Vegan Chocolate Cheesecake

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure and privacy policy.

Vegan Chocolate Cheesecake has the creamy texture you love, with a rich chocolate flavor. It’s the perfect no-bake dessert to make for any chocolate fans in your life.

chocolate cheesecake slice on black plate with berries.

Why You’ll Love It

This healthier chocolate recipe is naturally sweetened with maple syrup, and even has a veggie hiding inside the creamy filling. But you’d never know just by tasting it!

Since the filling is made with cashews instead of cream cheese, it’s also dairy-free, vegan and Paleo friendly.

Ingredients You’ll Need  chocolate cheeseake ingredients in glass bowls.

What’s in vegan chocolate cheesecake?

  • Cashews
  • Maple syrup
  • Cacao powder
  • Zucchini (yes, a veggie!)
  • Coconut oil
  • Vanilla extract
  • Sea salt

That’s all you need for the filling, and I like to pour it over the same no-bake chocolate crust I use for my vegan cheesecake bars. A simple blend of pecans (or walnuts), cacao powder, maple syrup, and coconut oil brings that together in no time.

Pro Tip: If you don’t care for the flavor of coconut oil, look for a refined or “expeller pressed” version at your local grocery store. Refined coconut oil has zero coconut flavor, so you won’t taste it at all in the final dessert. I use this trick for making vegan cream cheese and homemade magic shell, when I don’t want coconut flavor.

vegan chocolate cheesecake sliced and about to be served.

How to Make Vegan Chocolate Cheesecake

1. Prepare the crust. Place the pecans and cacao powder in the bowl of a food processor fitted with an “S” blade, and process briefly, until the texture is crumbly.

Add in the maple syrup, coconut oil, and salt, and process again until the crust sticks together.

chocolate crust ingredients in food processor.

Transfer the crust to an 8-inch springform pan that has been greased and lined with parchment paper, if you want the cheesecake to be very easy to remove later.

Press the crust evenly into the bottom of the pan, and then place it in the freezer to firm up while you prepare the filling.

chocolate crust pressed into pan.

2. Make the filling. Add the cashews, zucchini, cacao powder, maple syrup, melted coconut oil, vanilla extract, and salt into a high-speed blender and blend until smooth.

This will work best if your ingredients are NOT cold from the fridge, so the coconut oil doesn’t thicken up from the cold.

I typically do not soak my cashews ahead of time (because I don’t plan ahead very well) so I also add in a 1/4 cup of water to help with blending. If you would prefer to soak the cashews, cover them with 2 inches of water in a large bowl and let them soak for 2 hours.

cashew filling blended together in blender.

Then drain and rinse well, before adding them to the blender. Soaked cashews will blend easier, and may not require any additional water for blending, but you can add water 1 tablespoon at a time, if necessary, to make everything blend smoothly.

Be prepared to stop and scrape down the sides of the blender, or use a tamper if your blender comes with one, because this chocolate filling is pretty thick!

chocolate filling poured into pan.

3. Chill. Remove the crust from the freezer and use a spatula to add the chocolate filling from the blender container.

Smooth the top, and then place the pan back in the freezer to chill until the top of the cheesecake feels firm to the touch, about 3 to 4 hours.

frozen cheesecake with pan removed.

When the cheesecake is firm, you can slice and serve it chilled. It pairs nicely with fresh fruit on top, like raspberries or strawberries.

Keep in mind that the coconut oil is what holds this vegan cheesecake together, so it will melt if you leave it out at room temperature for too long. I recommend storing it in the freezer until just before serving. It can sit out for up to 30 minutes when frozen, but no longer than that!

vegan cheesecake with bite removed by a fork.

Storage Tips

Since this cake needs to be served from the freezer, you can store it in an airtight container for up to 3 months.

If you would rather make this in an 8-inch square pan, you can also slice it into bars for an easy treat to have on hand.

chocolate cheesecake slice overhead with a strawberry.

vegan chocolate cheesecake sliced and about to be served.
Add to Collection
Print Pin
4.79 from 46 votes

Vegan Chocolate Cheesecake

This Vegan Chocolate Cheesecake has a creamy texture and rich chocolate flavor, without using cream cheese. Made with cashews, cacao powder, and pure maple syrup, it's an easy no-bake dessert.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword vegan chocolate cheesecake
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 12
Calories 345kcal

Ingredients

Chocolate Pecan Crust

Chocolate Cheesecake Filling

  • 2 cups raw cashews (no need to soak)
  • 1 cup diced zucchini , peeled
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 3/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup water

Instructions

  • To make the crust, add the pecans and cacao powder in the bowl of a food processor fitted with an "S" blade and pulse briefly, until the mixture looks crumbly. Add in the maple syrup, coconut oil, and salt and process again until the mixture sticks together.
  • Prepare an 8-inch springform pan by lightly spraying it with oil and pressing a piece of parchment paper into the bottom of the pan. This guarantees the cheesecake will be easy to remove later. Transfer the crust to the prepared pan and press it evenly into the bottom of the pan. Place the pan in the freezer to set while you prepare the filling.
  • To make the filling, add the cashews, zucchini, cacao powder, maple syrup, vanilla, salt, coconut oil, and water to a high-speed blender and blend until smooth. Stop and scrape down the sides of the blender, as needed, to make sure everything is blended well. It will be very thick.
  • Remove the pan from the freezer and add the chocolate filling on top, smoothing it with a spatula. Return the pan to the freezer and chill until the cheesecake feels firm to the touch in the center, about 3 to 4 hours.
  • When the cheesecake is totally firm, it's ready to slice and serve. Be sure to serve it directly from the freezer for the best texture, as it will soften up if you leave it at room temperature for too longer. Serve with sliced berries on top, or with coconut whipped cream.
  • Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Video

Notes

Nutrition information is for 1 of 12 slices, but you can make the slices even smaller if you'd like to-- this is a very rich dessert! Nutrition information is just an estimate, not a guarantee.

Nutrition

Calories: 345kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Sodium: 80mg | Potassium: 374mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 16g | Vitamin A: 28IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 53mg | Iron: 3mg

This recipe was originally posted in 2013, and was updated in 2022. I increased the maple syrup and cacao powder in the filling by a 1/4 cup each to boost the chocolate flavor, but you can omit that addition if you prefer. I think it greatly improves the flavor, though!

If you try this Vegan Chocolate Cheesecake, please leave a comment and star rating below letting me know how you like it.

Get more recipes + meal plans in my books:

detox book and meal plan

Get Started Today!

Get a free 7-Day Kick Start when you sign up for my email newsletter

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Recipe Rating




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Comments

HealthHappiness&Alittlebitofbooze

This looks amazing. I’m going to make it for my boyfriend for Valentines day! Thanks so much!

janet @ the taste space

Holy yum!! 🙂

Ashley

This is PERFECT for satisfying our sweet tooth this valentine’s day! Thanks for the mix of savoury and sweet recipes lately:)

Joy

This looks gorgeous!Thanks for that! Can the pecans be replaced with walnuts?

    Megan

    Yes, definitely!

      Sonjia

      Megan, I am new to your website and I looked at the the ingredients to this delicious looking chocolate Cheesecake. I am allergic to all nuts except for almonds and peanuts. Is there a recipe for a cheesecake without the other nut varieties?

Trish

Hi this looks amazing. Can I replace the cashews with another nut?

    Megan

    I haven’t tried it myself, but I’ve heard that macadamia nuts or Brazil nuts may work. Please let us know if you try it!

Erin

Beautiful! And looks so delicious! Do you need to use a spring form pan or can a different type of pan be used?

    Megan

    The spring-form pan makes it easy to remove the cheesecake. It might get a little messy without one, but it will still taste good!

Courtney

I’m going to make this, hide it, eat every scrap of it in one sitting, and not feel bad about myself afterwards :). I can’t wait! Thanks, Megan!

kim

I am making this asap!

Esther

I just made this! It’s in the freezer and I can’t wait to eat it! 🙂

Kristi

The 2 cups of each nut…is it 2 cups after its processed or before? Thank you!

    Megan

    2 cups before you put them in a processor.

Ash

I made this yesterday and it’s an awesome raw cheesecake recipe, much better than all the ones I’ve tried with soaking and all that other effort! It tasted like a cross between cheesecake and icecream – yum! Although I used cocoa butter instead of coconut oil which might change the freezing consistency, and is definitely better in the freezer than keeping in the fridge which does make it fudgy.
I’m going to make it again for V-day dessert but use hazelnuts in the base. Thank you 😀

Kristi

Hi, are the nuts measured before or after theyve been thru the processor? Thank you

Diane Winmill

Have made this yesterday and is in the freezer ready for tomorrow. So can’t wait. If its half as good as your other cheesecake, which fooled everyone who tried it, I’ll have a very happy husband. Thanks Megan. Happy Valentines Day from NZ

Meg

Truly amazing! This was a huge hit with the family!

PS. I went to a birthday party tonight where they served chocolate snickers cake (sounded amazing). I had one bite and said, no way! I’m having chocolate cheesecake when I get home! That cake was so not worth it and wasn’t half as good!!!

Thank you Megan!!

Anita

Hi Megan, I almost ate the picture 🙂
Please advise how to substitute maple syrup with powder stevia.
Thank you in advance.

    Megan

    I’ve never tried it with powdered stevia, so I have no idea! Please let us know if you try it.

    Molly

    Anita, I only use KAL Pure Stevia, powdered. I always substitute 1/4t for 1c of sugar or other natural sweetener. I would try it with 1/8t of KAL. It’s always better to start with less and add more. Molly

May Bowser

I can hardly wait to taste it!!
What’s the least amount of time I need to wait for it to set?!?

Kirin Loomis

Leaving me alone in the house with an entire chocolate cheesecake, even a healthy one, is not such a good idea. So I made it in 12 4-ounce canning jars (the cute little ones that are usually for jam) and ate JUST ONE of them yesterday–delicious! And I will share some of the others with friends today. Thank you so much for sharing this great recipe!

Kirin Loomis

@Mary: You are the one who decides! Maybe some research (!) is needed to determine the perfect length of time. 🙂

Anita

I made it last night. I couldn’t wait to go shoping, so I had to improvise since I didn’t have all ingredients. I replaced 1 cup of cashews with almonds, maple syrup with 3 soons of honey and vanilla extract with lemon juice, and liquid stevia with powdered, and it turned out divine! I can imagine eating it out of the vine glass because it is so delicious. Thank you for this recipe

Jen

I halved the recipe last night and then this morning took a big heart shaped cookie cutter and cut two hearts for my husband and I for tonight. Lucky for me this morning I got to eat the “scraps” from cutting!! Thanks for this recipe–it is delicious.

    Megan

    That’s such a cute idea! Scraps are the best. 🙂

Mary Virginia

I made this yesterday for my boyfriend (mainly wanted an excuse to try it myself!). After spending about $50 on the ingredients and almost breaking the blender, it turned out very pretty. Can’t wait to taste it tonight! Also made the quinao mac and cheese and loved it! I had to test it out before making it again tonight for the BF 😉 Thanks for sharing, I am addicted to your blog Megan!

Maria

Hi-in your description of this recipe, you say that it has green vegetables in it, yet the instructions call for peeling the zucchini. So, Im not so sure it really has green veggies in it if you are taking away the healthiest part of the squash. Have you tried the recipe with the skin on? Although, the recipe looks good either way, im not sure id describe it as full of green vegetables

    Megan

    If you have a powerful blender, you can definitely keep the skins on!

cheryl

Made this for my sweetie today for V-day. Eating it right now and it is soooo delicious! Unbelievable that there is zucchini in here and you would never know! Can’t believe I’m sitting here eating veggies when it feels like I’m eating the most sinful chocolate cheesecake!!

dclan

OMW! This is the most delicious chocolate cheesecake ever! I made it for my cheesecake loving hubby to enjoy tonight for a valentine’s treat and it is spectacular! Definitely hit the spot! I made it exactly as described and it was perfection and you’d never believe there was zucchini in this heavenly treat!

I’ve also made the almond frosted cookies, classic choc. chip cookies and the pumpkin pancakes with maple pecan syrup — all delicious!! Never thought grain-free/dairy free cooking could be this delicious!

Thank you for sharing your talents with us!

Theresa

This is the most amazing dessert ever!!! Made with half stevia and it turned out great. Have you ever used yacon syrup in your recipes? Just wanted your opinion on it. Thanks for all your amazing recipes.

Alan

This looks incredible but my wife is allergic to zucchini. Is there any other vege that can be substituted?

    Megan

    I’ve never tried another vegetable, but I assume another mild-flavored veggie might work. Please let us know if you have any success!

    Michelle

    Can your wife have summer squash in place of the zucchini?

Molly

The 7 Bakers give this 7 thumbs up. We used stevia in the crust, along with half walnuts. We used less maple syrup than called for in the “cake” and used organic, natural process cocoa. We topped it with plain, thawed raspberries. Over and over we were hearing, “man, this is really good, man, this is good enough and real enough for company.” : ) You have done it again, Megan!

Melinda @cookingalamel

I made this over the weekend – YUM. I used walnuts, stevia, and almond oil in the crust instead. I was so surprised at how chocolatey it is.. I was expecting the cashew flavor to really come through. It didn’t at all. Thanks for the wonderful recipe!

Sarah Warman

I made this yesterday and it is tasty! It’s super easy to make and good for you too. I’ll make this again for sure. Thank you!

nana

Tried it: easy, excellent, healthy, and the zucchini secret ingredient excites fun conversation… Thanks for sharing!

Lilly

OMG, I just found your site and loooove it! thank you sooo much!

Mili

Hi there,
I was wondering if you have a nutrition fact chart for this recipe. My husband and I just started the paleo diet not so long ago and we’re really interested in trying this recipe. Could you please provide us with our request?
Thank you so much.

kim

I made this for my mom’s birthday this past weekend…it was the BEST THING EVER!!! Cant wait to try the classic and the chocolate swirl ones too! Thanks!

Kim

Donna

I have to say that this is one of the best raw healthy cheesecakes I have ever tasted.
I have tried many cheesecakes over the years (my favorite treat food), and this cheesecake is incredible, it’s well worth the 8hours wait for it to set.

Thank you
Donna

Macy

Can a coconut spread be used instead of coconut oil?

    Megan

    If the coconut spread doesn’t solidify when chilled, then it won’t work. I can’t comment on substitutions that I haven’t tried myself, so please let us know if you give it a shot!

Racheal

amazing flavour, no words….keep it up megan….

Emily

Can the raw nuts be purchased at a regular grocery store?

    Megan

    If your regular grocery store has a “natural” or “health” section, then they can often be found there. Otherwise, they can easily be purchased online!

Faye

Your chocolate cheesecake looks amazing!

Penny O

Just made this with my new Breville and it was WAY BETTER than my old Ninja system!!

Renee

I made this for a big birthday dinner today to have another option besides the birthday cake a friend was bringing. I left the zucchini peel on and used my Cuisinart to blend the ingredients. Once I added the cacao, I couldn’t see our detect the green. There seemed to be a pattern in the consensus. The women all loved it! And the men thought it was good, but. . . I think they just had a mental block when I told them the ingredients. I thought it was fabulous and am going to eat the last few pieces tomorrow!

Anna

Once again any substitute for all the nuts in this recipe?? I am having so much trouble finding any websites that have healthy “clean” recipes with no nuts- as all seem to put almond meal or nuts of some form instead of gluten etc etc. So frustrating!!!!

    All

    I’d recommend you look for a cheesecake recipe that use some silken tofu as the base (instead of cashews), I know I’ve come across a few. You could easily make a but free crust with dates and oats (add coconut or sesame seeds for more flavour- if you can have them).

kari

Wow!!! Absolutely amazing and ingenious! 🙂 so delicious, too!! 🙂

Chelsea W.

These. were. SO. good. I literally gasped out loud in excitement when I first tried them, in disbelief that they could actually taste so good for being raw & filled with veggies! Thank you so much for an awesome recipe – this one is definitely a keeper!

Isabel

I think i might make this for my birthday! yay
one thing though… i have an obsession with MINT chocolate and am wondering if i can make this a mint chocolate cheesecake.

How would this turn out? whats the best way to try this? Any ideas?

Maybe add mint extract to the crust? or would mint leaves work in the filling?

I have never tried this recipe so i am nervous about adding anything before trying.

Thanks

Nikko

This came out very well for my first time. I thought I messed up as I used the ice blade/drink mixer instead of the food processor. Tastes very good as is but I am tempted to add some grand marnier next time I make this.

Mary Virginia

This has been my favorite dessert! Everyone loves it and no one knows about the veggies 🙂

Penny

I have 1/2 cup pureed zucchini left in the fridge from making your raw hummus. If I wanted to make half of this recipe, should I use all of that or just 1/4 cup?

    Megan

    This recipe is pretty forgiving, so I think you could use the 1/2 cup if you want to– the only thing it might affect is the texture, making it slightly less firm.

Jaime

Just made this and its in the freezer. Amazing!! The “batter” was so creamy. My teenage son was watching me make it with his nose curled, but as son as he tasted it he was sold. Thanks for the incredible recipe!

    Jaime

    Update: after waiting for what seemed like FOREVER to be able to dig in, we were a little disappointed. It was super rich, super yummy and super creamy. However, it was more like a chocolate mousse pie than a cheesecake. Tasty recipe, just not what we were expecting. 🙂

      Amber

      Sounds good to me. I haven’t been able to have any sort of chocolate pie in over two years, ever since my dairy allergy was diagnosed.

Wanda Hackett

Sounds so good but can I replace Agave for the maple syrup?

    Megan

    Agave is sweeter than maple syrup, so you might want to try using less of that for the maple syrup in this recipe.

      Sarah

      I am trying to go sugar free. Can I substitute Truvia baking blend? I am trying to follow Jorge Cruises 100 diet for weight loss. I don’t think honey or maple syrup are allowed.

Wanda Hackett

Thank you. My husband is diaabetic and Agave nectar does not spike the blood sugard.

Get Started Today!

Get a free 7-Day Kick Start when you sign up for my email newsletter