This ultra-rich, decadently creamy and smooth Vegan New York Cheesecake is surprisingly easy to make. Enjoy as it is or get a little fancy with your choice of topping. It is vegan dessert perfection and you absolutely need it in your life.....
Vegan Cheesecake has got to be one of my all-time favourite desserts. I love anything rich, creamy and decadent and it doesn't get much more rich and decadent than this Vegan New York Style Cheesecake.
I have made and eaten a lot of vegan cheesecake (all in the name of research of course ;O) and whilst they are mostly very lovely, they aren't like "real" baked New York Cheesecake.
My Vegan New York Cheesecake is just like a "real" baked cheesecake in texture. Dense, rich, super creamy and very satisfying. It's as amazing as my vegan chocolate cheesecake.
To get the perfect vegan baked cheesecake texture I experimented with many different ingredients and methods. I settled for a combination of cashew nuts and chickpeas. Yes, the humble but quite awesome chickpea is the secret ingredient here.
Please do not let that scare you off. You would NEVER know.
The cashews give the filling it's creaminess and the chickpeas give the denseness, in a similar way that heavy cream cheese and eggs would in a non-vegan baked cheesecake. It's so similar in texture it's scary.
How to make vegan New York Cheesecake
This Vegan New York Cheesecake is surprisingly easy to make.
- Step 1 - First you need to make the crust and let is set in the fridge. For this I use my Vegan Digestive Biscuits recipe but you could also use vegan graham crackers, or to make life easier you can use store bought digestive biscuits or graham crackers (some are accidentally vegan). All you have to do is blend them with some vegan butter or coconut oil in a food processor.
- Step 2 - Press the crust mixture into the bottom of a 9 inch spring form pan (or similar). My go to bakeware is always USA Pan. Their spring form pan is great.
- Step 3 - While the crust is setting up in the fridge, blend the filling ingredients together until smooth. I recommend soaking the cashew nuts in boiling water before blending in the instructions, but if you have a high powered blender like a Blendtec or a Vitamix then you can get away without doing this.
- Step 4 - Once the filling is blended and smooth, pour it on to the base and bake.
- Step 5 - Allow to cool then refrigerate for a few hours before serving.
For such a decadent dessert it's all pretty easy really!
Whilst this Vegan New York Cheesecake is absolutely delicious on it's own, I love to top it with a little something extra.
The healthiest option is fresh fruit. Juicy berries in particular are very nice. Then there's my Frozen Berry Compote, Five Minute Vegan Caramel Sauce, my Blueberry Lavender Sauce or my Vanilla Roasted Strawberries ♡
Or my Vegan Lemon Curd or Pumpkin Caramel Sauce...♡♡
I think the Pumpkin Caramel Sauce is my favourite cheesecake topping so far. It is a very indulgent combo and is extremely rich but that's how I like my desserts!
For a festive spin on this cheesecake you could top it with a layer of my sweet, boozy Mincemeat.
- Blend absolutely thoroughly. The filling needs to be smooth as silk.
- Be sure to use a springform pan so you can get the cheesecake out easily once it's ready.
- Follow the recipe closely for best results.
- Don't overbake. It should have a wobble in the middle and it will set up properly as it cools.
- Don't cut/serve until it has been refrigerated.
Vegan cheesecake leftovers will keep really well in the fridge for up to a week. Just be sure to cover it so it doesn't dry out.
So to summarize, this Vegan New York Cheesecake is:
- Easy to make
- Perfectly sweet
- And just like the real thing!
- I can't wait for you to try it!
Vegan New York CheesecakeAuthor:
FOR THE BASE
- 350g / about 23 biscuits/cookies digestive biscuits (can sub graham crackers) - if you use my digestive biscuit recipe you will need almost the whole batch (minus about 3). For a gluten-free version use gluten-free cookies
- OR vegan graham crackers
- 4 tablespoons melted vegan butter , or coconut oil
FOR THE FILLING
- 300g / 2 cups raw cashews ,soaked in boiling water for 15 mins then drained (measured before soaking)
- 175g / 1 cup canned chickpeas , drained & rinsed well
- 1 lemon zest and juice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean powder , or 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons arrowroot powder , or cornstarch (cornflour in the UK)
- 120mls / ½ cup maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons tahini
- 1 can / 400 ml can full fat coconut milk (must be full fat, not light & if your can is 398 mls that's fine.
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- Preheat oven to 320F
- Prepare the tin. Use the bottom of a deep 9 inch spring form pan . It must be at least 3 inches deep (see recipe notes if you have another size pan). to draw a circle on some parchment paper. Cut out the circle and use it to line the bottom of your pan. Line the sides of the pan with a long rectangular strip of baking parchment. Use a little mildly flavoured oil on the pan first to make the paper stick
- Put digestive biscuits (or graham crackers) into a food processor with the butter/coconut oil and blend until well combined and in fine crumbs.
- Press into the bottom of the tin. Make sure it is even and pressed down firmly then refrigerate while you make the filling.
- Add all the filling ingredients to a blender and blend until completely smooth.
- Remove base from the fridge and pour the filling in carefully.
- Bake for around 50 minutes but this will vary depending on your oven and the pan you use. It should be set well around the edges and have a little tiny bit of a wobble in the middle when done.
- Remove and allow to cool then refrigerate for at least 4-5 hours or overnight.
The pan - If you do not have a deep 9 inch spring form tin then an 8 or a 10 inch will be ok. The cooking time just might need to be adjusted very slightly. Using an 8 inch tin will make it take a little longer as it will be a bit deeper. Probably only 5 or 10 minutes longer though. If you use a 10 inch it will probably be ready a few minutes earlier as it wont be quite as deep. Follow my guide in the instructions for knowing when it is ready. A deep spring form tin is ideal for this recipe. If you do not have one then a tin with a removable bottom will also work. Do not try to make it in a cake pan with no removable bottom as you will never get it out. If you do not have a deep pan then you might need to use a bigger than 9 inch pan in order to fit everything in.
Oil-free? If you follow an oil-free diet then you can omit the crust and just cook the cheesecake filling. You can do this in the same way as above but you will need to make absolutely sure that your springform tin is leak proof as it won't have the biscuit layer covering the seams. The last thing you want is for the cheesecake to leak out before it sets up in the oven. Practise with the tin by filling it with water to see if any drips out. If it doesn't you are good to go. If it does then don't use that tin!
Made this last night in preparation for my partners birthday. It was amazing and so easy- much less fuss than a non vegan baked cheesecake.
I used Oreos for the base, made the middle as normal and topped the cheesecake with a vegan chocolate ganache and some more Oreos for decoration. Will also serve with a few raspberries to get one of the five a day :D. Will definitely be making again!
So many recipes call for store bought cream cheese and it is expensive here. Love that you make your own cream cheese.
I made this yesterday for my fiancées birthday and wow its just so good!!! I was a bit concerned with chickpeas, tahini and lemon juice thinking I was making hummus lol but it's utterly amazing!!! I've printed off the recipe and kept it to make again! It's going to be a firm favourite from now on! So thank you!!!
Melanie McDonald says
It's such a surprising bunch of ingredients, but mix them all together and magic happens! I'm really pleased you enjoyed the recipe and thank you for taking the time to leave a review. It's much appreciated!
ARLENE LAFRENTZ says
Can you freeze this cheesecake ?
Melanie McDonald says
I've never tried so don't know how it would hold up.
Sounds and looks delicious. Must give this one a try for sure. I am sure the outcome will be amazing as you are the best…
Melanie McDonald says
Thank you ❤️
Question : Melanie, as you know this is my all-time favourite. Make it regularly! But: have you (or someone else) made mini-cheese cakes? I wonder about baking times. Btw, I have frozen it and it is just as good after defrosting.
This was so good! It had just the right texture and baked up really well. It lacked some of the richness of cheesecake, but I will definitely make it again. I added half a cup of an erythritol blend to the batter to make it sweeter. I also used my own recipe for the crust. Other than that, I did everything according to your recipe. Thank you!
My husband and I have loved this recipe for a long time. I've made many vegan and non-vegan cheesecakes, but this one tastes AMAZING and you feel good after eating it too. I always use your digestive recipe - that's one of our favorite cookie recipes ever. Thank you for your time spent creating and for sharing!!
I agree totally! Tried about 30 recipes but after trying this, I've stuck with it. It's truly amazing.
Hi Mel, what can I substitute for the cashews? As we have a nut allergy.
Thank you betty
Melanie McDonald says
I would think hulled sunflower seeds would work ok but I haven't tried it so can't guarantee.
Best vegan cheesecake I have ever made! So easy and yet so satisfying
I made this and it was amazing. Really impressed my guests. I would now like to make a smaller version. If I use half the ingredients would I need to bake it for half the time ??
Melanie McDonald says
It's impossible to say because it depends on the size of the pan and the depth of the cheesecake. The deeper it is the longer it will take to cook. You'll just have to wing it. Bake it at the same temperature and keep an eye on it. Take it out when it's set with a bit of a wobble in the centre.
Can you freeze this?
Melanie McDonald says
I have never tried freezing it.
Melané Fahner-Botha says
This was really amazing!!! I made it yesterday and my daughter's were seriously impressed. I made 2 slight changes. (1) for the biscuits I used 200 grams of tea biscuits. (2) for the filling I used 300 grams of silken tofu and 150 grams of cashews because we always prefer tofu over cashews in recipes and baked it for 65 minutes. It turned out so so good. None of the chickpeas, coconut, or tofu flavors could be detected at all. Can't wait to have another slice tonight. Thank you!