I love Thanksgiving food. Cranberries and stuffing? Yes, please. Some more sweet potatoes? Pile on some bread sticks or biscuits and gravy and call it a day. Who could miss turkey? Thanksgiving is all about the side dishes anyway.

Except for dessert. Dessert is an equally important part of Thanksgiving. Naturally, one’s mind wanders to pumpkin pie. I’m not a huge pumpkin pie fan myself, it’s just never quite been my thing. But I do love me some pumpkin. If you don’t already have your heart set on your T-Day menu, you may want to consider this decadent dessert.

The Pumpkin Cinnamon Swirl Cheesecake.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Swirl Cheesecake (from The 100 Best Vegan Baking Recipes)
Prep time: 35 minutes
Difficulty level: 4 whisks (rated from 1-5 in terms of difficulty, but it’s not so difficult as it is detailed)

I love pumpkin. The only thing I love more than pumpkin is cheesecake. The combination: a Thanksgiving masterpiece. This is a moist, dense cheesecake, mixed with the spiced pumpkin swirls and intense cinnamon ribbons laced through it, you’ll want to save room for this one. You don’t have to bake this cake in a water bath, but you certainly can for slightly creamier results and without the top cracking (like the pictures, which were from a non-water bathed cake).

3/4 cup flour
1 teas. pumpkin pie spice
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup margarine, softened
1 teas. molasses
1 tbsp. milk

2 8 oz. containers of soy cream cheese
1 aseptic container firm tofu- Mori Nu brand is what I use
1 cup of sugar, divided
3 tbsp. cornstarch
2 teas. vanilla
1 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix)
2 teas. pumpkin pie spice
1 teas. milk
1 tbsp. cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease the bottom and sides of a 9 inch springform pan.

First, make the crust. In a small bowl mix together the flour, 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice and sugar. Add the margarine, molasses and milk and combine until crumbly. Press into the bottom of the prepared springform and bake for 12 minutes.

While crust is baking, combine cream cheese, tofu, 1/2 cup of the sugar, 2 tbsp of the cornstarch and vanilla in a food processor or blender. Blend well until all is incorporated, scraping down the sides as needed. Pour 1 1/2 cups of mixture into a bowl and set aside. Add remaining 1/2 cup sugar, 1 tablespoon of corn starch, pumpkin pie puree and pumpkin pie spice. Process until well blended.

From reserved, vanilla cheesecake mixture reserve 3 tablespoons in a small bowl. Add milk and 1 tablespoon cinnamon to the reserved 3 tablespoons. Mix well to incorporate.

In the springform pan, alternate 1/2 cups of the vanilla and pumpkin cheesecake mixtures on top of the crust. Drizzle the cinnamon mixture on top of the vanilla and pumpkin in thick stripes. Lightly wiggle the pan to help the contents settle. Draw a knife though the batter several times to marble the batter.

Bake for 45-50 minutes, (in a water bath, if using) until center is still slightly jiggily but set. Let cool completely then let set in fridge for at least 2 hours before serving. Best if made the night before so the spices have time to meld. Store leftover cake covered, in fridge.

Yields: 12 slices

One thing that makes this cake priceless for holiday meal planning is that it actually tastes better if you make it the night before so the flavors can come together, so then it’s one less thing to worry about on Thanksgiving Day. And trust me, this cheesecake is something to be thankful for!

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16 Responses to gobble, gobble

  1. Kathleen says:

    genius! and lovely to look at.

  2. Nora says:

    I can’t get over how pretty it is! :)

  3. emmalee13 says:

    mmm, I made this recently and it was amazing! Thanks for so many great vegan recipes!

  4. Kiersten says:

    How pretty! I was never a fan of cheesecake when I was an omni. I have a feeling I might like a vegan version though, especially a pumpkin one!

  5. Ricki says:

    Beautiful, and looks so decadent! The combination of the cream cheese and pumpkin swirled together must be heavenly. Happy Thanksgiving! :)

  6. Okay, this post is my cue to go get the Silk Pumpkin Spice soymilk I just bought and pour a big tall glass. Damn, that cheesecake looks amazing!

    And I agree, Thanksgiving food is the best kind of food.

  7. Wow, this looks so so beautiful. Almost too beautiful to eat (almost!) Pumpkin, cinnamon, and cheesecake! What an excellent combo.

  8. Melisser says:

    That is gorgeous! I’ve been debating a Thanksgiving cheesecake!

  9. shannonmarie says:

    Thanks so much for stopping by my blog and inspiring one of my posts. Looks like you’re on a pumpkin and cheesecake kick again. Love it. Dessert really is the best edible part of Thanksgiving. I’ve never missed the turkey, although the kids and I usually construct one out of fruit.

  10. trinity says:

    That looks so beautiful. I am going to make this baby for Thanksgiving!

  11. JENNA says:

    Oh yum! I think I’ll be making this on Thanksgiving!

  12. Stacey says:

    Oh, I’m so in on this one. I don’t know how I could have overlooked this baby in the cookbook. Gonna make it for Thanksgiving! Thanks for posting the pics–I mean, looking at it, it’s begging to be made.

  13. Rachel says:

    OMG that is mouthwatering. I adore thanksgiving, and you’re right, I don’t even consider turkey with all those amazing side dishes around. I can’t wait – drool!

  14. Zupan's Markets says:

    Absolutely gorgeous presentation. If it tastes even half as good as it looks, it must be delicious!

  15. […] a hit though. Who knew such a simple cookie could be so popular? The main dessert was this pumpkin cinnamon swirl cheesecake. Tasty, but I think I would have liked it a little denser. Others liked the fact that it was a […]