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Salted Caramel “Cheesecake” Bites

Jan 8, 2015 | Minis

 

Salted Caramel Cheesecake Bite (dairy-free, grain-free)

I asked my friend Megan if she wanted one of these the other day, and she said no, because she can no longer tolerate dairy. Grrrrrrl. Don’t you know who I am? I didn’t tell her what they were made of, just that, I had her covered.

The salted caramel makes these everything they are. It’s what makes the eyebrows raise, or the eyes close, or the “Mmmm” that comes out when someone takes a bite out of one.  Or what prompted the text I got from Jessica after leaving some at her house…. “I tried a cheesecake bite. Holy shit.”

Salted Caramel Cheesecake Bite (dairy-free, grain-free)

I got this recipe from Vanessa over at Clean Eating With a Dirty Mind. (Go take a look at her photos. Mine don’t to these justice!) She has a couple other “cheesecake” recipes I can’t wait to try too. Though I’d be happy eating these every day.

Salted Caramel “Cheesecake” Bites
Author: Last Course Gourmet
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 24
Ingredients
  • The Crust
  • 1 heaping cup raw pecans
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon creamy almond butter
  • 2 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup, grade B or better
  • A few pinches sea salt
  • The “Cheesecake”
  • 1 heaping cup raw cashews (soaked overnight)
  • 1/2 cup raw zucchini (peeled and diced)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (melted)
  • 2 tablespoons canned coconut milk, full fat, room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons Grade B maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons coconut palm sugar
  • 1/2 tablespoon vanilla
  • The juice of one medium lemon (to taste)
  • The Caramel
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk, full fat, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup coconut palm sugar
  • 4 tablespoons grass-fed butter (or ghee)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • A few pinches sea salt
Instructions
  1. For the crust, pulse the pecans in a food processor or blender until they are a fine meal. Add the rest of the crust ingredients and mix again until well combined. Line a mini cupcake pan with mini liners (24 total) and use a teaspoon to scoop the pecan mixture into each well. Use your fingers to press the crust evenly into the bottom of each liner. Place in the freezer to set for a raw crust, or bake on 350 for 6 minutes.
  2. For the cheesecake, blend the cashews in a food processor or blender until fully processed (no more chunks). Add the rest of the cheesecake ingredients (with more or less lemon to fit your taste) and blend until a smooth milkshake-like batter is formed. Spoon or pour the cheesecake into a ziploc or decorating bag. I do this by placing my ziploc bag in a flower vase, with the top of the opening of the bag rolled over the edges of the vase. This way, I can use one hand to support the vase and one hand to pour the caramel into the supported bag. Snip the tip and pipe the cheesecake onto each crust, leaving room for a thin layer of caramel. Place back in the freezer on an even surface (so they harden evenly) for at least an hour. (**I always have leftover cheesecake that I save for later in the fridge. It’s great with berries or just by itself!)
  3. For the caramel, add the coconut milk, coconut sugar, and butter to a medium saucepan (NOT frying pan). On low heat, gently stir with a whisk in one direction to combine the ingredients and to let the coconut sugar dissolve. When the ingredients are fully melted, turn the heat to medium heat to bring the mixture to a slow boil. Stir in the vanilla and salt. Increase the heat so that the mixture comes to a full boil. Boil for 5 minutes, stirring continuously. Remove the pan from the heat , and continue to stir until the bubbles have dissipated. Let the caramel sit and cool (about 10 minutes). (Do not put it in the fridge, as this may leave the caramel unscoopable… and there’s no coming back from it!)
  4. When your cheesecake has hardened and your caramel has cooled, use your teaspoon to drop caramel over each cheesecake bite.You may have a little caramel left over, and you’ll be glad of it.
  5. Sprinkle with Himalayan salt and place back in freezer for the caramel to set (about 5-10 minutes) But let’s be real, you’ll hardly be able to wait that long.
  6. Store leftovers in the freezer and let thaw 10-15 minutes before serving.
  7. **Notes on caramel: the longer you cook your caramel, the thicker it will be. If your chilled caramel cracks when you bite into it, it’s been cooked too long (but is still delicious!). The key is to raise the temperature of the caramel slowly, keep stirring, and let cool before spooning onto each bite.
  8. **To clean the caramel pot, just fill the pot with water and bring to a bowl. Scrape the sides clean and pour out the water!

 

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