Red Velvet ‘Cheesecake’ {Vegan, Paleo, No-Bake}

Intense red color, dreamy (dairy-free) Red Velvet ‘Cheesecake’! Rich chocolate flavor– made entirely with healthy, whole foods. No dye!
Red Velvet Cheesecake - PrettyPies.com

Two bottles of RED dye? Nope!! It’s 100% natural. It’s made from a VEGETABLE, haha! For real. Can you guess which one? 😉 Red Velvet Cheesecake - PrettyPies.com

Secret Ingredient

It’s BEETS! Remember my Hot Pink Pie made with beets? I was SO infatuated with that amazing color, and I just had to make MORE with those powerful little root veggies!

It turns out, if you add cocoa to beets (along with the cheesecake base), it turns RED. Deep, dark, glamorous burgundy red. Omg, don’t you love it?! It’s like art class all over again mixing paint colors. 🙂

And the beets add a subtle earthy quality to the chocolaty flavor of the cheesecake. It’s definitely a specialty cake. Unconventional– absolutely. Delicious? Yes!

Red Velvet Cheesecake - PrettyPies.com

Birthday Girl

This cake was made for my gorgeous mama, who was celebrating a special birthday last week. (Hi, Mom! Love you) 

We got to spend the weekend at my parents’ house and had such a great time seeing a bunch of family. We made sure to do our favorites: visit 8th Street Coffee House for brunch, shop at the local antique/vintage shop, eat some Tex-Mex and go to TJ Maxx, ha! Love it.

Red Velvet has always been my mom’s FAVORITE, so I was determined to recreate that for her, using only whole foods. And it was a hit! I was surprised that my brother (who is not gluten/dairy/sugar-free) kept asking for more, haha.

Red Velvet 'Cheesecake' from PrettyPies.com (Vegan, Paleo, Dye-Free)

Red Velvet Cheesecake - PrettyPies.com

Velvety Velvet

The texture of this “cheesecake” is unlike any I’ve made before. It’s ultra VELVETY. Smoother than anything I ever made before. And it has a RICH buttery quality, thanks to cashews and coconut oil.

I decided to use refined coconut oil in this recipe as to not mask the chocolate flavor, but virgin works, too! There is also a “Buttery Flavor” Coconut Oil that I really wanted to get for this recipe, but I waited too long. Someday I must try that!

With a chocolate almond crust, cocoa cashew cheesecake filling and creamy cashew “cream cheese” frosting, this cake is both flavorful and RICH. You only need a tiny slice. 😉

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Red Velvet Cheesecake - PrettyPies.com

Special

This Red Velvet ‘Cheesecake’ would be wonderful for the holidays (or for any special occasion). Especially for those of us on special diets – without refined sugar, eggs, gluten, dairy and grains. But as my brother could attest, even non-special diet folks love this cake, too! 🙂

If you make it, I’d be so thrilled to hear from you! Leave a comment or share your photo on my Facebook page or tag me Instagram @emily.likes.food and hashtag #prettypies

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Red Velvet 'Cheesecake' - (Vegan, Paleo) PrettyPies.com

Red Velvet 'Cheesecake'

Intense red color, dreamy cheesecake texture, yummy chocolate flavor. All with healthy, whole food ingredients!
Prep Time25 mins
Total Time25 mins
Servings: 14 slices

Ingredients

Chocolate Crust

  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 2 Tbs cocoa
  • 2 Tbs maple syrup
  • 2 Tbs refined coconut oil melted
  • Dash of pink salt

Red Velvet 'Cheesecake'

  • 2 1/4 cup raw cashews soaked
  • 1 2/3 cup roasted beets
  • 1/2 cup + 1 Tbs maple syrup
  • 3/4 cup cocoa
  • 1 oz dark chocolate melted
  • 1 cup refined coconut oil melted
  • 1 1/4 Tbs vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • 1/8 tsp pink salt

'Cream Cheese' Frosting

  • 1 cup raw cashews soaked
  • 1 Tbs maple syrup
  • 2 1/2 tsp lemon juice
  • Splash of vanilla
  • Dash of pink salt

Instructions

To make the crust:

  • Mix all ingredients together in a small bowl (sift cocoa first if clumpy). Add a splash of water if it's too dry.
  • Press into a parchment-lined 7" springform pan. Chill while you make the filling.

To make the cheesecake:

  • Soak cashews in a bowl of boiling water for 1-2 hours or overnight in room-temp water. Drain, rinse and shake dry.
  • Blend cashews in a food processor for 3-5 minutes. Scrape down the sides. Add roasted beets and blend smooth.
  • Add remaining ingredients and blend. Taste and adjust if needed.
  • Spread over crust. Cover pan with a paper towel and wrap in foil. Freeze for about 3 hours until solid, then refrigerate.

To make the cream cheese:

  • Soak cashews in a bowl of boiling water for 1-2 hours or overnight in room-temp water. Drain, rinse and shake dry.
  • Blend cashews in a food processor for 3-5 minutes. Scrape down the sides. Add remaining ingredients, to taste and blend smooth.
  • Transfer to a baggie and snip off the tip to pipe on. ENJOY! 🙂

Notes

Use a small 7" springform to make your cheesecake tall and pretty. A regular size will result in a flatter/shorter cake.
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To roast beets:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a pan with foil. Trim the beets, leaving about 1" of the sprout. Wrap each beet in foil. Roast for 45-60 minutes until fork tender. Allow to cool. Use gloves (or baggies) to remove the peel with your fingers.
Keep refrigerated for up to one week, or frozen (tightly wrapped) for 1-2 months.

27 comments

  1. Mrs Christmas says:

    I think I have found the first of my trio of Christmas Day desserts. Thanks so much I hope turns out as well as the Cashew lime cheesecake which as become a regular in our home.

      • Mrs Christmas says:

        Hi again Emily
        So I tried out the recipe and all I can say is that after the first bite we just looked at each other and not another word was spoken until we had savoured very mouthful!
        It is a fabulous recipe and is a cert for Christmas day.
        Thank you so much you Emily for the wonderful gift of this very special recipe xx

        • Emily says:

          Oh wow you made it already? Awesome! So glad you loved it ❤️❤️❤️ Thanks for coming back to comment ☺️ And you are so welcome. Enjoy your cheesecake!

  2. Kathryn says:

    Looks SO good!!! My husband loves red velvet and I won’t make it due to the food coloring, but I will make this! Thank you for including the info on how to roast the beets.
    Do you buy your cashews in a certain place or in bulk? If I buy one lb bags, will one bag be enough for this recipe? Though I’ll double this one I bet it’ll go quick!

    • Emily says:

      Thank you, Kathryn! I was so excited to create that bold color without artificial coloring

      I buy cashews on bulk on Amazon: http://amzn.to/2Ey8iJs. Sprouts and other natural grocery stores also have good prices sometimes. Just be sure to get raw/unroasted.

      One pound might be enough if you don’t double it, and leave off the frosting.

      I wouldn’t double this one, though. It’s SO rich. A tiny sliver is plenty 🙂

  3. Neil says:

    This looks awesome. Would the dark chocolate take away from the vegan thing Emily? My birthday on Wednesday hoping to make it to share at work.
    Thanks, Neil

    • Emily says:

      Thank you! There are many dairy-free brands of chocolate now. Enjoy Life is one of the most popular. I use Aldi brand, also DF. Just check the label 🙂

      Hope you enjoy! Have a wonderful birthday ♥️

  4. Vedrana says:

    This looks sooo good! I am going to make it for a party. I was wondering though whether the quantity of vanilla is a typo. Is it really 1.25 Tablespoons? I usually see vanilla in teaspoons and I don’t have a 1/4 Tbs measure, so I thought maybe it’s 1.25 teaspoons? Thank you!

  5. Jen says:

    I can’t wait to make this for Valentine’s Day! I’m super happy about the beets because I can’t bring myself to use red food coloring lol. I was wondering what I can use for the frosting in place of cashews?

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