No-Bake Vegan Cheesecake (Soy-Free!)

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This Vegan Cheesecake is surprisingly creamy, thanks to a blended cashew filling that’s packed with a sneaky serving of vegetables. When served straight from the freezer, it has a texture remarkably similar to the real thing!

cashew cheesecake with blueberries

How to Make a Vegan Cheesecake

Cashews give this filling its signature creaminess, but the real secret is the hidden veggie that’s also inside– zucchini!

peeled and chopped zucchini

When you peel the zucchini, it doesn’t impact the overall color of your dairy-free cheesecake, but it does improve the texture. It adds moisture and fiber, and makes the cheesecake remarkably authentic when you serve it right from the freezer.

How to Make the Vegan Crust

I like to use a date-based crust for this cheesecake, paired with a buttery nut like pecans or walnuts. When you throw them together in a food processor, they form a sticky crust that you can easily press into the bottom of a springform pan.

date nut crust

To make the creamy filling, I like to break down the cashews in a blender first, then add in the other ingredients and blend until smooth. When you use a high-speed blender, you can even skip the soaking process and still wind up with a silky-smooth result.

cashew cheesecake filling recipe

You can use a 7-inch pan for a thicker cheesecake, as pictured here, or use a 9-inch pan for a thinner cheesecake. Either way works! The thinner cheesecake will firm up faster, and the thicker one will need more time in the freezer to set.

How to Sweeten this Cashew Cheesecake

I typically like to use I use a mix of natural sweeteners for a more neutral flavor and color. I use a combination of agave nectar and maple syrup to keep this recipe vegan, but you can use honey instead of the agave if you don’t need this to be 100% vegan friendly.

dairy free cheesecake slice

This no-bake cashew cheesecake is best served straight from the freezer, because it will melt relatively quickly if you leave it at room temperature for too long. You can store it tightly sealed in the freezer for up to 3 months, so I hope you’ll enjoy it!

whole vegan cheesecake with slice taken out
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4.97 from 33 votes

No-Bake Vegan Cheesecake (Soy-Free!)

This VEGAN CHEESECAKE is surprisingly creamy, thanks to a blended cashew filling that's packed with a sneaky serving of vegetables. When served straight from the freezer, it has a texture that is remarkably like the real thing!
Course Dessert
Cuisine gluten-free, vegan
Keyword cashew cheesecake, vegan cheesecake
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Chill time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 20 minutes
Servings 16 slices
Calories 234kcal

Ingredients

Cashew Cheesecake Filling

  • 2 cups raw cashews , soaked in water for 2 hours
  • 1 cup zucchini , peeled and chopped
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup agave nectar (or honey, if not vegan)
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

Crust

  • 6 Medjool dates , pitted
  • 1.5 cups pecan halves (or walnuts)
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil , melted
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup

Instructions

  • Lightly grease a springform pan and line the bottom with parchment paper for easy removal. I used a 7-inch pan in the photos here, but a 9-inch works also for a thinner cheesecake.
  • Prepare the crust: Add the dates to a food processor fitted with an "S" blade, and process until they are broken down a bit. Add in the pecans, oil, salt, and maple syrup and process until the mixture is sticky. (Be careful not to over-process, or the nuts will release excess oil and the batter will be oily.) Press the mixture evenly into the bottom of the lined pan, then place it in the freezer to set while you make the filling.
  • Prepare the filling: Drain the cashews and place them in a high speed blender. Blend until they are finely ground, then add in the zucchini, lemon juice, honey, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt, and blend again until very smooth. (You may need to stop and scrape the blender a couple times to make sure everything gets incorporated.)
  • Pour the cheesecake filling into the crust and smooth the top. Place the cheesecake in the freezer to set until firm, about 4 to 6 hours. (The thicker your cheesecake layer, the longer it will take to set.)
  • Serve the cheesecake directly from the freezer for a firm texture, or you can let it soften in the fridge for an hour beforehand to soften it up a bit. I recommend cutting small slices, as they are very rich!
  • This cheesecake will melt if you leave it sitting at room temperature for too long, so I recommend keeping it chilled until just before serving. Leftovers can be tightly covered and chilled in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Nutrition

Calories: 234kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 112mg | Potassium: 249mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 35IU | Vitamin C: 3.1mg | Calcium: 26mg | Iron: 1.5mg
Per serving: Calories: 234, Fat: 15g, Carbohydrates: 23g, Fiber: 2g, Protein: 4g

Recipe Notes:

  • You can make this cheesecake using only maple syrup instead of the agave, but it will be darker in color and slightly less sweet. Feel free to experiment with other sweeteners, if you like, too.
  • If you need to avoid cashews, you might want to try another nut, such as blanched almonds or macadamias, or you can try a seed, but keep in mind that the cheesecake will have the flavor of any nut that you use. Luckily, you can taste as you go and adjust the flavoring as needed.
  • For a chocolate cheesecake, try this Vegan Chocolate Cheesecake.
  • If you’d like to make this cheesecake with cashew butter instead, replace 2 cups of cashews with 1 cup cashew butter. Raw cashew butter gives it the best flavor.

Reader Feedback: Have you made a cashew cheesecake before? Any other dairy-free desserts you love, or would like for me to recreate?

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Comments

LAUREN

Incredible!!! I made this for a super bowl party and people raved about it!! They couldn’t believe there was zucchini in it.

Tasmanian

Looks sooo great!! You canΒ΄t buy cashewbutter in germany, do you have a receipe for it to make?

Mary Pichotta

Just wondering where you find a 4 inch springform pan? I’ve never seen one so small. These look really good and I’ll have to try them soon. Might just use the mini muffin cups like they did in a comment above.

    Megan

    I picked it up at a Home Goods store a few years ago! I used to have to make my raw desserts pretty small, because no one would dare try them– now, they all know better and I almost never use my small pan anymore. πŸ˜‰ You can double or triple the recipe to fill up a full-size pan, if you prefer.

Linda C

I can’t wait to try this! YUM! Sounds like a great recipe and I have everything on hand. I haven’t had cheesecake in years, so this will be a real treat! Thanks so much for sharing! And great blog too!

Rosie

Hi there,
Happy to have discovered your website, just amazing! Thank you”
Your raw cheesecake, we don’t have, oh oops I didn’t read all the recipe! I have just answered my own question.
We don’t have graham cracker, ( biscuits) I take it? Are they are savoury biscuits?
Big love from Rosie

Kaitlin

This looks amazing! Can’t wait to try…. I do not have a spring-form pan… do you have another suggestion?
Thanks πŸ™‚

    Megan

    I would just line a normal pan with plastic wrap, so it’s easy to remove when it’s set.

Steven

Hi,

Looking for a dairy-free take on the (Japanese) Rare Cheesecake I came across this recipe. I’m really interested in trying this, but before I do I’m curious about your thought process: How did you came to include zucchini? I’m a lifelong foodie and this would just never have occurred to me.

Great site, btw.

Cheers,
Steven

    Megan

    I’m always looking for ways to sneak veggies into my recipes, so the zucchini addition made sense to me– it adds moisture and texture, without altering the flavor! I can’t imagine making this cheesecake without it now.

Nora

Megan, if we would like to double this with an 8 inch spring form pan, we should make everything else doubled right?

    Lisa

    Oh gosh, no, you should quadruple the ingredient amounts (not double). Basic math. Area of a circle is pi*radius*radius, or just (1/4)*pi*diameter*diameter. So if you double the pan size (double the diameter), you’re ending up with 4 times the original circular area. If this doesn’t make sense, find a math whiz to explain it better!
    Note that if you just double your ingredients, it’s not a disaster: you’ll end up with a very short but still very tasty cheesecake.

Katie

THANK YOOOOU,
I became lactose -intolerant around 2 years ago and have been missing cheesecake ever since!! This was the perfect recipie and I will deffinitly be making more of them! THANK YOU
Katie

John

I made this a couple of times. First time I used almond butter instead of cashew butter. This was also very good! This last time I used the actual cashew butter. The first one came out a lot darker. It looked like it was a coffee cheesecake. This one looks more like the one on the picture:

I could not find a 4″ pan, so I used a 6″ pan and doubled the ingredients. Everyone loved it. Thanks for sharing the recipe with us!

Kelly @ Faith Beyond The Wrap

Payday is looking better and better. My shopping list is going to be pretty fun looking for the ingredients to so many of your recipes!!Since finding your blog tonight the hardest thing you ask?? Putting the laptop down & going to sleep!! LOL This looks amazing & I seriously can’t wait to try it. I may even offer to share with my family πŸ˜‰

Tammy

Just thought I would share… you can totally skip the whole make your own cashew butter and just use cashews. I made it and substituted the cashew butter for a heaping 1/2cup raw cashews and put all the ingredients in the blender and blended until smooth – turned out great and super easy!! I skipped the crust and topped it with fresh berries.
Thanks for a yummy recipe. Oh and I used yellow squash!

Cara

I made this using almonds instead of pecans (for the base) and cashews, and it was amazingly yummy! Thank you!

zosia

hi. just wondering how many servings this make?

    Megan

    Because of the small pan size, it makes about 4 servings.

Michele

Megan,
Can you tell me how many does this serve? It looks like a single serving from the pictures. Thanks Michele

    Megan

    We divide it into 4 servings.

Sybil

My son absolutely loves this recipe! He has requested it for his ‘birthday cake’

Anja

At the moment I have my first two cheesecakes in the freezer, a chocolate one with Zucchini and a lemon/strawberry without (see my blog). I’m excited to compare the two, thanks for the inspiration!

kerri

how many does this serve????

    kerri

    oops. i see the answer to my question!

ariells

hi! i really want to make this . . . but nuts r super expensive! i already have a recipe for healthy graham cracker pie crust, but what can i use to replace the cashew butter in the actual cheesecake? PLEASE HELP ASAP! thanks!

    Megan

    Hmm… if you don’t want to use nuts, then you might want to look for a recipe calling for cream cheese? I can’t think of an authentic-tasting alternative other than using nuts or seeds for a vegan version.

katherine

It was okay. the ingredients were expensive, so i just used graham crackers for the crust ( i used chocolate covered katie’s recipe) and the crust was fine. the cheesecake tasted VERY lemony, i don’t know if i used too much lemon juice or what, but it was very sour! overall it was good, but just because it was so expensive for the nuts that i don’t know if i were to make it again! thanks for the recipe though.

Cassidy

Eeek, I didn’t realize there were dates in this until I started making it. D: I don’t haz dates.
I subbed a couple generous tablespoons of coconut oil…here’s to hoping it works! πŸ˜›

Travis

Where’s the cheese?
No cheese, not a cheesecake.

I’ll give you “cheesecake texture”, but this is not a cheesecake. I am sad. Cheesecake is sad.

Sarah

I didn’t read any of the comments to see if this had been asked already or not, but my boyfriend is allergic to cashews; is there something we could use to substitute for cashews in this recipe?!

    Amy

    Almonds but color will be different. Maybe Macadamia but expensive

Jen

Made this for dessert tonight. I agree,”not cheesecake” BUT so amazing & delicious! Everyone loved it & no one believed that there was zucchini in it. Yum! Thanks πŸ™‚

Dom

Does anyone know the Cal and Carb count on this?

    Joanna

    Just calculated it using “MyFitnessPal”. This cheesecake is for 4 servings. 86 calories with 21.1 gram of carbs per serving.

Elyssa

Will this cheesecake taste the same if I used regular cashew butter? after making the recipe I realized the batter was a different color and that it called for “raw cashew butter”.

Dana

This is my go-to cheesecake recipe. It’s great with fruit and I basically know the recipe by heart now. Everyone loves this one!

Tiffany

Megan, OH MY GOODNESS!! This recipe is incredible, especially with the graham cracker crust with pecans. The only thing I changed was to add another 1/8 cup zucchini and a little bit more cashew butter as it was a lil “lemony” to my liking. But seriously, AMAZING! I had to stop myself from eating the whole batch. So excited to try out more of your recipes- a huge THANK YOU!

jean

I would like to know what size tin is used, or about how many serving can i get? Thanks.

    Megan

    I used a small springform pan– it’s about 4 or 5 inches in diameter, so you’d get about four servings.

Anna

I’ve really been wanting to make this, but was hesitant as I have yet to purchase a food processor. Turns out I underestimated my lovely Oster blender who did a bang up job at making the cashew butter and “crust”. I used almonds for the crust instead, amazing results. Made it last night, and boyfriend and I had it for breakfast. We were astounded. He kept saying how it tasted “bad for you”. I’ll be the first to say this is a brilliant recipe that mimics cheesecake as close as possible. Megan, you are very talented! It was creamy and delicious, and no overwhelming sense of regret after having a nice helping πŸ™‚ I am going to trick my non-health conscious friends tonight! Thank you for being a guru to us health-minded creatures!

Rachel

I figured all these fantastic reviews wouldn’t steer me wrong, so I made a quadruple batch today (only double for the crust, which is still a great ratio). I just checked on it in the freezer, and OH MY!! It’s heavenly!! People, don’t hesitate on this recipe, go for it! I found a brand of raw cashew butter called Eastwind at my health food store. It’s a great little company, it’s a teeny bit cheaper per oz than whole raw cashews (in my area), and you get a glass jar to reuse as well. I added a few sprinkles of cinnamon and nutmeg to my crust, and it’s the perfect hint of flavor. I’ll never go back to dairy cheesecake! Huge kudos to you, Megan, for this wonderful recipe! Love your blog!! Blessings, Rachel.

Rachel

Totally forgot to mention I used stevia in both the crust and filling with no problem at all. I’m on a candida/leaky gut protocol right now, so no honey or dates for me, but I don’t know if I’ll need them with recipes like this. I did add just a bit of coconut oil to the filling, just in case, but I’m sure it would have set up just fine without it. Can’t wait to use zucchini in more sweet recipes after this!

Mattie

So delicious! I didn’t have cashew butter, so I used an all natural peanut butter with great success. To compensate for a very different flavor between butters I reduced the lemon juice and increased the vanilla. Turned out delicious! I’m just beginning to get into natural cooking and baking, and your website is such a life saver!

Thanks for making the journey that much less overwhelming!

GigglinButterfly

I like to make all your cheesecakes into smoothies! I just add ice and almond milk, blend and enjoy! SOOO YUMMY! Thank you for your wonderful recipes.

Living Outside of the Box

Seriously, you’re killing me. Too many great recipes, so little time!!!!

Debbie

Just to let everyone know I purchased the mini spring pans at Target There were three in the box for under $10. Cant wait to try this, can you use prunes instead of dates? I can not find the dates.

Erica

I made this yesterday and it was fabulous. My husband even enjoyed it and told me to definitely feel free to make it again. πŸ™‚ I honestly liked it enough that I don’t think I will ever bother making a real cheesecake again. This one took me about 15 minutes to make in my Vitamix, crust included. The only change I made was to add 1/8 tsp of ground ginger to the crust. Thank you so much for creating and sharing this recipe!

Tracy

I made this last night. It’s delicious!!! I missed reading about using a small pan and just used a regular sized one. I doubled the recipe, which worked great for the crust, but the topping was pretty thin (1/2 inch). Next time I will triple the filling. Still wonderful though!!!

Amber

I can’t have dates, what could I use instead??

Christy

I saw this recipe back in 2012 but never tried it until about a year later because I was skeptical about how zucchini and cashews could taste like cheesecake. When I finally made it my husband and I immediately feel in love with it. It is so good I think we made it like four times in that first month.

Albeach

This was soooo good! I love taking a quick bite right out of the freezer. I would definitely recommend making this. It is so good.

Mariza

Oh my goodness!!! This is the amazing. Loved it! Wish I didn’t have to share…

Shelley

Hey meg! So sorry if u have already answered this question but didn’t get to read all the comments, it looks likes it’s only a small ( but super scrumptious!!!!) cheesecake. I was just wondering how many hungry ppl it would serve πŸ™‚

DbBd

I loved this dessert! I made it for my mom’s birthday. She is on the SCD diet. For the rest of the people that never tried nut-butter based desserts, this was heavenly! For me, however, it just tasted like frozen cashew butter. But it made my mother’s birthday! She did not expect to have a cake.. So thanks so much for posting!!!

sara

This actually sounds really tasty, but I am wondering if there is something I can substitute for the cashew butter? My son has tree nut/nut allergies…. Any ideas would be appreciated, I would love to try this out!

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