Vegan Cheesecake Brownies (Gluten-free)

January 23, 2020

Gluten Free

By: Jasmine Briones 

A swirled cheesecake brownie that is vegan, gluten-free and easy to make! A sweet, tangy and decadent treat that is sure to impress the whole family, vegans and nonvegans alike!

A close up shot of a swirled vegan cheesecake brownie by sweet simple vegan

This post is sponsored by Kroger.

One of my favorite things to do as a vegan (food blogger) is to put together veganized versions of nonvegan favorites and classics– from sweet to savory, it can be done and I’ll show you how! 

From my experience, showing others that they can still enjoy their favorite foods just in a plant-based form has been the most convincing way for me to encourage them to eat more plant based foods. It removes the stigma of “healthy” and “bland” and it opens their mind to the wonders of vegan cooking!

A step by step shot of a swirled vegan cheesecake brownie by sweet simple vegan
A step by step shot of a swirled vegan cheesecake brownie by sweet simple vegan

One of my friends back home was raving about these cheesecake brownies that she made over the holidays and immediately in my mind I thought “challenge accepted”.  I knew that I had to not only work to create a vegan version of the recipe to share on the blog, but to also create a version that will encourage her to try out more plant based foods since it was one of her goals in 2020.

I’ve heard the phrase “anything you can do I can do vegan” and honestly with all of the plant based options and developments in this day and age, it’s so true!

An overhead shot of a swirled vegan cheesecake brownie with chocolate and parchment paper by sweet simple vegan

For example, I used to shop at Kroger stores all of the time before I went vegan and guess what, I still can because their stores are not only filled with plant based options, but they have their own Simple Truth Plant Based line that has everything you need to veganize your favorite recipes. It makes me so happy to see plant based options that are not only easily accessible, but affordable! People have the misconception that plant-based cooking is expensive but I disagree– you can totally do it on a budget!

I was challenged by Kroger to create recipes using their Simple Truth Plant Based items and today I will be highlighting their plant based cream cheese alternative. The cheesecake brownies I came up with are not only decadent and packed with flavor, but they also just so happen to be vegan and gluten-free, so everyone can enjoy it! 

If you like this recipe and want to try out more veganized versions of classic desserts, we’ve got you covered. Check these out:

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A close up shot of a swirled vegan cheesecake brownie by sweet simple vegan

Vegan Cheesecake Brownies (Gluten-Free)


  • Author: Jasmine @ Sweet Simple Vegan
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 12 cheesecake brownies

Description

A swirled cheesecake brownie that is vegan, gluten-free and easy to make! Sweet, tangy and decadent treat that is sure to impress the whole family, vegans and nonvegans alike!


Ingredients

Brownies:

  • 3 flax eggs (3 tablespoons flaxseed meal + 6 tablespoons water)
  • 1/2 cup smooth unsweetened unsalted almond or peanut butter * (see notes)
  • 1 1/4 cups (282g) organic cane sugar
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (148g) Bob’s Red Mill gluten free flour (or use all-purpose if not gluten-free)
  • 2/3 cup (69g) dutch processed cocoa powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Cheesecake:

  • 8 oz. Simple Truth Plant Based cream cheese alternative
  • 1/4 cup +  2 tablespoons organic cane sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and line an 8×8 metal pan with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. In a medium sized bowl, prepare the flax egg by mixing together 3 tablespoons flaxseed meal and 6 tablespoons water. Set aside for 10 minutes to thicken.
  3. Once the flax egg has thickened, add the almond/peanut butter, cane sugar, almond milk and vanilla extract to the bowl. Mix together until uniform, and then add in the gluten free flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. Mix together just until uniform, do not over mix. It if it a bit lumpy, that is ok! It does not need to be smooth.
  4. Transfer about 1/4 cup of the brownie batter to a small bowl and set aside. Add the remaining brownie batter to the lined pan and spread it out evenly. Set aside.
  5. In another medium to large mixing bowl, prepare the cheesecake layer. First add in the cream cheese alternative and sugar. With a hand mixer (or a whisk), whip them together until smooth. Add in the remaining cheesecake ingredients and whip everything together until smooth. Evenly pour the cream cheese mixture over the brownie batter in the pan. Use a spatula to carefully spread the layer smooth. It there are some “bare” spots, that is alright! Just try your best.
  6. Take your reserved 1/4 cup brownie batter (stir it if it has become stiff stir) and drop it/drizzle it over the cheesecake layer. You can refer to the photo in the post to see how we did this, but there is no right or wrong way! Using a knife or a toothpick, swirl the brownie batter into the cheesecake batter as desired.
  7. Place the pan into the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until the center is set. Remove from the oven and allow it to cool completely before cutting and serving.

Notes

  • Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for about 5 days.
  • You can swap the peanut butter for any nut or seed butter. Coconut butter should work too! 
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: Vegan, Gluten-Free

Keywords: Vegan, Gluten-Free, Dessert, Brownies, cheesecake, swirl, lemon

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Kroger but all opinions remain our own. The nutritional information shown is an estimate provided by an online calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional’s advice. This page may contain affiliate links, which simply means that we earn a commission if you purchase through those links, but your price remains the same. Thank you for supporting Sweet Simple Vegan!

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Recipe rating

  1. Shaun Skerbitz says:

    So moist and fudgy…I made them for my kids weekly, homemade snack. I can’t have them, due to the sugar content, but I do snag the crumbs. I think I’ve found my new favorite chefs to follow. We have strict dietary restraints, so your “Kroger challenge” recipes are perfect for us!!

  2. Deatra says:

    Can I freeze them?

  3. J says:

    what was the note about the nut butter? 🙂

  4. C says:

    What would you use to substitute nut butter?
    Thanks 🙂

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