This delicious lemon protein Greek yogurt cheesecake recipe is easy and heavenly – it’s vegan, gluten-free, and super easy to make!
Confession: I eat this scrumptious “dessert” for breakfast AND as a pre/post-workout meal. This lemon greek yogurt cheesecake recipe has little or no cream cheese or butter, with a high-protein oatmeal crust and you won’t get enough of it!
Most cheesecakes require a huge chunk of full-fat cream cheese, egg, and loads of sugar. The crust also contains refined carbs and butter.
This Greek yogurt lemon cheesecake recipe, however, is totally different (but still tastes heavenly, if not more) because it is :
- high in protein
- gluten and nut-free
- No butter, oil, or fat if desired
- easily customizable
- simple to make
- batter-licking friendly
- freezer friendly
- filling, great for pre and post-workout
- ..do I need to give any more reasons?
Ingredients & Substitutions
Plain Greek yogurt – the filling, the base, the EVERYTHING. However, feel free you swap half or all the greek yogurt for any cream cheese you like, spreadable or block.
I’m using plain non-fat yogurt, but again, use whatever fat percentage of Greek yogurt you have. Also, I highly suggest using plain Greek yogurt because first off, Greek yogurt is thicker which creates a more creamy texture, while also containing more protein than other yogurts.
On the other hand, choosing unflavoured yogurt over flavoured ones is more healthy, as they contain no sugar.
Vegan protein powder adds richness and thickness to the batter, providing sweetness and more protein. I use Vega vanilla protein and greens for my recipes because they taste great, are vegan, sugar-free and mix well. I’m not sure if casein or whey protein powders will work, but please let me know how it turned out!
Also, if your protein powder is not sweet enough, or if you have a sweet tooth, you may need to add more sweetener.
Lemon juice and zest – Fresh, please! Lemons give the refreshing taste and feeling that I CRAVE. However, if you’re looking for a mild lemon taste or even just a hint of lemon, I suggest cutting back the lemon juice 🙂
The crust is similar to my protein-sugar-free quick granola recipe, but the ratios are a bit different. These are the ingredients.
Quick Oats/oat flour (gluten-free if needed) – I don’t care which one you use, it depends on your preference for a more crunchy crust (oat flour) or a more soft, chewy crust. A good substitution of oats is almond flour, but make sure to keep an eye on the texture of the crust batter to see if you need to add more or less liquid.
Protein powder – YEp, say hello to protein powder again! Of course, you don’t have to add it if you don’t want to, simply swap them out for almond flour or more oats.
Chia seed and Ground Flaxseed – a substitute for butter and egg for the crust. Feel free to use 2 tablespoons of just flaxseed or chia seed. These ingredients are great to sneak into your desserts for an extra nutritional and omega boost!
Lemon juice and zest – just a little bit more…
Tips and Tricks for the best lemon protein greek yogurt Cheesecake
- Taste test – Every protein powder and yogurt is different so be sure to keep an eye on the texture of the batter and crust, as well as the taste to adjust accordingly.
- Use your fingers to really spread out the crust to the sides to ensure an even layer of crust
- Don’t overbake the cheesecake – the cheesecake should be jiggly in the middle and underbaked. The cheesecake will firm up in the fridge, so don’t worry!
Q & A
How long can I keep the protein Greek yogurt cheesecake in the fridge and freezer?
The cheesecake can keep in the fridge for about one week, while it can keep in the freezer for months. To freeze the cheesecake, cut the cheesecake into desired slices, wrap it in parchment paper and then foil tightly and freeze.
To defrost, simply put the slice in the fridge overnight.
Why is my Greek yogurt cheesecake filling grainy?
There are two possible reasons for a grainy cheesecake filling
- Letting the filling batter sit for too long – simply explained, leaving mixed yogurt and too much lemon juice for 15 minutes or more is NOT good (think of buttermilk/curd)
For more questions, comments and suggestions, please feel free to tell me in the comments below!
Lemon Protein Greek Yogurt Cheesecake Recipe (Vegan, Gluten+Sugar free)
- 1/2 cup oat flour or steel cut oats
- 1 scoop vanilla vegan protein powder (or 1/4 cup)
- 1 tablespoon chi seeed
- 1 tablespoon ground flaxseeds
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest (squeeze more lemon juice if you want!)
- 1 cup plain greek yogurt
- 1/3 cup vanilla or lemon vegan protein powder
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest for garnish (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 190c / 375f
- make the vegan egg mixture. First add chia seeds, flaxseeds, 1 tsp of lemon juice and zest into a bowl, then add 1/2 cup of water and mix well
- In a medium size bowl, add the remaining crust ingredients and mix until combined.
- Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix until the mixture becomes a somewhat wet and crumbly dough.
- Transfer the mixture onto a small cheesecake or cake pan and use your fingertips to smooth and spread out the mixture evenly on and on the sides of the pan to form the crust of the cheesecake.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes, until dry and slightly golden brown
- In a medium-large bowl, add all the filling ingredients (yogurt, protein powder, lemon juice) and combine until no clumps are seen.
- When the crust is out of the oven, pour the filling batter into the crust and spread evenly. Add optional lemon zest or chopped walnuts for garnish
- Bake at 180c / 365f for 22 minutes. The cheesecake should be under-baked and jiggly in the center and top. DO NOT OVERBAKE
- Let cool completely, Cover the cheesecake with plastic wrap and let it sit in the fridge for at least 8 hours to set