This Healthy Cheesecake Recipe skips the cream cheese and uses Ricotta cheese instead. For a lighter, feathery, no-bake cream that sits on top of a delicious wholewheat cookie crust loaded with nutritious nuts.
All made from scratch and without refined sugar for a very healthy alternative to THE all-time-favorite dessert, the cheesecake!
Okay, because that was too much information at once, let's break it down into... layers 😀
The Cheesecake Crust
Imagine a large (9-inch to be exact) digestive cookie that is full of walnuts and almonds. Flavored with a hint of cinnamon. Aaaand... made with ghee butter instead of plain butter (No kidding when I say healthy). It is also made with wholewheat flour and wheat flakes.
In a classic Greek cheesecake, we use store-bought digestive cookies that we powder in a blender and then combine with melted butter to create the base for the cheesecake. Just like it's done with a New York Cheesecake and graham crackers.
Since for me though healthy= make it from scratch and know what's in it, I decided to use a homemade digestive cookie crust for this Healthy Cheesecake Recipe.
Do you like Ricotta? I love it! And my new favorite way to use it is to make desserts with it. It is a very light yet creamy cheese that hits the list of the top 9 healthy cheese's to eat!
The reason it is considered so healthy is that it is made from cheese whey. Cheese whey is the water part that is left after making other types of cheeses like Feta, Gruyere, etch. Cheese whey is considered a top-quality protein that contains all the essential amino acids our body needs.
So in this cheesecake recipe, Ricotta takes the place of cream cheese. Just make sure you buy whole milk Ricotta.
-Don't miss this Greek Yogurt Lemon Cake With Anthotyro Cheese (the Greek version of Ricotta)
Another quality protein included in this cream is the protein out of Greek yogurt. Which is another healthy ingredient in this recipe.
All in all, this cream is made with: whole milk Ricotta cheese, full-fat and strained Greek yogurt (can't find strained? see here how to easily strain it at home), heavy cream, honey (preferably raw organic), a bit of fresh lemon juice and vanilla extract as flavorings.
The process of making the cream is easy. And all you need is to use your electric mixer. It's a quick, no-bake cream.
The Berry Sauce
Now, this can't get any easier. This sauce is made with frozen berries, honey, a bit of fresh lemon juice, and a pinch of salt. Did you know that salt in tiny amounts helps bring out the sweetness? Yeap, in case you ever wondered why just a pinch of salt.
To make the sauce simply add all of the ingredients to a saucepan and simmer for about 5 minutes over low heat. You don't even have to unfreeze the berries. Just add straight to the pot. And if you are wondering if frozen berries are healthy, well, yes they are. Berries in general are one of the best sources of antioxidants on the planet. I won't start on antioxidants now as I think I overdid it with the healthy info for one day.
So to sum everything up, it is healthy because:
- The crust is loaded with healthy nuts.
- Also, made with ghee butter which is great for digestive health.
- The whole wheat flour and flakes are a great source of fiber for your gut.
- The cream is made with two high quality protein sources Ricotta cheese (from whey) and Greek yogurt.
- No refined sugar only honey (ideally raw organic).
- The berry sauce is full of antioxidants.
This cheesecake is indeed a healthy one. What I forgot to mention is its flavor. If you're in for sweets that are not too sweet your gonna fall head over heels for this dessert. The sweetness is just enough to let all of the other flavors really shiny. The natural sweetness of the berries and the rich flavor of the cheese and yogurt inside the cream. And best of all, you can always adjust the sweetness by adding an extra spoonful of honey on top. All healthy and guilt-free!
Healthy Greek Yogurt Cheesecake
For The Crust:
- 100 grams / 3.5 oz ghee butter at room temperature see how to make at home here
- 60 grams / 2.1 oz honey
- 100 grams / 3.5 oz whole wheat flour
- 50 grams / 1.7 oz whole wheat flakes
- 40 grams / 1.4 oz raw almonds
- 40 grams / 1.4 oz raw walnuts
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅓ teaspoon baking soda
For The Cream:
- 400 grams / 14.1 oz whole milk Ricotta cheese
- 200 ml heavy cream 35% fat
- 100 grams / 3.5 oz honey
- 300 grams / 10.5 oz Greek yogurt full-fat strained
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice fresh
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For The Berry Sauce:
- 400 grams / 14.1 oz frozen berries mix
- 180 grams / 6.3 oz honey
- ½ teaspoon lemon juice fresh
- pinch of salt
For The Base:
- Add ghee butter together with honey in a blender and beat until smooth. Transfer in a large mixing bowl.
- Wash and dry the blender and add the whole wheat flour, the whole wheat flakes, ground cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. Blend until the flakes look finely ground. Transfer this mixture to the bowl containing the butter and honey.
- Add the walnuts and almonds to the blender this time, and blend until finely chopped and almost powdered. Transfer to the bowl with the remaining ingredients.
- Mix the dough with your hands until all the ingredients combine. It's going to look crumbly and soft.
- Preheat oven to 170°C / 338°F.
- Transfer the dough to a 9-inch springform pan (I use one that comes with parchment paper). Press it with your hands to cover the bottom of the pan evenly. Cover only the bottom of the pan with the dough, not the sides.
- Prick many times with a fork. Bake for about 20-25 minutes until the top of the crust gets a brown color all over. Remove from oven and let the crust reach room temperature. It is going to look soft and delicate when you take it out of the oven but will get harder as it cools down.
For The Cream:
- Add the Ricotta to the bowl of your electric mixer. With the whisk attachment on, beat over medium speed. The cheese will start to break apart. Start adding the cream slowly in batches. Wait 30 seconds before adding the second batch of cream to the cheese. This way you give it time to properly absorb the cream and become smoother.
- Once all the cream is incorporated into the cheese start adding the honey in slowly. Once the honey is incorporated as well, add the Greek yogurt in batches and then the vanilla extract and lemon juice. Keep beating for 2-3 minutes more until the mixture looks like very thick whipping cream.
- Turn off the mixer and transfer cream to the pan. Spread the cream with a spoon evenly over the crust. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or ideally overnight.
For The Berry Sauce:
- Add the frozen berry mix (no need to defrost) in a saucepan along with the remaining ingredients for the sauce. Bring to a low simmer over medium-low heat.
- Cook the sauce for about 5 minutes. Just until the sauce gets a syrupy-like consistency. Then turn off the heat and set it aside to cool down to room temperature. Then place in the fridge until you are about to serve the cheesecake.
Cut And Serve:
- The cheesecake will yield about 16 servings. It is best to add the berry sauce on the top right when you are about to serve. As it is a runny sauce if it sits for too long on the cheesecake it will get absorbed by the cream. This isn't much of a problem as it won't ruin the cake. But it will lose all of its shiny, glazy appearance.
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