These Purple Sweet Potato Cheesecakes are vividly colourful, perfectly sweet and surprisingly healthy!
I absolutely love purple sweet potatoes, and have previously used them for lots of different desserts, including ice cream, mochi, milkshakes, and sticky rice cakes. I adore their natural sweetness, almost perfume-like flavour, and of course their beautiful colour! They’re also really, really healthy. The Japanese island of Okinawa is home to some of the healthiest and longest-living people on the planet, and it’s no coincidence that purple sweet potatoes are a big staple of their diet.
These little Purple Sweet Potato Cheesecakes are pretty easy to make too, and unlike a lot of other vegan cheesecake recipes you see around, there’s no freezing required.
Another way in which they’re slightly different to more traditional vegan cheesecake recipes is that instead of just using cashew nuts as a base, I added the purple sweet potatoes, and didn’t use any coconut oil to make them set, instead relying on the starch from the sweet potatoes. I personally think this makes the texture slightly softer and more conventional cheesecake-like and makes them taste better as well, because the overall flavour doesn’t become overpowered by the coconut oil. Using a mixture of purple sweet potatoes and cashews instead of just cashews makes these slightly cheaper to make too, and a little less overbearingly nut-based.
These cheesecakes are pretty easy to make too – all you need is one food processor, a muffin tin and muffin cases! You will need to cook your purple sweet potatoes first, but what I like to do is cook a big batch of them, mash, divide into smaller portions and freeze them. Spare frozen purple sweet potato is useful for making things like ice cream, mochi and milkshakes!
Although these cheesecakes are vegan, gluten-free and refined sugar free, I promise you won’t be able to notice it at all. I absolutely love the combination of a salty-sweet, crunchy, base paired with the tender, melt-in-your-mouth topping.
These cheesecakes are so delicious topped with coconut whipped cream or coconut yogurt and fresh fruit such as raspberries or chopped mango!
If you like purple sweet potatoes as much as I do, be sure to check out my Purple Sweet Potato Ice Cream, Purple Sweet Potato Milkshake, Purple Sweet Potato Smoothie Bowl, or Purple Sweet Potato Mochi!
If you try out this recipe or anything else from my blog, I’d love for you to take a photo and tag it #rhiansrecipes on Instagram! It would really make my day to see what you come up with!
- 75g (2.5oz) pecan nuts, walnuts or brazil nuts
- 85g (3oz) dates, pitted
- 1 teaspoon coconut oil
- Pinch of salt
- 170g (6oz) cashew nuts, soaked and drained
- 200g (7oz) purple sweet potato, peeled and diced
- 4 tablespoons maple syrup (or sub any other sweetener), to taste
- Juice of half a lemon
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Line a muffin tin with muffin cases
- Add all the ingredients listed to a food processor and blitz until you get a crust that easily sticks together but that still has some texture
- Divide the crust mixture between the muffin cases, pressing down with your fingers, the back of a spoon or the bottom of a small cup or glass to make it as compact as possible
- Place these in the fridge while you make the rest
- Soak cashew nuts either overnight in cold water or in boiling hot water for 10 minutes
- Boil or steam the purple sweet potato until soft enough to pierce with a fork (should take about 15 minutes)
- In the same food processor (no need to wash it out), add all the ingredients for the cheesecake and whizz until completely smooth
- Taste and adjust amount of sweetener if necessary
- Divide the cheesecake mixture between the cases and place back in fridge until completely set (will take up to a few hours)
- Keeps covered in the fridge for up to a few days
- They're delicious topped with coconut whipped cream or coconut yogurt and fresh fruit such as raspberries or chopped mango!