly suggest eating it in the sunshine on a warm day. But that’s just me.
What’s been hanging out in your pantry? 

Vegan Cheesecake
Makes one 9” cheesecake, 8 large muffin size cheesecakes (pictured here and perfect for sharing), or 12 individual cheesecakes

1/2 cup dark chocolate chips or chocolate chunks
1 tablespoon coconut oil

3 cups cashews, soaked overnight and drained
Juice of one large lemon
3/4 cup maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup coconut oil

Fresh strawberries (optional, but highly recommended)

1. Melt the chocolate and coconut oil in a double boiler (or in the microwave) until smooth and creamy. Pout into a pie shell or divide into lined muffin tins. If, like me, you have no muffin liners, first place two strips of parchment paper at the bottom of each muffin tin to help lift up your finished cupcake later. Set aside in fridge or freezer to harden.
2. Place the remaining ingredients into a food processor or heavy duty blender and process until it reaches a smooth and creamy consistency. Taste and adjust lemon juice or maple syrup if needed.
3. Pour the cashew mixture over the hardened chocolate bottom. Again, either empty to contents into one large pie shell or divide evenly into the muffin tins. Place in freezer to harden, at least 30 minutes.
4. When you’re ready to eat the cheesecake, remove from freezer and let sit at room temperature for a few minutes to soften. During this time, slice fresh strawberries and top the cheesecake with them. The cheesecake can be stored in the fridge for a couple of days and in the freezer for up to two weeks.

4 Responses to Recipe ReDux: Vegan Cheesecake

  1. Holy Food says:

    I had one (yumm, actually more like 3 or 4!) last summer & it was to.die.for! hope they bring them back again this summer, yummmmmm.

  2. Vivian Wolfe says:

    A vegan cheesecake? That’s interesting. And from the looks of that recipe, it seems quite easy to do. This would be an amazing snack for those who are trying to stay away from dairy, but would love to indulge once in a while. Anyway, thanks for sharing your recipe. Cheers!

    Vivian Wolfe @ Jerry's Kitchen

  3. Jerry says:

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. YUM this looks so good. I had vegan cheesecake once and it stands as my favorite desert.

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