Today I’m sharing the recipe for Raw Lavender Cheesecake with Hazelnut Crust that I originally created for the Nutrition Stripped Cookbook. It’s a delicious dairy free and gluten free cheesecake made with cashews, zucchini, vanilla beans, blueberries, and lavender simple syrup. This one gets to go on the blog because it didn’t make the cut since there wasn’t room in the cookbook. When I say there are over 100 deliciously simple whole food recipes in the #NSCookbook, I really mean it! It’s packed with delicious recipes for every meal of the day plus boasts my most important nutrition and healthy living tips, and the release date is in just ONE WEEK! Preorder your copy today and be the first to get in on August 23rd. Plus if you pre-order before the release date, you’ll get four bonus recipes AND a free NS Abundant Reset Guide. Keep reading to find out how!
A healthy non-dairy version of cheesecake? Yes! It’s completely raw with a custardy filling with delicate floral and sweet vanilla bean flavors and a dense crust made of nutty hazelnuts and dates. The crust isn’t like any crust you’ve tried before unless you’ve tried my Raw Pumpkin Cheesecake. Instead, it’s nutty, dense, chewy, and crunchy from the combination of walnuts, hazelnuts, dates, and warming cinnamon.
For the crust, I was inspired by baklava, a Turkish dessert, which is incredibly flaky from phyllo dough, crunchy from nuts, and sticky from the honey or other sweetened syrups used. Traditional crusts rely on using refined and gluten-containing flours, refined sugars, and highly processed fats. I created a raw nut based crust and the result is far from doughy. Instead, it’s crunchy, sweet, chewy, and contains heaps of minerals, fiber, protein, and healthy fats.
My cheesecake is not for the fat-phobic as it’s loaded with healthy fats from the filling and crusts. The filling is made from cashews, zucchini, and blueberries that all play their role in tricking your eye and stomach into thinking the filling is made of something else. A small amount of blueberries acts as natural food dye to create a beautiful and subtle lavender color.
Despite its elegant appearance, it’s incredibly simple to make with the exception of testing your patience while you allow it to completely chill and harden. The best part of making this recipe is using a fork to slowly break the surface of the cheesecake filling and watching the creamy center release from its shape and overflow the triple nut crust. It’s a combination that all food lovers will appreciate.
- 2 cups raw cashews, soaked for at least 4 hours
- 1 large zucchini, chopped
- ½ cup organic cold-pressed coconut oil
- ½ cup Lavender Simple Syrup (see recipe below)
- 4 tablespoons agar flakes
- 1 vanilla bean, scraped (yields about 1 teaspoon vanilla beans)
- ¼ cup fresh blueberries
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1/8 teaspoon of sea salt, adjust to taste
- honey, for garnish
- LAVENDER SIMPLE SYRUP
- 1 cup coconut sugar
- 1 cup filtered water
- ¼ cup dried lavender buds (save about 1 teaspoon for garnish)
- HAZELNUT CRUST
- 2 cups dates, pitted (about 20 large dates)
- 1 cup walnuts, lightly roasted
- 1/2 cup hazelnuts, lightly roasted
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon cardamom, ground
- Soak cashews for at least 2 hours in water, discard the water, this is for the filling.
- For the hazelnut crust: Start by lightly roasting the walnuts and hazelnuts. In a medium-high dry skillet, place the walnuts and hazelnuts in the pan and gently toss back and forth with a wood spoon or spatula until lightly browned and fragrant- be careful not to overcook these, nuts/seeds burn very quickly. Make coarse flour by grinding the nuts into a food processor or nut/seed grinder.
- Transfer to a food processor, and blend the nuts with the pitted dates. Continually scrape the sides of the bowl until the mixture started to come together. Add in the melted coconut oil and seasonings for the crust, this mixture will be sticky. Using coconut oil, grease a spring form pie pan and evenly press the crust into the bottom, working your way from the center out. Spread evenly and applying pressure with your fingertips.
- Once the crust has been evenly spread across the bottom, you have the choice to create a small side edge by pressing the crust mixture onto the side, if you prefer to leave the crust just on the bottom, skip this step. Place the crust in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours or freezer for 2 hours until hardened.
- For the lavender simple syrup: Add coconut sugar to a saucepan with the filtered water and bring it to a boil. Add dried lavender to this simple syrup mixture, set the timer and boil for 20 minutes or until it becomes thick enough to lightly coat the back of a spoon. Stir occasionally. It will overall reduce to a syrup consistency. Use a strainer filter out the dried lavender. Set to cool for about 20 minutes or until room temperature.
- For the filling: In a small saucepan add agar flakes and 5 tablespoons of the ½ cup reserved Lavender Simple Syrup, bring to a boil over medium-high heat and whisk constantly. After it’s combined, reduce heat to low and cover pot to simmer for 15 minutes or until all agar flakes have dissolved. Whisk, remove from heat, uncover until blending with the other ingredients below.
- Add soaked cashews, chopped zucchini, coconut oil, filtered water, lavender simple syrup, vanilla, agar flakes and maple syrup, and sea salt to a high-speed blender and blend. Add in blueberries 1 tablespoon at a time, just until you reach the desired color. Adjust to taste by adding salt or sweetness (by adding a bit more lavender simple syrup).
- To serve: Pour the cheesecake filling into the pie hardened pie crust, in the pan and spread evenly. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours- overnight or the freezer for 3-4 hours until hard. When you’re ready to serve, remove the cheesecake from the pie form/tin, slice suing a warmed knife (running it under hot water for a minute). The cheesecake should be cool. I recommended leaving out at room temperature for about 20 minutes before eating just enough time for the cheesecake to thaw and for the center to stay cool. Serve with honey and garnish with dried or fresh lavender.
What do you think about this raw vegan cheesecake? If you make this one for yourself, let me know what you think in the comments and by rating this recipe. And be sure to share it Instagram with #nutritionstripped so I can see!
If this recipe didn’t make the book, then you know the recipes that made it have gotta be good. Pre-order your copy today and be the first to get your copy on August 23rd! Plus if you submit your proof of purchase here you’ll get four bonus recipes not included in the ebook and an NS Abundant Reset Guide.