Cinnamon Cheesecake à la Keto
As the throes of autumn fall upon us, we trade the tart refreshments of summer for the warmth of sugary, spicy sweets. Within this search for gastronomical comfort, our “pumpkin spice-anything” cravings intensify, and so do our yearnings for sugars and carbs to ward off the chills of autumn and to comfort us amidst the impending threat of winter.
Instead of battling the temptation to indulge in fall’s questionably healthy delicacies, I decided to take it upon myself this year to look for healthier alternatives to traditional fall treats. Since the ketogenic diet has overtaken social media, I adapted this cheesecake recipe from a beauty and lifestyle YouTuber, LustreLux, who created this recipe to accommodate her journey in weight loss. The keto diet limits carbs and sugars and replaces them with healthy fats in order for the body to enter into ketosis; a process by which a lack of carbohydrate intake allows the body to burn fat. Be it not an endorsed item on any keto disciple’s daily diet, this recipe will allow those on the diet, and those who crave a sweet treat alike, the enjoyment of a fall staple all while cutting some sugars and carbs. This is achieved by substituting the conventional sugar used for the filling with naturally-derived sugar alternatives and the graham cracker crust with pecans. Although it is more a treat than an everyday staple of the diet, dieters and enthusiasts alike will be able to indulge in the dish while still remaining in ketosis.
I can vouch for its uncompromising flavour. The softness of the cheese filling coupled with the earthy sweetness of the pecan crust is enough to fool your taste buds—in fact, it may even train them to prefer the healthier option rather than that of the conventional graham cracker.
Trying this recipe, I discovered my family’s new alternative to the traditional autumn delicacies. So what do you say? This autumn, don’t sacrifice your diet for your indulgence and enjoy a piece of this keto-friendly cinnamon cheesecake!
Serves about 8
For the crust:
Non-stick spray (for the pan)
8 oz. ground walnuts or pecans (the most keto-friendly and most delicious if you ask me!)
3 tbsp. butter
¼ cup Erythritol or any other naturally-derived sugar alcohol substitute (you can also use regular granulated sugar if you’d prefer a non-keto cheesecake)
Ground cinnamon (be generous - I recommend 2-3 teaspoons for a truly authentic spicy fall-inspired cheesecake)
For the filling:
2 ½ bricks of cream cheese (I prefer light cream cheese to the conventional kind)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup granulated sugar
2-3 tsp. ground cinnamon
About 1 tsp. lemon juice
For the crust:
Grease generously the bottom and the sides of a round 9-inch springform pan with non-stick spray and set aside.
Add the remaining ingredients for the crust to the bowl and blend with a wooden spoon until an even, granular consistency is achieved.
Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Press into the bottom of the pan to form an even, compact base.
Bake at 350°F for about 10 minutes.
Allow the crust to stand until it is cool to the touch.
For the filling:
In a medium mixing bowl, break the cream cheese into smaller pieces, about 1-inch by 1-inch in size.
Add the rest of the filling ingredients and stir just until combined.
Add the eggs one at a time, blending after each addition to achieve a fluffy consistency.
When the mixture has become consistent, spread the filling on top of the cooled, pre-baked crust.
Bake for 55 to 60 minutes at 350°F.
Refrigerate for at least 5 hours or overnight (very important step for cohesiveness and taste).
Et voilà !
Release the latch on the top half of the springform pan and carefully slide the cheesecake from the bottom of the pan onto a flat plate, platter, or cake stand.
Garnish with dried flowers for a rustic feel, or with fruit for a classic one.