The Best Dairy Free Cheesecake

I don’t label a lot of things the best. It’s a bold statement that leads to major expectations. When it comes to The Best Dairy Free Cheesecake however, I am confident that both the flavor and texture will be the best your ever had. Just ask Stylist Magazine who included this in their 5 of the Best Cheesecake Recipes.

Vanilla Bean Cheesecake

Can we just pause for a moment and gaze upon the texture of this cheesecake? When creating recipes that are gluten free and dairy free, I never want people to think they’re good for being gluten free. Or they’re good for being dairy free. I want them to think they’re great! Explanation point. Period. This cheesecake gives you all the creamy luxurious texture and rich tang you crave when it comes to cheesecake. It’s so good, you might not be able to share!

Let’s Talk Ingredients

It has taken me countless tries to come up with just the right flavor and texture for a dairy free and gluten free cheesecake. So when I say this is The Best Dairy Free and Gluten Free Cheesecake it’s because I have trialed and error with many different products and combination of products.

When it comes to some recipes I will recommend you use what you like, but for this particular recipe to achieve just the right decadent texture, I am going to recommend specific products.

The Best Dairy Free Cheesecake

This recipe calls for both Dairy Free cream cheese and also Dairy Free sour cream. I have tested this with both Kite Hill cream cheese and also Tofutti cream cheese and sour cream. In addition, you can also use a combination of the two.

Besides the cheese portion of The Best Gluten Free and Dairy Free Cheesecake, let’s talk vanilla. This cheesecake gets a double dose of vanilla in both vanilla extract and vanilla paste. You want to use a high quality vanilla extract for a more intense true vanilla flavor.

While vanilla extract has an alcohol base that evaporates as it bakes, leaving behind a faint vanilla flavor, the vanilla bean paste is thicker, including the beans, or caviar of the vanilla beans. This gives you the unmistakable little flecks of vanilla confetti.

Baking The Best Dairy Free Cheesecake

In addition to being the best bite of cheesecake, this dessert couldn’t be easier. Unlike many recipes, there’s no need for a water bath. Let me walk you through the simple steps.

First, let’s start with the crust. To achieve the perfect sandy fine grain crumb, I like to add my Gluten Free graham crackers to a blender. This will give you an even consistency that will mix well with the melted Dairy Free butter.

Make sure you spray your 9″ spring form pan well with non stick baking spray. Using a spring form pan will make for an easy release of this cheesecake.

Vanilla Bean Cheesecake

When it comes to making your cheesecake batter, let your mixer do all of the work. Add your eggs, sugar, and vanilla bean paste and let it mix until it’s light and fluffy. This will take about five minutes.

You want to make sure your Dairy Free cream cheese is at room temperature. This will help everything mix into a smooth and creamy texture. It should be thick, luscious, and decadently creamy.

When you’re ready to bake your cheesecake, place it on the center rack in the center of your oven. This cheesecake bakes for 45 minutes. No peeping! I know it’s tempting to crack open that oven door and check on things, but keep the oven shut during the entire bake time. You want to maintain that consistent even heat.

Allow your cheesecake to cool off. Let it sit out for 1 hour so it can cool and come to room temperature before putting it in the refrigerator and allowing it to chill for 4 hours. The most difficult part of this cheesecake is the waiting!

Are you looking for more dessert inspiration? Make sure you check out my recipe for Gluten Free Caramel Apple Upside Down Cake. Now let’s get baking!

Top Tip for The Best Dairy Free Cheesecake

Is there anything better than sinking your fork into a creamy slice of cheesecake? It should be a decadent and sumptuous experience. Make sure to always let your creamy cheese come to room temperature. This will make it easy to mix together and allow it to be lump free.

In addition, Do not open your oven door during that first 45 minutes of baking. After 45 minutes if it seems too jiggly, let it bake for an additional 10-15 minutes. It will still have slight movement but shouldn’t be runny.

Let’s Talk About Dairy Free Cheesecake Jiggle

I’ve attached a video that showcases the ideal amount of jiggle you should look for when it’s time to pull your cheesecake out of the oven. When you see your cheesecake jiggling just like in the video, it’s time to take that cheesecake out! Be patient; the residual heat will continue to set the center as it cools and sets in the refrigerator. Also, ensure the top isn’t overly shiny; the edges should be perfectly set with a slight golden appearance. Note that this advice is specific to dairy-free cheesecakes, and while all recipes can be made with full dairy, the full dairy version won’t exhibit as much jiggle. 

the best dairy free and gluten free cheesecake

The Best Dairy Free Cheesecake

This decadent and creamy cheesecake is rich with sweet vanilla flavor.
5 from 6 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
chilling time: 5 hours


  • Mixing Bowl
  • Blender
  • Mixer
  • 9" springform round pan


Gluten Free Crust

  • 2 3/4 cups graham crackers
  • 10 tbsp butter, melted
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Cheesecake Filling

  • 16 oz cream cheese, room temperature see note
  • 12 oz sour cream see note
  • 1 egg
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3 tbsp vanilla extract the higher quality, the more intense the flavor
  • 1 1/2 tbsp vanilla paste


Gluten Free Crust

  • Add the graham crackers to a blender and pulse until they form a sandy texture with fine crumbs.
  • Pour the crumbs into a bowl with the melted butter and the cinnamon. Mix until fully combined.
  • Spray a 9"springform pan with non stick baking spray. Pres the crumbs into the bottom of the pan and up onto the sides. You can use the bottom of a measuring cup to help make them even and firmly compacted.
  • Place in the fridge until you are ready for the filling.

Cheesecake Filling

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a mixing bowl add the sugar, eggs, and vanilla bean paste. Mix on high for 5 minutes. The mixture should be light and fluffy and the sugar mostly dissolved.
  • Add the room temperature cream cheese and mix for 3 minutes. It should be fully incorporated and smooth.
  • Add the remaining ingredients and mix for 3 more minutes. The mixture will be thick and creamy.
  • Slowly pour into the prepared springform pan. Place it on the center rack in the center of the oven.
  • Bake for 45-60 minutes depending upon your oven. Do not open the oven door during this time.
  • Remove and allow to sit out for 1 hour, cooling off and coming to room temperature.
  • Refrigerate for 4 hours. Slice and enjoy!



I have tested many different varieties of Dairy Free products and found that using Toffuti and Kite Hill give the best results. You can use either for the cream cheese/sour cream mixture, or a combination of the two. 
Tried this recipe?Mention @TheSaltyCooker or tag #thesaltycooker!


  1. 5 stars
    I made this cake this weekend and is delicious. But I have a question, can I check if the cake is fully cooked using a toothpick? When I baked it, after the 45 minutes the cake was still fluffy so I let it cook for extra 10 minutes. At the end the cake tasted very good but it was fluffy in the middle.

    1. Hello, I wouldn’t recommend testing a cheesecake with a toothpick. Once it bakes at 45 minutes, remove and let it come to room temp then place in the fridge. This should be a thicker creamy style cheesecake. Thank you.

        1. Hello, Great question. I have never made this in advance to freeze. If you do try it, I feel it would be best to store in an airtight container.

    2. Hi
      I want to make this recipe but I can’t get sour cream will it work with single cream but beat it before using?
      Thank you

      1. 5 stars
        Any suggestions for convection baking ?
        Do you recommend convection & what temp ? Do you put yours on Bake ? Considering adding maple syrup/coconut sugar instead..Any advice here ?
        Thank you !

        1. Hello, for the oven. I would follow the typical difference in temperature time from a standard oven. You can substitute different sugars but it will effect the taste

  2. 5 stars
    First off, there are not even stars for this review. Absolutely the best dairy free/gluten free cheesecake I ever made in my life. So creamy and the flavor profile was on point. My family loved it too! I added some fresh strawberry sauce on top! 1000/10

  3. 5 stars
    I adapted this to make a chocolate cheesecake and a colleague said it was the best cheesecake she’s ever had, dairy-free or otherwise (even compared to the fully dairy chocolate cheesecake I brought in last week)

    I used Kite hill cream cheese and tofutti sour cream (halved quantifies to fit in a 6-inch springform pan) and added 6 oz of melted cooled dark chocolate before cooking at high pressure on a trivet in my instant pot with 1.5 cups of water in the bottom for 35 minutes and then a 10-minute natural release. Also used gluten-free oreos and vegan butter for the crust.

  4. I want to make 12 mini cheesecakes with this recipe, with other cheesecake recipes I usually just half the recipe. Do you think that is a possibility with this recipe?

  5. 5 stars
    I am hoping it turns out, smells fantastic, it was a more runny consistency vs regular cheesecake I make. Baked 55 min as very jiggly 45 minute check. I think I have baked to long, color looks great but some cracking on thr edge. Plan to refrigerate overnight before slicing. Will be user error if it doesn’t turn out. Thanks again for the fun cheesecake recipe.

  6. Do you think this could be made without cane sugar? Like coconut sugar, honey or maple syrup? I am trying to make for a friend that is no-cane sugar, no dairy, no gluten.

    1. Absolutely- With using honey or maple syrup, these tend to be sweeter. I would reduce the amount by 25%. Also with this adding more liquid, you may need to reduce your dairy slightly. Coconut sugar or date sugar are another great replacement

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