Isn’t it a wonderful thing when you discover something so amazing it changes your life forever? Like an amazing new brunch spot, or an incredible new face cream?
Part of you probably doesn’t want to disclose this information to the public, scared that the restaurant might become so busy that getting a table will now become a challenge, or that the beauty product might sell out so quickly, you’ll be left without your new discovery. I’m not going to lie, for a moment I second-guessed sharing this recipe, but after rationalizing the outcomes, realized that I was in safe territory and that the supply of the few ingredients needed for this recipe were not likely to disappear. So without further ado, allow me to kindly introduce you to “The New Cheesecake”.
This recipe consists of only a handful of ingredients, most of which you might have in your pantry. Easy, healthy and no baking required.
A vegan lifestyle is quickly becoming to hippest trend here in southern California, and eating “raw” would be considered the hottest accessory to this lifestyle. Turning cashews into cream might seem like a strange concept, but once you have tried this recipe, your kitchen confidence will skyrocket and you’ll be attempting all sorts of magical tricks (nuts into cheese?).
The best part about this recipe it is versatility. I have tried so many variations. Raspberry, lemon, chocolate…endless really. If it blends, it might just work!
Is this raw vegan peanut butter cheesecake healthy? It sure it! Now, let me clarify – being that it is basically all nuts, it will carry a pretty high caloric number, BUT, if you consider the ingredient list, what you are swapping it out for (high refined sugars and animal fat!) then yes, it is by far the healthier choice. Also, being raw means that the vitamins, enzymes and minerals of the ingredients are not broken down in the cooking process, and therefore completely available to your health-inspired goals.
So dig in my friends and enjoy!
- ½ cup raw almonds (pecan or walnuts will also work)
- ½ cup soft Medjool dates
- ¼ tsp. sea salt
- 1 ½ cups raw cashews, soaked for at least 5 hours (overnight is best)
- juice of 2 lemons
- the seeds of 1 whole vanilla bean (or 1 teaspoon alcohol-free vanilla extract)
- ⅓ cup raw coconut oil, melted
- ⅓ cup agave nectar
- 1 tablespoon of peanut butter for the middle layer
- Place nuts and dates in a food processor with sea salt and pulse to chop until they are to your desired fineness. If the ingredients hold together, your crust is perfect. Scoop out crust mixture into a 7” spring-form pan, or any baking dish. If it is not a
spring-formpan, line the bottom of the dish with saran/cling wrap to avoid the crust from sticking to the bottom. (I used 3 mini spring-formpans for this specific recipe).
- Press firmly, making sure that the edges are well packed and that the base is relatively even throughout. Rinse food processor well.
- Warm coconut oil and agave in a small saucepan (or microwave) on low heat until liquid. Whisk to combine.
- In the most powerful food processor/blender you own, place all filling ingredients (except peanut butter) and blend on high until very smooth. This may take a couple minutes so be patient.
- Pour about ½ of the mixture out onto the crust and smooth with a spatula. Add the peanut butter to the remaining filling and blend on high until smooth. Pour onto the first layer of filling. Place in freezer until solid (approx 2-3 hours).
- To serve, remove from freezer just minutes prior to eating. Run a smooth, sharp knife under hot water and cut into slices. Serve on its own, or with chocolate ganache toppings and crushed nuts as pictured.
- Store leftovers in the freezer.