Greek yogurt 'cheesecake' with honey-walnut topping

Still stuffed from the holidays, but not quite willing to give up desserts? Try this cheesecake made with Greek yogurt. Use honey and walnuts for a baklava-like topping, or top it with fresh fruit. 

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    Nonfat Greek yogurt makes a surprisingly delicious base for a cheesecake.
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Anyone else feel like they ate everything this Christmas? Oh I have no regrets. I'm just saying that after a steady diet of Christmas cookies and cheese and crackers and delicious mama-made meals, I could/should spend some serious time with fruits, veggies, and healthier desserts. (Note that I say healthier desserts, not no desserts. Who do you think I am? No desserts is crazy talk.)

What is not crazy talk? Greek yogurt cheesecake. This really is a healthy dessert – nonfat Greek yogurt, eggs, and a little sugar – that is all! It is insanely easy to make. And it's actually really smooth, creamy, and delicious. Really, I am blown away by how good this is.

I made this for a Greek-themed dinner party back in the fall. Greek desserts are too hard for me on a weeknight (or ever – I'll leave baklava to the pros), but I wanted to make something relevant to the theme. So I searched around for a dessert involving Greek yogurt, and then made up a honey walnut baklava-like topping to go with it.

Recommended: Decadent recipes for chocolate desserts

I made the graham cracker crust no problem, and slid the cake into the oven, praying to the baking gods that it did not deteriorate into a watery mess burning on the bottom (always a risk when trying something new). Well, my prayers were answered because it came out looking A-OK and I was elated!

And I'm happy to report that it tastes good, too. Definitely nowhere near as rich and creamy as a regular cheesecake, but it also doesn't give you that too-full feeling after eating a slice. I will definitely be making this again and trying out different toppings.

Greek yogurt cheesecake with honey-walnut "baklava" topping

For the cake

1-1/2 cups crushed graham cracker/crumbs

1 cup sugar, divided

1/4 cup butter, melted

4 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

3 cups plain or vanilla Greek yogurt (I used nonfat)

For the topping

1 cup honey (I used wildflower honey)

1 cup water

3/4 cups walnuts, toasted, and finely chopped

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

2. In a medium-sized bowl, thoroughly combine graham cracker crumbs, 1/4 cup sugar, and melted butter. Press into the bottom and a little up the sides of a 9-inch spring-form pan and bake for 10 minutes.

3. Beat together eggs, remaining 3/4 cup sugar, vanilla, and flour. Gently whisk in the Greek yogurt.

4. Pour into hot crust and bake for 45-50 minutes or until barely set in center (just a little jiggly when you shake it).

5. Cool cake to room temperature on wire rack, then refrigerate at least an hour (or overnight) before serving. 

6. For the topping: 30 minutes before serving, combine all topping ingredients in a small saucepan on the stove. Simmer until thickened, approximately 15 minutes. Spoon over each piece of cake before serving. 

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