Sugar-Free and Egg-Free No-Bake Chocolate Cheesecake!!! (and opt dairy/gf!) and a lesson in frugality…:)

Alisha's Baby Shower (March 2010) 001

They say necessity is the mother of invention, well, I say, frugality is the mother of invention in this case too! This weekend, I was headed to a baby shower and wanted to bring a yummy dessert that I could enjoy too but others wouldn’t notice was "healthier”. 🙂 I was also searching for something I could make with what I had on hand since it is nearing the end of the semester and I am trying not to buy much more. So, as fate would have it, 🙂 I went to a breakfast that morning for my church and afterwards, they asked if anyone wanted any leftovers. I said sure! I always do. 🙂 This is  one of those things that I feel no shame in doing and it allows me to gain a little extra food here and there and stretch my budget and frugality better. So, question was though, what to do with it when I got home.

 

Here’s what I was given:

  1. a couple of already cut-in-half bananas that needed to be eaten or used quickly
  2. about 7 mini muffins (not sugar-free or GF but I planned on bringing them to the party or giving them away or something!… and they were MOSTLY lemon and 2 were chocolate chip)
  3. a tub of original cream cheese
  4. a tiny tub of whipped berry cream cheese (again, not sugar-free, but I would use it for the party somehow!)
  5. three blueberry bagels (again, not sugar-free, but I was going to figure out a way!)

So, what would you do? I was like…ok, I could eat the bananas. I ate one or two of the halves and decided….I need to use the others…So I just left them there for a moment and started thinking. I looked at my cream cheese….oh, yum! Cream cheese….I haven’t afforded myself that in a long time…check the container…almost full (nice!) but no way I’ll use this all……what can I use it for? Cheesecake! Now it says on the container, don’t use for baking. So, why not make a no bake cheesecake? 🙂 And that’s where it really started….

I looked around for ideas and remembered seeing a recipe for no-bake cheesecake on my gelatin box. So gaining inspiration from there I created this recipe. The cheesecake became chocolate because I also needed to use up the rest of my chocolate sauce that I had made from the other day. 🙂 Plus, what girl doesn’t like chocolate? :) 

And then there’s the crust….what to do, what to do….hmmm…it would be kind of awkward to bring 7 little mini muffins to a party…what if I used them as crumbs instead of using cookie crumbs or graham cracker crumbs (as in the traditional crust recipes out there, both of which I didn’t have, nor have time to make). Brilliant, if I do say so myself. Wanting to reduce the fat content a smidgen,  take away at least some of the strong flavor of the lemon muffins, save money on butter, use up the bananas, I added a mashed banana to the muffin crumbs. I then added the butter. I tasted it….Hmmm…still lemony. Just not quite right yet…and though I’ve heard you can put chocolate and lemon together, it just didn’t fit, plus it seemed too wet. So, I added cocoa…and pressed it in a pie plate since I didn’t have a spring form pan. And that ladies and gentlemen, is how I roll! 🙂

And the results? They loved it. I got several compliments at the shower. And, yes, though I realize it wasn’t the exact ideal ingredients (the crust had sugar and white flour which I never use), it was mostly for others, still a lot healthier than your average cheesecake  and the fact that I was able to use up my free ingredients was the big deal for me.

 

Oh, and what did I do with those bagels and whipped berry cream cheese? I used a tiny gingerbread boy cookie cutter and cut about 30 or so gingerbread boys from them. I then piped the whipped berry cream cheese on them to make them look like little girls with bows and dresses. I had cute pictures…but I accidently deleted them.

 

Anyways, sorry for being so long winded, but I just had to share what I was able to do with this recipe! (which for me to make cost me almost nothing!)  But here’s the recipe….

 

 

Ingredients:

Filling:

  • 1 and 1/4 c. chocolate sauce*
  • 1 package unflavored gelatin (if you can’t use…try agar agar)
  • Original cream cheese spread (1 lb tub) or about 14.5 oz regular block cream cheese (soften) or equivalent amount of dairy-free cream cheese
  • 1 t. vanilla

Crust:

  • 3-4 T. butter or 3-4 T. earth balance
  • 1 banana, mashed
  • ~7-8 mini muffins (GF or not) or 3-4 regular size muffins, crumbled
  • 1/4 c. cocoa

 

Directions:

  • Mix together crust ingredients. Press into pie plate. Use as is or cook at 300 for 20 mins if you desire a soft-half baked crust. After doing that tough, I think it would be just as great/better raw. 🙂
  • Boil and mix with 1 package unflavored gelatin, stir well. Set aside.
  • Whip cream cheese with vanilla. Slowly add in sauce. Blend. Pour into prepared crust. Let set for 3 hours or until set in the fridge.
  • Top with bananas and serve as is or with extra chocolate sauce.
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5 Comments

  1. Very creative! Sometimes it pays to know your way around the kitchen and how to be frugal. Some of the recipes end up being keepers and some of the recipes end up in the trash to never make again. Just this week I had both happen to me, but because I hate to waste food I told my family that I was not making something else until what I made was all gone and then I vowed to never make it again. This was a lesson for all because you never know unless you experiment and that makes for a great cook. BTW- I purchased 1 gallon of maple syrup yesterday from our very own maple producing state and am excited to start using it in place of refined sugar (They gave me a chart on how to do it).

    • Thanks Debbie! I definitely have had a lot of “trash can” attempts too….and I’m with you…I hate throwing away food….I will do it if it’s really bad…but if it’s not, I try my best to use it! That’s great that you are starting using maple syrup! You will have to let me know how that goes! -Ari

  2. Ditto you both on the trash can attempts but the ones that work sure make it worth it, huh? Off to look up your chocolate sauce. Thanks!!

    • Kris! It is worth it! 🙂 No problem! Let me know how you like it! 🙂

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