There is absolutely nothing like the decadent smooth and creamy taste of cream cheese. But, truth be told, we’d almost forgotten about it! For many of us, whether it’s the dairy or the not so natural ingredients that sneak their way into the mix, this spread is absolutely off limits – not to mention a little too caloric.
This drool-worthy recipe for fruity, vegan cream cheese from blogger Heather Cox of Eat Real Food NYC is a game-changer! Not only is her cream cheese dairy-free, it’s made from absolutely pure and natural ingredients that add to the full flavor of this delicious spread. Filled with warming ginger, cinnamon, unrefined coconut sugar, juicy pears and even a dash of black pepper, we may give our avocado the month off and spread this on our toast instead…
I first tried pear cream cheese at a bagel store in the Hamptons and I was hooked! And then I found out what was in it. So I decided to try making my own healthy version and it turned out to be super easy. You can play around with this recipe and add whatever fruit or spice you like: apples or pears in the winter and perhaps apricots or peaches in the summer. Either way, the tofu base makes it super creamy and oh so delicious!
About the coconut sugar: You may need to add more than 3 to 4 tablespoons – depending how sweet you like it. Personally I think the pears are sweet enough, but everyone is different.
Vegan Cream Cheese With Ginger, Pear + Coconut
1 16-oz block of firm tofu (non-GMO and organic)
6-8 large pears, cored and roughly sliced
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp cinnamon
3-4 Tbsp coconut sugar
fresh cracked black pepper, optional
In a medium sized saucepan, bring the pears, ginger, cinnamon, coconut sugar and a little water to a boil. Cover and simmer for about 15 minutes or until soft, checking and stirring to make sure they don’t burn.
When ready, add the tofu and 1/2 of the stewed pears (minus any leftover liquid) to a food processor and pulse until creamy. Taste and if you think it needs more spice or sugar, add and pulse again.
When ready, chop up the remaining pears and mix through the tofu with a spoon.
Serve on your favorite locally made bread with crushed hazelnuts and a drizzle of honey or maple syrup.
Optional: Add a bit of cracked black pepper on top. I know it sounds weird but it’s actually really good!