Oven-Roasted Banana Rum Cheesecake

This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

Editor's Note: When life hands you bananas, make this recipe for Oven-Roasted Banana Rum Cheesecake! This easy vegan dessert recipe is one you'll want to serve for just about any occasion on your calendar. You'll love the contrast in flavor, as well as how easy it is to make this recipe. Just keep in mind it takes some time to prepare this cheesecake recipe, and that the dessert must be chilled completely before it can be served. Your family and friends will be amazed by how creamy this dessert is! This recipe will quickly become part of your go-to desserts.

A bunch of overripe bananas on the counter is a great excuse for whipping up this dessert. You want the skins to have a few brown spots-no green. It’s the moisture of the extra-ripe bananas that makes for the traditional cheesecake texture.

Makes6 to 8 servings

Preparation Time1 hr 50 min

Chilling Time3 hr

Cooking MethodBaking



Total Timehalf-day

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Occasional Fresco, Birthday, Buffet, Buffet Meal, Card Night, Casual Dinner Party, Family Get Together, Pool Party

Recipe CourseDessert

EquipmentFood Processor, Springform Pan

MoodAdventurous, Festive

Taste and TextureCheesy, Creamy, Fruity, Nutty, Rich, Spiced, Sweet

Type of DishCake, Cheesecake


  • 4 large, very ripe bananas
  • 1 cup grade B organic maple syrup
  • 4 tablespoons Earth Balance spread
  • Sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon dark rum
  • 1 cup pecan nut flour (see note below)
  • ½ cup spelt flour (white or whole)
  • 1 tablespoon firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons Earth Balance spread, partially melted
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 16 ounces non-dairy cream cheese
  • ¾ cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ cup dark rum
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • Toasted pecan halves


  1. Make the oven-roasted bananas: Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Place the unpeeled bananas on a roasting pan and roast in the center of the oven for 15 to 20 minutes, until the bananas are soft, the skins are dark brown, and some juice is seeping out. Let the bananas cool to room temperature in the pan in their skins. Set aside. Increase the oven temperature to 400 degrees F.

  2. Make the maple rum sauce: In a small saucepan, combine the maple syrup, Earth Balance, and salt to taste and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring frequently, until the sauce has thickened slightly, about 10 minutes.

  3. Remove from the heat and add the rum, stirring well; be careful, as the sauce will bubble up a bit. Let cool for a few minutes, then taste and add more salt if necessary. Cool to room temperature, then transfer to a squeeze bottle. The sauce can be rewarmed by putting the bottle in a pan of hot water off the heat.

  4. Make the spiced pecan crust: Combine all the crust ingredients in a bowl and stir until well incorporated. Press the crust into a 9-inch springform pan and put in the freezer for 5 minutes. Bake in the center of the oven for 8 to 10 minutes, until the crust looks a little dry and the edges are light golden. Remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

  5. Make the filling: Peel the roasted bananas and remove any obvious strings. In a food processor, puree the bananas until very smooth. Add the remaining ingredients and pulse until smooth, scraping the sides of the bowl periodically; do not overprocess, or the cream cheese will separate and curdle.

  6. Pour the filling into the crust and bake on the center rack of the oven for 10 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F and bake for another 35 to 45 minutes, until the top is the color of light brown sugar and the center of the cheesecake is set but still jiggles slightly; a toothpick inserted into the center should come out clean.

  7. Let the cheesecake cool to room temperature on a rack for at least 1 hour, then cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours, preferably overnight.

  8. To serve: Rewarm the sauce in a pan of hot water. Use an offset spatula or a thin knife to loosen the edges of the cheesecake, remove the sides of the pan, and cut the cake into slices. Serve with the warm sauce and toasted pecans.

Making Nut Flour

To make your own nut flour, first freeze raw nuts overnight. Place about 1 cup of the frozen nuts in a food processor at a time and pulse until finely ground. Freezing the nuts prevents them from turning to nut butter in the food processor as the blade heats up-but be warned, it will be loud!


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