Vegan lemon blueberry cheesecake - this delicious eggless and dairy free baked cheesecake is easy to make and tastes amazing! The perfect dessert for Summer! Post sponsored by Tala.
Tala recently challenged me to make a Summer baking recipe using their fantastic bakeware. I was keen on the idea of making a cheesecake because I realised that I hadn't yet posted a vegan cheesecake recipe!
This vegan lemon and blueberry cheesecake is the perfect dessert for Summer, it is creamy, tangy and fruity and tastes just like a non-vegan cheesecake!
The filling is made using silken tofu (hear me out!), cashews and coconut cream, with a little flour and cornflour to thicken in place of the eggs and plenty of lemon juice and zest to add that cheesecakey tang.
You can't taste the tofu at all, it just helps to provide a silky smooth texture and is low fat and high protein as a bonus! You need to get firm silken tofu which is the shelf stable kind, not the kind you would find in the fridge section. Most supermarkets have it, or you can easily find it online.
The cashews and coconut cream provide richness and make for that perfectly creamy, dense texture that is classic of a baked, rather than set, cheesecake.
Obviously the most important part of a cheesecake is the base (no crustless cheesecakes here please!), a biscuit base is of course the best kind, so that is what I have gone for here. I used supermarket own brand digestive biscuits which appear to be vegan friendly (McVities are not) to keep things traditional, but you could also use gingersnaps, Biscoff, Oreos or another vegan friendly variety.
The cheesecake is topped off with an easy blueberry compote which works wonderfully with the lemon flavour of the cheesecake and provides contrast to the dense, creamy texture. It also makes it look very pretty!
How To Make Vegan Lemon Blueberry Cheesecake:
(For ingredients and full instructions see the recipe card below)
*For the best results make sure that you follow the recipe closely. As always, I highly recommend using the gram measurements (with a digital scale), rather than the cup conversions. Cup measurements are simply not accurate enough for baking and I cannot guarantee the best results if you use them.*
You need to start the day before you want to serve the cheesecake as it is best if it is refrigerated overnight.
Start by crushing your choice of biscuits for the base, you can do this in a food processor or put them in a freezer bag and bash with a rolling pin.
Tip the crushed biscuits into a mixing bowl - this Indigo and Ivory Corn Design 30cm one by Tala is beautiful, sturdy and my new favourite mixing bowl!
Add in melted vegan block butter (not the spreadable kind in a tub) and stir until it resembles wet sand. Tip this mixture into a good, non-stick 20cm/8 inch round springform cake tin like this performance one from Tala, spread it out evenly and pack down firmly with the base of a glass.
Bake the base in a preheated oven for 10 minutes then set aside to cool.
To make the filling, soak some raw cashew nuts in boiling water for half an hour, drain well then add to a blender along with silken tofu (no need to press it but do drain off any excess liquid first), coconut cream, lemon zest and juice, sugar, cornflour, flour, vanilla extract and salt.
This Indigo and Ivory Cook's Dry Measure by Tala is perfect for accurately measuring out dry ingredients like sugar and flour, and it is a very attractive piece of equipment too!
Blend until the mixture is totally smooth, you don't want any pieces of cashew left. Let it settle for 5 minutes to allow some of the air bubbles to pop.
Meanwhile, wrap the bottom of the springform tin in a double layer of tin foil; the tin is going to be sitting in water so make sure that the top of the tin foil is high enough that no water is going to come over the top. Put the kettle on.
Pour the cheesecake mixture over the baked base then bash the tin on the worktop a couple of times to burst any remaining air bubbles.
Place the tin in a roasting tray and place it in the oven. (I find it easier to add the water once the tray is in the oven so you don't tip any over the top of the foil carrying it to the oven).
Pour boiling water into the roasting tin so that it comes about halfway up the sides of the tin. Be very careful that none goes over the top of the tinfoil.
Bake the cheesecake for 1 hour. When it is ready it should be set but still jiggle if you tap it. Switch the oven off but leave the cheesecake in there (it's fine to leave it in the water bath) and leave it to cool down slowly for an hour or so then allow it to cool completely at room temperature before you cover it and place in the fridge overnight.
(I am terrible at keeping track of how long things have been in the oven for, so this lovely Tala kitchen timer from their Indigo and Ivory range is proving to be very useful for me!).
While the cheesecake is baking make the blueberry sauce, simmer fresh blueberries, sugar and lemon juice until the berries have softened then add a little cornflour mixed with cold water and simmer for another couple of minutes until it has thickened. Leave to cool then refrigerate.
How To Prevent Cheesecake From Cracking:
Cracking is a very common problem when it comes to baked cheesecakes and while it doesn't affect the taste at all it can be very annoying. Here are all my tips to try to prevent your cheesecake from cracking:
- Get all of the air bubbles out of the batter - air bubbles in the cheesecake mixture can rise to the surface and cause cracks. Give the mixture a bit of time to settle after blending and then once you have poured it into the tin, give the tin a good bash on the worktop a couple of times to burst any remaining bubbles.
- Use a good non-stick springform tin like this 20cm one from Tala, if the cheesecake sticks to the sides of the tin, cracks can form as it cools and shrinks.
- Bake the cheesecake in a water bath - a water bath provides an even temperature and makes the oven humid which helps to prevent cracks. (See recipe instructions for how to make a water bath).
- Don't over-bake the cheesecake - overbaking can cause the cheesecake to dry out which is a major source of cracks. The cheesecake is ready when it is set, but still jiggly if you tap it.
- Don't open the oven door - avoid opening the oven door until the cheesecake is almost done as drafts and drops in temperature can cause cracks.
- Leave the cheesecake to cool in the oven - cooling down too quickly can cause cracking so once the cheesecake is done, switch the oven off and leave it in there for an hour or so to cool down slowly. Then allow it to cool completely at room temperature before refrigerating.
How To Fix A Cracked Cheesecake:
Even if you follow all of the steps above, sometimes your cheesecake may crack anyway but don't be disheartened, all is not lost!
The easiest way to fix a cracked cheesecake is to simply top it with something - like the blueberry sauce on this vegan lemon and blueberry one, that way you won't be able to see the cracks. Fruit compote, chocolate ganache or sliced fresh fruit all work well.
Otherwise, once your cheesecake has chilled in the fridge overnight (or for at least four hours), you can dip a palette knife in boiling water, dry it with a tea towel and gently smooth over the cracks. Dip and dry the knife as needed. You wont get a perfectly smooth top, but it definitely helps!
More Vegan Berry Recipes:
- Blueberry frangipane tarts
- Berry crumble bars
- Raspberry, white chocolate and almond sheet cake
- Strawberry tart
- Blueberry pie
If you tried this recipe why not tag @domestic_gothess on Instagram and hashtag it #domesticgothess
Vegan Lemon Blueberry Cheesecake
- 250 g (9oz) vegan friendly digestive biscuits (or another variety of biscuit/cookie) crushed
- 100 g (3.5 oz) vegan block butter (not the spreadable kind in a tub) melted
- 80 g (½ cup) raw cashews soaked in boiling water for at least 30 mins then drained
- 450 g (16 oz) firm silken tofu* excess water drained off
- 280 ml (1 cup + 3 Tbsp) coconut cream**
- finely grated zest of 2 lemons
- 120 ml (½ cup) freshly squeezed lemon juice (from 3-4 lemons)
- 200 g (1 cup) caster sugar
- 30 g (¼ cup) plain (all-purpose) flour
- 20 g (2 Tbsp) cornflour (cornstarch)
- 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp salt
- 250 g (9oz) fresh blueberries
- 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 2 Tbsp water divided
- 50 g (¼ cup) caster sugar
- 2 tsp cornflour (cornstarch)
- You need to start the day before you want to serve the cheesecake as it is best if it is refrigerated overnight. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4.
- Place the crushed biscuits in a bowl and mix in the melted vegan butter. It should resemble wet sand. Tip this mixture into a good, non-stick 20cm/8 inch round springform cake tin, spread it out evenly and pack down firmly with the base of a glass.
- Bake the base in the preheated oven for 10 minutes then remove and set aside to cool.
- To make the filling, place the soaked and drained cashews in a blender along with the silken tofu, coconut cream, lemon zest and juice, sugar, flour, cornflour, vanilla extract and salt and blend until the mixture is perfectly smooth. Let it settle for 5 minutes to allow some of the air bubbles to pop.
- Meanwhile, wrap the bottom of the springform tin in a double layer of tin foil; the tin is going to be sitting in water so make sure that the top of the tin foil is high enough that no water is going to come over the top. Put the kettle on.
- Pour the cheesecake mixture over the baked base then bash the tin on the worktop a couple of times to burst any remaining air bubbles. Place the tin in a roasting tray and place it in the oven.
- Pour boiling water into the roasting tin so that it comes about halfway up the sides of the tin. Be very careful that none goes over the top of the tinfoil.
- Bake the cheesecake for 1 hour. When it is ready it should be set but still jiggle in the middle if you tap it. Switch the oven off but leave the cheesecake in there (it's fine to leave it in the water bath) and leave it to cool down slowly for an hour or so, then allow it to cool completely at room temperature before you cover it and place in the fridge overnight.
- While the cheesecake is baking make the blueberry sauce, place the blueberries, lemon juice, sugar and 1 Tbsp of the water in a pan. Simmer for about 5 minutes until the berries have softened then mix the cornflour with the remaining Tbsp water, add it to the pan and cook while stirring for another minute or so until it has thickened.
- Remove from the heat, allow to cool then refrigerate overnight.
- Once the cheesecake is chilled, run a knife around the edge to make sure it isn't sticking to the tin then undo the clip and remove the rim of the tin. Pour the chilled blueberry compote over the top and serve.
This post is sponsored by Tala, thank you for supporting the brands that allow me to continue doing what I love – playing with food and making a mess of my kitchen.