Paleo Vegan “Cheesecake”

It really stinks to be being “that person” who doesn’t eat anything at parties because you’re on a diet. Not only do you have to say no to many of the delicious things right in front of your face, but people will ask questions, lots of questions, about why you aren’t eating. Then you have to explain your diet plan, over and over. I try not to make it a big deal, because it isn’t. It’s just my thing right now, and I’m not bothered by it. I can say no when I have to.

And I thought September would be a quiet month for my first round of Whole30, well enough past the BBQs and parties of summer but still before the fall and winter holiday parties. I was wrong. Don’t get me wrong, it hasn’t been that hard to get through; I’ve had lots of support from family and friends at events and gatherings.

It’s just a little sad when you have to miss out on the more social and fun parts of food, so I wanted to make a delicious snack that would let me join in on some birthday fun for a family member tonight! And if you’re on a Whole30 during a holiday or special occasion, Melissa says it’s actually okay to celebrate with a fruit-based dessert. I found a recipe for vegan cheesecake, but needed to make a few changes to make it align with the Whole30 restrictions. Yes, it’s technically off limits because it’s a dessert, which is against the spirit of Whole30, but it tastes nothing like cheesecake so I don’t even think it’s SWYPO for me. It might be for you, though so use caution. It definitely didn’t have me wishing for real cheesecake or wanting to overindulge… In my opinion, it’s actually less dessert-like than a piece of fruit like a sweet orange, since it has all the nuts in it. 

You can tell me I’m not Whole30 if you want, but this did nothing to activate my sugar dragon at all. So yes, you’re supposed to skip all desserts in order to help break the cycle of cravings, instead of Whole30-fying recipes. But you know what? After some thought and reflection, I feel like it’s really been ok for me personally to figure out a way to get through these 30 days with an emotionally healthy handle on my eating habits. I want to love the food I’m eating through this Whole30, and that means I don’t want to deny myself some of the social enjoyment of food. I like food, and I plan on continuing to enjoy it once I’m done with this.

Here’s what I really like about this recipe: It takes less than 5 minutes of cooking time, so you can make it way ahead of time or whenever you have a few minutes to spare. It presents like a really pretty treat, so it feels special, even though it’s not traditional birthday cake. 

Vegan Paleo Cheesecake with Berries

Paleo, Gluten Free, Vegan, Low Carb

Course Dessert
Prep Time 5 minutes
Chilling Time 4 hours

Ingredients

rust:

  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1/2 cup raw cacao nibs
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1/3 cup raisins
  • pinch salt

Cake:

  • 1 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 1/2 large lemon
  • 3 Tbsp coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce

Berry Topping:

  • 1/2 cup mixed berries
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice

Instructions

  1. Place all crust ingredients into a blender or food processor and pulse until fully broken down and combined. Press into a 6 inch pan.
  2. Rinse out your blender, then add all the cake ingredients into the cake. Blend on medium speed until creamy and dreamy. Taste and check consistency. You may need to add a little more lemon juice or apple sauce to sweeten it.
  3. Mix together the berries and lemon juice and spread on top of the cake.
  4. Freeze at least 4 hours, but let it sit at room temperature for about 10-15 minutes before cutting and serving.

Looking for more clean treats? Check out my Paleo Chocolate Mousse – you’ll never guess the secret ingredient!