I can already hear the question: How do you make vegan cheesecake?!
Anything is possible – with a little creativity and google – we can make anything vegan!
The idea of vegan cheesecake is nothing new and we owe it to the brilliant creator who experimented using cashews in place of dairy for that thick and creamy consistency of all that is cheesecake. Normally I shy away from cashews and high fat desserts/food in general but we have to live a little (or we’ll go crazy!) and with special occasions such as Thanksgiving – a day that’s cumbersome enough for vegans – I’d say it’s a perfect holiday to thoroughly enjoy and be grateful for all the yumminess available to us. Share plant based desserts like these Mini Vegan Pumpkin Pie Cheesecakes with family and friends. Show them how delicious this way of eating can be. Eat mashed potatoes with vegan butter because it’s comforting, not because it’s fattening.
Don’t be hard on yourself and just soak in all the good feelings of the day.
Sound like a plan?
Pumpkin season has been fun and while the frenzy of pumpkin everything gets bigger and bigger every year (not complaining), Thanksgiving is sort of the last hoorah for pumpkins. I figured a festive and decadent fall dessert was the best way to go out with a bang since, most likely, this will be my last recipe of the year using pumpkin. Don’t quote me on that though.. ya never know 😉
I love these Mini Vegan Pumpkin Pie Cheesecakes because they’re the perfect little treat for fall parties or just to have something sweet on hand. Simple, rich, pumpkin-spiced, creamy and not too sweet, they hit the spot and give you the comforting feeling of all things Fall.
You can make 12 mini cheesecakes in a muffin tin like I did or you can make one big cheesecake in a round cake or springform pan. The recipe works either way! They easily come together in a food processor or blender and would be even better with a dollop of coconut cream. That’s what these little bites are missing! I totally would have added coconut cream if I had some on hand. For Thanksgiving, I’ll definitely add that touch.
- 1.5 cups raw pecans
- 1 cup medjool dates (soaked in warm water for 10 minutes)
- pinch of sea salt
Pumpkin Pie Filling
- 1 cup cashews (soaked in hot water for 1 hour)
- 1/2 cup light coconut milk
- 1/2 cup pumpkin purée (not pumpkin pie filling)
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted (or olive oil)
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- juice of 1/2 lemon
- Start by soaking the cashews for one hour and soaking the dates for 10 minutes.
- Line a muffin tin with plastic wrap or liners. Make the crust in a food processor. Blend the pecans until ground, then add the soft dates and sea salt. Pulse until well combined and sticky. Transfer the mixture into muffin tin and press down until a crust is formed. The crust is super sticky and it helps if you run your fingers under warm water before pressing down the crust. Place tin in freezer for 15 minutes.
- In a high speed blender, blend all the ingredients for the filling until smooth and creamy. Remove tin from freezer and pour the filling over crust. Top with a few extra pecans and freeze for about 4 hours, or until firm.
- Store any leftovers in the freezer.