This easy recipe is a take on one of my favourite desserts: cheesecake! This no-bake cheesecake in a jar is simple + quick to make and it’s served in mini mason jars…cute, right? Complete with graham cracker “crust”, cheesecake filling, and cherry cheesecake topping!
About This Recipe for No Bake Cheesecake in a Jar:
Oh, cheesecake. One of my most favourite desserts. I love that it’s tangy and rich, and that there are so many decadent flavours to go around. What I don’t love about cheesecake is that it’s not the easiest or quickest dessert to make.
Years ago in Junior High School, the cafeteria at my school had these cherry cheesecake cups that were sold at lunch hour. I have no idea how they were made, but the cafeteria had just undergone a big menu change to adopt more nutritious options and somehow these made the cut. I was definitely not complaining.
About once a week I was allowed to buy my lunch from the cafeteria, and the rest of the week I was in charge of packing my lunchbox. Whenever my mom handed me the cash for my weekly cafeteria lunch, I always knew exactly how I was going to spend it. Cheesecake, baby.
It was my weekly treat and I savoured it oh so much. It had some sort of graham cracker crust at the bottom, a tangy cheesecake filling in the middle, and a cherry pie filling on top. I used to save most of the cherry topping until the end because it was my favourite part. Those were the days.
All of this to say that the junior high cheesecake nostalgia is the inspiration behind this recipe.
I love an easy no bake dessert that doesn’t sacrifice taste or decadence. So, when I set out to create another no-bake dessert for summer, it wasn’t hard decide to recreate a healthy – or ‘healthier‘ – version of the cafeteria cheesecake cups that I loved so much. This recipe is definitely easy, and definitely doesn’t sacrifice on taste or decadence.
Making No Bake Cheesecake in a Jar:
For the No Bake Cheesecake in a Jar Filling:
The secret to making this dessert a little more nutritious? Greek yogurt!
I find that by using a full-fat plain Greek yogurt in this recipe there’s not sugar needed, as it’s naturally less sour and more rich tasting.
All in all, there’s 3 tablespoons of maple syrup in the entire recipe, which makes 5-6 mini (125 mL) mason jar servings. That’s pretty impressive if you ask me! Yogurt is also the secret ingredient in my 2-Ingredient Protein Popsicles, it’s pretty magical!
For the Graham Cracker Base:
Now the crust or base is just a simple mixture of graham cracker crumbs and melted butter. Feel free to swap this for coconut oil or something else if you like! If you want to add some fibre, healthy fat and protein, you could try subbing half of the graham cracker crumbs for almond flour. Though I’m happy with my graham cracker crumbs!
For the Cherry Topping:
We will simmer the cherries with a little maple syrup, lemon juice, and corn starch to create a thick, cherry compote to serve on top of the cheesecakes. Both fresh and frozen cherries work well! Feel totally free to use another fruit if cherries aren’t you’re thing. Blueberries, strawberries or really any berry would be just as delicious.
Once they’re made, you can serve these mini cheesecakes in a jar immediately or store them in the fridge before serving. Personally, I do like to keep them in the fridge for an hour or so before eating to let the cheesecake filling firm up even more. Totally up to you!
More ‘Healthier’ Dessert Recipes You’ll Love:
- Healthy Berry Cheesecake Dip
- No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Oat Bars
- Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake Balls
- Strawberry Oatmeal Crumble Bars
Connect with Hannah Magee, RD!
As always, if you make my recipe I would love it if you could leave me a comment and recipe rating below. Or share a picture on Instagram or Twitter and let me know what you think! 🙂 You guys are the best. Thanks for stopping by!
Healthy No Bake Cheesecake in a Jar
For the Cherry Topping
- 1 cup pitted cherries halved
- 1 tbsp pure maple syrup
- 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 tsp water
- 1 tsp corn starch
For the No-Bake Cheesecake Filling
- 4 ounces cream cheese softened
- 2/3 cup plain full-fat greek yogurt
- 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
- 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
For the Graham Cracker Crust
- 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
- 2-3 tbsp butter melted
For the Cherry Topping
- Add all cherry topping ingredients to a medium saucepan over medium heat. Saute for 5-10 minutes, gently stirring every couple minutes. Eventually it will begin to thicken and form a sauce. You can mash up the cherries some if you like.
- Remove saucepan from heat and allow the cherries to cool while you prepare the cheesecake filling.
For the Cheesecake Filling
- In a medium mixing bowl, add softened cream cheese, plain greek yogurt, maple syrup, and lemon juice. Mix together using electric hand or stand mixer for 2-3 minutes on high. When the mixture is smooth (there may be some little lumps) place in the fridge while you make the crust.
For the Graham Cracker Crust:
- Melt butter in microwave. Add graham cracker crumbs to a small bowl and drizzle on melted butter. Stir until completely mixed together.
To Assemble Mini Cheesecake Jars
- Distribute the crust mixture evenly into six 125mL mason/jam jars. Pack down gently with your fingertips.
- Divide the cheesecake filling evenly amongst the jars. Gently tap jars down on your countertop to settle the layer.
- Finally, top each jar with the cooled cherry topping. Serve immediately if you like, but I prefer to refrigerate at least 1 hour before enjoying to let the cheesecake set some more. Enjoy!