Primal Pumpkin Cheesecake

If you’re a fan of Dandy Dishes on Facebook you already knew this post was coming!  So let’s talk cheesecake…my hands down favorite dessert of all time.  Believe it or not it is on my Bucket List to devour every single one on Cheesecake Factory’s menu.  And I’m not embarrassed to admit that I’m halfway there.

However these days I look at food a little differently, not by calories or fat content (obviously), but by the quality of ingredients and how they effect your body.  So when the boy and I were invited to a friend’s for dinner this past weekend and I was tasked with dessert, I knew immediately what I was going to make.

Fall is my favorite time of year, and as I mentioned in my Primal Pumpkin Bread post, I have tasked myself this holiday season with taking some of my favorite fall dishes and converting them to Primal.  I searched the web high and low for recipes and knew immediately that I could take one of my favorite desserts and make it organic, healthy, and 100% MDA approved!  The end result is a cheesecake not only packed with pumpkiny goodness but one that is light, fluffy and made even more amazing when topped with homemade whipped cream.

Do yourself, your friends, your family, heck even your neighbors a favor and make this tonight!  (Yeah I know it cracked but it was still delicious!)

Primal Pumpkin Cheesecake
Serves an army, or 10-12 healthy grown ups

For the crust
3 cups pecan meal
1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
4 ½ tablespoons melted butter

In a small bowl, combine all ingredients and mix with a fork until well combined.  Press the mixture evenly across the bottom and sides of a 9” spring form pan.  Bake in a preheated 300º oven for 15 minutes, transfer to a wire rack to cool.

For the cheesecake
3, 8oz packages of cream cheese (room temperature)
1, 15oz can of pure pumpkin
3 eggs and 1 egg yolk
¼ cup sour cream
1 cup pure maple syrup (I used Grade B, it’s cheaper)
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon cloves
1/8 teaspoon ginger
1 ½ tablespoons coconut flour
1 teaspoon pure vanilla

In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth.  Add in the pumpkin, eggs, sour cream, maple syrup, baking soda, spices and combine well.  Add the coconut flour and vanilla and beat one last time until all ingredients are mixed through.  Pour into cooled crust and spread evenly.  Bake in a preheated 350º oven for 1 hour, or until the sides have browned and the center is still a little wobbly.  Remove from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack.  Cover with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours before serving, or even better over night.  Serve with homemade whipped cream.



  1. Thanks! Going to try this with some tweaks (I have a sugar pumpkin I want to use up, and Cooks Illustrated had a nice tip for soaking up the pumpkin moisture before adding it to the filling), but I have definitely been hoping to see someone else make a primal go at this recipe!

  2. Please comment back and let us know how it works with real pumpkin! I would love to give that a try to see how the flavor profile changes. And after eating this for a couple days now I think my favorite way is cold...it helps to bring out all the sweetness.

  3. This is perfect timing. I was looking for some nice seasonal Primal recipes for Pumpkin cheesecake. I never thought of adding coconut flour to it. Sounds like it will be really fluffy like you said.

    I will making it tonight and serving to a non Primal audience. I can't wait.

  4. What is pecan meal?

  5. Pecan meal is just ground pecans, it can typically be found in the produce section of most any supermarket next to the almonds, walnuts and pecans.

  6. Seeking clarification on the line "3 eggs and 1 egg yolk".

    Does this mean 3 whole eggs, white and yolk, plus 1 additional yolk? Or 3 egg whites and 1 egg yolk?

  7. @Anonymous - Yes, 3 whole eggs and 1 egg yolk. Thanks for bringing it to my attention, I've revised the recipe as to not confuse any future readers :)

  8. Mine is baking in the oven and it smells delicious!

  9. I made this for Thanksgiving and it was fabulous! I could not find pecan meal (in the time that I had) so I just ground 3 cups of pecans in my food processor instead. Worked beautifully! I also wrapped the pan in foil and placed in a larger roasting pan, then added 1 inch of hot water. Everyone loved it and no one realized it was primal.

  10. I made this for a family function over Thanksgiving weekend. I substituted almond meal for the crust because I had two bags of it in the cupboard. Not sure if it was a poor substitution or a mistake to bake the crust in a toaster oven (to save energy), because it ended up soggy and stuck to the form after baking the filling. Didn't matter much because the result was appreciated by all. Thanks for the recipe!

  11. Awesome!! Thanks for sharing the recipe. :-)

    Will try it out soon.

  12. I want to make this sugar free...can I use stevia instead of the syrup?