Food & Drink

Radhi Devlukia-Shetty’s baklava cheesecake recipe

This dreamy dessert is entirely vegan.

Radhi Devlukia-Shetty’s baklava cheesecake recipe
Radhi Devlukia-Shetty’s baklava cheesecake recipe (Alanna Hale)

According to Radhi Devlukia-Shetty, this recipe makes for an extremely memorable treat.

“And it’s so easy: just a flaky filo base topped with a crushed buttery cookie layer, followed by a baklava topping, then finished off with a cheesecake filling.”

Baklava cheesecake


(Serves 8)

Total time: 1½ hours, plus soaking and setting time

For the filo and cookie crust:

Softened vegan butter for the pan

200g digestive biscuits or another crunchy cookie

2tbsps unsalted vegan butter, melted

10 sheets of filo (see note)

For the nut crumble:

280g walnuts

60g pistachios

Grated zest of 1 orange

1tsp ground cinnamon

140g agave nectar or vegan honey

For the cheesecake filling:

120g cashews, soaked for 30 minutes and drained

180ml coconut cream (see note)

180g plain vegan cream cheese

60ml maple syrup or agave nectar

60ml fresh lemon juice (about 2 lemons)

1tbsp cornflour

Radhi Devlukia-Shetty’s baklava cheesecake recipe
Radhi Devlukia-Shetty’s baklava cheesecake recipe (Alanna Hale/PA) (Alanna Hale)


1. Make the filo and cookie crust: Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/Gas 4. Lightly butter the base and sides of a 20 centimetre springform tin.

2. In a food processor, combine the cookies and melted butter and pulse until the mixture looks like wet sand.

3. Working quickly so the filo doesn’t dry out, layer the filo sheets all along the sides and base of the tin, covering the whole tin. Press the cookie crumb mixture on top of the filo. Set aside while you make the nut crumble.

4. Make the nut crumble: In a food processor, combine the walnuts, pistachio, orange zest and cinnamon and pulse until roughly ground. Add the agave and pulse again to combine. Dollop about half of the nut mixture over the crust and set the remainder aside until serving time.

5. Make the cheesecake filling. In a high-powered blender, combine the cashews, coconut cream, cream cheese, maple syrup, lemon juice and cornflour and blend until completely smooth. Taste and adjust the flavours as you like, adding more lemon juice for tang or maple syrup for sweetness.

6. Pour the filling over the nut mixture. Give the pan a good tap on the worktop to remove any air bubbles. Bake until the edges of the cheesecake start browning and come away from the sides, for 45-60 minutes. The centre should still be a little jiggly but not wet.

7. Leave the cheesecake to cool for about 15 minutes at room temperature. Cover and transfer the cake to the fridge for at least five hours, but ideally overnight.

8. Dollop the top of the cheesecake with the reserved nut crumble. Slice and serve with a drizzle of (vegan or cashew) cream.

Note: You could also make this cheesecake without the filo layer. You would just start by pressing the cookie layer into the tin without buttering it first. You can either buy a tin of coconut cream or you can refrigerate coconut milk for 30 minutes and skim off the thick cream at the top. Thai coconut milk is perfect for this as it tends to be creamier.

JoyFull: Cook Effortlessly, Eat Freely, Live Radiantly by Radhi Devlukia-Shetty is published in hardback by Thorsons, priced £22. Available now.