My Big Skinny Greek Cheesecake!

20130803-230621.jpgI call this “My Big Skinny Greek Cheesecake” for 2 reasons: First, it’s “skinny” because it’s so healthy, you could eat it as a nutritional breakfast. For real. Second, it’s “Greek” because it uses Greek yogurt (not cream cheese) and … dun dun dun … feta! It’s all Greek to me! No butter, no sugar, no cream cheese. I know what you’re thinking… no WAY! Well let me tell you something…WHEY! Pun intended. This bad boy has vanilla whey protein powder to give it nutritional benefits and sweeten it up :) This is real people. Nike this Greek Cake, just do it!

    Makes a 9″ round cheesecake, 12 slices.

Ingredients

Crust
1.5 cups sweet granola (I use Trader Joe’s Just the Clusters Vanilla Almond Granola Cereal)
4 large medjool dates + 1/2 teaspoon water
1 Tbsp melted coconut oil or Smart Balance buttery spread

Filling
6 large medjool dates + 1/2 teaspoon water
2 cups greek honey yogurt (the good stuff people, not the nonfat kind).
1/4 cup feta cheese (or ricotta)*
3 eggs 1 tbsp flaxseed + 3 tbsp water*
1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder or 1/4 cup splenda/stevia.
3 Tbsp corn starch 1 tsp vanilla extract

*If you use ricotta, add 1/8 teaspoon salt to filling
*The flaxseed+water blend is a substitute for 1 egg. You can either use 4 eggs total, or mix the flaxseed & water (let sit for 5 minutes) as an egg substitute.

Topping (optional)
1/2 Square (14g) Baker’s Semi-Sweet Baking Chocolate Squares
1 Tbsp natural creamy nut butter (almond, peanut, cashew, hazelnut, etc.)
1 to 2 Tbsp (according to taste) sweetener like stevia, splenda, or sugar
1/2 cup light plain yogurt

Directions

For the crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray a 9inch spring form pan with baking spray. Place the granola in the food processor and process into small crumbs, then transfer crumbs to a medium size mixing bowl. Stir into the crumbs the melted coconut oil or butter. Next place 4 medjool dates + 1/2 teaspoon water in the food processor and process until it turns into a sticky date paste. Stir date paste into the crumbs with a pastry blender or fork. Press the mixture into the bottom of the spring form pan and bake for 7 minutes. Remove from oven and reduce temp to 300 degrees.

For the filling: Place 6 dates + 1/2 teaspoon water in processor to create date paste. Add the yogurt & feta, process until just combined. In a blender, puree the eggs + flaxseed mix (if using), protein powder (or splenda), corn starch and vanilla extract. Stir mixture into the yogurt mixture, then pour into spring form pan.

Bake at 300 for 40 minutes, do not open door while baking. The center should just barely jiggle once it’s set. Remove from oven and allow to cool to room temp before putting it in the fridge to chill before serving. It’s helpful to run a thin knife between the pan and the cake when you take it out of the oven to avoid the cheesecake cracking. When you’re ready to serve, run a large sharp knife in hot hot water, dry with paper towel, then make first slice. Repeat hot water + drying + slicing. Makes 12 slices.

For the topping (optional): Melt 1/2 chocolate square according to directions. Vigorously stir in 1 Tbsp of creamy nut butter along with 2 Tbsp sweetener of your preference. Then stir in 1/2 cup light plain yogurt. You could also try ditching the additional sweetener and just use a flavored yogurt like vanilla instead of plain! Spread

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Nutrition stats per serving of My Big Skinny Greek Cheesecake:
Left=plain Right=with topping

Calories: 170, 190.5
Fat: 7.5g, 8.5g
Sat fat: <3g, 3g
Carbs: 21g, 23g
Fiber: 1.5g, 1.5g
Protein: 6g, 7g
Sugar (naturally derived): 13g, 14g

I garnished mine with a chocolate cover almond. Yum!

 

 

 

Regular Cheesecake
Calories: 466
Fat: 30.5g
Sat fat: 19.5g
Carbs: 34g
Fiber: 1/3g
Protein: 7.5g
Sugar: 27g

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