During our pre-vegan days, Eddie and I really enjoyed making cheesecakes. It became our signature dessert and we made darn good cheesecakes! The cheesecake we ended up making the most was a peanut butter cup cheesecake with a chocolate cookie crust, layer of peanut butter cups, and the creamiest plain cheesecake layer you ever tasted. We even perfected how to bake the cheesecake without cracking it!
Over the holidays Eddie started making his cheesecakes again for some friends as a Christmas present. He has wanted to try a vegan version for awhile, but I have been resistant. There is NO WAY a vegan cheesecake would even compare to the original… or so I thought!!!
Well, we were bored the other night so we decided to bake something. Eddie decided to veganize his famous cheesecake recipe and I decided to try my hand at a raw cheesecake. After a bit of research, we both had our recipes in hand, and off to the store we went to get the needed ingredients. We spent the rest of the night baking away.
These were the results:
Eddie’s Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake
As you can see by the photo of Eddie’s cheesecake above, it turned out AMAZING! Not only did it look amazing, it tasted amazing! It was so close to real cheesecake I could hardly tell the difference. I cannot even begin to describe how amazing this cheesecake was. Unfortunately, the recipe is an “Eddie original” and I cannot share it with you today on this blog. We will, however, definitely be using this recipe over and over and over again and we are eager to try different versions! Chocolate Mint anyone? How about a turtle cheesecake? cookie dough? dulce de leche? The possibilities are endless!
As for my raw cheesecake, it also turned out extremely well. It does not really have the taste of traditional cheesecake but it has a super creamy texture and a really great taste of its own. The adapted a recipe from the Vegetarian Times. It was super easy to make and I can see doing different variations of this cheesecake as well. It would be really easy to adapt this recipe to make a chocolate cheesecake or a mint cheesecake. The only change I would make next time is to double the filling recipe so you have a thicker filling than crust. I have reprinted the recipe for you below. Enjoy!
Some notes about the raw cheesecake:
1. The original recipe said to soak the nuts for the crust, I did not do this, I prefer the crust to be crunchy and was afraid soaking the nuts would make it too soft.
2. I used lemon juice in my recipe but the original recipe calls for lime juice, use whatever you have on hand or prefer.
3. For the filling, I blended it in my high speed Vitamix to get a super smooth texture. If you don’t have a Vitamix, use a food processor instead and add 6 tablespoons of water.
4. I used vanilla bean powder in my recipe, if you don’t have this, just use the seeds from one vanilla bean pod.
5. For the crust I used brazil nuts because the is what I had on hand. The original recipe calls for macadamia. I think it turned out great with brazil nuts but I will use macadamia nuts next time.
6. I doubled the filling in the recipe below.
Raw Cashew Cheesecake
Adapted from The Vegetarian Times
3 cups cashews
2 cups macadamia nuts
1/2 cup medjool dates
1/4 cup dried coconut
3/4 cup coconut oil, warmed
1/2 cup lemon or lime juice
1/2 cup raw agave nectar
1 teaspoon vanilla bean powder
3 cups mixed fresh berries, such as raspberries and blueberries
1. Place cashews in a separate bowl and cover with cold water. Soak nuts for 4 hours, then rinse, drain, and set aside.
2. Pulse macadamia nuts, dates, and coconut in a food processor to a sticky crumb-like consistency. Press crust mixture into pie or tart pan.
3. Place cashews, coconut oil, lime juice, agave nectar, and vanilla bean into a high-speed blender and puree until smooth. If using a food processor, add 6 tablespoons water. Pour mixture onto crust, and freeze 1 to 2 hours, or until firm. Remove from freezer, slice while frozen, and transfer to serving platter. Defrost in fridge 1 hour, or on countertop 30 minutes, top with berries and serve.