DessertJune-July 2010

Dairy-Free Cheesecake

SERVES 8

 

The texture of this cheesecake is silky smooth. No one will guess it's made with tofu.

Dairy-Free Cheesecake

1 (16-ounce) package silken tofu, drained
1 cup sugar
2 (8-ounce) packages dairy-free cream cheese
1 egg,* room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 gluten-free crust of choice, prebaked
- Topping of choice

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

2. Place the tofu in a food processor and blend until smooth. Add the sugar and dairy-free cream cheese and blend. Add the egg and vanilla and blend.

3. Pour the batter into the prebaked crust.

4. Bake in preheated oven on the middle rack for 45 minutes. The edges will be firm, the center soft.

5. Turn the oven off and leave the cheesecake in the oven with the door slightly ajar for 1 hour.

6. Remove from oven and cool completely before refrigerating. Slice and serve or finish cheesecake with toppings of choice.

Each slice with graham cracker crust contains 405 calories, 20g total fat, 9g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 49mg cholesterol, 279mg sodium, 52g carbohydrate, 1g fiber, 10g protein.

*For Egg-Free, Dairy-Free Cheesecake, add 2 tablespoons cornstarch to processed tofu mixture and blend. In a small bowl, whisk 1½ tablespoons egg-replacer with 6 tablespoons water until frothy; mix into batter and continue with recipe instructions.

For Dairy-Free Chocolate Cheesecake, add ½ cup unsweetened cocoa to food processer when blending in the sugar. If making the egg-free version, it's not necessary to add the cornstarch.

 


 

 

Cherry Topping

MAKES 2 CUPS

⅓ cup sugar
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 (10-ounce) bag frozen pitted dark sweet cherries, defrosted
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons water

1. Mix sugar and cornstarch together in a saucepan. Add cherries, lemon juice and water, stirring over medium heat until mixture thickens.

2. Remove from heat and cool before spooning over cheesecake.

 


 

Mixed Berry Topping

MAKES ABOUT 4 CUPS

1 cup raspberries
1 cup blueberries
½ cup blackberries, if available
2 cups strawberries, hulled and quartered
¼ cup sugar
1½ teaspoons white distilled vinegar

1. Pick through and wash the berries.

2. Place half the berries into a saucepan with sugar and vinegar. Bring mixture to a boil.

3. Remove from heat and cool slightly. Gently mix in remaining berries and spoon over cheesecake.

 


 

Sour Cream Topping

MAKES ABOUT 1 CUP

1 cup sour cream or dairy-free sour cream
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1. Whisk together sour cream, sugar and vanilla.

2. Spoon topping over baked cheesecake.

3. Return cheesecake to 325-degree preheated oven and bake for about 8 more minutes or until topping is set.

4. Cool in pan on a wire rack. When cool, remove springform from pan, leaving cheesecake on the pan bottom. Set on a serving plate and refrigerate for at least two hours before serving.

 


 

Milk Chocolate Ganache

MAKES ABOUT 2 CUPS

9  ounces milk chocolate,* chopped
¾  cup heavy cream or coconut milk (not lite)
1½ tablespoons cold unsalted butter or dairy-free margarine

1. Place chopped chocolate in a medium stainless steel bowl. Set aside.

2. Heat cream and butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Bring just to a boil. Immediately pour boiling mixture over chocolate and let stand for 5 minutes without stirring.

3. Swirl mixture until blended and smooth. Let sit until it begins to thicken. Pour over cooled cheesecake, spreading to cover.

*TIP For dairy-free chocolate, try Enjoy Life chocolate chips, enjoylifefoods.com.

 


 

 

Dark Chocolate Ganache

MAKES ABOUT 2 CUPS

8 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped
¾ cup heavy cream or coconut milk (not lite)
2 tablespoons cold unsalted butter or dairy-free margarine

1. Place chopped chocolate in a medium stainless steel bowl. Set aside.

2. Heat cream and butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Bring just to a boil. Immediately pour boiling mixture over chocolate and let stand for 5 minutes without stirring.

3. Swirl mixture until blended and smooth. Let sit until it begins to thicken. Pour over cooled cheesecake, spreading to cover evenly.

 


 

Coconut Topping

MAKES 3 CUPS

¾ cup heavy cream or coconut milk
½ cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
½ cup unsalted butter or dairy-free margarine
1 (3½-ounce) can flaked coconut, about 1⅓ cups

1. Over medium heat, bring the cream, brown sugar and butter to a full boil. Immediately remove from heat.

2. Stir in coconut.

3. Cool to room temperature. Pour over cooled cheesecake, spreading to cover.

 


 

Gluten-Free Graham Cracker Crust

MAKES ONE 8- OR 9-INCH CRUST

To vary the flavor of your cheesecake crust, substitute any type of crunchy gluten-free cookie. Try crushed gingersnaps, vanilla or chocolate sandwich cookies, biscotti, shortbread, vanilla cookies—even brownies!

1½ cups (6 ounces) gluten-free graham cracker crumbs or crushed cookies of choice
½ teaspoon cinnamon, optional
6 tablespoons unsalted butter or Earth Balance or dairy-free shortening of choice, melted

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease the bottom and sides of a springform pan. Set aside.

2. Mix graham cracker crumbs, cinnamon and melted butter together.

3. Press mixture into prepared pan.

4. Place in preheated oven and bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Cool on a rack before adding cheesecake filling.

 


 

Gluten-Brownie Crust

MAKES ONE 9-INCH CRUST

8 tablespoons butter or dairy-free shortening, of choice
4 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate
1½ cups sugar
2 eggs
¼ cup milk of choice (cow, rice, soy, nut, hemp)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup gluten-free flour blend of choice
½ teaspoon salt

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly grease and flour the sides and bottom of a 9-inch springform pan. Set aside.

2. Melt butter and chocolate in a heavy saucepan over low heat. Remove from heat and cool to lukewarm.

3. Add sugar to chocolate mixture. Stir in eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in milk and vanilla.

4. In a separate bowl, combine flour and salt. Stir into batter until blended.

5. Spoon batter into prepared springform pan, spreading evenly. Bake in preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until center is firm to touch. Cool on rack before adding cheesecake filling.

 

Comments (5)

If I could find a dairy-free cream cheese, I wouldn't need a recipe for dairy-free cheesecake. Just sayin....

Posted by: hayley3 | June 16, 2016 6:56 AM    Report this comment

I made this recipe with the vanilla cheese cake "cheery" topping and gram cracker crust. It came out delicious! My family loved it, my boyfriend(who's lactose-intolerant) loved it and his family loved it!
I changed a few things to make it my own and because of the comment about it not cooking correctly.
First I substituted the cherries or strawberries, and I would like to try it with raspberries as well.
Second I substituted half a cup of gram crackers for a half cup of walnuts.(This came out really really well!)
And third I cooked the cheese cake at 330 and for an extra 10 minutes. the top was just barely starting to darken and had a couple spots but it didn't effect the taste at all and the center was very well cooked through!
Thank you for this great recipe I cant wait to make it again and again!

Posted by: JoaniBea | September 8, 2012 12:44 PM    Report this comment

Delicious! I do not have dairy or gluten allergies, so I am not yet accustomed to the aquired tastes of products without dairy or gluten. But I tried this recipe for my grandma who is sensitive to both dairy and gluten. I used Pamela's shortbread cookies (2 pkgs.) put through a food processor for the crust, and after reading the comments about the baking times, I decided to try individual cakes using muffins tins to ensure they would cook through. Baked for 35 minutes instead of 45 and they turned out perfect! topped with the berry topping and even my "anti healthy" huband was fooled. YUM!

Posted by: a.rowan | January 26, 2012 6:55 PM    Report this comment

This recipe was fantastic. I made the recipe as stated, with the gluten free brownie crust and the coconut cream topping, and was quite amazed at how delicious it was. I shared it with coworkers and they were completely shocked it wasn't made with dairy (butter excepted) or gluten.

I had a few notes about my results with the recipe... The 45 minute baking time was not nearly enough to get anything beyond the very edges cooked. My finished cheesecake was fairly wet throughout, and more custardy than cakey. It reminded me of a no bake cheesecake, and was tasty, but I think next time a significant amount more cooking may be required, I am guessing about 30 minutes, though I am not sure if that will burn the top at all. I will keep a better eye on it next time.

It wasn't clear that the gluten free brownie crust was not designed to go around the edges of the pan. At first I was confused by how wet it was, then just gave in to having just a bottom crust, only realizing later that this was probably what was intended all along. It was probably twice as much crust as I would see needing for as much cheesecake as the recipe makes, next time I will only make half. It was nearly 50/50 crust and cake with the existing ratios. I think maybe 25% crust is the most I'd want next time.

The coconut cream worked fantastically. I let it cool enough to make a thicker cream before pouring it over the top, so that it would chill nicely without making a mess.

These suggestions aside, I am delighted to have a cheesecake recipe that I can actually eat and enjoy! It completely satisfies my cheesecake craving, and I actually think I even like it better, as I often find most cheesecakes a little more rich than I enjoy. I will make it again!

Posted by: T. Pridemore | December 12, 2011 5:09 PM    Report this comment

I tried this recipe with the sour cream topping. I used Tofutti for the non dairy cream cheese and sour cream. It turned out great. I did forget to buy the second 8 oz of dairy-free cream cheese, I only had one, and it still turned out great. My only advice would be if you are going to use Pamela's Product Mini Ginger Snaps, which is what i used, get two packages instead of one. One package was not enough for the crust, my crust turned at very thin. Be sure you put your cookies of choice through the blender. I used the old fashioned smash method, I still had large chunks to deal with, this made spreading the crust very difficult. I hope you give this recipe a try you'll be pleasantly surprised.

Posted by: Leah A | November 2, 2011 1:48 PM    Report this comment

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