These vegan mini chocolate cheesecakes are the perfect sweet ending to Valentine’s Day, or any day, really! Made with just a handful of ingredients–nuts, dates, cacao, cacao butter, non-dairy milk, lemon juice, and salt, these little cheesecakes taste indulgent, but are actually wholesome and healthy!
No-Bake Mini Cheesecake [Vegan]
For the Crust:
- 1 1/2 cups raw walnuts or pecans
- 1/3 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- 1/2 cup pitted Medjool dates (very soft ones work best here)
- 1 tablespoon raw cacao powder OR cocoa powder
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 teaspoon coconut oil, if needed
For the Filling:
- 1 1/2 cups raw cashews, soaked* and drained
- 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
- 1/2 cup non-dairy milk
- 1/3 cup melted cacao butter**
- 1/3 cup cacao powder OR cocoa powder***
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Pinch of fine sea salt
For the Cherry Compote:
- 4 cups frozen organic tart cherries (or use fresh if you have access to them!)
- In a food processor, pulse together the walnuts/pecans, coconut, dates, cacao/cocoa powder, and salt until crumbly. When you press a small amount between your fingers, it should hold together. If it does not, add 1 tsp of coconut oil and pulse again until it sticks together.
- Line a standard muffin tin with 12 paper liners. Evenly divide the nut/date/coconut mixture between the 12 muffin cups and press in firmly with your fingers. The more firmly you press it in, the better!
- In a high speed blender, blend together the cashews, maple syrup, milk, melted cacao butter, cacao powder/cocoa powder, lemon juice, vanilla, and salt until very smooth. This will take a couple of minutes, so be patient and plug your ears or wear ear plugs to protect your eardrums! Once smooth, divide it evenly between the 12 little crusts in the muffin cups.
- Transfer the entire muffin pan into the freezer and freeze the cheesecakes for 3-4 hours, or until mostly firm. Be sure to remove them from the freezer at least 15 minutes before serving to soften; otherwise, you’ll have more of an ice cream cake than a velvety cheesecake!
- If desired, make the cherry compote/stewed cherries by simmering the cherries over medium-low heat for about 15-20 minutes, or until they’ve cooked down to half their original volume. Strain off excess liquid as needed.
- Top individual cheesecakes with a spoonful of cherry compote and serve. Leftover cheesecakes can be stored in the refrigerator or freezer.
Raw cashews need to be soaked to soften them. This also increases their digestibility. You can soak them in cold water for 8 hours or employ the quick soak method by placing the cashews in a pot, adding water to cover, and bringing to a boil. Then remove the pot from the heat, cover, and soak for one hour. Drain through a fine mesh sieve and proceed with your recipe. **If you are unable to find cacao butter, you can use an equivalent amount of melted coconut oil! ***I used regular organic cocoa powder, but you can use raw cacao powder if you want to make this recipe