This is eye candy in itself. The bright colors will seduce you into indulging in this creamy dark chocolate cake layered with a sweet strawberry lemonade filling, making this the perfect summer treat. Do you need more convincing?

Strawberry Lemonade Chocolate Cheesecake [Vegan, Gluten-Free]

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Ingredients

For the Crust:

  • 1 cup almonds
  • 1/2 cup cashews
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 8 pitted Medjool dates (soaked in hot water for 15 minutes)
  • Pinch of pink Himalayan salt

For the Chocolate Layer:

  • 1 cup coconut oil (not melted)
  • 3/4 cup canned coconut milk, just the thick cream, not the oil (refrigerate to help get the separation of oil and milk)
  • 1/4 cup creamed coconut
  • 10 pitted Medjool dates (soaked in hot water for 15 minutes)
  • 1/2 cup cashews (soaked in hot water for 15 minutes)
  • 1/2 cup vegan chocolate chunks
  • 1/4 cup cacao powder
  • 3/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon instant espresso powder (optional)
  • A pinch of pink Himalayan salt

For the Strawberry Lemonade Layer:

  • 1 16-ounce package of fresh strawberries, stems removed
  • Juice from 2 lemons
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 cup coconut oil (not melted)
  • 3/4 cup canned coconut milk, just the thick cream, not the oil (refrigerate to help get the separation of oil and milk)
  • 1/4 cup creamed coconut
  • 1 packet of instant pink lemonade (optional)

For the Toppings:

  • 1/2 cup vegan chocolate chunks, melted
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 packet of instant pink lemonade
  • Juice from half a lemon
  • Slice of lemon
  • Mint leaves
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Preparation

To Make the Crust:

  1. In a food processor, blitz the almonds and cashews until crumbly.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients and blitz until combined.
  3. In a 8-9 inch springform pan, firmly press the mixture into the pan. Use the bottom of a flat surface such as a glass to push down and flatten the layer. Set aside.

To Make the Chocolate Layer:

  1. In a high-powered blender add all the chocolate layer ingredients and blitz until smooth. You may need to user a damper or stop every 10-20 seconds to push the sides down. Blend for 2 minutes until thoroughly combined.
  2. Pour chocolate mixture on top of the crust and tap the pan a few times on the counter to help get rid of the air bubbles.
  3. Place in the freezer for 2 hours.

To Make the Strawberry Layer:

  1. In a high-powered blender add all the strawberry layer ingredients and blitz until smooth. (Note that adding a packet of instant pink lemonade is optional, but it gives it a nice kick of flavor if you can get your hands on it)
  2. Blend for 2 minutes until thoroughly combined.
  3. Pour the strawberry mixture on top of the chocolate layer and tap it a few times on the counter.
  4. Place in the freezer for 4 hours, or in the fridge for 8 hours.
Decorate the top
  1. Melt the chocolate chunks for 20-30 seconds in the microwave 2-3 times. Careful not to burn the chocolate! Stir each time.
  2. Over medium-high heat in a small sauce pan add the sugar and lemon juice and heat for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Next, add a packet of instant pink lemonade. After a minute, reduce heat to low and constantly stir for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat and let it stand for 5-10 minutes. It should be a translucent pink and thick glaze.
  4. Drizzle chocolate and pink glaze over the cheesecake as desired. Add a slice of lemon and mint leaves to create a beautiful contrast of colors. Serve and enjoy.
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