Peanut Butter & Banana “Cheesecake” – vegan friendly

Who doesn’t love a good cheesecake? Creamy, rich, indulgent… And you’d have thought that being vegan means giving up on decadent treats such as these, but you’d be wrong.

I love finding a dairy-free, vegan friendly alternative to some of my old favourites, and this one is sure to impress even your non-vegan friends.

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The perfect combination of deliciously crunchy base, created from homemade Dark Chocolate Digestive Biscuits, and creamy smooth “cheesecake” topping of blended, protein-rich cashews and peanut butter.

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The banana element gives this cheesecake a hint of Banoffee Pie, which let’s face it, is never a bad thing!

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PEANUT BUTTER + BANANA “CHEESECAKE” WITH DARK CHOCOLATE DIGESTIVE BASE

Now obviously you could buy the biscuits for the base, and choose practically any type you want (Oreos – vegan friendly – work great!), but these digestives are so easy to make, and I like knowing I’ve created something entirely from scratch.

Author: My Vegan Kitchen

Recipe Type: Dessert

Cuisine: Vegan

Serves: 8 – 12

Ingredients

BASE (makes 10 so you have some leftover for eating)

  • 170g wholemeal flour
  • 170g medium oatmeal
  • 150g cold vegan butter, diced
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 55g dark muscovado sugar
  • Pinch of pink Himalayan sea salt
  • 2-3 tbsp unsweetened almond milk
  • 150g vegan dark chocolate (optional)

FILLING

  • 2 bananas
  • 2 cups cashews
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
  • ¾ cup coconut milk
  • ½ cup maple syrup (or your choice of liquid sweetener)
  • ¾ cup peanut butter (your preference of smooth or crunchy)

CHOCOLATE GANACHE TOPPING

  • ¾ cup vegan dark chocolate
  • 50ml coconut milk

 

Instructions

For the biscuits (if making):

  1. Preheat your oven to 170C degrees and in a large mixing bowl, sift together the flour and oatmeal. Rub in the butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs (best to get dirty and use your hands for this bit).
  2. Mix in the bicarb, sugar and salt, adding just a little almond milk to bring it all together to a dough-like consistency. Flatten in to a disk, wrap in clingfilm chill for at least 30 minutes (like pastry, this makes it easier to roll out and cut in to biscuit shapes).
  3. Line 2 baking sheets with baking paper and set aside. Roll out your biscuit “dough” between 2 sheets of clingfilm, to around 4-5mm thick, then cut out your biscuits. Arrange on your baking trays, leaving a small gap in between each, prick each one several times with a fork and bake for between 12-15 minutes. Baking time will depend on you oven and whether you prefer your biscuits to be soft or crisp (crisp is probably better for the purpose of your cheesecake base).
  4. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely, whilst you melt your chocolate (if using) over a saucepan of simmering water. Remember this step is optional, you may only want to coat the biscuits you won’t be using for the cheesecake base, but I did them all so my base would have little chunks of chocolate!
  5. To coat biscuits, dunk one side in to the melted chocolate, repeating to build up layers, set aside to cool.

For the base:

  1. If not still on, preheat your oven to 180C degrees and, using either a food processor or a good, old fashioned rolling pin, crush up 140g of your biscuit choice. Add 5 tbsp of melted coconut oil and mix together.
  2. Lightly grease a 20cm cake tin, either spring form or one with a removable base is best. Fill the bottom of cake tin with your crushed biscuit mixture, and use either the back of a spoon or a small cup to pack it down tightly and as evenly as possible.
  3. Bake for 5 minutes, remove and set aside to cool.
  4. Add you bananas, cashews, lemon juice, coconut oil, coconut milk, maple syrup and peanut butter to a blend a blend together until very smooth. This will take around 4 – 5 minutes and you’ll probably need to stop the blender and scrape down the sides to mix back together a couple of times.
  5. If your peanut butter doesn’t already contain salt, you may want to season with a pinch at this point. Also, if your mixture is too thick, you can add a little more coconut milk to loosen.
  6. Pour evenly over your cool biscuit base and set aside. At this point you can either put in the fridge to set for at least 3 hours – although overnight is best – or you can whip up whatever toppings and decorations you want to add. For example:

For the chocolate ganache:

  1. Heat 50ml of coconut milk over a low heat, bringing it to a simmer. Meanwhile break up ¾ cup of vegan dark chocolate (I like Green & Blacks) in a small heat proof mixing bowl and, once the coconut milk is bubbling, pour it over the chocolate. Then just leave it for 3 – 4 minutes, before stirring and mixing together. Have a taste at this point, as you may want to sweeten with a little maple syrup. I however I like mine a little bitter, to combat the richness of the cheesecake.
  2. Spoon your ganache over the top of your cheesecake, in whatever pattern takes your fancy. Go wild, be as creative as you like! Once you’ve exhausted your creativity, pop your cheesecake in the fridge to set, as stated above, for at least 3 hours.
  3. Once set, remove your cheesecake from its tin and serve! I like to serve mine with a bit of salted caramel sauce, veganised from this recipe from Jamie Oliver’s website, and any leftover ganache.

Raw, Vegan Date Bites

Just a quick post to share these deliciously indulgent little snacks with you.

  
I made them as a little post dinner snack the other night and they went down a storm, even with my 17 year old (non-vegan) niece!

Ingredients :

  • Medjool dates
  • 100% peanut butter
  • Vegan dark chocolate (optional)

Instructions :

  1. Cut dates in half, remove pit of necessary
  2. Fill with as much peanut butter as you like
  3. Top with a small piece of dark chocolate 
  4. Grate a little extra dark chocolate over everything (why not, you deserve it?!)
  5. Eat

I’ve also melted some coconut oil with cacao powder and maple syrup, to make homemade chocolate in the past, and used it to coat these yummy morsels. That requires a little more time to prep and chill in the fridge though, but worth it if you can endure the wait!

Easy Homemade Hummus

I’ve been playing around with hummus recipes for a while now, and I think I might have just cracked it.

  • 1x can of chickpeas, reserving the water
  • 2x tsp tahini
  • 1x garlic clove, crushed
  • 1/2x tsp salt, pink Himalayan if you have it
  • 3x tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2x tbsp fresh lemon juice

  
You can double or triple the ingredients, depending on how many you want to serve. These qualities will produce about 4 good sized servings.

  1. Rinse chickpeas, reserving water from the can, and place in food processor
  2. Add tahini, garlic, salt and lemon juice and blend together, adding about 3-4 tbsp of the chickpea can water
  3. Whilst blending, drizzle in the extra virgin olive oil, adding more to reach desired consistency, reserving some to drizzle over at the end
  4. Serve, adding extra chickpeas or paprika as garnish

And there you have it, a simple, quick and easy recipe for a household favourite. I’ve also tried with peanut butter (yes, you read that right) instead of tahini, and it works quite well!

Next on my list is a roasted jalapeño version.

Raw Vegan Nut, Seed + Cacao Hearts

Just a quick post today to tell you about the Raw Vegan Nut, Seed + Cacao Hearts I made at the weekend.

I wanted to jazz up my usual protein balls so I made them in to little hearts, using a silicone ice cube mould. I love using these to make sweet treats as they come in so many different shapes; I’m on the lookout for something “Easter-y” at the moment, if anyone can point me in the right direction?

Anyway, I digress, these are so simple to make and they are raw so no cooking involved, retaining all their natural nutritious goodness.


Here’s what I used, but feel free to play around with the ingredients, I tend to just use up what I have in my cupboards. Your quantities will vary depending on the size and shape of your mould. I always find it’s better to make too much than too little. I like to taste as I go – of course, who doesn’t, right? – and you can always revert back to good old protein balls if you run out of space in your mould. I ended up making 12 hearts, with enough mixture left over to make 6 balls, which I rolled in the leftover cacao chocolate and coconut.

·         Desiccated coconut

·         Porridge oats, steel cut if you’re gluten-free

·         Your preferred mixture of nuts and seeds – I used cashews and almonds + sunflower and pumpkin seeds

·         Dates, medjool if poss as they are best

·         4x tbsp maple syrup – 2x tbsp for the protein mixture + 2x tbsp for the cacao chocolate topping. You can add more or less depending on the size of your sweet tooth and mould of course

·         Coconut oil, melted –  1x tbsp for the protein mixture + 4-5x tbsp for the cacao chocolate topping

Do you know how good this stuff is for you? Check out post featuring some of the amazing ways coconut oil can be used in your cooking and beauty regime

·         3x tbsp raw organic cacao powder – 1x tbsp for protein mixture + 2x tbsp for cacao chocolate topping

Raw cacao is made by cold-pressing unroasted cocoa beans. The process keeps the living enzymes in the cocoa and removes the fat (cacao butter)

You can use regular cocoa powder but your creations won’t be raw

You might also need to use more cocoa powder, in order to get the same depth of chocolate flavour as cacao

 

Add your favourite vegan friendly protein to ramp up the protein content. They’re then great little snacks for an immediate post workout protein hit.

And how you make them :

1.       Sprinkle a little desiccated coconut in the bottom of your moulds, this will give them nice little coconut tops

2.       Put nuts, seeds, oats, dates, 1x tbsp cacao powder + more desiccated coconut in a food processor and blend to desired consistency

3.       Add in 2x tbsp maple syrup and 1x tbsp coconut oil and blend once more, until the mixture becomes thick and sticky, then pack tightly in to your moulds

4.       Mix the remaining melted coconut oil and cacao powder to make a rich cacao chocolate, then drizzle on top of your moulds, creating what will become their lovely chocolate bottoms

5.       Put in your freezer for about 30 minutes and until set and they’re ready to devour. Make sure you keep them in the fridge when not eating, as this will keep them set and fresh!

 

raw vegan nut, seed + cacao hearts

 

Let me know how you get on making these. I think some bunnies would be fun for Easter, now where would I get that mould from? Post your pictures on Instagram tagging me so I can see your creations!

 

Vegan (almost raw) Chocolate Orange Tarte

Chocolate Orange Tarte 5

I made chocolate brownies not so long ago, and whilst I loved them – chocolate, what’s not to love, right? – the boyfriend wondered if they might have been better as a pie/tart/torte, something to do with the density. So I have created my Chocolate Orange Tarte and am going to share the recipe with you.

Although not strictly “raw”, this recipe doesn’t require any baking, but does involve some steaming and melting, plus some of the individual ingredients themselves already been cooked in their production.

INGREDIENTS :

For the “tarte” :

  • 500 – 600g sweet potatoes, steamed
  • 4 x tablespoons raw cacao powder
  • 150g organic vegan dark chocolate, melted
  • 3 x tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1 x pinch of salt
  • 1x handful pistachios, crushed
  • 1 x orange,  juice and zest

For the base :

  • 150g almonds, ground
  • 100g walnuts, crushed
  • 100g cashews, crushed
  • 250g medjool dates, blended
  • 3 x tablespoons coconut butter, melted
  • 1 x tablespoon maple syrup

EQUIPMENT :

  • Blender
  • 8 x small tart tins, or 1 x large tin
  • Small saucepan, to melt coconut oil
  • Steamer

METHOD :

  1. First make your base. You can actually use any combination of nuts that you so desire. I like to grind my almonds up to make a “flour”, whilst leaving the walnuts and cashews in bigger pieces, to give my base more of a crunch
  2. Grind or blend your nuts and mix together in a large bowl, adding the blended medjool dates, melted coconut butter and maple syrup
  3. Grease your tart tins, I used Pure Olive spread, and add your base mixture. You’ll need to push the mixture down firmly to form a crust
  4. Place your tart tins in the freezer and start to make your tarte mixture

Chocolate Orange Tarte 8

  1.  Steam the sweet potatoes until soft, this will take about 10-15 minutes
  2. Whilst your sweet potatoes are steaming, melt your dark chocolate and place in a big mixing bowl
  3. Once the potatoes are nice and soft, mash up and add to the melted chocolate, along with the rest of the” tarte” ingredients – cacao powder, maple syrup, salt, pistachios, orange juice and zest
  4. Mix all the ingredients together, take your bases out of the freezer and add tarte mixture. I’d recommend you pipe the mixture in as it will be quite thick. Piping will giving you a neater finish. I did not pipe mine and so, according to the boyfriend, they had a “rustic” look
  5. Place “tartes” in the fridge and let the mixture set

Chocolate Orange Tarte 7

Once these little beauties have set, it should be easy to remove them from their tins. I then dusted mine with more raw cacao power, crushed pistachios and orange peel.

Chocolate Orange Tarte 6

I didn’t use any flour in this receipt as I didn’t want to do any actual baking. However, next time I am going to try baking the bases before adding the “tarte” mixture, to give it a nice crunch and a bit of a different texture.

If you don’t eat these all at once – I tried, but they’re too rich even for me – they’ll need to be kept in the fridge or they will melt. Although, thinking about it now, they might be quite delicious as a melted mess, with a bit of vegan ice cream… mmmmm…

I took these to my yoga course this weekend and I think they were a hit. As promised guys, here’s the recipe, and the recipe for my carrot & walnut cupcakes (with cashew frosting!) will follow soon too!

So that’s that then, my Chocolate Orange Tartes. Make, eat, enjoy, let me know what you think.

Come back soon for more vegan recipes, tips, brands and products. In the meantime check out my Instagram – @isitveganuk.