It feels like I didn’t do anything during Memorial Day Weekend. I went to a bar with some friends and had a family cookout, but that’s it. Bleh. The weekend started off rainy, moved onto blusterous, and finally ended with sunshine. But for the most part, I was stuck inside due to New Jersey’s gloomy skies. As you guys know, when I get stir crazy, I cook. So I made a cheesecake. That’s a normal thing to make when you’re bored, right? To be honest, I’m not even the biggest cheesecake eater, so I have no idea what possessed me to make one. But I did and fell in love. That’s right, I literally am in love with a cheesecake. Enough to propose? Oh yes….no question about it.
So one of my issues with the typical run-of-the-mill cheesecake is that they’re often too heavy or sweet. You end up feeling like you ate a brick. So I whipped up a lighter version and couldn’t stop drooling over it’s low calorie deliciousness! It tastes the same, but you don’t get that bloated feeling after polishing off a slice (or three).
Okay…you’re probably wondering how I managed to make cheesecake “healthy” since creamy desserts are usually diet killers. Two words – GREEK YOGURT. Well, technically three words (nonfat Greek yogurt) but who’s counting haha. Before you turn your nose up at my Greek yogurt alternative, try it. It’s amazing. The yogurt makes the cheesecake incredibly light and smooth. It tastes like you spent hours making it, but it’s foolproof! I even surprised myself with how good each bite tastes. And believe me, I was nervous that it would be a little funky! But it’s great. And don’t even get me started on the amazing lemon curd slathered on top of the cheesecake. It’s sweet, but the tartness of the lemons balance it out so perfectly. I also added crushed almonds to the crust and on top for some unexpected texture. Add a little whipped cream and you’re good to go!
Basically this healthy cheesecake recipe is tart, bright, creamy, and absolutely the perfect summertime dessert. Trust me, you’re going to want to try this one. Dig in! :)
1/2 cup almonds
5 Stella Dora cookies
1/4 cup butter (melted)
8 oz cream cheese
3 cups plain Greek yogurt
2 cups sugar
1 lemon (zested)
6 tablespoons lemon juice
1 egg yolk
1/2 cup sugar (or 1/3 if you want it to be less sweet)
2 tablespoons butter
Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
Crust — Add the almonds and cookies into the food processor. Blend until everything is crumbled up. Mix in melted butter. Press the crumbs into the bottom of a greased springform pan. Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until lightly golden. Remove and cool.
Filling — Whisk together the cream cheese and Greek yogurt. Add sugar and whisk to combine. Mix in the eggs one at a time and then add in the zest and juice of one lemon. Pour mixture onto the crust and then bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes. It will still be jiggly when you take it out of the oven, don’t worry…it will firm up as it cools. Cool completely.
Lemon Curd — In a double boiler, whisk together the zest, juice, sugar, and eggs. When it is warm, add the butter, a little bit at a time. Stir until thick, about 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat and cool for 40 minutes. Pour onto the cheesecake and then refrigerate for 3 hours, or overnight.
Garnish with whipped cream and toasted slivered almonds.