Here’s a vegan cheesecake-like version of pumpkin pie that offers a subtle chocolate twist with each bite. What a perfect way to finish a Thanksgiving dinner! Recipe adapted from Vegan Holiday Kitchen by Nava Atlas. Photos by Susan Voisin.
Pumpkin Cheesecake with a Hint of Chocolate
- ½ cup chocolate chips
- ¼ cup walnuts
- One 9-inch good-quality natural pastry crust preferably whole grain
- One 12.3-ounce container extra-firm silken tofu
- ½ cup vegan cream cheese
- ⅔ cup natural granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice or more, to taste
- 1 ½ cups well-baked coarsely mashed sugar pumpkin or butternut squash
- ½ cup chocolate chips for optional chocolate drizzle see Note
- Preheat the oven to 350º F.
- Combine the chocolate chips and walnuts in a food processor and pulse on and off until finely chopped.
- Scatter the chocolate chip-walnut mixture evenly over the bottom of the pie crust and set aside.
- Combine half of the tofu, half the cream cheese, and half of the sugar in the container of a food processor and process until smoothly pureed. Pour into the pie crust and smooth down with a cake spatula.
- Combine the pumpkin or squash pulp in the food processor with the remaining tofu, cream cheese, and sugar, along with the cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice. Process until smoothly pureed.
- Pour the pumpkin mixture into the pie crust over the tofu layer. Smooth down with a cake spatula.
- Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until the mixture is set and the crust is golden.
- Let the pie cool to room temperature. Cut into 6 or 8 wedges to serve.
If you’d like to garnish each slice of pie with chocolate drizzle as shown in the photo, melt the chocolate chips in a heatproof bowl in the microwave (start with 45 seconds) or in the top of a double boiler.
Transfer the melted chips to a pastry piping bag or, less fancy but almost as effective, a ziploc bag. If using the latter, snip a tiny hole in one corner. Gently squeeze the melted chocolate over each wedge of pie in an attractive zig-zag pattern.