Believe it or not, the Holidays are right around the corner! The Holiday season brings so much joy and happiness to so many people, but with the joyous celebrations often come high-calorie, sugar-loaded foods and beverages which often lead to the infamous Holiday Weight Gain! Have no fear, I have the perfect HEALTHY Holiday dessert that even the greatest Pumpkin Cheesecake connoisseur will love! Trust me, no one will know that this dessert is actually healthy, made with wholesome ingredients, and is gluten-free and free of added sugars!
This week's Meal Makeover: Healthy Pumpkin Cheesecake
This recipe requires absolutely no baking and is so versatile! You can make one large pumpkin cheesecake in a dish (as seen above) or make 12 mini cheesecakes in a muffin tin* (as seen below). No matter which form you choose, no one will be able to resist this nutritious and delicious dessert!
*Best to use a "mini cheesecake tray" if you have one!
Ingredients (makes 12 servings / 12 mini cheesecake "muffins"):
- 6oz pitted dates
- 1.5 cups raw cashews
- pinch of salt
- filtered water (1-4 tbsp., as needed)
- 1 container Greek yogurt (I used Siggi's Coconut, but Pumpkin flavor works best)
- 6oz 1/3 Less Fat Cream Cheese (about 3/4 of the 8oz block)
- 1/2 cup Pure Pumpkin Puree (I used Libby's 100%)
- 3 tbsp. Pure Maple Syrup (or Honey)
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp Pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- To make the crust: Blend pitted dates in a food processor, then add the cashews and pinch of salt. Blend on high speed, stopping once in a while to scrape down the sides with a spatula as needed, and add 1 tbsp. of water at a time until desired consistency is reached. You want the batter to be firm and moist, but not too thin and runny.
- Spray a 12 tin muffin tray with non-stick spray and fill each cup with about a spoonful of crust batter. Push the batter down into the muffin tin with the back of a spoon or bottom of a small, round cup. You want the crust batter to be compressed flat.
- Place muffin tray in the freezer to harden while you make the filling.
- To make the filling: In a large mixing bowl, mix all ingredients together until well blended. You may need to use an electric mixer to mix the cream cheese until all is completely smooth.
- Once mixed completely, scoop a spoonful of filling into each muffin tin and smooth out the top. Cover the whole tray with plastic wrap and set in the refrigerator for at least 30-60 minutes.
- When ready to serve, carefully remove each cheesecake from the muffin tins and place on a serving dish.
Now doesn't that look delicious!? Trust me, these bite-sized beauties did not last long on the dessert table when I tried them out on my in-laws a few weeks ago and at only 160 calories per serving, I know they will be a huge hit at your next Holiday gathering!
So what are you waiting for? Thanksgiving is right around the corner and you need to make these ASAP!
Happy (no) baking and have a wonderful week ahead!