This post is sponsored by Dream® Non-Dairy Yogurts.
What is your dream Valentine’s Day?
Breakfast in bed; a gorgeous bouquet of roses delivered to your door; getting a Valentine’s Day card from your special someone; or enjoying a lovely, hearty homemade dessert together with your loved ones. The last one definitely is my choice.
How about this beautiful no-bake vegan yogurt cheesecake for your choice of dessert? Don’t be intimidated by how amazing it looks. No bragging! I guarantee you can do it because it is super simple. This cheesecake is raw, so no baking or cooking is required. If you have a high speed blender or food processor, a rubber spatula, a springform pan, and a kitchen scale, you are pretty much set.
The Yogurt Cheesecake Filling:
Do you remember that I recently introduced a group of new vegan friends, Dream® Non-Dairy Yogurts., to you? I had made some healthy dark chocolate yogurt cake bites using dream coconut yogurt and everybody in our family and extended family loved them. Since I’m using cashew nuts as the cheesecake base in this recipe, I thought it would be a good time to invite Almond DreamTM yogurts to take the stage.
Like their Ccoconut DreamTM siblings, Almond DreamTM yogurts also come with five different flavor choices: plain, strawberry, mixed berry, vanilla, and coconut. They’re all made from real almonds. The texture has a super smooth consistency. I like to add a few drops of lemon juice to increase the tangy taste for those with refined taste buds. Otherwise, the sweetness is just right for a sweet afternoon snack. I couldn’t find any better a choice than using this vegan yogurt in my raw cheesecake recipe, because, again raw means it maintains all the live probiotics in the yogurt.
The filling of this yogurt cheesecake is made of
Soaked raw cashew nuts
Freshly grated lemon zest and squeezed lemon juice
Agar agar noodles and boiling water
(optional) Nutritional yeast
Pure stevia extract powder
Shredded beets for the pink color
It may seem like a long list. However, once you gather everything, you just need to use a good quality high-speed blender to blend everything together. Before I added the shredded beets, I saved some of the white filling to make the heart swirl. I adapted the heart swirl idea from this video. Check it out for more instruction to making these chasing-hearts.
Let me give a special word of thanks to the vegan community/bloggers for sharing their grain free raw vegan crust recipe ideas. I finally decided to use this low sugar coconut macaroon crust recipe with a slight modification. This crust is made of
Unsweetened coconut shreds
Pure stevia extract
Again, after blending the soft Medjool dates in a food processor, I added the rest of the crust ingredients and let them blend until well combined. Pack them evenly on the bottom of the springform pan, just like you do with the regular cheesecake crust. After refrigerating for an hour, it’s ready to add the filling on top.
The finished cheesecake needs to be refrigerated for 4-6 hours to let the vegan yogurt cheese filling set. So you can definitely prepare this cheesecake a few days in advance. You can also freeze it and enjoy later.
The ground cashew nuts and almond yogurt give an extremely smooth and creamy texture. The beet shreds added a nice color and a very mild beet taste that you may not even notice. The lemon zest and lemon juice just give an extra tangy taste and zing to the cheesecake, a pleasant and not at all overwhelming addition. Trust me, you can’t go wrong with this vegan yogurt cheesecake for your Valentine’s Day!
- 7 large Mejool dates, pitted
- 1-½ cups unsweetened coconut shreds
- ¼ cup special dark coca powder
- ¼ teaspoon pure stevia extract powder (Now brand)
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil (liquid form)
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- (optional) ¼ cup coconut flour
- 5 grams agar agar noodles
- ¼ cup boiling water
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1-½ cup (approximately 210 gram) raw cashew, soaked in water for at least 8 hours (see note)
- 12 oz Almond Dream yogurt (plain or your favorite choice)
- ⅓ cup coconut oil (liquid form)
- ½ teaspoon pure stevia extract powder (Now brand)
- 2 tablespoons agave nectar
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- (optional) ¼ teaspoon nutritional yeast
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest, from half of a large lemon
- 1 large lemon, juiced
- ½ cup packed shredded beets
- Prepare the crust: In a food processor, blend the soft dates until it forms a big ball. Add the remaining crust ingredients and blend until it forms loose crumbs. The dough should stick together if you press it a little bit between your fingers. If it doesn’t, add 1 teaspoon of water and blend again.
- Transfer the crust mixture into a springform pan. Use your hand to spread it out evenly and press down firmly. Place the springform pan in the freezer while you are preparing the cheesecake filling.
- Prepare the cheesecake filling: Use a pair of scissors to cut the agar agar noodles to ½ inch in length. Dissolve them into ¼ cup of boiling water and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Use a spoon to stir, helping the noodles to dissolve. Heat in microwave oven for 15 seconds if necessary.
- Drain the soaked cashew nuts and pat dry with paper towel. Add the cashew nuts and agar agar noodle solution into a high-speed blender. Blend briefly, approximately 30 seconds. Add the remaining filling ingredients, except beets, and blend until very smooth. Transfer approximately 2 tablespoons of the white filling into a squeeze bottle (such as mustard or ketchup squeeze bottle) for later decorating.
- Add the beets into the white cheesecake filling and blend again until very smooth. You can taste and adjust the sweetness as needed.
- Pour the pink cheesecake filling into the spring form pan containing the prepared cheesecake crust. Gently tap on the counter to remove any air pockets in the filling.
- Squeeze small amount of the white cheesecake filling to form dots in a swirl pattern over the pink cheesecake. Take a toothpick, beginning with the center dots, and run the toothpick through the center of each dot to form a heart shape (don't lift the toothpick out until you finish the last dot).
- Carefully transfer the springform pan into the freezer on a level surface for approximately 2 hours or until firm throughout.
- Remove the springform pan from the freezer and let it rest at room temperature for 5-10 minutes. Use a paring knife to run between the cake and edge of the springform pan to help release it. Slice and serve immediately.
2. You can soak the cashew dates in boiling water for 1 hour for quick soak method.
3. Decoration idea is adapted from Raw Vegan Not Gross (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eftolbGBTEk)
4. The crust is adapted from OhSheGlows (http://ohsheglows.com/2014/10/31/double-dark-chocolate-coconut-macaroon-tart-vegan-gluten-free-grain-free/)
5. This cheesecake can be kept in the freezer for up to 2 weeks. However, the pink color from beets will make the hearts change from white to slightly pinkish when stored longer.
6. The preparation time doesn't include the soaking and refrigerating time.