Photo Credit: Haile Thomas and Will Coleman
Cashew “Cheesecake” Squares
These squares are filled with delicious nostalgia and could definitely compete with your traditional cheesecake.
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Shop IngredientsHow this works
Servings: 12 squares
- 1 1/2 cups raw cashews
- 1/2 cup raw almonds (or nut of your choice, such as cashews or peanuts)
- 3/4 cup rolled oats (gluten-free if needed)
- 1 cup pitted Medjool or Deglet Noor dates
- 1/2 cup fresh blueberries or diced fruit of your choice (such as strawberries, raspberries, blackberries
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1/2 cup full-fat coconut milk
- 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
- 3 tablespoons coconut oil, melted and cooled
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon grated orange zest
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon Himalayan pink salt
Optional Blue/Lavender/Pink Swirl
- 1 1/2 teaspoons colored powder: Butterfly pea flower powder (for blue), pitaya or beet powder (for pink)
- In a bowl, fully cover the cashews in water and soak overnight in the fridge.
- Line the bottom and all sides of a 9 × 9-inch baking pan with parchment paper (or use a springform pan).
- To make the crust: In a food processor, pulse together the almonds, oats, dates, blueberries, cinnamon, and cardamom until well incorporated. The mixture should be thick and stick together when pressed.
- Evenly press the crust over the bottom of the lined pan. Freeze for 20 minutes.
- To make the batter: Drain the cashews and transfer to a large high- powered blender (see Tip). Add the coconut milk, maple syrup, coconut oil, lemon juice, orange zest, vanilla, and salt and blend until smooth and creamy.
- If you want your cheesecake squares to have swirls, set aside most of the cheesecake batter in a large bowl, leaving 1 /4 cup in the blender. Add the butterfly pea flower powder, pitaya powder, or beet powder in the blender and blend until smooth. Transfer the colored batter to a small bowl.
- Remove the prepared crust from the freezer and pour the cheesecake batter over the crust, spreading it evenly. To add swirls, drop small dollops of the colored batter across the top of the cheesecake and swirl them with a toothpick or chopstick.
- Freeze the cheesecake for at least 6 hours and up to overnight.
- Let sit at room temperature for 20 minutes before serving.
Tip: For this recipe, you’ll need to use a high- powered blender to ensure the cashews can be fully broken down and blended to achieve the creamiest possible “cheesecake” consistency. Excerpted from Living Lively: 80 Plant-Based recipes to Activate Your Power & Feed Your Potential © 2021 by Haile Thomas. Published by William Morrow Cookbooks, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.
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