Yesterday was fun; as in one of those days when you laugh at yourself over and over as you experiemnent with something, in our case- gluten and dairy free cheesecake!
My husband has been gluten free for several years now, and dairy free as well. His mom was making their family cheesecake recipe that was passed down from my husband’s Irish great-grandmother, and I wondered if it would be possible to modify it to be gluten free and dairy free. With that said; baking has never been a strong suit of mine.
Here’s the original recipe:
Combine the following ingredients and form into a graham cracker crust in a pie pan:
16 graham crackers
1 stick butter
2 Tablespoons sugar
Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes
Beat 2 eggs
Add 1/2 cup sugar
Add 1 teaspoon vanilla and 12 oz cream cheese
Beat well. Put in a 9 inch crust and bake for 30 minutes in a 300 degree oven.
Cool for a few minutes and then put on topping.
1/2 pint sour cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 Tablespoons sugar
This recipe posed a few challenges since most graham crackers contain gluten, and sour cream and cream cheese most definitely contain dairy.
We bought the following ingredients in our attempt at substitution:
- Kinnikinnick Gluten Free / Dairy Free Graham Style Crumbs
- Tufutti Better Than Sour Cream
- Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese.
The first step was to prepare the Graham Craker Crust. Luckily, the Kinnikinnick box had a recipe for making a graham cracker crust with the crumbs that we had rather than the full sized graham crakers that the original recipe called for.
To make the crust, we combined:
- 1 1/2 cups of packed Kinnikinnick Graham Style Crumbs
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 6 tablespoons of melted butter (we used the dairy free Earth Balance butter substitute)
This next part was very important.
My original recipe called for the crust to be baked for 15 minutes after it is formed into the pan. That does NOT work with the Kinnikinnick graham style crumbs, as we quickly learned. If you use the above crust recipe and put it in the oven, you will get a bubbling pile of graham cracker crumbs and butter. We pulled the crust out of the oven and reverted back the original directions on the box. What you SHOULD do with this crust is press it into the pan and then refrigerate for one hour.
- Beat 2 eggs
- Add 1/2 cup sugar (I went slightly over because I was concerned about whether the Tofutti cream cheese was as sweet as regular)
- Add 1 teaspoon vanilla and 12 oz of Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese
- Beat well. It took us more than five minutes with an electric beater to get this to a smooth consistency.
- Place in the graham cracker crust and bake in a 300 degree oven. The timing on this was much different than the original recipe. My mother-in-law had said to bkae for 30 minutes, but to then check it with a knife to make sure that it was a somewhat stable consistency and that it should “jiggle” when you take it out. At 30 minutes, ours still had the consistency of pudding. It was almost 50 minutes before we felt the consistency was just right. You can see the knife marks in this next picture showing our various “tests.”
Here’s what it looks like after the filling is cooked.
The last step is the Topping
To create the topping, mix:
- 1/2 pint Tofutti Better Than Sour Cream
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 Tablespoons of sugar (I sprinkled a little extra in again because of my concern that Tofutti may not be as sweet as regular sour cream)
After it is mixed, place the topping over the filling and bake at 250 degrees for 10 minutes.
After you take the finished cheesecake out of the oven, let it cool for 30 minutes and then refrigerate until it is time to serve.
Here’s a picture of our finished Gluten Free Dairy Free Cheesecake.
My husband was thrilled with the cheesecake!! This left me feeling more inspired to try modifying traditional recipes to be gluten free and dairy free. So often I search online for recipes but they end up being so COMPLICATED! I personally don’t have three different types of gluten free flour in the house at all times, so I really appreciated the simplicity of this graham cracker crust.
Let me know if you try the original or modified recipe. Happy Easter!
suzanne montgomery says
I will be making this along with a couple other cheesecakes. Can you get the Toffuti at Festival?
Yes; we got the Tofutti better than sour cream and better than cream cheese at Festival. Sometimes they have it and sometimes they don’t.
Very nicely done!
That’s a tasty pie crust too. We’ve tried it before. If you are in a pinch you can use almond meal with butter/butter substitute. We’ve done that too– the old fashioned way.
We’re gluten free and not dairy free over here (dairy light). I think we’ll try the original filling with your gluten free crust!
Thanks for stopping by! The original filling is tasty, just very much real dairy. 🙂
Yum! Tofutti cream cheese is so good, works awesome in cheesecakes, this sounds delish!
Thanks Kristina! I love your website!
Don’t replace the eggs in this recipe, I have just had delicious but terrible looking result by replacing the eggs with water, oil and baking powder!
Thanks for the tip Mari! I’m sorry it didn’t work without the eggs.
Athena Cupp says
This is the same family recipe I have always used for cheesecake. I have been gluten free / dairy free for over 3 years and as of yet have not attempted a cheesecake! I am having girlfriends over for a jewelry party and have decided to do wine and cheese themed appetizers…I will definitely be making this recipe!
Thanks for stopping by Athena! Let me know if you like it.
Hey I was looking for a good cheesecake recipe (sounds like I’ve found it) because my husband is allergic to everything that you use in basic cooking. He is allergic to eggs, milk/dairy, chocolate, lemon’s, cheese, all kinds of tree nuts especially peanuts, nutmeg and coconut. So I am always trying to find new items to be able to make him stuff like hot chocolate (made with Carob powder and soy milk) and stuff like a grilled cheese sandwich, mac & cheese, and tacos with cheese (all made with daiya shreds & block style) just to name a few things. I was able to make all of these things by going to 2 wonderful places, Krogers, for the cheese and cream cheese (Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese) and Kay’s whole foods, for the carob powder. He has loved all the things that I have been able to make for him but I have a new challenge to make him something that looks like scrambled eggs (but with NO eggs). If anyone has any ideas on how to make something like that I sure would be so extremely happy! I’ve thought about using a soft tofu and break it up in different size chunks and then fry it but it would still be white. I don’t know where to go from here. Thanks! 😀
Try looking up recipes for ‘Tofu Scramble’. If you just Google those words you will find a lot of recipes and images. There are many variations out there and it is quite good! Our oldest daughter doesn’t care for eggs so we make it once in awhile. Turmeric makes the tofu yellow and gives it a good flavor and you can add a variety of ingredients like vegetables, dairy-free cheese, salsa etc. Hope that helps!
Brenda Caligeros says
Thx for your recipe. Can u tell me have u made dollop type cream from tofutti to serve with a dessert. Look forward to hearing from u.
I haven’t tried that, but it sounds interesting!
Making this tonight for our Small Group tomorrow! I have GF Chocolate Graham Crackers on hand currently, so hopefully it still goes smoothly 🙂
Lois A Degner says
This recipe turned out great, I followed all your suggestions. Everyone loved it, even the birthday girl who eats a gluten and dairy free diet. I would highly recommend this recipe, it was delicious.
Suzanne Holt says
Thanks for letting me know. I’m so glad to hear everyone enjoyed it!! Thanks for stopping by.
Suzanne Holt says
That’s wonderful! Thanks for letting me know.