No-Bake Carrot Cake Cheesecake (Vegan)
How about a vegan carrot cake that’s healthy and easy to make? This recipe incorporates all of the traditional flavours of carrot cake from fresh carrot to warming spices and cream cheese frosting. Instead of regular carrot cakes that are baked and frosted with cream cheese, the base of this cake is made using more wholesome ingredients that create a sticky base and topped with a tangy dairy-free cheesecake made using cashews and vegan cream cheese. All in all, a healthier and less traditional, No-Bake Carrot Cake Cheesecake!
THIS NO-BAKE CARROT CAKE CHEESECAKE IS:
- Perfect for Easter
- Packed with wholesome plant-based ingredients
- Creamy and smooth
- Tangy and fresh
- No-Bake and Easy to make
LET’S TALK ABOUT THE NO-BAKE CARROT CAKE BASE
The base of this no-bake carrot cake is incredibly wholesome and made using healthy plantbased whole food ingredients. In fact, you could also turn the base into some delicious healthy energy balls if you’d like!
INGREDIENTS FOR THE CARROT CAKE BASE:
- Toasted coconut flakes: You can also use desiccated coconut although it won’t give you that nutty buttery flavour.
- Cashews: These are added to the base for texture. You could also use another type of nut here, pecans or walnuts would be great!
- Dates: These provide sweetness, flavour and also act as the binding agent to keep all the base ingredients together.
- Grated carrots: You can’t have a carrot cake without carrots! For the freshest result, make sure you grate the carrots just before adding them into the base.
- Spices and orange zest: Cinnamon and ginger help to create that classic carrot cake flavour while orange zest adds freshness to the cake.
- Sea salt: The salt will help to balance the sweetness of the dessert. You can use flaky sea salt, kosher salt or pink Himalayan salt. Avoid regular table salt however.
- Coconut flour: Keep this ingredient on hand as it’s only added to the base if the mixture is a little on the wet side.
LET’S TALK ABOUT THE CREAMY CHEESECAKE TOPPING
To contrast the sticky sweet base, the cheesecake topping is tangy, smooth, and creamy! I’ve added warming spices to bring the flavour to the next level.
INGREDIENTS FOR THE TOPPING:
- Cashews: When soaked for a minimum of 4 hours, these nuts begin to soften. Once blended, this allows them to create a rich and creamy base for the cheesecake filling. Tip: If you’re in a hurry you can quick soak your cashews in boiling water for 30 minutes to an hour.
- Vegan cream cheese: I use violife, but you can use any vegan-friendly cream cheese that’s available to you. If you’re not able to get your hands on this you can use coconut cream in it’s place, just add an additional tablespoon of lemon juice along with it!
- Pure maple syrup: Maple syrup sweetens and brings another layer of favour to the dessert.
- Vegan greek style yoghurt: This adds another layer of “cheesecake” taste while adding lightness to the dessert. If you can’t find Greek style, you can use regular soya or coconut yoghurt at a reduced amount (see the recipe notes at the bottom of this page).
- Vanilla extract: The vanilla plays a big role in the flavour of the filling so don’t skip it! You could also use vanilla bean paste for an even more intense vanilla flavour.
- Spices and lemon juice: Cinnamon and nutmeg add festive warming flavour to the cheesecake while lemon juice helps to enhance the flavours as well as give it that cheesecake tang!
- Coconut oil: This is an important ingredient for the filling as it plays the role of setting the dessert.
HOW TO MAKE A NO-BAKE CARROT CHEESECAKE
(Full recipe and instructions can be found in the recipe card at the end of this page)
RAW CARROT CAKE BASE
First add your dry ingredients (flaked coconut, cashews, cinnamon, ginger, salt) to a food processor and blitz them until they form an even light crumb consistency – this will ensure you don’t have lumps of coconut or nuts in the finished cake.
Next add in the wet ingredients (dates, orange zest) and blend for about a minute to form a dough. Then add in the grated carrot and blend for another thirty seconds or so to combine all of the ingredients. Check the consistency, if very wet, add all of the coconut flour and blend to combine. Depending on how moist it is you can add less of the coconut flour.
Line the bottom of a 7″ cake tin with removable base with some parchment paper. Press the dough into the base of the cake tin, and smooth it out with a spatula or flat bottomed glass. Place in the freezer while you prepare the filling.
For the filling, simply add all of the ingredients to a blender and blitz until smooth and creamy. Pour the filling into the cake tin and tap the tin on your work surface to remove any air bubbles. Place in the freezer for a minimum of 4 hours or until set.
Once set, remove the cake from the tin whilst still frozen. You can use a blowtorch or a damp warm cloth to gently heat up the sides which will make it easier to remove the cake.
MAKING THE CARROT GARNISH
If you’d like to add some fancy carrot swirls as a festive decoration for your cake, I’d recommend using this method as it will make them easier to roll as well as tastier!
- Use a vegetable peeler to cut the carrots into long thin strips
- Make a simple sugar syrup of 1 part caster or granulated sugar to 2 parts water.
- Cook the carrots for a few minutes to soften them slightly.
- Place the carrots in an ice water bath to prevent them from cooking further.
- Roll them up and secure them on a tooth pick while they dry
- Use them to garnish your cheesecake!
HOW TO STORE YOUR VEGAN CARROT CAKE
- Store this cake in an airtight container in the fridge and consume within 3-4 days. Alternatively you can freeze any unused cake and defrost as needed – I’d recommend removing the carrot and mint garnish if freezing any leftover cake.
RECOMMENDED TOOLS TO MAKE THIS CARROT CHEESECAKE
LOVE NO BAKE CHEESECAKES? HERE ARE SOME OTHER RECIPES TO TRY
No-Bake Carrot Cake Cheesecake
CARROT CAKE BASE
- 1 cup toasted coconut flakes or desiccated coconut
- 1 cup cashews
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground ginger
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp orange zest
- 8 medjool dates pitted
- 1 cup grated carrots
- ½ cup coconut flour less if required
- 1 ½ cups cashews soaked *see notes
- 7 oz vegan cream cheese
- ½ cup pure maple syrup
- ¾ cup vegan greek style yoghurt or ½ cup regular soya yoghurt
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground nutmeg
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- ¼ cup coconut oil solid
CARROT GARNISH (optional)
- 2 medium carrots or 1 large
- ½ cup caster sugar
- 1 cup water
- For the base, add the flaked coconut, cashews, cinnamon, ginger and salt to your food processor and blitz for about 30 seconds until you have a pretty even crumb consistency.
- Add in the dates and orange zest and blend again for another minute until evenly combined. Add the grated carrots and blend for another 30 seconds or so. Check the consistency, if very wet, add all of the coconut flour and blend to combine. Depending on how moist it is you can add less of the coconut flour.
- Line the bottom of a 7.5 or 8" cake tin (with removable base) with some parchment paper. Press the dough into the base of the cake tin, and smooth it out with a spatula or flat bottomed glass. Place in the freezer while you prepare the filling.
- For the filling, add all of the ingredients to a blender and blitz until smooth and creamy. Pour the filling into the cake tin and tap the tin on your work surface to remove any air bubbles. Place in the freezer for a minimum of 4 hours or until set.
- Once set, remove the cake from the tin whilst still frozen. You can use a blowtorch or a damp warm cloth to gently heat up the sides which will make it easier to remove the cake.
- Allow the cake to defrost at room temperature for 30-40 minutes before serving.
- To make the carrot garnish, thinly slice long strips of carrot using a vegetable peeler. Add the sugar and water to a saucepan and bring to the boil, reduce to a simmer and add in the carrot strips. Simmer for 3-4 minutes, then transfer the carrot strips to a cold water/ice bath for about a minute. Roll the carrots up and secure them with a cocktail stick until ready to use.
- Garnish with the carrots, chopped pecans and some fresh mint if desired.
- Store this cake in an airtight container in the fridge and consume within 3-4 days. Alternatively you can freeze any unused cake and defrost as needed - I'd recommend removing the carrot and mint garnish if freezing any leftovers.