I’m inspired! Completely inspired! First it was I Am Baker, the author of the Surprise Inside Cakes cookbook and originator of so many incredible surprise cakes, that made me want to bake my very own surprise cake. But when I saw this Rainbow Tie Dye Surprise Cake on one of my favorite websites of all things rainbow, Tablespoon.com, I knew it was time to get in the kitchen and work some magic. Not only did I make my cake gluten free, grain free and dairy free, I also mixed my cake with raw cashew cheesecake to add a layer of serious decadence. Healthy cake? Yes please!

I soaked the raw cashews in water for 4 hours on the counter. I drained the cashews, washed them with fresh water then dried on paper towels. I made my soaked cashews a few days ahead of time so I put the dried cashews in an airtight container in the fridge, where they would stay fresh for 3-4 days. This is a great tip if you are planning to make cashew cheese but don’t know when you will be making it. Soak the cashews, refrigerate them and then you will have them ready whenever you are!

First come the cake, which is the surprise part of this cheesecake recipe. I made my favorite gluten free, grain free, dairy free chocolate cake recipe with just a few minor changes since I bake the cake in a loaf pan instead of a casserole dish. I refrigerated the cake so it wouldn’t fall apart as I sliced and cut stars out of it.

I thinly sliced the cake to the size of my star cookie cutter then cut out star shapes from the center of each slice. I stacked the stars and froze them uncovered until they were ready for the cheesecake.

I made the crust using these amazing gluten and grain free Ginger Cookies from The Detoxinista. I baked the cookies until they were extra crunchy, let them cool then crushed them and stirred in melted coconut oil. I pressed the cookies crust into the bottom of a foil lined and greased loaf pan.

Now here comes the fun part! I blended all of the cashew cheesecake ingredients together in my Vitamix until smooth and creamy. I poured the batter into a large piping bag then piped around 1 cup into the bottom of the pan, covering the crust. I set the frozen chocolate stars, standing up, down the middle of the pan.

I piped the remaining cheesecake batter around the stars and on top until all of the cake was covered. I smoothed the top of the cheesecake then covered it with wax paper then covered tightly with foil. I froze the cheesecake for at least 2 hours to set before slicing.

I removed the cheesecake from the freezer and carefully sliced it with a sharp knife. Check out those beautiful stars! You can freeze the cheesecake for up to 1 month and when you are ready to eat it, just defrost in the fridge for 30 minutes then slice.


Chocolate Star Surprise Cashew Cheesecake

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Gluten Free Chocolate Cake
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
1/2 cup coconut milk
2 eggs
1 1/4 cup almond flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
Cookie Crust
6-8 gluten free cookies of your choice
1-2 Tbsp coconut oil, melted
Raw Cashew Cheesecake
4 cups raw cashews, soaked in water for 4 hours or overnight on the counter
3/4 cup coconut oil, melted
1/2 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup pure maple syrup (or raw honey)
1/2 cup coconut milk
3 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt


Gluten Free Chocolate Cake
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F., line a 9×5 loaf pan with foil and grease it with coconut oil.
Combine 1 cup of the chocolate chips and coconut milk in a microwave safe bowl and warm in the microwave for 30 seconds. Stir the mixture and microwave it for another 30 seconds. Stir until the chocolate is completely melted in to the coconut milk. Slowly pour the egg into the chocolate mixture, whisking constantly. Add the almond flour, salt and baking soda and stir to combine.
Pour the batter into the loaf pan and bake for 40-45 minutes.
Cool the cake on the counter for an hour then cover it and place it in the fridge for at least an hour, to firm up the cake.
After chilling the cake, cut thin slices of the cake that are the size of your cookie cutter. Then in the center of each slice, cut out the stars, stack them in a pan or plastic container and freeze uncovered while you prepare the crust and cheesecake batter. Save the scraps for a trifle or just to snack on.
Cookie Crust
Line the same loaf pan that you bake the chocolate cake in with more foil and grease it with coconut oil.
Crush the gluten free cookies with a rolling pin or in a food processor then add 1 tablespoon of melted coconut oil and stir until all of the cookies are coated. If the cookies are still too dry, add another tablespoon of melted coconut oil.
Press the crushed cookie mixture into the bottom of the loaf pan and place it in the fridge to set.
Raw Cashew Cheesecake
Drain the cashews that have been soaking for 4 hours or overnight, wash with fresh water and dry them off.
In a food processor or blender, combine all of the cheesecake ingredients and process until smooth, for around 5 minutes. Scrape down the sides every few minutes to make sure the batter is perfectly smooth and all ingredients are combined. Pour the batter into a large pastry bag or large plastic storage bag.
Remove the loaf pan from the fridge, put around 1 cup of the cheesecake batter over the crust.
Set the chocolate stars slices, standing up, down the middle of the pan then pipe in the remaining batter around the stars and over the top. Smooth out the cheesecake batter with a spatula and make sure all of the chocolate cake is covered.
Cover the cheesecake with wax paper or parchment paper then with foil and freeze for at least 2 hours.
When ready to eat, remove the cheesecake from the loaf pan with the foil, peel off all of the foil and slice to reveal the chocolate star surprise inside.