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REDUCED CALORIE PUMPKIN CHEESECAKE & GINGERSNAP CRUST RECIPE
Complete your healthy holiday with this twist on traditional pumpkin pie: smooth, rich and delicious pumpkin cheesecake in a super easy-to-make homemade gingersnap crust! The gingersnap crust reduces calories quite a bit from traditional crusts which are typically made from graham crackers and shortening. We’ve even tested this using gluten free gingersnap cookies to make this a gluten free dessert! We recommend making this reduced calorie pumpkin cheesecake, a day or more before desired, as it will have to set in the refrigerator for 10-12 hours. Make is extra decadent with fresh whipped cream and a drizzle of chocolate sauce! Your Blendtec or Vitamix will easily blend the cream cheese, nuts, and gingersnaps! You can use canned or make your own homemade pumpkin puree for the batter.
- 40 about 4 cups gingersnap cookies
- 1/2 cup toasted walnuts cooled completely
- 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 cup unprocessed sugar such as coconut palm sugar, turbinado or raw
- 1/4 cup butter melted
- 2 tablespoons water
- 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
- 3 eggs
- 1 package Neufchâtel cheese softened
- 2 packages fat-free cream cheese softened
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- Preheat oven to 325⁰F (163⁰C) Use 1–2 large pieces of aluminum foil to cover bottom and sides of 9-inch spring form pan. (This technique will reduce leaks when using a water bath.)
- Add gingersnap cookies and walnuts to jar, secure lid.
- For Blendtec and Vitamix: Select Speed 1, and run for 5 seconds. Add butter, water, and cinnamon to jar and secure lid. Select Speed/Variable 1, and run for 10 seconds. For Blendtec: If blade is spinning freely stop the machine and scrape ingredients towards the blade and reblend until combined. For Vitamix: Use the tamper to press ingredients into the blade.
- Press crust evenly into spring form pan along bottom and up sides about 1 inch.
- For Blendtec: Clean jar, and add pumpkin, eggs, Neufchâtel cheese, cream cheese, sugar, vanilla, salt, and pumpkin pie spice to jar. Secure lid and select BATTERS and run for one cycle. If necessary, scrape ingredients towards the center and run a second time.
- For Vitamix: Clean jar, and place the rest of ingredients into the Vitamix container and secure lid. Select Variable 1.Turn machine on and slowly increase speed to Variable 4 or 5. Blend for 20-25 seconds or until smooth.
- Pour filling over crust. Place spring form pan inside of larger pan that is 2–3 inches deep that will not leak (line second pan with foil if necessary). Pour approximately 1 inch of boiling water into larger pan. Carefully place pan in oven, and bake for 90 minutes. (The center of cheesecake will jiggle but will complete cooking during the cooling process.)
- Cool cheesecake completely, and then place in refrigerator until sufficiently chilled, about 10–12 hours.
- Serve alone or with your favorite whipped cream or chocolate or caramel topping.
- All done! Enjoy!! Now take a photo, rate it, and share your accomplishments! 🙂 Tag @BlenderBabes & #BlenderBabes
HEALTH BENEFITS OF PUMPKIN AND WALNUTS
Pumpkin is packed with fiber – one cup has up to 1/3 of your recommended daily allowance – and vitamin A, vitamin K, and vitamin C. Vitamin K is an often-overlooked vitamin that is found in a surprising number of foods: ALL greens, blueberries, and pumpkin, just to name a few. Vitamin K builds bones by retaining calcium and protects your heart. One cup of pumpkin has half of your RDA for Vitamin K!
Walnuts are another nutrition-packed part of this healthy cheesecake recipe. Packed with omega-3s, walnuts are a good choice to protect brain health. Studies have linked many health problems to omega-3 deficiency. Though nuts are high-calorie, they’re super healthy in moderation, so definitely don’t forget them when making the yummy gingersnap crust for this pumpkin cheesecake recipe!