Paleo Salted Caramel Cheesecake

15 Sep

The most common reaction to my paleo recipes after the first bite is, “This can’t be paleo!”.  Well, if ever that was to be said, this is the recipe that qualifies.  Sweet, salty, crunchy, melt in your mouth, delicious!  And it requires ZERO cooking!  That’s right, you don’t need to cook a thing.

Paleo salted caramel cheesecake

Paleo salted caramel cheesecake

Ingredients:

Crust

2/3 cup pecans

1 cup unsweetened flaked coconut

1 cup crunchy almond butter (I love Barney’s)

1 1/2 tbl. Earth Balance coconut spread

1 1/2 tbl. agave or coconut nectar

1/2 tsp. sea salt

Cheesecake

1 1/2 cups raw cashews

1/2 cup coconut oil (I used unrefined virgin coconut oil), melted

1 tbl. Thai Kitchen full fat coconut milk

1 tsp. vanilla

1-2 tbl. lemon juice

Salted Caramel

14 pitted dates, soaked

1/3 cup Thai Kitchen full fat coconut milk

3 drops Capella caramel flavor concentrate

1/4 tsp. sea salt

~1/4 tsp. coarsely ground sea salt to sprinkle over top

Method:

Line a baking dish with parchment paper.  I used an 8×8 inch glass dish, but I find that it came out thicker than I wanted, so I recommend using a 9×9 inch glass dish.  For the crust combine all of the ingredients in your food processor and process until you have a batter.  The batter will still be crunchy, but should not have any obvious chunks of pecans remaining.  Press the batter evenly throughout the bottom of your baking dish.  Begin the cheesecake.  Place all of the cheesecake ingredients in your food processor and process until the mixture is smooth.  It will take a couple minutes before the cashews are fully broken down.  Periodically wipe down the inside of the processor so that the mixture incorporates evenly.  Pour and spread the cheesecake evenly over the crust and place in the freezer for 2-4 hours.  Place your dates in a cup of warm water so they are completely submerged.  Allow the dates to soak for at least 2 hours (perfect because you’re waiting this much time for your cheesecake to set!).  Remove your dates from the water and place in your food processor with the coconut milk, vanilla, caramel flavor, and 1/4 tsp. sea salt.  Process your caramel until it is smooth and you no longer have chunks of dates.  Remove your cheesecake from the freezer and spread your caramel over the top.  Sprinkle with some additional coarsely ground sea salt.  I placed my cheesecake back in the freezer until the caramel had also set.  I removed my cheesecake from the freezer for 45 minutes and cut into 16 squares (can be cut into more).  Store in the refrigerator or freezer.

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