These Bite-Size Vegan Cheesecakes Are Perfect For Entertaining (And They're Not Packed With Sugar)
Looking for a better-for-you dessert for this festive season? This dessert pairs two classics—cookies and cheesecake—into a bite-size vegan sweet that's perfect for a party or just a cozy holiday at home.
From Fantastic Vegan Cookies by Tiina Strandberg, these treats use a combination of cashews, lemon juice, and maple syrup to create a filling that's reminiscent of a classic cheesecake. Then, they're topped with another popular flavor: raspberries. "This recipe was inspired by the first cheesecake I ate in New York over 10 years ago," writes Strandberg. "Before that I had never paired cheesecake with raspberries, although I knew it was a classic combination."
"You can also enjoy these cookies with fresh strawberries or raspberry jam or strawberry jam if you don't have raspberries," she adds. Our suggestion: Make the simple cookie and filling, and then top them with a few different options—that way, there's something for everyone's tastes.
Raspberry Cheesecake Cookies
Makes 14 cookies
For the filling:
- ½ cup (70 g) cashews
- 3 tbsp (45 ml) lemon juice
- ½ tsp lemon zest or the zest of 1 lemon
- 3 tbsp (45 ml) water
- 2 tbsp (30 ml) maple syrup
For the cookies:
- 1 cup (125 g) all-purpose flour
- ¼ tsp salt
- ⅓ cup (75 g) vegan butter, softened
- 3 tbsp (45 ml) maple syrup
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- 14 fresh raspberries
- Soak the cashews in just-boiled water for 15 minutes. Drain and rinse them well.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a blender, blend the soaked cashews together with the lemon juice, lemon zest, water and maple syrup until you have a smooth and creamy mixture. You might need to scrape the mixture down from the edges when blending to get everything smooth.
- To make the cookies, in a bowl, whisk together the flour and salt. Add the vegan butter, maple syrup and vanilla extract and combine either with a wooden spoon, a spatula or with your hands into a smooth dough.
- Take 1 tablespoon (16 g) of the dough and roll it into a ball. Flatten it on the parchment paper and shape the cookie dough into a mini pie with edges. Fill the cookie with cashew cream, about 2 teaspoons (10 ml) per cookie.
- Repeat until you have all the cookies on the parchment paper. Bake the cookies in the oven for 15 minutes, or until the cashew cream is solid.
- Let the cookies cool on the parchment paper for 10 minutes before moving them onto a cooling rack.
- Place a fresh raspberry on each cookie. Store the cookies in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Reprinted with permission from Fantastic Vegan Cookies by Tiina Strandberg, Page Street Publishing Co. © 2021. Photo credit: Tiina Strandberg.
Eliza Sullivan is an SEO Editor at mindbodygreen, where she writes about food, recipes, and nutrition—among other things. She received a B.S. in journalism and B.A. in english literature with honors from Boston University, and she has previously written for Boston Magazine, TheTaste.ie, and SUITCASE magazine.