Perfect recipe for a spring party dessert! We’ve included gluten and dairy free substitutions. You’ll need 2 eggs for this recipe. This is essentially a creamy cheesecake base with a layer of delicious strawberry sauce/compote, and whipped cream topping.
2 cups graham cracker crumbs or gluten free graham cracker crumbs (You can also use 1 ½ cups graham cracker and ½ cup ground or very finely chopped almonds, walnuts, or pecans)
6 tablespoons of butter or dairy free butter, melted
3 8oz packages of cream cheese or dairy free cream cheese, 24oz total, slightly softened
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup half and half, or dairy free half and half
2 eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
A pinch of sea salt
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 pound fresh strawberries, hulled and quartered
⅓ cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 9” springform pan, and wrap the bottom in foil. Locate a shallow pan or making dish to make a water bath for the cheesecake. Something large enough that the cake pan fits into it, plus an inch or so of water.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9-inch springform pan and wrap the bottom in foil to protect it from water leaking in while baking in the waterbath.
Place graham cracker crumbs in the cake pan, then pour melted butter on top. Mix them together with a spoon or fork until the crumbs are evenly buttery. Press the mixture evenly and firmly into the bottom of the springform pan. Set aside while you prepare the cake.
In the bowl of your stand mixer, or in a large mixing bowl, add the tofu cream cheese and mix on low/medium speed until light and creamy. Add the sugar and continue mixing on low/medium speed until smooth. Add the half and half and continue to blend. Add in the eggs one at a time, mixing until completely combined. Add the vanilla, lemon juice, cinnamon, pinch of salt, and flour. Beat just until combined.
Pour the filling into your prepared crust. Place the pan in a rimmed baking sheet or other baking dish and fill with enough water to come 1” up the sides. Carefully transfer to the oven. Bake for 30 minutes at 350, then lower the oven temp to 275 and bake for another 45 minutes. Turn the oven off and leave the cheesecake inside to very slowly cool – another 2 hours or so. Once it’s reasonably cool, place in refrigerator.
Stir together strawberries and sugar in a medium saucepan. In a small bowl, add lemon juice, vanilla, and cornstarch and whisk until smooth, no lumps remaining. Pour over strawberries in the pan and stir together well.
Place pan over medium/high heat and bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Reduce the heat to medium/low and cook sauce until the berries are breaking down and the sauce has thickened and reduced a bit. This can take 10 minutes or so. Set aside to cool then refrigerate until time to serve.
Chill the cheesecake for at least 24 hours. Release the pan form from the bottom and add the strawberry topping if you haven’t already. Spread a layer of whipped cream on the top and serve. Enjoy!