A creamy, vegan no-bake cheesecake is topped with slices of fresh figs. It’s vegan, paleo friendly, and free of dairy, grains, gluten, and eggs!
Growing up, one of my favorite store-bought treats was fig newtons. I just loved that soft cookie coating with the sweet, crunchy filling! When I saw fresh figs in the store for the first time a while back, I snatched them up quickly and looked forward to getting home and enjoying that taste I remembered as a child.
Just an FYI, fresh figs do not taste like fig newtons.
They have more of an earthy, slightly sweet flavor that is very unique on its own. They may not taste like that chewy cookie we remember, but they’re still delicious and always make a beautiful presentation. They were also perfect atop this creamy, no-bake “cheesecake” and the light taste of cinnamon in the filling really complemented it well.
I refer to this dessert a cheesecake, even though there is nothing “cheesy” in here. The base of this filling is actually made of cashews, but when blended with the other ingredients and then given a “tang” from raw apple cider vinegar and lemon juice, you get everything you love about cheesecake, without the dairy, grains, gluten, or eggs! It’s so delicious and has my picky kids’ stamp of approval, which must say something. They are, after all, my children and are bona fide little foodies! 🙂
Now I know figs aren’t the easiest fruit to find at times and even if you can find them, they can be costly. Feel free to substitute another fruit in place of the figs, such as strawberries or kiwi slices, or even just omit the sliced fruit before freezing and just serve with fresh fruit.
This raw cheesecake sets in the freezer, but you’ll want to give it plenty of time to soften before serving. A slice of popsicle for dessert just isn’t as appealing!
If you make this dessert, be sure to tag #wifemamafoodie on Instagram so that I can see your creation! I hope you enjoy this healthier take on cheesecake!
- 4 cups raw cashews, soaked overnight in the fridge*
- ½ - ¾ cup milk non-dairy milk (I used half unsweetened almond and half full-fat coconut milk)
- ½ cup pure maple syrup
- ¼ cup melted coconut oil
- 3 tablespoons raw apple cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- ½ - 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, to taste (optional, you can omit if another fruit is used)
- 8-10 fresh figs, sliced (You can use another fruit, like strawberries or kiwi, or just omit fruit on top for vanilla cheesecake)
- *If you are pressed for time, you can soak the cashews in boiling hot water for 1 hour instead.
- In a food processor, combine together the dried dates, nuts, and salt. Pulse until coarsely ground and mixture holds together when pressed. Press into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan. This mixture is pretty fool-proof so if your mixture is too sticky blend in a few more nuts, if it's not sticky enough, blend in more dates.
- Drain soaked cashews and rinse with clean water. Into a clean food processor, add drained cashews, ½ cup milk, maple syrup, coconut oil, cider vinegar, lemon juice, and vanilla. Blend together until smooth. Add the extra ¼ cup milk if your mixture is too thick to blend. If you're going to add cinnamon, add a little at a time and taste after each addition until you are happy with the flavor.
- Pour the creamy filling into the springform pan and spread evenly over the crust. Top with sliced figs, cover the pan with foil and put into the freezer for several hours to overnight.
- To serve, carefully remove from the springform pan while frozen and place onto your serving plate. Let sit at room temperature for 10-15 minutes before cutting. If cheesecake is still firm, it's easier to cut. Run a knife under hot water and dry to help cut through the cold cake. Continue to let cheesecake soften for another 10 or 15 minutes before serving. Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the freezer.