Cranberry Cheesecake Bites

NZ’s animal rights group SAFE asked me to contribute a wee something for their Christmas Dessert Contest “Sweet As” so here’s my entry: Cranberry Cheesecake Bites. Find out about the Sweet As comp here and enter!

These are really easy to make and perfect to take to a shared Christmas as a sweet vegan option.

It helps if you have a good blender and mini muffin tray but you could make bigger ones or even one large cheesecake (I haven’t tested it but I imagine you’d need to double this recipe for a full sized cheesecake).

Inspired by Minimalist Baker’s raw cheesecake bites.

Cranberry Cheesecake Bites 2

Cranberry Cheesecake Bites

makes 12 mini muffin-sized bites

10 dates
1/2 c roasted hazelnuts (or raw almonds)
1 c soaked cashews
2T maple syrup
1 t lemon juice
3 T coconut milk
couple of drops of vanilla extract
pinch salt
1/3 C candied cranberries (you can use the sweetened kind that are easy to find in NZ supermarkets or use frozen and add a little maple syrup to sweeten)
juice of 1 orange
1/2 t arrowroot
4 T water

Blend dates and hazelnuts or almonds. You’ll get a smoother consistency if you blend each separately and then combine. Divide across a mini muffin tray, putting roughly 1 teaspoon in each and pressing down to form a base.
Freeze for at least 30 mins.

Add cashews, maple syrup, lemon juice, coconut milk, vanilla extract and salt to the blender/bullet/food processor. Blend until smooth. Divide the creamy mixture across the mini muffin, filling each muffin section more or less to the top. Give the tray a wee shake and smack it down on the bench a few times to flatten and get rid of air bubbles.

Put the tray back into the freezer for at least 30 minutes.

Combine cranberries, orange juice, arrowroot and water in a small pan. Heat until reduced to a thick pink sauce and there is no water left.
Spoon over the cheesecakes and return to the freezer.

Freeze 3 hours before serving and serve immediately or within 20 minutes. They’re best eaten while frozen or cold.

*You can make these a couple of days in advance and store in an airtight container in the freezer until serving.

*They will come out of the tray easily if you grease it with some coconut oil and gently pry each one out with a thin knife.

Happy holidays! x

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