This decadent caramel pecan cheesecake features a quick and easy creamy caramelized brown sugar cheesecake filling baked in a pecan graham cracker crust and topped with gooey caramel pecans! Absolutely no one will know these holiday cheesecake is vegan, dairy free, and contains no eggs!
Pecan Pie Cheesecake:
- 1 1/2 cups (160 g) vegan graham crackers
- 1/2 cup (65 g) raw pecan halves
- 1/4 cup (50 g) organic brown sugar
- 1/3 cup (80 g) vegan butter or coconut oil, melted
- 24 ounces (720 g) vegan cream cheese, room temperature
- 8 ounces (228 g) vegan dairy free yogurt cream (such as Forager Project)
- 1 cup (240 mL) unsweetened dairy free milk, room temperature
- 1 cup (200 g) organic brown sugar
- 6 tbsp arrowroot starch or cornstarch
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- 3–4 cups boiling water, for water bath
Caramel Pecan Topping:
- 5 tbsp vegan butter
- 2/3 cup (160 g) organic brown sugar
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 cup (60 mL) vegan heavy cream or coconut cream
- 2 cups (260 g) toasted pecan halves
1 tsp vanilla
- Prep: Line a 8 or 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper. Grease the edges of the pan with a bit of cooking or coconut oil as well.
- Make the crust: In a food processor, pulse together the graham crackers, pecans, and sugar until mixed. Add in the vegan butter, and pulse again until it becomes a sticky dough. Press the dough onto the bottom of the springform pan. Place the pan into the freezer to chill while you preheat the oven to 400F. Once preheated, poke a few holes into the bottom of the crust, and place the springform pan into the oven with a baking sheet underneath it to prevent any drips. Bake for 15-17 minutes, or until the crust turns lightly golden. Remove from the oven and set aside while you prepare the filling.
- Make the cheesecake filling: In a large food processor, stand mixer with whisk attachment, or large bowl with hand mixer, cream together the cream cheese and dairy free yogurt until smooth. Add in the brown sugar, dairy free milk, vanilla, and arrowroot. Cream together again until smooth. Pour the cheesecake filling into the springform pan, and smooth the top.
- Create the water bath: Be ready to move to the next step immediately after finishing this step. Make sure that you boil the 3-4 cups water prior to pouring the water into the pan. Pour the boiling water into the pan.
- Bake the cheesecake: Carefully place the baking sheet into the oven on the low rack. Then place the cheesecake onto the middle rack and quickly close the oven to bake for 55-65 minutes, or until the the top of the cheesecake lightly golden. The center is set but still wiggly. Turn off the oven, and allow the cheesecake to sit in the oven for 10 minutes. The water should also be completely dissolved. The cheesecake will still be very wiggly. This is completely fine and should be that way.This cheesecake will not seem cooked at all when you first turn off the oven.
- Chill the cheesecake: Remove the cheesecake from the oven and allow the cheesecake to cool at room temperature for 15 minutes. Then place the cheesecake into the fridge to chill for 4 hours, or preferably overnight.
- When ready to serve, make the pecan caramel topping: In a small saucepan on medium low heat, melt the vegan butter and brown sugar together until the brown sugar is nearly melted (being careful not to burn the sugar. This should take about 3-5 minutes. Then reduce the heat to low, and add in the cinnamon and heavy cream. Continue stirring vigorously until the cream combines with the sugar butter mixture. Add in the toasted pecan halves, and stir to combine.
- Top the pecan pie cheesecake: Plate the pecan cheesecake and remove the springform pan sides. Pour the pecan topping on top of the cheesecake.
- Serve and enjoy! Store any leftover cheesecake in an airtight container and in the fridge for up to 4 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Make ahead: Prepare the pecan pie cheesecake the day before through Step 6. Then make the topping the day of and top the cheesecake to serve!
Pie cut outs: I used Williams Sonoma pie cut outs for cute little toppings with leftover vegan pie crust!
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