Vegan Raspberry Lemon Chia “Cheesecake”

Vegan Raspberry Lemon Chia "Cheesecake"

Happy early Valentine’s day… or Galentines Day… or whatever holiday you like to celebrate with heart shaped treats and little paper cards. As I’ve written about many times before, Jack and I have this Chocolate Molten Cake Valentine’s tradition. This year I switched things up a bit and made this decadent yet mostly raw raspberry “cheesecake” slice. How cute are those layers!?

A few notes about this recipe – it takes a little time for each layer to freeze before you add the next, so be sure to make this either the morning of, or the day before you’re going to eat it. Other than the time it takes to freeze, this is a piece of cake to make.

Vegan Raspberry Lemon Chia "Cheesecake" Vegan Raspberry Lemon Chia "Cheesecake"

I have two versions below – one version uses raw cashews for the white “cheesecake” layer and the other version uses vegan cream cheese. I wanted to offer these two options because one requires a fancy high powered blender to really cream the nuts out of those cashews and the second option will work with any blender.

Both versions also taste different – if you’re used to eating “raw” desserts you will love the cashew version. It has a fresh taste that I really like. Jack preferred option 2 which tastes a little more authentically like cheesecake. The topping was inspired by the raspberry chia jam that I make all the time – but instead of jamming it, I blended it the raspberries with chia seeds to create that bright pink layer.

Vegan Raspberry Lemon Chia "Cheesecake"

5.0 from 7 reviews
Vegan Raspberry Lemon Chia "Cheesecake"
Note: this recipe requires each layer to be frozen before adding the next so it's best to prep this at least one day before you would like to serve it.
Serves: 8 to 10
Walnut Crust
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 3 soft Medjool dates, pitted
  • ½ tablespoon coconut oil
  • heaping ¼ teaspoon sea salt
Option 1: "Cheesecake" layer using cashews
    (high-powered blender recommended)
    • 1½ cup raw cashews, soaked 4 hours then drained
    • ½ cup full fat coconut milk
    • ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons maple syrup
    • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice plus 1 tablespoon zest
    • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract or 1 vanilla bean, scraped
    • ½ teaspoon sea salt
    Option 2: "Cheesecake" layer using Daiya cream cheeze
      (any blender will work)
      • 1 8 oz. package plain vegan cream cheese
      • ½ cup full fat coconut milk
      • ¼ cup maple syrup
      • ¼ cup lemon juice
      • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract or ½ vanilla bean, scraped
      Raspberry Chia Layer
      • 1 (12-ounce) bag frozen raspberries, mostly thawed
      • ½ teaspoon fresh lemon juice
      • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
      • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
      1. In a food processor, pulse the walnuts, dates, coconut oil and salt together until crumbly. Line an 8x4” loaf pan with parchment paper allowing 1 inch of overhang on each side. Press the crust into the bottom of the pan. Freeze for at least 15 minutes or as long as it takes to get the next layer ready.
      2. In a high-powered blender (such as a Vitamix), blend the cashews, coconut milk, maple syrup, lemon juice, zest, vanilla and salt until completely creamy (about 1 minute). Pour the filling over the crust and smooth until even. Freeze until this layer is completely firm, at least 2 hours. (Alternatively, use a regular blender and blend the ingredients from "Cheesecake" Option 2, above)
      3. In the blender (no need to wash between layers), combine the raspberries, lemon juice, maple syrup and chia seeds. Blend until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate until ready to assemble. When the cheesecake layer is frozen and firm to the touch, pour the raspberry mixture on top and smooth until even. Freeze for 4 hours or overnight.
      4. When ready to serve, remove the cake from the freezer and let it thaw for 20 minutes. Using the sides of the parchment paper, carefully lift the cheesecake out of the pan. Use a sharp chef’s knife to slice it into 8 to 10 slices. Let the individual slices thaw for 15 to 20 minutes, until fully thawed and not icy. (If you’re not serving 8 to 10 people, re-freeze the remaining slices right after slicing.)


      If you make this, let us see! Tag your photo with #loveandlemons on Instagram.


      1. Dominique on said:

        This looks amazing! Your creativity never disappoints. Will be making this for sure.

        • Genevieve Doll on said:

          Looking forward to making these for a dinner party this weekend!

      2. Sanja on said:

        Can you recommend any crust substitutions for someone who doesn’t like walnuts?

        • Do you like pecans? I think any soft nut would work here instead.

      3. Izzy | pinch of delight on said:

        This looks AMAZING! x
        Izzy -

      4. Pia on said:

        Holy Moly, or more like Holy Jeanine! These look INSANELY good and that raspberry layer just really makes them pop and stand out and dance and sing and whatnot. Just wow *insert heart-eyed emoji*

      5. Elize from on said:

        yumm!!! Look at the red colour! Looks delicious! 🙂

      6. R.Srivastava from on said:

        VEGAN RASPBERRY LEMON CHIA “CHEESECAKE” wow.. thanks for the wonderful recipe really liked this.. such a delicious cheese cake.. loved it. i will try this out.. and good write-up, you had written in such a simple manner..

      7. Annabelle from on said:

        Hmm looks delicious! I’m obsessed with anything cheesecake and these look amazing!

        x Annabelle

      8. Gail on said:

        Love your recipes but wish you included nutritional information as I am trying to gain weight.

      9. Deb Hatton from on said:

        Cheesecake is one of those things that always seems so daunting until you actually try it and see how simple it can be! Eager to try this awesome crust.

        • This one is really simple – no baking required!

      10. Amalia on said:

        I’m doing the cheesecake #2 option, as I’m really low on raw cashews. I hate the taste of Daiya, but in CA there’s an almond cream cheese called Kite Hill that I recommend to anyone. Sooo good.

        I do have some raw cashew butter from somewhere…do you think it would be an odd texture combination to mix the two cheesecake types together? I think I have about 6 oz of my Kite Hill left, but I don’t know if the cashew butter mixture will blend well with something that’s already whipped…🤔

        • Isa on said:

          Thanks, this was soo delicious!
          I made it today with a few changes due to limitations in what my fridge had to offer. I substituted half of the walnuts with oats, instead of lemon juice i went for yuzu juice (my favourite citrus flavor) and instead of raspberies i used blueberries. It all got together so well. My boyfriend devoured it too (at first I did not tell him about the cashew base, he tends to be very biased when it comes to food -.-).


          • I’m so glad you and your boyfriend loved it! I bet it was so good with yuzu!

        • Hi Amalia – I think that would work – you might just want to taste and adjust the flavors/sweetness to your liking as you blend.

          • Amalia Sieber on said:

            Yes! iIt is so good – loved being able to combine and control the flavor a little more. Layers 1 and 2 are in the freezer now, and I definitely licked my spatula a few times (I used to hate cheesecake, so this is really great!)

            I ended up making it a little tarter with extra lemon juice in layers 2 and 3, because I have a million lemons right now and I like extra tang. The only other change was the using combination of mostly almond cream cheese and a few tbsp of raw cashew butter.

            Can’t wait to cut it up in a few hours, since I’m loving all my un-frozen remnants right now!

      11. Heather from on said:

        I love how healthy this recipe is! It’s proof that you don’t have to sacrifice deliciousness to be healthy. I think I might try making this over the weekend so I have something to keep my sweet tooth at bay throughout the week!

        • thanks Heather, let me know if you give it a go!

      12. Aleksandra from on said:

        I’m so excited to try this cake. I especially love the raspberry layer. The colour is so beautiful.

      13. Mona CC from on said:

        Looks delicious. I’ll try to do it this weekend 😀

      14. Lee Ann from on said:

        I made this for my Husband and Son for Valentines yesterday and it is Delicious! Easy to do, I made the cashew version they wanted thirds!

      15. yummy..three layers which is making me to try it out.. Going to enjoy it in this weekend.

      16. Caitlin on said:

        Should I put the can of full fat coconut milk in fridge prior to making this, to split the water and cream?

        • No, I just used it as-is this time! No need to separate the solids and liquids.

          • Caitlin on said:

            Okay, thanks! I can’t wait to make this!

      17. Tania on said:

        so, so good. I saw this post on like, a Tuesday and dreamt about it all week until I finally had time to make it Saturday. It was actually pretty easy – I just used regular cream cheese but otherwise followed it exactly. Big hit – my 18 month old loved it! — it didn’t last the day! Also, it looked beautiful too.

      18. Diana Maier on said:

        Excellent! I will definitely make this again.

      19. Sasha on said:

        This recipe was incredible! I saw the pictures and I HAD to try it. I’ve never made anything with cashews even though I have tried a lot of plant based cooking and baking. I have a soft spot for cheesecake but I hate dairy. THIS HIT THE SPOT. It tasted just like cheesecake and I felt good eating it. Had three pieces I couldn’t help myself. Everything about this is delicious. The crust is spot on, the center came out SO creamy and the top layer gave it the perfect tartness. Thank you thank you thank you!!!! I love your blog you are honestly my inspiration. I’ve wanted to make a cooking YouTube/blog for so long but I just don’t have the guts to start. I just ordered your book and hope to cook everything from it. Thanks again! Looking forward to more

        • Hi Sasha, thank you!! I’m so glad you loved the cheesecake! Thank you for your sweet words 🙂

      20. Kacy from on said:

        This just looks out of this world

      21. Aidan on said:

        I am really excited to try this! Just wondering if the coconut oil in the crust should be room temp or melted?

        Thanks so much 🙂


        • Hi Aidan – mine was at room temp, but I’m pretty sure it would work either way.

          • Aidan on said:

            Oh my god – finally had some spare time to make this and it is SO good. 🙂 I’m in heaven – the slight tartness of the raspberry chia layer is such a perfect complement to the cashew “cheesecake” layer.

            Love love love it! Thank you for more deliciousness. 🙂

            • funny – I was just thinking about this one as your comment came through :). So glad you liked it! Always appreciate your feedback!

      22. Belina on said:

        Hi, can I use fresh raspberries? Is still work? Thank you.

      23. Tomi on said:

        Is it possible to use something other than the coconut milk and it still set up? I have a coconut allergy.

        This looks so amazing that I would like to try it out before the holidays.


        • Hi Tomi,

          Any nut milk should work (the cashews are the most important part of the filling) – it might be a tad more icy, but should be fine after it thaws a bit before slicing into it. Hope that helps!

      24. AC on said:

        Hi! I was wondering if you think it is possible to make this without a food processor (I only have a blender and don’t want to buy another piece of equipment)? Thanks!

      25. Steph on said:

        Regarding the coconut milk, do you use the thick part on top or do you mix the can up first? This looks amazing, looking to prepare it for Father’s Day.

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