This raw vegan cheesecake with caramel apples is gluten free and made with no refined sugar. Instead, it features a combination of cashews and dates with a date caramel apple topping. Trust me, you won’t even care that it’s vegan.
You all know I’m no vegan, and I don’t like when “health halos” (like gluten free or vegan) cloud our understanding of what’s healthy. But when you can make cheesecake out of nuts, dates, and oats without anything processed involved, I am totally on board. Introducing my raw vegan cheesecake with caramel apples- get ready to have your mind blown!
Table of contents
Why This Recipe Works
I know you must be thinking “Abbey, how can you possibly make cheesecake vegan?”. To be honest, I used to think the same thing! But having been inspired by Minimalist Baker’s basic recipe as a guide, I couldn’t help experiment for myself and man oh man are the results ever so delicious! This raw vegan cheesecake is also totally natural, packed with fibre, protein and healthy fats and delicious.
The best thing about this recipe is that it uses up simple ingredients that are likely already sitting in your pantry. So with a little vegan culinary magic, I promise this recipe will trick even the most avid cheesecake lover.
Cheesecake layer – To make the raw vegan cheesecake layer we combine creamy cashews, soy milk, sweet dates and tangy lemon juice. Believe it or not, these ingredients do a pretty stellar job of mimicking the flavour.
Base – the base is made by a simple combination of dates, pecans, oats, cinnamon and salt. To make this recipe no bake, this layer goes in the freezer to harden.
Date Caramel Apple Topping – If you are new to making date caramel you are in for a treat (literally!). This caramel alternative combines sweet dates with salt, lemon juice, soy milk and vanilla. When combined with chopped apples it makes for a finger licking cheesecake topper that will make your tastebuds sing!
How to Make This Recipe
Step 1: In a food processor, puree the dates, pecans, oats, cinnamon and salt until it forms a sticky crust-like consistency.
Step 2: Press about 2 tablespoons into the bottoms of 12 silicon cupcake liners, transfer to the freezer for an hour.
Step 3: Meanwhile, puree the cashews and dates until well pureed, then add in the soy milk, lemon juice, oil, vanilla and cinnamon.
Step 4: Puree until very smooth.
Step 5: Add the mixture to the frozen crust mixture, and freeze for 4-6 hours.
Step 6: Puree the dates in the food processor until gummy, then add in the salt, lemon juice, soy milk and vanilla. Puree until it reaches a very thick caramel-like consistency.
Step 7: In a bowl, toss the apples with the caramel until well coated. Carefully remove the cheesecakes, top with a spoonful of the apple caramel and pecans and eat with a fork immediately.
The key to making raw vegan cheesecake is to soak your cashews overnight so they get soft and easy to puree. If you want to make this recipe today and don’t have time to let the cashews soak, you can soak them in boiling water for 1-2 hours. However – I will say that soaking the cashews overnight yields a creamier texture FYI.
A high-speed blender or food processor is also highly recommended for this recipe as it will result in the creamiest dreamiest texture! I also love to use silicon cupcake molds for this recipe as it makes it super easy to pop out the raw vegan cheesecake from the muffin tin once frozen (the molds can also be reused which I love).
Absolutely! We like using soy milk because it’s higher in protein but you can use any plant-based milk that you prefer. I think coconut milk would be absolutely divine in this recipe.
I prefer to store these in the freezer. When I want to enjoy them I let them sit at room temperature for a few minutes and then dig in!
I used pecans for this recipe because it’s what I had on hand, but this recipe is versatile enough that you can use walnuts or almonds instead.
More Recipes You Might Like
Here are more cheesecake recipes on the blog that you’ll love!
- Matcha Cheesecake Parfaits (Vegan, No Bake)
- Strawberry Cheesecake Pancakes (High Protein, Gluten Free)
- Cheesecake Stuffed French Toast Crepes
- Nutella Cheesecake Chocolate Cups (Vegan)
- Cheesecake Dessert Nachos (Dairy Free & Sugar Free)
Have you tried making this caramel apple raw vegan cheesecake?
Raw Vegan Cheesecake with Caramel Apples
- In a food processor, puree the dates, pecans, oats, cinnamon and salt until it forms a sticky crust-like consistency. Press about 2 tablespoons into the bottoms of 12 silicon cupcake liners, transfer to the freezer for an hour.
- Meanwhile, puree the cashews and dates until well pureed, then add in the soy milk, lemon juice, oil, vanilla and cinnamon. Puree until very smooth.
- Add the mixture to the frozen crust mixture, and freeze for 4-6 hours.
- Right before serving, puree the dates in the food processor until gummy, then add in the salt, lemon juice, soy milk and vanilla. Puree until it reaches a very thick caramel-like consistency.
- In a bowl, toss the apples with the caramel until well coated.
- Carefully remove the cheesecakes, top with a spoonful of the apple caramel and pecans and eat with a fork immediately.
What flavour of cheesecake should I lighten up next? Leave me a comment below with your go-to flavours and I’ll get to work in the kitchen!
Abbey Sharp is a Registered Dietitian (RD), regulated by the Ontario College of Dietitians. She is a mom, YouTuber, Blogger, award winning cookbook author, media coach specializing in food and nutrition influencers, and a frequent contributor to national publications like Healthline and on national broadcast TV shows.