Chocolate Swirl Cheesecake



1cup shredded, unsweetened coconut
1/2cup soft, pitted Medjool dates
2tablespoons raw cacao powder
1teaspoon vanilla
pinch sea salt
1cup coconut cream
1/2cup cashew pieces, soaked for 4-8 hours
1tablespoon lemon juice
1tablespoon vanilla extract
1/8teaspoon liquid vanilla stevia
1/4cup coconut oil
2/3cup canned full-fat coconut milk
3ounces store-bought dark chocolate


For the Crust:

  1. In a food processor with an S blade, puree the shredded coconut, dates, raw cacao powder, vanilla extract, and salt until the ingredients clump together.
  2. Line the walls of a 7” springform pan by making a ring of unbleached parchment paper. You can staple the paper where the ends meet to help it stay together.
  3. Press the crust into the lined pan and set aside.

For the Filling:

  1. In a food processor with an S blade, puree the coconut cream, cashews, honey, lemon juice, vanilla extract, and the liquid vanilla stevia. Add the melted coconut oil last while the processor is running.
  2. Continue to puree the mixture for a few minutes. In the beginning, the fat will separate. Then the heat from processing will help it re-emulsify. The filling is done when it’s completely smooth and looks like a cream sauce.
  3. Set aside a few tablespoons of the filling to use when you make the swirl on top of the cheesecake.
  4. Pour the rest over the crust and set it aside while you make the Ganache.

For the Ganache:

  1. In a small saucepan, heat the coconut milk until it begins to simmer.
  2. Place the chopped chocolate in a bowl, pour the hot coconut milk over it, and let it sit for 1-2 minutes.
  3. Whisk as the head of the coconut milk melts the chocolate, and continue whisking until the milk and chocolate are well combined.

To Create the Swirl:

  1. The Ganache should be very warm when you add it to the cheesecake. If it isn’t, heat it before you begin.
  2. When the cream filling is slightly set (like soft cream cheese), drizzle some of the Ganache over the top. Note: you won’t use all the Ganache.
  3. Use a knife to swirl the Ganache in a figure 8 motion.
  4. Heat the reserved cream filling and add it to the top as needed to create a pretty design. This is especially helpful if you end up with a glob of some of the heated cream filling over the glob, and swirl it around with the knife to fix it.
  5. Chill the cheesecake overnight in the refrigerator.

To Serve:

  1. Remove the cheesecake from the refrigerator. Remove the wall of the springform pan, and peel off the paper.
  2. Heat a large chef’s knife in a glass of very hot water. Run the knife between the crust and the bottom of the pan until the cheesecake has completely separated from the pan. Lift the cheesecake onto a serving plate.
  3. Heat the knife again in very hot water and dry it with a towel. Use the knife to slice the cheesecake while it’s still cold from the refrigerator.
  4. Allow the cheesecake to come to room temperature for serving. Store it in the refrigerator.

Reprinted with permission from The Paleo Chocolate Lover’s Cookbook by Kelly V. Brozyna, copyright © 2013. Published by Victory Belt Publishing Inc.