Welcome September! And welcome to the healthiest pumpkin cheesecake recipe, ever! This was my first attempt at a traditional dairy cheesecake (no nuts here!) and it was amazing! It tasted just like the real thing (definitely a ‘sometimes’ food for my precious nephew!) – probably more than any other healthy dessert I’ve made so far! Confirmed by my husband and a close friend of ours, this recipe is a hit! It’s creamy, delicious, and the perfect jump-start to fall! The best part? It’s just about half as many calories as the original recipe! I’ll show you some of my best recipe makeover tricks with this one, so read on to learn more!!!
The original pumpkin cheesecake recipe:
When scouring the web for a great pumpkin cheesecake recipe, I found that most were about the same: lots of cream cheese, lots of sugar, a bit of flour, lots of butter. Some even included whipped cream or sour cream. I decided to make a few easy substitutions to make mine not only healthier, but just as delicious!
First, let’s look at the crust:
Healthiest Pumpkin Cheesecake Crust Recipe
The original graham cracker crust called for the following ingredients:
- one 1/2 cup stick of melted salted butter
- one and 3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
- 3 Tablespoons of light brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
First of all, I substituted ground oatmeal (or oat flour, but I ground mine on the spot from good old fashioned oats) for graham cracker crumbs. The nutritional difference between factory processed graham crackers and straight oatmeal is amazing! Not too much explanation needed here! Next, 1/2 cup of applesauce in place of all that butter and brown sugar, plus two measly tablespoons of butter to add some fat and keep it non-stick! I went with a whole teaspoon of ground cinnamon to give it that graham cracker taste and only 2 tablespoons of coconut sugar in place of three tablespoons of light brown sugar. Check out this comparison:
I hope you are as impressed with the difference as I am! No loss in protein, way less calories, way less fats, and just 3g more carbs: WIN!
Next, let’s look at the cheesecake filling substitutions:
Healthiest Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe
Now, I don’t usually go into tons of specifics on how I actually do all of my recipes makeovers, but this time I wanted to let you in on the secrets. It’s amazing how easy it is to do, once you’ve gotten the hang of it! Try it out on your own, or comment below with any other healthy substitutions you might have found success with – we’d love to hear from you!
The traditional recipe called for three 8 oz packages of cream cheese. I substitute one-to-one with the new Greek cream cheese, because it is less calories and more protein. Plus it tastes delicious and just about the same as the traditional! For a healthier cheesecake recipe, Greek cream cheese is a must!
One 15 oz can of pureed pumpkin can stay the same, nothing unhealthy or unwanted here!
3 eggs plus 1 egg yolk = 6 egg whites plus 1 flax egg (This cuts the fat, cuts the calories, and gives just enough oomph to make the cake rich, creamy, and fluffy!
A quarter cup of sour cream and 2 tablespoons of flour was left out . . . these aren’t necessary.
A whopping 1 and 1/2 cups of refined white sugar can be easily replaced with 1 and 1/3 cups of coconut sugar. Though you may be wondering why it is still so much in volume, keep in mind that coconut sugar has less grams of actual nutritional sugar per teaspoon than refined white sugar. This makes it an excellent substitute ingredient!
Spice for spice in this case, so no change on the ground cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves or vanilla.
And voila! The healthiest pumpkin cheesecake recipe!
And the best thing? Original recipe was over 600 whopping calories – ours is just about half of that! AWESOME! 🙂
- 1 cup old fashioned oatmeal
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons coconut sugar
- ½ cup unsweetened applesauce
- 2 tablespoons of melted butter
- three 8 oz containers of greek cream cheese
- one 15 oz can of pureed pumpkin
- six egg whites + one flax egg
- 1 and 1/3 cup coconut sugar
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F
- Pulse 1 cup of old fashioned oatmeal in a food processor until made into a flour (or use about 3/4 cup of oat flour)
- Wisk together oat flour with 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon and coconut sugar; set aside.
- Melt 2 tablespoons of butter and mix together with 1/2 cup of unsweetened applesauce.
- Mix applesauce and butter into flour blend
- Press into a 10" springform pan and form into a crust
- Prepare flax egg substitute (http://toeatpraylove.com/index.php/2015/08/19/flax-egg-substitute/) and set aside to set
- In a large mixing bowl, whip cream cheese until smooth and fluffy.
- Add pumpkin puree, egg whites, and flax egg.
- Fold in sugar, spices, and vanilla until well combined.
- Pour into crust and spread evenly.
- Bake in the oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour.
- Remove and let stand for 15 minutes.
- Cover with plastic wrap or cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
What favorite recipes do you want us to makeover? Comment below with your favorite pumpkin or Fall flavors, and we’ll see about getting up a healthier version!
Looking forward to hearing from you!