Raw, Vegan, and Cream-a-licious:
Something about hot summer days just makes you want a cold, creamy treat – which is why these Paleo Vanilla Lime Cheesecake Bars are such a wonderful dessert for this time of year. They’re great with some fresh watermelon and cold iced tea. You can serve ‘em up for brunch, a mid-afternoon snack, or a BBQ dessert; they really compliment a huge variety of other flavors. As an added bonus, they are no-bake, so you don’t have to go anywhere near an oven for this one!
Cashews are an excellent alternative to dairy, providing that luscious, creamy texture and a mildly sweet flavor. I used honey as the sweetener for these Paleo Vanilla Lime Cheesecake Bars since it actually tastes slightly better to me with the other ingredients in this recipe. However, if you’re a strict Vegan you can totally replace it with coconut nectar and these still turn out delicious.
There’s just something about the smooth taste of vanilla combined with the tanginess of lime – they’re a perfect pair. The crumbly crust made of almonds, almond flour, dates, coconut oil, and sea salt provides a lovely contrast to the velvety texture of the cashew filling.
Why You Should Eat These Paleo Vanilla Lime Cheesecake Bars
Wellllll, my friends, since I’ve focused on cashews in several other recipes (you can read about them in my Blackberry Lavender Cheesecake post). I’m going to turn the spotlight onto some other tasty morsels for this one.
Limes! These little green guys are amazing fruits. They are packed with Vitamin C to give you a glowing complexion and strong immune system, not to mention they support the entire digestive process from salivary and bile acid stimulation to intestinal peristalsis (contraction), which keeps your food moving through you GI tract at an optimal pace.
Honey is such a yummy, flavorful, natural way to sweeten up these Paleo Vanilla Lime Cheesecake Bars. Something about it compliments the vanilla and lime juice just right and it’s loaded with therapeutic benefits. Honey has been used for millennia all over the globe, and for good reason! It has potent antibacterial and antifungal properties and eating raw honey that’s been locally produced can be really beneficial for seasonal allergies.
How to Make Them
The first step towards creating these tangy bites is to soak your cashews – at least 2 hours or overnight. Next, we’re going to focus on this tasty, crumbly crust. Toss your almonds, almond flour, and sea salt into a food processor and blend until a fine flour forms. Then you toss the chopped dates and coconut oil in as well, pulse, and blend until crumbly and sticky. Heads up: if you toss everything in and then try to process, you will get big chunks of almonds and the crust won’t be as fine, that’s why blending the nuts first is important.
Grab a bread pan and line it with a piece of parchment paper. Pour your crust mixture into the pan and press firmly and evenly all the way around. Now, you can stick this in the fridge while you work on your filling.
To start the filling for these tart, velvety, Paleo Vanilla Lime Cheesecake Bars, drain your cashews and rinse them with cold water. Toss them in the food processor and add your fresh lime juice, vanilla extract, honey, and coconut oil. Turn your blender on low and get things movin’, then slowly crank it up until you’re at full speed. You should see a rich whirlpool of cream happening before your eyes!
Once this is nice and blended, pour the filling over your prepared crust. Use the back of a spoon to smooth the filling out evenly throughout the pan and give it a few taps to pop any air bubbles that may have formed.
Now, just sprinkle a little lime zest over the cashew cream, cover with plastic wrap or foil, and pop into the freezer. Freeze your Paleo Vanilla Lime Cheesecake Bars for at least 2 hours. Take them out of the freezer and allow to warm for a couple minutes before slicing. You can serve them right away for more of an ice cream bar, or allow them to thaw 15 minutes before serving for a softer result, more like a cheesecake.
Dive in face first to these Paleo Vanilla Lime Cheesecake Bars! Happy eating <3
Paleo Vanilla Lime Cheesecake Bars
Yield 10 Bars
These sweet, tangy, creamy, crumbly bars are the perfect cold treat for a hot summer day.
- 1 cup raw almonds
- 1 cup dates, pitted and chopped
- 1/2 cup almond meal
- 1 1/2 Tbsp coconut oil
- 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
Cashew Cream Filling
- 1 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked 2 hours to overnight
- 2/3 cup fresh lime juice (from 4-5 limes)
- 1/4 cup raw honey (or blonde coconut nectar for Vegan)
- 2 Tbsp coconut oil
- 1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
- 2 limes, thinly sliced into rounds, for garnish
- zest of 1 lime, for garnish
- Soak cashews at least 2 hours to overnight. Drain and rinse well, set aside.
- Line a bread pan with parchment paper and set aside.
- To make the crust: add the almonds, almond flour, and sea salt into a food processor. Pulse several times then blend well, until a fine flour forms.
- Add dates and coconut oil to the crust mixture in the food processor and blend well, until moist and crumbly thoughout.
- Pour the crust mixture into prepared bread pan. Use your hands to press firmly and evenly into the bottom of the pan. Put into the fridge while you work on the filling.
- For the filling: add cashews, lime juice, honey, coconut oil, and vanilla extract into a high-speed blender. Begin blending slowly and gradually increase to high for several minutes, making sure to blend until super smooth and creamy (stopping to scrape sides if necessary).
- Pour filling over the crust in the bread pan. Use the back of a spoon to spread evenly. Pick up the pan and tap several times on the counter, to get any air bubbles out.
- Sprinkle lime zest over the top of the cashew cream filling.
- Freeze Paleo Vanilla Lime Cheesecake Bars for at least 2 hours. Remove from freezer several minutes before cutting.
- Garnish with lime slices and enjoy!
- Serve soon after removing from the freezer for an ice cream like bar or allow to thaw for 15 minutes for more of a cheesecake texture.