Thick, creamy cheesecake made skinny with a little Greek yogurt, and naturally sweetened with maple syrup, these Skinny Mini Strawberry Cheesecakes are a great healthy party or Valentine’s Day dessert!
Have you made homemade cheesecake before?
I think cheesecake can be really intimidating. It’s hard to tell when it’s cooked through enough, and you have to cross your fingers and hope that it sets just right and that it doesn’t sink too much too!
And that’s why I love mini cheesecakes.
Mini cheesecakes take classic cheesecake and put them in a muffin tin, in individual sized servings, making the entire process faster, less intimidating, and more of a fun treat!
These Mini Strawberry Cheesecakes are made “Skinny” with a little Greek yogurt, light cream cheese, a grain-free nut crust, and sweetening this dessert only with maple syrup (or honey) for a refined sugar-free dessert.
Besides being a healthier treat, these mini cheesecakes are little bites of strawberry cream cheese Heaven! Thick, creamy cheesecake, with a sweet and crunchy nut crust, topped with a strawberry sauce. YUM! 🙂
So, first, let’s dig into some ingredients.
Let’s start at the crust.
You’ll need a mixture of pecans, maple syrup, water and a little butter. You can use different nuts with a similar texture if you can’t/don’t eat pecans – like walnuts. You could also use the same crust recipe from my Skinny Mini Margarita Cheesecakes if you prefer a gluten-free graham cracker crust instead!
I like the nut crust because I think it adds a great texture to the crust. It’s almost like a sweet roasted nut crust. It holds together pretty well, but is a little messier than a graham cracker crust I think.
If you want something more traditional and more kid-friendly, you may want to go with a graham cracker crust. My kids love nuts so they like both crusts!
Next, let’s talk filling, working our way up from the bottom!
You’ll need cream cheese, Greek yogurt, maple syrup (or honey), vanilla and an egg. For the cream cheese, you can use regular or light.
For the Greek yogurt, I love and use plain Fage 2%. I would recommend something with 2% or full fat, for the texture of the cheesecake to be as close as possible to the original.
If you use fat free cream cheese and 0% Greek yogurt, the texture may be a little different. I like to use little substitutions, but not take it too far so it’s too different from the original!
Also, you can use plain or vanilla Greek yogurt, but you may want to reduce the amount of vanilla extract if you use vanilla yogurt (to 1/2 or 3/4 tsp), as this recipe is specific to plain.
The most important thing about the filling will be adding the egg in at the end and lightly beating it into the mixture. Don’t over mix your cream cheese filling after you add your egg in!
And now, the sweet strawberry sauce on top.
The strawberry sauce that I based this recipe off of is filled with white sugar, and I’m sure has a thick texture closer to jam or jelly.
But I wanted a sauce that was only lightly sweetened with maple syrup (or honey), with a little lemon juice and vanilla for a bright flavor. To ensure the flavor comes across right, be sure to use very SWEET strawberries!
If you don’t use sweet and juicy strawberries, this sauce will probably not be sweet enough and be too tart.
I recommend topping your cheesecakes with the sauce prior to serving, after both the cheesecakes and the sauce have chilled in the fridge. If you’re serving these for a party later, you can keep the sauce separate until you serve them.
After the cheesecakes cool they get this perfect little sunken in well that the strawberry sauce sits in just right. You can add a little cool whip on top for a pretty touch too!
These Skinny Mini Strawberry Cheesecakes are such a fun party dessert or cute Valentine’s Day treat. They’re easy to share with adults and kids! And who doesn’t like strawberries?! 😉
- 1 cup pecans, chopped (or walnuts)
- 3 tbsp maple syrup (or honey)
- 2 tsp water
- 1 tsp butter, melted
- 8 oz cream cheese (light or regular)
- 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt (2% or full fat)
- 1/4 cup maple syrup or honey
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 egg
- 2 cups strawberries, chopped
- 2 tbsp honey
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
To begin, preheat your oven to 325. Fill a muffin tin with 10 cupcake liners.
In a small bowl, add your pecans, maple syrup, water and butter and stir them together till well combined.
Spoon an overflowing teaspoon into each cupcake liner, evenly distributing the maple pecan mixture among the cupcake liners.
Using the back of your teaspoon, press the pecans down into the bottom of the cupcake liner till you have a flat, even layer along the bottom to create the crust.
Bake in the oven for 13-14 minutes, or till the crust feels a bit firm to touch, and the edges are gaining a little color. While your crust is in the oven, make your cheesecake filling.
Preheat your oven to 350. In a large mixing bowl, using a hand mixer, beat your cream cheese for a minute or two till its creamy and smooth.
To the bowl, add your Greek yogurt, maple syrup, and vanilla and blend again till everything is well incorporated.
Lastly, add your egg to the bowl and blend briefly, only till the egg is mixed in. Do NOT over beat the mixture!
After your crusts have baked, fill each cupcake liner almost full to the top with the cheesecake filling.
Bake in the oven for 18-20 minutes, or till the cheesecakes are set (jiggle your pan and the center of the cheesecakes should have only a slight wiggle to them).
Let your cheesecakes cool for 30 minutes on the counter. Then, move them to an airtight container in your fridge.
To a pot, add your strawberries, honey, lemon juice and vanilla and bring the mixture a boil.
Reduce to a simmer, and simmer for 15 minutes, for the sauce to thicken a little. If you prefer to mash some of your strawberries while the sauce is simmering, you can.
Take the pot off, and let the strawberry sauce cool entirely.
Place in a mason jar and refrigerate. You will have extra strawberry sauce (which I recommend putting on top of pancakes!).
When you are ready to serve your Mini Cheesecakes, top each of them with a spoonful of strawberry sauce, and maybe a little cool whip on top too. Devour!
These cheesecakes last in the fridge about 5-6 days, when stored in an airtight container.