Blood Orange No-Bake Mini Cheesecakes
You know what’s awesome? Coming home after a long week of work to find this waiting on your front porch.
But wait, I’m getting ahead of myself.
You might have heard me rave about my addiction to Greek yogurt once or twice or two thousand times. Wanna hear a secret?
I used to hate yogurt.
Then I found pineapple Chobani. I can’t remember now what inspired me to try it – if my mom or a friend told me about it, or if the pineapple just caught my eye at the store – but it’s been a non-stop Greek yogurt fest in my house ever since. And after listening to me rave about it for months and months, even my husband is hooked on it now! You could say I’m a little obsessed.
Ok, maybe a lot obsessed.
When I heard Chobani was rolling out 3 new flavors in 2012, suddenly it was the only thing I could think about. I had to try those new flavors. After weeks of searching and disappointment, I finally found myself in the dairy aisle face-to-face with a freshly stocked shelf of Chobani and all three new flavors. I could not believe my luck.
Now I expected to love the Apple Cinnamon flavor, but the Blood Orange Chobani took me by surprise. Who knew blood orange yogurt could be so good? It’s something about the combination of tangy blood orange and rich, creamy Greek yogurt. I was suddenly inspired!
“Wouldn’t this make a fantastic cheesecake?”, I asked myself while I contemplated licking the now empty container.
“It would… but only if it also had a chocolate crust.”, I answered myself.
I firmly believe chocolate makes everything better.
My first attempt at making these cheesecakes was meant to feature blood orange red hearts for Valentine’s Day. Awwww.
But plans went awry.
After baking, the hearts looked like smudges.
I tried to fix them. (I made it worse.)
Exasperated, I shoved the cheesecakes in the freezer and started over, sans hearts. Thankfully my second attempt was less cute but much more successful.
At first bite you taste the vanilla cheesecake and chocolate crust, but as the blood orange gelatin on top melts, it hits your tongue with that floral, slightly bitter blood orange flavor. You get creamy, rich, crunchy and zesty all in one bite.
Not to mention that color will brighten any dreary winter day instantly.
It’s a good thing they’re small or I would have devoured a whole 9-inch cheesecake by myself.
But wait! I almost forgot to mention the best part. On top of getting this lovely recipe from me, Chobani wants to send one of you lucky readers 12 cups of the new flavors – that’s 4 Apple Cinnamon, 4 Blood Orange, and 4 Passion Fruit yogurts! They’re still hard to find in stores (they keep selling out at my store) so you’ll want to jump on this. All you have to do is follow the rules below.
Chobani Giveaway Rules This giveaway is open to US residents only. One entry per person, please. Winner will be chosen at random from all entries received. Entries will be accepted until 5:00pm EST Monday, February 20th, 2012. Winner will be announced no later than 5:00pm EST Wednesday, February 22nd, 2012. TO ENTER: Simply leave me a comment with your favorite Chobani flavor or the one you’re most looking forward to trying. Easy.
(PS. Use a real email address so I can contact you later to claim your prize!)
Full Disclosure: Chobani sent me a case of the new flavors too. All opinions in this post are my own. I only like Valentine’s Day as an excuse to eat more chocolate. I have a terrible sense of direction. Beagles are my favorite. Also, I really need someone to come over to my house and help me eat all these cheesecakes.
The giveaway is closed and we have our winner – Congratulations Kerry!
OOH yay! I love Chobani too!!! My favorite is the pineapple but I would love to try the blood orange
Blood Orange No-Bake Mini Cheesecakes with Chocolate Crust
I highly recommend using a mini cheesecake pan with removable bottoms for this recipe. Technically you bake the crust for these mini cheesecakes, but the cheesecakes themselves are unbaked which is why the blood orange gelatin sets so prettily on top. There are several cooling steps, however, so be sure to read through and plan ahead accordingly! These should definitely be made in advance.
4 – 5 sheets chocolate graham crackers, crushed
1 tablespoon sugar
4 tablespoons salted butter, melted
4 ounces cream cheese
3 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons low or no-fat plain Greek yogurt
pinch of salt
7 tablespoons fresh squeezed blood-orange juice, strained
3/4 teaspoon unflavored gelatin powder (less than 1/2 packet)
2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon cornstarch
Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray 12-cup cheesecake pan with removable bottoms generously with baking spray.
Break graham cracker sheets apart along scored lines and place in food processor. Pulse until reduced to fine crumbs. With the processor running, pour in melted butter. Continue to pulse until blended. Crumbs should stick when pressed together.
Divide crumbs evenly among 9 cups of the prepared 12-cup pan, about 1 tablespoon of crumbs each. Press crust firmly into place. (The bottom of a shot glass ended up being perfect for this task.) Bake at 350°F for 8-10 minutes. Cool.
Beat cream cheese in a stand mixer with the paddle attachment until smooth. Add sugar, vanilla, lemon juice, Greek yogurt and salt. Beat on low until smooth. Divide cheesecake mixture evenly among crusts. Smooth tops. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
Once cheesecakes are firm, prepare blood orange topping. In a small bowl add 2 tablespoons blood orange juice and sprinkle with unflavored gelatin powder. Let stand until gelatin softens, about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, bring 4 tablespoons blood orange juice and sugar to a boil in a small saucepan. In a small cup or glass, stir together remaining 1 tablespoon blood orange juice and cornstarch. Whisk into boiling mixture. Remove from heat. Stir in softened gelatin. Cool until warm, 5-10 minutes. (While waiting, you can further smooth the tops of your cheesecakes with a damp finger, if needed.)
Pour gelatin mixture evenly over prepared cheesecakes, about 1/2 tablespoon each. Refrigerate until gelatin is set, at least 20 minutes. Keep chilled until ready to serve. Garnish with blood orange zest if desired.
Store covered in refrigerator.