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Vanilla Bean and Raspberry Swirl Cheesecake

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raw vegan Vanilla Bean and Raspberry Swirl Cheesecake served in single serving cups

~ raw, vegan, gluten-free ~

I know that many of you who visit my site are veterans of the raw food world of desserts, but we are also in the company of those who are new to this style of food prep… and to those, I say welcome!  Well, welcome to all of you actually. :)

In creating the swirl effect in this cheesecake you will be making a coulis.  Prior to starting my raw journey, I had no idea what coulis was.  But then prior to raw I was a big fan of Betty Crocker boxed cheesecake mixes.  *we all cover our mouths and gasp*  So, what is a coulis?  It is a thick sauce made from puréed and strained vegetables or fruits.  In this case, I chose to use a fruit… didn’t think pureed beets would do it. hehe

What I have learned over my years of making coulis is that it can be thick or thicker in viscosity.  I know that sounds odd, I didn’t want to use the word thin because we don’t want a runny coulis.  You can either drizzle a coulis over a dessert or as in this case, within a dessert.  It can be made with about any fruit, except melons wouldn’t work so great because they are so high in water.

In most cases, you will always strain the fruit puree because you don’t want speckles of fruit skins in the coulis.   You can use a nut or other fine mesh bag to strain the blended fruit.  You can also add other ingredients to it as well such as vanilla, liquid sweetener (if needed), just keep an eye out that you don’t make it too thin.

This time around I blended my raspberries with some maple syrup, strained it through a nut bag (to remove the seeds), returned to the blender, and added the dates… blending it until completely smooth.  I don’t always mix with dates but I wanted this coulis to be thicker than normal.

I find when using a coulis for a swirl effect that it is best to try to match the two textures as much as possible.  Otherwise, as the cheesecake sets,  the coulis shrinks back from the cheesecake and gives it that “dried out” look.   Leaving the skins and seeds in a coulis can also make it gritty and that isn’t what we want when coupled with the silky mouth-feel of the cheesecake filling.   I hope you find these tips helpful.  Blessings, amie sue


9″ Springform pan or 17 cups individual


  • 2 cups shredded dried coconut
  • 1/4 cup raw cacao powder
  • 1/8 tsp Himalayan pink salt
  • 2/3 cup date paste
  • 2 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup organic raspberries
Vanilla  bean filling:


  • 1 1/2 cups organic raspberries
  • 4 Medjool dates, pitted
  • 2 Tbsp maple syrup


  1. Place the coconut, cacao, and salt in the food processor, fitted with the “S” blade, and process until the coconut is broken down to a fine of a powder as you can get it.  It took about 30 seconds with my machine.
  2. Add date paste, maple syrup, and vanilla.  Process until the mixture sticks together when pinched.
  3. Crust options:
    • Individual 4-5 oz cups ~  With a 1 1/2 Tbsp cookie scoop, place a leveled off scoop of batter into each cup.  Press the dough down firmly, making sure to seal the edges so the filling doesn’t seep around the crust.  This is purely for a visual effect.   Sprinkle 3 berries onto the crust, per container.
    • 9″ Springform pan ~ Line the base of the pan with plastic wrap or parchment paper.  Press the batter into the pan, making sure to use even and firm pressure.  Pour the 1 cup of raspberries over the crust and evenly dispersed.


  1. Drain the soaked cashews and discard the soak water.  Place in a high-speed blender.
  2. In a high-powered blender combine the; combine the cashews, coconut milk, maple syrup, vanilla, stevia, and salt.
    • Due to the volume and the creamy texture that we are going after, it is important to use a high-powered blender.  It could be too taxing on a lower-end model.
    • Blend until the filling is creamy smooth.   You shouldn’t detect any grit.  If you do, keep blending.
    • This process can take 2-4 minutes, depending on the strength of the blender.  Keep your hand cupped around the base of the blender carafe to feel for warmth.  If the batter is getting too warm.  Stop the machine and let it cool.  Then proceed once cooled.
    • You can use a different liquid sweetener if you are not comfortable with maple syrup.  Just be aware of the different flavors and colors that the sweetener might impart in the cake.
  3. With a vortex going in the blender, drizzle in the coconut oil, and then add the lecithin.  Blend just long enough to incorporate everything together.  Don’t over-process.  The batter will start to thicken.
    • What is a vortex?  Look into the container from the top and slowly increase the speed from low to high,  the batter will form a small vortex (or hole) in the center.  High-powered machines have containers that are designed to create a controlled vortex, systematically folding ingredients back to the blades for smoother blends and faster processing… instead of just spinning ingredients around, hoping they find their way to the blades.
    • If your machine isn’t powerful enough or built to do this, you may need to stop the unit often to scrape the sides down.
  4. Pour the filling into individual cups or a 9″ Springform pan.
  5. Gently tap the pan on the counter to remove any air bubbles.


  1. In the blender combine the raspberries and maple syrup (if needed), if not, use water instead.  Blend until completely smooth.
  2. Pour into a nut or thin mesh bag and strain out all the raspberry juice.
  3. Add to the blender and add the dates.  Blend very very well.  You don’t want any chunks, any chunks will clog up the squeeze bottle tip.
  4. Pour the mix into a squeeze bottle that has a long nipple.

Swirl effect with Coulis:

  1. To create the swirl effect, poke the top of the squeeze bottle into the batter.  Give the bottle a squeeze forcing the coulis into the filling batter, at the same time slowly remove the bottle, leaving a dot of coulis on top of the filling surface.
  2. Using a skewer, drag the stick through the dots and swirl them around.  Be careful that you don’t disturb the crust during this process.
  3. Chill in the freezer for 4-6 hours and then in the fridge for 12 hours.
  4. Store the cheesecake in the fridge for 3-5 days or up to 3 months in the freezer.  Be sure that they are well sealed to avoid fridge odors.

10 thoughts on “Vanilla Bean and Raspberry Swirl Cheesecake

  1. Lyn says:

    Hello my friend, It’s me and I am so excited! I have to go to a party in a couple of days, and I wanted to bring a cheesecake, but with Christmas colors. Ta Da – Amie Sue to the rescue, this looks yummy !! Would it be bad to show up with one slice missing from the pan? (just kidding) :] Thanks again for such amazing recipes and easy to follow instructions- Smiles, Lyn :]

    • Lyn says:

      P.S. I can’t imagine you EVER using a Betty Crocker box anything!! You have such amazing talent in the kitchen, than you for rescuing the rest of us from the boxes too!!! :]

    • amie-sue says:

      lol Lyn… trust me, I have shown up with desserts with a piece missing. Just precut the whole pie and separate the pieces evenly… it will look purposeful and no one will know. hehe How did it turn out by the way? Have a happy day my friend, amie sue

      • Lyn says:

        Well I am making it to night! :] I slipped up and put the rasberries right in the crust (not on top), blonde moment in space. :] But I have to say it’s a tasty slip up!! Yum Yum !!! I will report in when I’m finished!

        • Lyn says:

          OH MY GOODNESS…MY GOODNESS… I just made the filling (sorry you are getting this play by play, because I HAD to stop and exclaim..THIS IS SOOOOO GOOD , PEOPLE YOU BETTER TRY IT !!!! I could just grab my blender and a spoon and…..you guessed it ..hide behind the couch..I don’t really want to share it!! OK , one question I let my blender (vita-mix) ,run for the full 5 min. the filling was warm,quite warm. Did I have a blonde moment, and shouldn’t have left it on that long (since this is a powerful blender)? Boy I hope I didn’t ruin the nutrition, but the taste is fabulous!!! I’m excersiing my will power now not to eat it all!!! Thank you again for making me look like a fabulous ‘cook” :] Lyn

          • Lyn says:

            OK… I’m finished..no I didn’t take it behind the couch and am now declaring “I’m finished” :] but I am truly done making the cheesecake…I am delighted with the results!!!! It’s so good, I can’t wait to serve it!! Thank you again, Lyn :]

          • amie-sue says:

            lol I am thrilled beyond belief that you like it Lyn. :) I always appreciate your comments and the time you take in leaving them. Made my day. Now… about the blender. I can’t say for sure how warm you got the batter but it is always possible to start “cooking” batters in high powered blenders. You wouldn’t know unless you took its temp. Always best to only run it as long as needed, stopping every so often to test for smoothness. If it is still gritty but the batter is getting too warm, let it rest a little to cool down if you want to be on the safe side of things.

            P.S. You are a FABULOUS cook! :) amie sue

        • amie-sue says:

          You really can’t go wrong with raw recipes… I don’t believe in calling them mistakes, just new creations! hugs, amie sue :)

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