Let me introduce the things I practically lived on throughout the entirety of last week, when all I could think about was exams exams exams with a side of memorising the angle of refraction of different wavelengths of light in three-dimensional prisms…
As you can tell, I’m still recovering from post-exam mush-brain, side effects of which include sleeping for longer than seems humanly possible, constantly gorging on guacamole + black olive lettuce cups, and almost accidentally feeding the cat lemon coconut cheesecake filling instead of tuna… almost.
Now that said horrors are over, it’s time to celebrate!
Preferably with these zesty, zingy, silky smooth lemon coconut cheesecake bites, with their golden speckled base and their creamy, melt-in-your-mouth topping. Made with only coconut, dates, lemon, and a splash of pure maple syrup, they’re just slightly sweet, with the bright, punchy tang of lemon invading every crevice in your mouth as you take a bite.
Just a warning, though: I’m obsessively infatuated with all things lemon, so you may find you need to add a little more maple syrup to your bites if you’re not quite as addicted to all things lemon as I am!
I’m absolutely positive that serving these as tiny pieces is always the better option. Not only do they look adorable, but if you cut them up, nobody will notice if there’s a piece or two missing… why hello, second breakfast!
And don’t even get me started on all of the bits you’ll need to trim off to get straight-edged squares.. someone’s got to eat them, right?!
I’ll have 273, please… oh wait, I might’ve already scarfed them down!
zesty lemon + coconut cheesecake bites
Prep Time: 20 minutes (plus 2 hours setting time)
For the Base
- 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- 1/2 cup soft Medjool dates (about 4), pitted
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
For the Filling
- zest of 2 unwaxed lemons
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1/2 cup coconut butter (homemade is my favourite!)
- 1/2 cup coconut oil
- 1/2 cup coconut cream (to make this, place a can of coconut milk in the fridge for at least 24 hours, then open the can and scoop out the white, fatty cream, leaving behind the coconut water at the bottom of the can)
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
1. Line an 8×8 inch baking tray with a smooth layer of plastic wrap.
2. In a food processor, combine the base ingredients for about 30 seconds, until the mixture starts to form a ball. Remove from the food processor and press the mixture in to the baking tray, making sure to evenly distribute it and press it down quite firmly. You can use your hands or the back of a spoon! Place the baking tray in to the fridge while you make the filling.
2. Place all the filling ingredients in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Whisking constantly, heat until everything melts together to form a smooth mixture. Remove from the heat, let it cool slightly, then taste the mixture. You can add a little more maple syrup here to taste if the lemon is a little too bold for you.
3. Once the filling has cooled, remove the base from the fridge and pour the filling on top. Return the bars to the fridge and leave there for 2-3 hours, until firmed up.
4. Remove the bars from the fridge and use the plastic wrap to transfer them to a cutting board. Cut into 1×1″ squares using a sharp knife. Serve immediately, or place them in an airtight container and store in the fridge for future use. Enjoy!