Meyer Lemon Cheesecake Bars are a bright and fresh winter dessert that can be totally vegan and gluten-free! Made with cashew and coconut cream, this plant-based cheesecake is easy to make and full of sunny flavor.
For shortbread crust:
- ½ cup (one stick) melted vegan butter (like Miyokos)
- ¼ cup brown sugar, lightly packed
- 1 cup + 2 TBS all purpose flour (or fine oat flour for gluten-free)
- ¼ tsp kosher salt
For the filling:
- 1 cup roasted cashews, soaked in boiling water for 10 minutes to soften
- 1 cup coconut cream, chilled (solid portion scooped from the top of a chilled 15 oz. full fat coconut milk can, leaving behind liquid)
- ½ cup fresh Meyer lemon juice
- 2 TBS cornstarch or arrowroot starch
- 1 TBS lemon zest (optional)
- Pinch of kosher salt
- Pinch of turmeric (for color, optional)
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- To begin, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line an 8×8 baking dish with parchment paper. Leave a slight overhang of parchment on each side of the pan so that you can easily remove the final product.
- In a medium bowl, combine melted butter, brown sugar, flour, and salt. Stir to combine until you have a very sticky mixture. Press the crust across the bottom of the parchment lined pan, flattening with your hand or the back of a glass. Try to make the layer as even as possible. Bake the crust for 15-20 minutes, or until lightly browned around the edges.
- While the crust is baking, we can prepare the filling. Drain the cashews that have been soaking and add them to a high speed blender along with chilled coconut cream, Meyer lemon juice, cornstarch, optional lemon zest, salt, optional turmeric, and maple syrup. Blend on high speed until thoroughly combined and smooth.
- Once the crust is done baking, remove from the oven (but leave the oven on) and evenly pour lemon filling on top of the crust. Add the pan back into the oven and bake cheesecake for 23-30 minutes, until the top is fully set with no ripples. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly to room temperature. Once the pan is cool enough to handle, transfer cheesecake to the refrigerator and let cool at least 4 hours. I know this is a long time but I promise this is what will help it set!
- Once cheesecake is fully cooled, grab the ends of the parchment paper and remove cheesecake from the pan. Using a chef’s knife, remove any irregular edges to make a perfect square. Slice into 9 or 16 individual squares to serve.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Chilling Time: 4 hours
- Cook Time: 40 minutes
- Category: Dessert
- Serving Size: One bar of 16
- Calories: 195 calories
- Sugar: 7.6 grams
- Sodium: 72.7 milligrams
- Fat: 13.9 grams
- Saturated Fat: 9.3 grams
- Unsaturated Fat: 4.6 grams
- Trans Fat: 0 grams
- Carbohydrates: 16.7 grams
- Fiber: 0.9 grams
- Protein: 2.9 grams
- Cholesterol: 0 milligrams
Keywords: cheesecake, lemon, bars, dessert