Dec 01

Very Berry No-Bake Cheesecake

Very Berry No-Bake Cheesecake




Hello, hello one and all. We have officially entered my favourite month of the year … LET THE CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN BEGIN!! Today marks the first day of Advent and with that comes a constant reminder of all the Christmas prep that has yet to be done; only 24 days to go til the big day. Gasp!



Having said that, however, I am not feeling too Christmassy this year as there have been a fair few happenings in my life that are less than savoury. Spirits are somewhat low in our house, but as with all things unpleasant I believe the sunshine is just another cloud cover away. Have to keep busy and I have to keep thinking happy thoughts and all will be well again in due time.  *she says, reaching for another slice of cake to drown her sorrows*



Anyway, moving along to more pleasant things … cheesecake. Today I had a neighbour come over for a spot of tea and I know for a fact that she simply adores cheesecakes. The Dutch are not cheesecake people. Their shops are simply filled to the brim with deep-dish apple tarts and custard flans topped with fruit. It is quite rare that you’ll find cheesecake being sold in bakeries. So the last time I was at this neighbour’s house I brought with me a classic New York cheesecake and she loved it. Today, I decided to make the non-baked variety using a medley of berries and a jelly topping. Not sure if she’d respond positively to this but I was willing to find out. Simple and straightforward … this was all done within a few short hours. The longest time you will be spending on is waiting for everything to set properly.



All my cheesecakes are done in 8-inch round springform tins. Any bigger and I think we’d be stuck eating the same thing for weeks … but feel free to adjust this recipe to suit any size tin you prefer. Below is the ingredient list.





  • 1½ cups crushed sweet biscuits
  • 100 g unsalted butter, melted
  • 400 g cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 150 mls heavy cream
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup mixed berries
  • 6 gelatine sheets, softened
  • 1 box strawberry flavoured jello
  • 350 mls boiling water
  • extra fruit for garnish




As with any cheesecake recipe, start of with the base. Crush any sweet biscuit of your choice, either Graham crackers, Marie biscuits, Digestives or vanilla wafers. I got R. to crush them up for me in a Ziplock bag. Then pour melted butter over everything and mix until you get the “wet sand” look.


Spoon everything into a lined cake tin and press firmly with the back of a spoon. I don’t like putting my biscuit layer up the sides, but if you choose to do this then you will need a lot more biscuits, naturally. Shove it into the freezer to chill out while you get the filling done.


For the filling it is important that you have the cheese at room temperature to avoid lumps. Place it in a mixing bowl along with the sugar, vanilla extract and 80 mls of cream, saving the other 70 mls for later. Using a wire whisk, gently mix everything together until a smooth batter forms. You will not need to whisk air into it because you want to keep it fairly dense.


Heat the remainder of the cream in a microwave for 30 secs until hot, bit not boiling. Melt four of the six softened gelatine sheets in this hot cream. Stir and add this to the cream cheese mixture.


The berries you use can either be fresh or frozen, whichever it is you find more convenient. I used frozen ones and simply zapped them in the microwave for 30 secs to thaw. Macerate with two teaspoons of sugar and leave for five minutes. Then fold this into the cream cheese mix, ensuring you produce a marbled effect.




Very Berry No-Bake Cheesecake1





Very Berry No-Bake Cheesecake2





Remove the tin with the biscuit base from the freezer and pour in the cream cheese mixture. Give the tin a bit of a shimmy and a shake to settle everything, then place everything into the fridge to set. With the amount of gelatine used, it should only take an hour to set. Why? Coz the biscuit base and the tin is very cold having just come out of the freezer.



Once your cheesecake has set, you can then proceed to make your jelly topping. Use a packet of instant jello (strawberry flavoured) and empty the contents into a glass, heat proof bowl. Pour over the boiling water and stir until all the powder has dissolved. Now add the last two sheets of softened gelatine and stir to combine thoroughly. Set aside to cool to room temperature and then pour it over the now chilled cheesecake. Use a fine mesh sieve to catch any lumpy jelly bits. Return the cheesecake to the fridge to set the jelly … overnight is best … but you can get away with 4 hours if you really cannot bear to wait.



Before serving, unmould from the tin and garnish with more berries ~ I chose to use strawberries, blueberries and pomegranate ~ all mixed with a little bit of sugar to macerate. It’s important to strain off any juice before placing on top of the cake for a neater, cleaner look. If you simply lump the fruit on top you risk the juice running everywhere and making the biscuit crust soggy.




Very Berry No-Bake Cheesecake3




As you slice into this cake you will be greeted with very pleasing designs within from all the swirls of purples and reds. Taste-wise it was a winner, however I do believe the flavour will intensify if you leave it in the fridge for another night. Was very happy with the results of this cake and I know it will have to make an appearance at my next summer party. The important thing today was that my guest loved it enough to help herself to a second slice. I also sent her home with a healthy wedge of cheesecake, to be enjoyed whenever she needs to.








So there you go folks one more cheesecake recipe for the file, and the list keeps growing. I wonder what flavour I should do next? Definitely will go away to ponder over it and will hopefully get back to you in the not so distant future. In the meantime, you guys keep up the good work in your kitchens and I shall keep thinking happy thoughts for the rest of the month until Christmas.




~ Enjoy! ~







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