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Dessert

Dairy-Free Cheesecake

SERVES 8

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

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.

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