In anticipation for summer solstice I made these summery vegan cheesecakes which are low-glycemic, raw, vegan and gluten-free. Both lemons and lavender scream summer to me. Lemons are known for boosting our immune systems and improving digestion. They may also improve insulin and liver function. Lavender is commonly used in aromatherapy for its relaxation properties, however, the scientific evidence is limited. This herb can also be eaten and is a small source of calcium and iron.
Maple syrup and dates are two of my favourite natural sweeteners when trying to make healthier desserts. They are both low on the glycemic index which means they help manage blood sugar levels better than other sweeteners (ex. sugar, honey). This is especially important for women with PCOS who are predisposed to developing metabolic syndrome.
Ingredients (makes 12):
- 1 cup nuts (I used a mix of walnuts, almonds and cashews)
- 1 tbsp chia seeds
- 1 cup dates
- 2 cups cashews, pre-soaked in water for 4 hrs
- 1/2 cup lemon juice (I used 3 small organic lemons)
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
- 2 tspns dried culinary lavender
- 1/2 tspn vanilla extract
- Use parchment paper to oil muffin pan with coconut oil (prevents sticking).
- Place long strips of parchment paper in each muffin mold for easier removal (I saw the Minimalist Baker do this and I think it is genius).
- Process dates, nuts and chia seeds together in a food processor until you get a rough, sticky mixture.
- Transfer spoonfuls of the mixture into the muffin pan and push down firmly and evenly. Set in freezer.
- Blend all filling ingredients together in a blender until smooth and creamy. You may need to add liquid to help out (ex. almond milk).
- Take muffin pan out of freezer and scoop filling on top of each crust, smoothing out to pop air bubbles. I used a 1/4 measuring cup to distribute the filling to each mold and then went back over with a spoon to even them out.
- Decorate if desired (I decorated half with lavender before freezing and the other half with lemons after freezing).
- Set in the freezer for at least 5 hours.
- Gently pull each cake out holding the wax paper. The wax paper will make indents which I smoothed out easily.
- Serve or store in freezer or fridge.
- low-glycemic = helps maintain blood sugar levels
- lemon juice = contains vitamin C which boosts immune system, helps improve digestion, may improve insulin function, boosts liver function
- tree nuts = no cholesterol, high in unsaturated fats which help reduce LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels, help prevent cardiovascular disease
- chia seeds = high in omega-3s which can help decrease high testosterone and improve egg quality
- coconut oil = anti-inflammatory, may positively impact thyroid function, may improve cholesterol profiles by increasing HDL cholesterol, its use is controversial in the scientific community due to high saturated fat content so I use in moderation
Happy Solstice! I would love to see how you recreate this vegan cheesecake! Please share your photos with me on Instagram: @phruitfuldish
This recipe was inspired by Em at This Rawsome Vegan Life.