Vegans Deserve to eat Cheesecake too!
A good cheesecake has a creamy body and a crunchy buttery biscuit base and we all know that nowadays we do not need dairy products to produce this effect.
However, I have tried many vegan cheesecakes and have found them to be lacking in indulgence.
So, I decided it was time to master my own vegan cheesecake recipe.
Vegan Cheesecake Recipes Downfalls
Many vegan cheesecake recipes rely too heavily on coconut oil and end up tasting like, guess what, coconut. Which is fine if you are going for those tropical vegan flavours.
However, I desire a vegan cheesecake that resembles the real thing. Creamy, vanilla-ry, with an extra dose of yumminess. Is a vegan version achievable?!
YES, of course! But more on that later…
Healthy Vegan Cheesecake: Really?!
I am not a believer in coconut cream on top of a healthy base of crushed nuts and seeds as a suitable alternative, sometimes sugar is necessary.
I experimented a lot with no-bake cheesecakes and all I found was that they still tasted slightly lacklustre. Raw vegan food tastes pretty much raw.
How about using vegan cream cheese?
Vegan cream cheese products are definitely improving and getting more realistic, but they still have an almost plastic-like flavour.
That was before I remembered my lack of enthusiasm towards no-bake cheesecakes before I went vegan, but baked cheesecakes…now they were the ones I used to adore.
They had a certain cakeyness to them, with crispy edges and a soft and creamy centre. I thought I would give it a shot and after baking this cheesecake for the first time, I will never look back.
A Vegan White Chocolate ‘Cheesecake’
Now, you might be questioning how you can achieve the taste of white chocolate. Well, it is possible by using one of the ingredients used to make white chocolate itself – cocoa butter (I buy mine online here). If you aren’t able to source it or don’t crave white chocolate as much as me, then you can just sub it for more coconut oil.
Building on this Vegan Cheesecake Recipe
I love rhubarb. Originally when I created this recipe we were leaving the forced rhubarb season and entering the field rhubarb season so we were able to find rhubarb in the shops quite easily.
However, if you struggle to find it or just don’t like rhubarb, you can sub it with another fruit of your choice.
I would recommend rhubarb though for its deliciousness, sharpness and colour! Even in its raw form, it looks just like bright pink candy. Once swirled into the cheesecake mix it will create a beautiful balance between sweet and sharp.
I love rhubarb so much I like to add extra to this dessert, especially if I want to dress it up on the plate. So here’s an idea on how to garnish the cheesecake.
OPTIONAL TOPPING – ROASTED GINGER RHUBARB:
Mix 200g rhubarb (chopped into long pieces), 1 tbsp agave syrup and a thumb-sized piece of ginger grated and juiced (squeeze the juice out of the grated pieces using your hand). Coat the rhubarb and roast in the oven at 180 degrees (fan) for 10 mins covered in foil and then for a further 10 mins without the foil. Serve with the finished cheesecake.
It looks so beautiful and colourful – just what you need to help get rid of the winter blues!
What equipment will you need?
You will need a good blender for this, otherwise, the cheesecake body won’t reach the desired smooth consistency.
I use a Vitamix blender – it was the best investment I ever made.
You can buy one yourself from £300 and it’ll be with you for life!
Baking a Vegan Cheesecake
Just like a traditional cheesecake, you’ll need to add some flour into the mix in order to bake the cheesecake effectively.
I’ve tried it with both normal flour and gluten-free flour. Both work!
The Baked Vegan ‘Cheesecake’ Recipe
White Chocolate, Ginger and Rhubarb Vegan ‘Cheesecake’ W/ Pistachio Crumb
- Blender (I use my Vitamix)
- 200 g Rhubarb
- 40 g Caster sugar
- 70 ml Water
- Juice from 1/2 lemon
- 200 g Ginger biscuits many supermarkets sell their own brand biscuits that are suitable for vegans
- 100 g Vegan margarine
- 2 x balls of stem ginger optional – if you really love ginger!
- 100 g Macadamia nuts soaked overnight, drained and rinsed
- 200 g Cashew nuts soaked overnight, drained and rinsed
- 1 tsp Vanilla paste/or extract
- Zest from 2 lemons
- 60 g Plant-based milk
- 180 g Agave
- 30 g Cocoa butter
- 50 g Coconut oil I prefer mild odourless
- 1/4 tsp Sea salt
- 1 tsp Apple cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp Plain flour
Pistachio Crumb Topping
- A handful of toasted pistachio nuts crushed or blitzed
- Start by placing all of the rhubarb coulis ingredients in a pan and cook for 15-20 minutes on a medium heat (or until soft and broken down)
- Let the mix stand for 30 minutes before blending to a smooth consistency
- Whilst waiting for the rhubarb to cool, break the ginger biscuits into a fine crumb. Either place them in a freezer bag, cover with a tea towel and then bash them with a rolling pin (the fun method) or simply blitz them in a food processor
- If you’re using stem ginger, this is where you would finely chop it and mix it into the biscuit crumb
- Melt the vegan margarine and mix into the biscuit crumb
- Press the biscuit mix into the base of a 20cm spring-form cake tin and leave to cool (it is best to put it in to the freezer so that it sets in time for the mix to be added)
- Melt the coconut oil and cocoa butter in a bain-marie (a bowl sitting above a saucepan of boiling water)
- Add the melted mix and the rest of the ingredients, excluding the flour, in to the blender and blend until smooth
- Put the blended ingredients into a mixing bowl, sift in the flour and fold in
- Pour the mix on top of the chilled biscuit base and then swirl in the rhubarb mix on top to create a marbled effect (I use the thin end of a chopstick)
- Cook at 180 degrees (fan) for 40 mins. If the top starts to catch and burn, cover with foil
- Leave it to cool and then scatter over the pistachio crumb, along with any extra optional toppings