Raw Orange Chocolate “Cheesecake”

by Susan on December 10, 2009

Raw Orange Chocolate "Cheesecake"

What do you do when a blizzard cancels your raw food cooking class and you have cashews soaking for prep? Make a great raw recipe for cheesecake! I love the combination of orange and chocolate. A bag of beautiful, fragrant oranges was sitting on the counter. Time to have some fun. The texture came out beautiful, and the taste is divine. Another recipe that would be perfect for holiday entertaining. I used a little orange essential oil in this to really kick up the orange flavor. You might want to note that essential oils are not considered raw and you want to be sure you are using food grade oils for recipes. This is a really simple, quick yet impressive “cheesecake”.

Orange Chocolate Cheesecake


  • 1 C Almonds*
  • 1/4 C Cacao Powder
  • 3 Dates

Combine all ingredients in the food processor. Process until ground fine. Mixture should hold together when pressed. If it doesn’t, add water, 1 T at a time until texture is achieved. Set aside 1/4 C. Press remaining into bottom of 6″ spring form pan. Place in refrigerator.

*I always pre-soak all my almonds and dry them as soon as I get them.


  • 3 Oranges (make sure you have very good oranges)
  • 2/3 C Agave (or liquid sweetener of your choice)
  • 2 1/2 C Cashews (soaked at least 3 hours)
  • 3/4 C Coconut Butter
  • 1/2 t. Sweet Orange Essential Oil (optional as it is not raw but still very healthy)

Grate the zest off of all the oranges. You should have at least 3 T. Be careful to only get the orange part as the pith (the white) is bitter. Squeeze the juice out of all the oranges. You should have about 2/3 C. Place cashews, agave, coconut butter, zest, essential oil, and agave and orange juice in the food processor and process until very smooth. Pour over crust, sprinkle extra crust on top and refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving.

Print Friendly

{ 119 comments… read them below or add one }

Nichol March 24, 2012 at 1:24 am

I see that the question has been asked about substituting the Agave and that you answered by saying that some people don’t like it (which I am one) and that there are substitutes… though 2 people have used honey, one worked with the recipe, the other did not.
Can you offer any other substitutions for the Agave? Stevia or Xylitol perhaps? I’m new to this and don’t want to make a disaster and have no real clues what works for substitutions in this type of situation.

veganmam March 31, 2012 at 2:58 pm

I made this cake for a dinner hosted by a friend. I made 2 batches. one with 6inch and and one with 9inch. My 9 inch came out perfect and the people at the party loved it. As most of my friends like light sugar on their cakes this was perfect. My 6ich was good but not too good. It didn’t set properly. Two things didn’t go well. One is I soaked the roasted cashews for probably hour(recipe didn’t mention whether it should be roasted or raw). Secondly I think I added too much zest. May be the oranges at home are too flavorful(we have 2 good orange trees). However the taste was little bit bitter on my small cake and it didn’t set well. My big cake(i used 1 and 1/2 ingredients) was a hit! I again used roasted cashews but let them soaked overnight and used less zest(just a few strands). Thanks!

Susan March 31, 2012 at 4:25 pm

About the cashews…this is a raw food website. So, we use raw cashews. :-). Second, if you do not follow the recipe, ie using roasted cashews and not soaking them the proper time, I can’t guarantee results. Orange zest does have a bitterness to it and if you added too much, it would make your cheesecake bitter. The soaking time is extremely important to get the cashews to the right consistency and roasted cashews have very different properties than raw.
Glad your larger one turned out. Cheers!

Jessica Montaigne May 2, 2012 at 12:18 am

I’m not sure what I did wrong but this didn’t firm up like in the picture. I followed the directions exactly and ended up putting it in the freezer to get to be more pie than pudding. It tasted great,just flopped out of the form. Any tricks I can use? I heard Irish moss can be used just not sure how?

Susan May 2, 2012 at 12:21 am

I am not sure what you did wrong. I have made this many times, as have many others with great success. Adding any ingredients to this would drastically change the recipe.

Kara October 19, 2012 at 7:15 pm

I’m very new to raw eating and raw foods… Can you tell me exactly what you mean when you say “soaking” nuts and also what you mean by drying them?
Thank you!

Susan October 19, 2012 at 7:34 pm

Soak nuts = soak them in water. Dry nuts = dry them in a dehydrator under the temp of 115. There is more information here: http://www.rawmazing.com/raw-food-soaking-nuts-and-seeds/

Rodi December 19, 2012 at 10:27 am

Is orange essential oil edible ?

Susan December 19, 2012 at 2:07 pm

Rodi, thanks for asking. In the post I specify that you should use food grade essential oils. Cheers!

Shannon December 22, 2012 at 7:13 am

I too don’t want to use Agave and saw a posting above requesting alternatives. Can you respond with other suggestions – or let us know if honey would work? Thanks

Susan December 22, 2012 at 12:46 pm

I wish substitutions were straight up but they are not. You can certainly try honey but I can’t guarantee the results as I haven’t had time to try it. Cheers!

ken October 13, 2013 at 5:36 am

Fwiw, mine didn’t set up either. I didn’t do any ingredient substitutions either. The top part was about the same consistency as when I poured it in :-(

Maybe adding coconut oil would help? It solidifies when child…

Susan October 13, 2013 at 5:45 pm

I am not sure why yours didn’t set. The coconut butter is the setting agent and should work well. Are you using true coconut butter?

ken October 14, 2013 at 4:12 pm

ok..found out why mine didn’t set. The recommended four hours in the recipe is *NOT* long enough!
Checked the leftovers the next day and it had the consistency I expected…firm enough instead of molten lava like.
I’d recommend changing the recipe notes to mention this. And yes, I used real coconut butter….exact same ingredients, 6″ pan, etc.

Susan October 17, 2013 at 11:06 am

You might note that the recipe states at least 4 hours. Meaning it could take longer. Set-up times vary.

Katy December 10, 2013 at 4:17 pm

This looks amazing. I’ve been looking for a raw vegan cheesecake that’s soy free and this sounds perfect. Coconut butter / oil is pretty individual in its properties I know, but sadly I’m allergic to coconut in all forms. Any suggestions for a replacement setting agent? Just discovered your site via Pinterest and am loving it! :-)

Liga December 15, 2013 at 3:15 pm

Great recipe, will have to try. Do you know how long I can keep it in fridge? I like to prepare small batches of mini cheesecakes so I can eat it when I want and not make from scratch every day.
Are they good for freezing?

Ugne May 30, 2014 at 11:10 am

Hello, I am about to try this recipe. Does it really say 3 dates or is it a typing mistake and should be 3 cups? Thanks

Susan May 30, 2014 at 11:11 am

Yes, three dates. Three cups? Wow that would be a lot of dates! Cheers!

Leave a Comment

{ 9 trackbacks }

Previous post:

Next post: