Strawberry Cheesecake for Your Diabetic Sweetie
Sweets for the Sweet
Ever since my dessert-loving husband was diagnosed with diabetes, I've struggled to create sweet treats that are both tasty and healthy for him to eat.
I failed miserably with all sorts of cupcakes, including ones made with zucchini and chocolate, and earned a low C for pumpkin and chia pudding cakes.
But this low-carb faux cheesecake made with Neufchatel cheese was an immediate winner— for both of us.
The filling is light, creamy and bright; the crust has a sandy, satisfying texture; and the fruit topping is juicy and fresh.
Although the strawberry version dresses up nicely for Valentine's Day, variations with seasonal fruit are also yummy.
I used Smucker's sugar-free preserves, Giant brand Neufchatel cheese and Giant brand lite whipped topping.
- 2/3 c. walnuts
- 1/2 c. graham crackers, about 1/2 a sleeve
- 1/3 c. old-fashioned oats
- 1/3 c. + 1 Tbsp. sugar
- 3 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
- 8 oz. Neufchâtel cheese, softened
- 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/2 c. lite whipped cream topping
- 1 1/2 c. strawberries, stemmed and halved or chopped
- 2 tbsp. sugar-free strawberry jam
- To make the crust, grind first three ingredients in a blender.
- Add 1 tbsp. granulated sugar or brown sugar to the mixture.
- Stir in melted butter then press into bottom of an 8-inch square pan.
- Bake at 350 degrees until toasted, about 10 minutes.
5. While crust bakes, make the filling by beating sugar into softened Neufchatel cheese.
6. Next, beat in lemon juice and vanilla.
7. Fold in lite whipping cream and set aside.
7. While the crust cools, make the fruit topping. First, soften strawberry jam in the microwave for about 15 seconds.
8. Stir the warm jam into the strawberries.
Putting It All Together
9. Spread the cheese mixture over the cooled crust.
10. Top the cheese mixture with the strawberries.
11. Decorate with more whipping cream as desired, then chill and serve.
- Use blueberries, blackberries or raspberries and corresponding sugar-free jam.
- Substitute orange juice for lemon juice.
- Use fresh peaches and sugar-free peach preserves in lieu of strawberries then substitute lemon extract for vanilla extract. Add ground cinnamon to the crust mixture.
- Use Splenda™ or some other brand of Stevia instead of granulated sugar in the cream cheese mixture. (Note: the filling will not be as fluffy and light.)
- Add 1 Tbsp. brown sugar or Splenda™ brown sugar substitute to the crust in lieu of 1 Tbsp. granulated sugar.
- Use light Philadelphia cream cheese instead of Neufchatel.
Tips for Success
Hold the Fruit Topping
If you're making the recipe ahead of time, reserve the fruit topping and spread it over the filling just before serving.
Grind in Batches
Grind the nuts and graham crackers in small batches for a finer. easier grind. I used a Nutribullet.
Pick Over the Fruit
Wash the strawberries well, removing stems, bruised spots and hard white bits. If using blueberries, be sure to pick over them carefully, removing all stems.
Fold, Don't Beat
Don't beat the whipped cream into the Neufchatel mixture: fold it in. This will make the filling light and airy.
To fold, take a small amount of the cream and gently whisk it into the filling to lighten up the mix. Then use a spatula to add the rest all at once or a bit at a time, turning it over in cheese mixture until it's incorporated into the whole.
A Folding Demo
|Serving size: 1|
|Calories from Fat||126|
|% Daily Value *|
|Fat 14 g||22%|
|Saturated fat 5 g||25%|
|Unsaturated fat 9 g|
|Carbohydrates 21 g||7%|
|Sugar 13 g|
|Fiber 3 g||12%|
|Protein 6 g||12%|
|Cholesterol 17 mg||6%|
|Sodium 146 mg||6%|
|* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.|
© 2018 Jill Spencer