Pumpkin 'Cheese' Cake

I am completely obsessed with pumpkin. Prior to making this cake I did not realise that I already had two pumpkin related recipes on my blog including a Cherry Tomato and Pumpkin Laksa and Pumpkin Risotto using pearl barley.

My desire to make this cake stemmed from a celebratory lunch with my boyfriend. We went to a restaurant called Vegerama to have a vegan satay burger. Whilst ordering my salad I noticed all the beautiful vegan cakes they had. One of them happened to be a pumpkin cheesecake. I had never tried a pumpkin cheesecake, let alone a vegan one, so we ordered it. It was completely amazing and love at first bite.

Following this I started searching for some vegan pumpkin cheesecake recipes and stumbled across one from Laura Friendly. After making a few changes to ensure it had less sugar, I was wrapped with the results.

This cake is moist and sweet and has a cheesecake texture. It is my new favourite, followed swiftly by this Flourless Orange Choc Nut Cake. Best of all, it doesn't even need to be baked! I  recommend leaving it in the fridge overnight if you can resist eating it to let those yummy flavours develop.

Please note that you will need to soak the raw cashews for at least 8 hours (or overnight if possible).

What you need to make one cake for very lucky people:

  • 12 dates, pits removed, soaked in water for 30 minutes, then drained (save water)
  • 4 to 6 tbsp date water
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 cups raw almonds (or equivalent of almond meal) or other nut meal of choice
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil (if needed)
In a blender or food processor add the dates, date water and salt. Blend until it becomes a paste. Set aside.

In a food processor, add the almonds and pulse until they become a coarse meal. Add in the date paste and pulse until the mixture starts to mold together. Add up to 1 tbsp of coconut oil if the mixture isn't sticking together and continue to process.

Transfer mixture into a lined 20 cm springform cake pan. Press the mixture into the bottom of the pan and about 3.5 centimetres (1.5 inches) up the sides.

Place pan into the freezer and allow to chill before adding the filling, around 10 minutes.

  • 2 cups raw cashews, soaked in water overnight, drained
  • 1.5 cups cooked pumpkin, cooled (fresh or canned)
  • 2/3 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Sweetener of choice (I used 1/4 cup maple syrup, 1 tbsp rice syrup and 6 drops liquid stevia - a combination of rice syrup and stevia would be perfect and contains almost zero sugar - taste as you add the sweetener to test desired sweetness)
In a blender or food processor add the cashews, pumpkin, coconut oil, maple syrup, lemon juice, vinegar, vanilla, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Blend until the mixture is smooth. It will be quite thick.

Pour the mixture onto the chilled pie crust, smoothing out the top with a blunt knife or the back of a spoon. Chill the cake in the refrigerator for 1 hour or overnight. Slice and serve cold. If you leave it out for too long it will be more of a mouse like texture.