Pumpkin Cheesecake {Dairy-Free, Paleo}

Pumpkin…good. Cheesecake…great. Pumpkin Cheesecake…fantastic!


I was thinking about baking something delicious recently, that I hadn’t seen done on the interwebs, and struck up the idea for Dairy-Free Pumpkin Cheesecake. Ya’ll know I love me some pumpkin since I have done several posts on them (see here, here, & here), so it was only fitting to come up with an adapted recipe for those trying to do dairy-free. To be 100% transparent, I’m not completely dairy-free all the time, though I wish I had better willpower to do so. Remaining gluten-free 100% is no question…but the dairy still calls me back from time to time.

I decided to search for a regular pumpkin cheesecake recipe thinking I could easily swap out for dairy-free replacements. Go figure, the search revealed a recipe from the famous butter queen, Paula Deen. It was pretty easy knowing I would be using my favorite, legit dairy-free cream cheese: Kite Hill Cream Cheese (found at Whole Foods). If you haven’t explored the amazingness of Kite Hill Cream Cheese, you need do so STAT and watch a whole new world open up to you!

kite hill dairy free cream cheese

The tricky part would be the sour cream. No one has come up with a replica that I could buy, so I decided to make it myself. I have made sour cream recipes from Fed & Fit’s new cookbook, Against All Grain’s cookbook, and some I found randomly on the web. I will suggest the one I used, but am now thinking you could probably just use plain dairy-free yogurt from either Kite Hill or So Delicious (both are carrageenan-free).

Do yourself a favor and whip this up for the upcoming holidays–you will not be disappointed! I’m so glad that I finally have a dairy-free recipe to make that takes be back to my childhood.

PS: This crust is our go-to for all things pie, etc. Just leave out the cinnamon to make it a plain one.

Pumpkin Cheesecake {Dairy-free, Paleo}

Adapted from Paula Deen


Nut Crust:

To make this crust in a food processor, combine nut halves or pieces with the butter, sugar, and salt and pulse until the nuts are finely chopped.

  • 2 cups crushed walnuts, pecans, etc. OR ALL almond flour
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Prep Time: 10-15 minutes, Cook Time: 15 minutes

  1. Preheat oven to 375ºF.
  2. Grease a 9 or 10 inch pie pan or an 8 to 10 inch spring-form pan.
  3. Add chopped nuts or almond flour to bowl. Pour in remaining ingredients and mix with a fork until combined.
  4. Using your fingertips or the flat bottom of a drinking glass, press the mixture evenly over the bottom and sides of a pie pan or over the bottom and 1/2 inch up the sides of a spring-form pan.
  5. Bake until the crust is richly browned, 10 to 15 minutes.
  6. Check periodically during baking; if the crust has slipped down the sides of the pan, smooth it into place with the back of a spoon.
  7. Let cool before filling.


  • 2 (8-ounce) packages Kite Hill cream cheese, at room temperature
  • ½ can (15-ounce) canned pumpkin
  • 2 eggs plus 1 egg yolk
  • ¼ cup homemade sour cream or plain dairy-free yogurt
  • ¾ – 1 cup maple syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 tablespoon coconut flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Prep Time: 15-30 minutes, Cook Time: 1 Hour, Serves: 8

  1. Beat cream cheese until smooth. Add pumpkin puree, eggs, egg yolk, sour cream, sugar and the spices. Add flour and vanilla. Beat together until well combined.
  2. Pour into crust. Spread out evenly and place in oven for 1 hour. Remove from the oven and let sit for 15 minutes.

Notes: You can serve this with some coconut whipped cream by combining Coconut Cream (from coconut milk hardened in the fridge) and Sweetened Condensed Coconut Milk.

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