A low-glycemic, raw, vegan dessert just in time for summer solstice.
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
- 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
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.
Cocktail-inspired, dairy-free cupcakes for your Spring celebrations (no artificial food coloring!).
I welcomed Spring Equinox with my first vegan cupcake experiment. Now, I’m not suggesting cupcakes are the next superfood but, for special occasions, this recipe is on the healthier side. Firstly, I replaced white flour with whole wheat flour. This increases fiber content which helps manage blood sugar spikes. Secondly, these are dairy-free which is beneficial for PCOS-fighters. Lastly, instead of using artificial food coloring, I added beet juice! I can proudly say the taste was unaffected and I avoided the toxic chemicals in food dye. Please leave a comment if you have a tip for coloring desserts naturally!
Cupcake Ingredients (makes 12):
- 1/2 cup Earth Balance dairy-free butter
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup powdered sugar
- 1/2 cup soy yogurt
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- 1 tbsp lemon zest
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup whole wheat flour (or gluten-free alternative)
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 can coconut milk
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 tbsp almond milk
- 1 cup Earth Balance dairy-free butter
- 2-3 cups of powdered sugar
- 3 tsp beet juice, from canned beets
Cupcake How To:
- Preheat oven to 350 deg F.
- Place 12 liners in a cupcake pan.
- Cream the butter and sugars until smooth.
- Mix in yogurt, milk, lemon zest, lemon juice, and vanilla extract until combined.
- Sift in flour and baking powder whisking until just combined.
- Scoop batter into cupcake liners filling up just past half full.
- Bake for about 18 minutes (check that a toothpick comes out clean).
- Cool cupcakes on a wire rack.
Frosting How To:
- Refrigerate can of coconut milk overnight. In the morning a hardened top layer should have formed which you can scoop out (apparently the occasional can won’t do this).
- Mix the hardened coconut milk, vanilla, and almond milk in a small bowl. Set aside.
- Beat butter in a large bowl until smooth.
- Add 2 cups of powdered sugar to the butter in 1/2 cup batches.
- Once combined, add the coconut milk mixture.
- Whip on high for 3 minutes or until the mixture gets glossy.
- Add beet juice in teaspoons at a time until you reach the vibrancy you want.
- Add more sugar if the frosting is still runny or refrigerate frosting until it is firm enough to stay put.
- Pipe icing on cooled cupcakes. Note: The amount of frosting I used as pictured was very sweet so I will use less next time.
- Keep cupcakes in fridge until ready to serve to ensure frosting holds its shape.
Notes: Lemonade cupcake adapted from Cheers to Vegan Sweets and frosting adapted from Delia Creates.