Holding up to the tradition of my week, even on it’s first day, I made some totally vegan non-bake cheesecakes, made of soy yoghurt, chia seeds and a baked nut crust-base. I prepared in advance, and made these the night before my challenge week, letting them sit in the fridge to firm up. They’re not entirely cheesecake like unsurprisingly, but they make a pretty good try! On their own merits, they are amazing. Like, I could bake only these from now on, and have them with different toppings.
Here I’ve made a strawberry sauce out of raspberries, agave syrup and a little dairy-free cream, but I also served them with good old plain fresh raspberries, as well as a sprinkling of pomegranate seeds. Yummy!
They make eating cheesecake pots a little bit more healthier at least, thanks to the chia seeds which have several health benefits; they slow down digestion, meaning you help to regulate those blood sugar spikes; one ounce of chia seeds has a 1/3 of your recommended daily allowance of fibre; is a good source for calcium, protein, phosphorous and manganese; and is believed to make you feel fuller for longer! They look a little like more oblong versions of quinoa, but when added to the cheesecake mixture, lose their graininess since they become softer when hydrated.
The coconut oil gives a light coconut-ty flavour, but it’s very subtle, so don’t panic if you can’t stand the stuff. It’s sort of necessary since it’s your binder for the cheesecake mixture here.
The crunchy base is sort of like a crumble, made of coarsely chopped cashews and brazil nuts, mixed with oats before being baked in the oven. I used vegan butter for the base, but for the cheesecake mixture, I made my own vegan “cheese” from soy yoghurt! It’s super easy, and I recommend trying it if you prepare for it a day in advance to let it stand in the fridge. Otherwise, you can totally just use a reliable vegan soft cheese.
So, let’s get started, huh? 🙂
Adapted from here!
Makes one small pie dish of cheesecake, or six small pots
3 tbsp of oats
handful of brazil nuts, coarsely chopped
handful of cashew nuts, coarsely chopped
4 tbsp of melted vegan butter
500g of soy yoghurt OR vegan cream cheese
2 tbsp extra of soy yoghurt OR lactose-free Turkish yoghurt
2 tbsp of chia seeds
1/2 cup of agave syrup
3 tbsp of coconut oil, melted
Raspberry Topping (optional)
4 tbsp of raspberries, lightly crushed with a fork
1 tbsp of agave syrup
1 tbsp of non-dairy cream subsitute, (or almond milk if you are desperate)
If you’re making the soy yoghurt “cheese”, then the night before you plan to make the desserts, line a sieve with paper towels and place over a bowl. Add the soy yoghurt, and let it stand in the fridge overnight. The next morning, the watery liquid will have soaked through to the bottom, and the soy yoghurt will have become creamier.
Preheat oven to 200 degrees C. Add all ingredients for the base into a bowl. Add more oats if not enough to cover your chosen dish(es), or add more butter if the mixture is not sticking enough. Bake in oven for ten minutes, and remove to cool.
Mix together all the ingredients for the filling, whether with soy yoghurt cheese or vegan cream cheese. Use a stand mixer or a handheld electric whisk to beat the mixture for about two minutes, and it should fluff up a bit more.
Spoon in the filling into the dish(es), and let them chill in the fridge to firm up for at least two hours, but ideally overnight.
For the raspberry topping, mix the ingredients into a small saucepan and lightly heat up for a minute. Turn off heat, and spoon over the cold desserts. Serve immediately.