The classic flavors of tangy cheesecake and fresh ripe strawberries marry together perfectly in these 10-ingredient, vegan, gluten-free bars! We were inspired to make a berry cheesecake bar for summer to highlight juicy, ripe berries, and these definitely hit the spot! We went for a baked cheesecake in order to achieve that quintessential cheesecake flavor and texture. Did we mention they’re kinda perfect? Let us show you how it’s done!
How to Make Strawberry Cheesecake
It starts with our easy oat-almond crust, which is reminiscent of a graham cracker crust and slightly modified from our fan-favorite Creamy Vegan Lemon Bars (GF).
Rolled oats and almonds are blended with a little salt and transformed into a moldable dough with the additions of maple syrup and coconut oil.
Next, we make a strawberry purée to concentrate the sweet strawberry flavor without adding too much moisture.
The strawberry purée goes over the crust and is swirled into the creamy cashew-coconut filling for maximum strawberry flavor in every bite. Swoon!
Lastly, it goes into the oven to give it a classic cheesecake flavor and texture.
We hope you LOVE this strawberry cheesecake! It’s:
It’s the perfect dessert for summer gatherings and celebrations, wedding or baby showers, birthdays, and beyond! It would also be delicious with other fruits, especially other berries.
Into Cheesecake? Try These Next:
- Apple Butter Cheesecake Bars (Vegan/GF)
- No-Bake Chocolate Cheesecakes
- Easy Baked Cheesecake (Vegan + GF)
- White Chocolate Lemon Cheesecake (Vegan + GF)
If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #minimalistbaker on Instagram. Cheers, friends!
Strawberry Cheesecake Bars (Vegan + GF)
- 1 cup rolled oats (gluten-free certified as needed)
- 1 cup raw almonds
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 2 Tbsp maple syrup
- 4-5 Tbsp refined coconut oil, melted
- 4 heaping cups super ripe strawberries, hulled and quartered (1 ½ lbs yields 4 heaping cups)
- 3 Tbsp maple syrup
- 1 Tbsp arrowroot or cornstarch
- 1 cup raw cashews
- 1 cup coconut cream (from a can — our favorite is Savoy)
- 3 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 ½ Tbsp arrowroot or cornstarch
- 1/8 tsp sea salt
- 1/3 cup maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 350 F (176 C) and line an 8 x 8-inch baking dish with parchment paper.
- CRUST: Add oats, almonds, and salt to a high-speed blender and blend on high until everything resembles a fine meal.
- Transfer oat mixture to a medium mixing bowl. Add maple syrup and the lesser amount of coconut oil. Stir to combine. The mixture should hold together when squeezed in your hand. If too dry, add the extra coconut oil. Place the crust into the lined 8-inch pan and spread evenly. Place parchment on top and press the dough into your pan using a flat-bottomed object, such as a drinking glass, to distribute firmly and evenly.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the corners are golden and the center of the crust is pale and dry to the touch. Remove from the oven and set aside.
- STRAWBERRY PURÉE: While your crust bakes, rinse your blender and prepare the strawberry purée. Place the strawberries, maple syrup, and arrowroot or cornstarch into the blender and blend until you achieve a smooth purée.
- Transfer strawberry purée to a medium saucepan and heat on medium. Cook, stirring constantly, for 20-25 minutes, until it’s thick, slightly reduced, and darkened in color. Once reduced, you should have ~1 ½ cups (355 ml) of thickened purée (adjust if altering number of servings). Turn off the heat and set aside to cool slightly.
- CHEESECAKE FILLING: While your purée and crust are cooling, rinse your blender once more and make your cheesecake batter. Add raw cashews, coconut cream, lemon juice, arrowroot or cornstarch, salt, maple syrup, and vanilla (optional) to the blender. Blend on high until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Taste and adjust flavor, adding more lemon for zing or maple syrup for sweetness.
- Start layering! Add about 1 cup (237 ml // adjust if altering number of servings) of the strawberry purée as your first layer on top of your crust and smooth with a spatula to distribute evenly, ensuring you have about 1/2 cup of purée left to decorate the top of your cheesecake. Now gently pour all of the cheesecake batter on top of the strawberry purée. Gently tap the dish on the counter a few times to remove air bubbles from the cheesecake layer. Lastly, dollop tablespoon-sized scoops of the remaining strawberry purée on top of the cheesecake layer and use the back of a knife or a toothpick to swirl.
- Bake for 45-55 minutes until the edges are slightly brown and the center is still slightly jiggly, but solid.
- Cover loosely with a towel or parchment paper and place in the refrigerator to chill for 6-8 hours or, preferably, overnight. After chilling, the top should have a glossy texture and turn whiter in color.
- To serve, gently lift the cheesecake out of the pan and cut into 16 equally sized squares. Store leftovers in a sealed container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with the lesser amount of coconut oil and without optional ingredients.
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