Outrageously delicious Strawberry Cheesecake made with roasted (or reduced) strawberries for an intensely fruity flavour and utter perfection. Easy to make with a gluten free biscuit base.
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Introducing my summer-delicious Strawberry Cheesecake
Meet my incredibly delicious, super-showstopping Strawberry Cheesecake. It turned a few heads a while back when I shared a photo on social media of myself coincidentally holding it. And although I had not originally made it with any intention to share on the blog (it was created for visiting family), I figured that some of you might like the recipe.
I also tested subsequently as individual piped cheesecakes, so there is the option to vary dependent on your preference. However, I apologise in advance for the lack of photographs of the large version… As it was made for a family visit, I neglected to specifically photograph it for the blog… So, I am making do (for now) with the hastily taken snapshot of me holding it… However, as and when I make Strawberry Cheesecake again (and I most definitely will, because it’s THAT good), I will endeavour to update the pics.
Why choose this Strawberry Cheesecake Recipe?
If you google ‘Strawberry Cheesecake’, there are any number of recipes to choose from. However, they all vary considerably. So why should you choose this particular recipe? Well… There are several reasons… It’s…
- Outrageously DELICIOUS… Intensely strawberry, creamy and decadent.
- So SIMPLE, anyone can make it
- NO BAKE… (always a benefit)
- Show-stoppingly BEAUTIFUL
- Unlike the majority of strawberry cheesecake recipes out there, it uses ROASTED (or pan-syrupped) STRAWBERRIES in the filling. This intensifies the flavour to a whole new level. See below.
- The STRAWBERRY is actually IN THE CHEESECAKE FILLING and not just dumped on the top.
- It can also be made GLUTEN FREE with a simple sub.
Why is this a ‘no bake’ cheesecake?
I appreciate that there will be some people who challenge whether (if using oven-roasted strawberries) this cheesecake can be defined as ‘no bake’. It’s a fair challenge… But I am very clear that this cheesecake is ‘no bake’ for the following two reasons…
- There are two very clear types of cheesecake recipe. One does not require baking to make it set (a ‘no bake’ recipe) and the other does (often having eggs in the ingredients). Indeed the texture of each is very different. This Strawberry Cheesecake does NOT require baking to set and is thus ‘no bake’.
- If there is no available oven to roast the strawberries for my Strawberry Cheesecake, then it can be made without… As explained further down the post, the strawberries can be pulped and ‘reduced’ using a saucepan and hob.
Making Roasted Strawberry Cheesecake gluten free
As just mentioned, it is incredibly easy to make this Roasted Strawberry Cheesecake gluten free… In fact, it requires only one minor alteration to the recipe. And that is to switch the biscuits. Since all the other ingredients are naturally gluten free, this recipe is perfect for any dinner party, meal or celebration… Without having to make any extra ‘gluten free’ fuss!
Gluten Free Mcvities Hob Nobs and digestive biscuits are generally available in most good supermarkets (in the ‘Free From’ aisle, or on Amazon, clearly marked ‘gluten free’ on the box). Just make absolutely sure to use them to make a Gluten Free Strawberry Cheesecake.
The only other caution (particularly if those eating it have Coeliac Disease (Celiac) or a gluten allergy), is to double-check that the white chocolate used in the base and decoration is also gluten free. Check labels to ensure there is no hidden gluten listed (usually barley malt extract in chocolate), or ‘May Contain’ warnings.
Strawberry Cheesecake with white chocolate
With a nod to extra decadence (and because it’s a perfect pairing), my Strawberry Cheesecake has a hint of added white chocolate in the mix… Specifically, it has some white chocolate chips mixed into the biscuit base and white chocolate drizzled over the top. What this brings is a perfect texture-snap and flavour harmony of vanilla-rich white chocolate against the creamy, intense strawberry filling…
Of course, adding white chocolate chips in the base, or even as decoration, is entirely optional. So, if the idea of Strawberry and White Chocolate Cheesecake doesn’t float your boat, simply leave it out.
Why roast the strawberries for this ‘no bake’ cheesecake?
Okay… I’m aware that roasting strawberries to make a cheesecake is an extra step in the process. And yes.. roasting involves an oven which may be considered ‘baking’. But please don’t let that put you off… Because without doubt, it has been a GAME CHANGER in making the BEST Strawberries and Cream Cheesecake I have ever eaten. (And there is an alternative to the oven if required…)
There are two key reasons why I choose to roast the strawberries…
- Roasting the strawberries reduces the liquid content and in so doing, massively intensifies the strawberry flavour, while remaining entirely natural.
- By reducing the liquid content, the cheesecake filling remains thick and 100% creamy. There is no ‘watering down’ of either flavour or consistency… And that also means less anxiety about whether it will properly set or not.
Although I would always recommend roasting (because it offers extra caramelisation in the flavour), if you prefer a speedier method that will give the same intensity and moisture reduction, then simmer and syrup the strawberries on the hob in a saucepan instead… See below.
How to roast strawberries for Strawberries and Cream Cheesecake
If you’ve never roasted strawberries before, don’t panic. It’s the easiest thing to do…
- Place the de-stalked and hulled strawberries with a sprinkle of sugar in a foil-lined oven-proof dish.
- Leave to stand for 15 minutes or so, while the oven pre-heats.
- Give the strawberries a little stir, before roasting for 50 to 60 minutes, until soft and sticky and the juice has reduced to a syrup.
- Cool a little, before scooping out the strawberries (and ALL the sticky syrup) ready to use.
- For making Roasted Strawberry Cheesecake, blend the sticky strawberries into a smooth purée.
Reducing strawberries on the hob (the alternative to roasting)
As I said, there is always the option to reduce the strawberries on the hob, if you can’t be bothered to roast them. You won’t get the same degree of caramelisation that you would with the harsh, dry heat of the oven… But it will offer the same reduction of moisture and intensity of flavour…
Place the hulled strawberries and sugar in a pan and gently heat. Stir until the strawberries soften and break down (squishing them against the sides of the pan to help break them). Then simmer for a few minutes (stirring intermittently) until the liquid has reduced to a thick syrup. Lastly, cool and puree for the cheesecake.
Get ahead with strawberry preparation
Whichever method is chosen to reduce the strawberries, I absolutely recommend that you use one or the other… Seriously, it makes the difference between an average or incredible cheesecake!
And yes… It is an extra step. But it’s one that can be done well ahead of time (up to 3 days, stored in the fridge). In fact… It’s better if done ahead of time. Because that will ensure the strawberries are completely chilled and ready to use when you need them.
The Cream Cheese used to make Strawberries and Cream Cheesecake
Again, no bake cheesecake recipes vary in the ingredients used for the filling. I personally like a combination of tangy Philadelphia and rich, Italian Mascarpone. It’s simply about balance of flavour (Phili cheese on its own can be ‘over-tangy’) as well as the ‘sumptuosity’ rating.
Bear in mind however, that Philadelphia cheese varies depending on where you live in the world. So if you are in the US, you need the firmer block variety. In the UK, it comes in a tub.
How to melt white chocolate to decorate your Strawberry Cheesecake
Melting white chocolate seems to be more tricky and temperamental (in my experience) than melting dark chocolate. My understanding is that it comes down to the lack of cocoa solids. Either way, it burns easily and cannot tolerate high levels of heat. So… Having been caught out too many times with seized white chocolate, here are my tips for melting, so that it is perfectly drizzleable and ready to decorate your Strawberry Cheesecake…
Melting white chocolate using indirect heat is essential…
- I would recommend melting in a ‘double boiler’… That is, use a saucepan with a small amount of water on the hob and a pyrex glass bowl (I have never been very successful with metal).
- Set the bowl on top of the saucepan, making absolutely sure the bottom is NOT touching the water.
- Place the white chocolate in the bowl and very gently heat the water underneath so that it is JUST about simmering. Anything hotter and the chocolate is likely to ‘burn’ and seize.
- Stir very gently with a silicone or wooden spoon (so there is no additional heat transfer), until the chocolate has melted and can be drizzled.
REALLY IMPORTANT: Do NOT let ANY water (not even a drop) get into the chocolate bowl. Chocolate and water are never a good mix and it will result in instant seizure and clumpy chocolate that cannot be saved.
Although technically, you can also melt white chocolate in the microwave on low, short bursts, it is never as controllable. And I have had too many disasters because the bowl has overheated or I have gone a second or two over. Stick with the hob method.
Choice of chocolate
When melting white chocolate, it is also essential to use only chocolate that comes from a bar or baker’s Callets. NEVER use chocolate chips that are intended for baking into cookies, etc, as they are likely to contain added stabilizers which seriously affect meltability.
Check the bar for any hidden gluten (if gluten free). And break the chocolate into small pieces to that it melts more easily.
Essential equipment needed to make no bake Strawberry Cheesecake
If you are a keen cook or baker, then the equipment needed to make a no bake Strawberry Cheesecake is probably already in your kitchen. However, here are the basics and the bits of kit I use…
- Mixing Bowls – Needed for mixing the base, filling and whisking the cream.
- Pyrex bowl – To melt the white chocolate
- Kitchen Scales – I always weigh liquids as well as solid ingredients when cooking. Did you know that 1 ml of liquid = 1 gram?
- A sturdy Electric Whisk for the filling and cream. I recently replaced my old whisk with a KitchenAid hand whisk. It’s honestly the best one I’ve ever owned.
- Blender – to purée the strawberries. Most blenders will work well, as long as it is powerful enough to break the fruit down to a smooth purée. I have a handful of options in my kitchen, but the one I always use (because it is incredibly efficient) is my PROMiXX MiiXR X7. It’s fabulous.
- For a single large cheesecake, it’s essential to use a deep, non-stick springform tin (so that you can remove the cheesecake in one piece). I use an 8 inch (20 cm) Masterclass Tin.
- If making individual cheesecakes, a muffin/small cake tin will be required to set the biscuit at least. Because it has perfectly straight sides, I used a Masterclass 12-hole Mini Sandwich Tin with loose bases.
- A spatula/spoon to fold, stir and also get every last bit of yummy mixture from the bowl. I use a spatula-spoon, which may just be the best invention ever.
- And for pretty cream swirls… a piping bag with a nozzle is required. I’m a bit of a fan of the Lakeland ‘Get a Grip’ disposable piping bags. But you’ll also need a nozzle too… I use an open star tip.
Ready to make Strawberry Cheesecake?
Hopefully, that’s all you need to know to make the most incredible, head-turning, super-delicious Strawberry Cheesecake. Don’t forget to let me know if you make it. Leave a comment at the bottom, rate the recipe and tag me on social media with your decadent cheesecake photos. I have social media accounts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest (#glutenfreealchemist). I’d love for you to give me a ‘follow’ too. And if you haven’t done already, why not sign up for our weekly update email. It means you’ll never miss any of our recipes! (Leave your details in the box at the bottom or on the Homepage).
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With my love
Strawberry Cheesecake (no bake)
- oven (to roast strawberries)
- oven-proof dish
- kitchen foil
- large plastic food bag + rolling pin
- Small saucepan
- 8 inch/20 cm deep non stick springform cake tin (for large cake)
- mini cake tin (ie. suitable 12 hole muffin tin with loose bases) (if making mini cakes)
- 300 g Hobnobs (or digestive biscuits or 50:50 ratio of each) – gluten free as required
- 150 g unsalted butter melted
- 50 g white chocolate chips
- 350 to 400 g strawberries hulled
- 2 tsp caster sugar (superfine sugar)
- 350 g Philadelphia cream cheese
- 250 g Mascarpone cream cheese
- 100 g icing sugar (confectioners/powdered sugar)
- 250 ml/g double cream (heavy cream)
- 60 g white chocolate good quality (meltable bar or callets) – for drizzling (Do not use baking chocolate chips)
- 200 ml/g double cream (heavy cream)
- 14 fresh strawberries approx – dependent on whether making large or individual cheesecakes
- white or strawberry chocolate buttons optional
Roast and puree the strawberries – in advance to allow time to cool (OR alternatively, reduce on the hob – See NOTES below)
- Completely line a shallow oven-proof dish with foil.
- Wash and hull the strawberries. Cut into halves or leave whole as you wish (and dependent on the size of the strawberries).
- Transfer the strawberries to the prepared dish and sprinkle with a little sugar. Leave to stand for 15 to 20 minutes at room temperature.
- Pre-heat the oven to 200 C/400 F/Gas 6.
- Give the strawberries a little stir, before placing them in the oven.
- Roast for 50 to 60 minutes, stirring intermittently, until the strawberries are soft and sticky and the juice has reduced to a syrup.
- Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tray.
- Once the strawberries have reached the point of being just warm, scoop and scrape them into a blender (making sure to include all the sticky goo from the tray).
- Blend into a smooth puree and set aside in the fridge to chill.
- Crush the biscuits into crumbs either in a food processor or place in a strong large plastic food bag and bash with a rolling pin.
- Transfer to a large mixing bowl and stir with the melted butter until the mixture looks evenly 'damp'.
- Add and mix in the chocolate chips.
- Transfer the mixture to either a deep 8 inch (20 cm), non-stick springform baking tin or divide between individual holes in a suitable muffin/mini cake tin.
- Press the biscuit mixture down (using the back of a spoon or a flat-bottomed glass) to compress and make an even, firm base.
- Place in the fridge to set for about 30 minutes while you make the filling.
Strawberry Cheesecake Filling
- Using an electric whisk and in a large clean bowl, briefly beat together the two types of cream cheese and the icing sugar until combined and smooth.
- Add the strawberry puree and beat briefly to combine.
- Add the cream and continue to beat until the mixture has thickened.
- For a single large cheesecake – transfer the cheesecake filling to the tin on top of the biscuit base and smooth the top.
- For small, individual cheesecakes – either remove the bases and pipe the cheesecake mixture onto the biscuit. OR divide the mixture evenly between the mini cake tins. (IMPORTANT NOTE: If the cake tins do not have removable bases, remove the biscuits first and use the piping method).
- Place in the fridge to chill and set for at least 3 to 4 hours.
White Chocolate Drizzle
- When the cheesecake is set, carefully remove from the tin and transfer to a serving plate. (See NOTES at the bottom re how to remove a large cheesecake from the tin).
- Melt the white chocolate by placing in a heat-proof pyrex bowl over a saucepan of just simmering water (low heat & do not allow the bowl to touch the water). Stir frequently, but gently until almost melted. Then remove from the heat and continue to stir until smooth.
- While the chocolate is at its runniest, use a spoon to drizzle across the surface of the cheesecake.
- Place the cheesecake back in the fridge to set the chocolate while whipping the cream.
Whipped cream and remaining decoration
- Whisk the cream until it is just holding its shape.
- Using a piping bag and an open-star nozzle (or nozzle of choice), pipe swirls of whipped cream around the top edge of the cheesecake.
- Top some or all of the cream swirls with fresh strawberries (or optional chocolate buttons) and place a couple of strawberries in the centre of the cheesecake.
- Refrigerate until ready to eat. Enjoy decadently.
- Unclip the tin a tiny bit and very carefully run a flat-sided/butter knife around the edge of the cheesecake.
- Next, carefully open the spring of the tin completely.
- Open the tin as wide as possible and very gently lift it off and over the cheesecake. You can alternatively opt to carefully push the cheesecake up through the sides of the tin with your hand supporting the base, but I find it cleaner and easier to work the other way round if the tin will open wide enough.
- Use a palette knife to carefully loosen the biscuit base of the cheesecake from the tin.
- With the support of a couple of palette knives/fish slice/cake lifter, transfer the cheesecake to the serving plate.
- If you wish, you can smooth the sides of the cheesecake gently using a flat/butter or palette knife.
© 2019-2023 Kate Dowse All Rights Reserved – Do not copy or re-publish this recipe or any part of this recipe on any other blog, on social media or in a publication without the express permission of Gluten Free Alchemist