If you’re a fan of pretty treats that impress your family and friends, you’ll love these sweet raspberry cheesecake mooncakes! The crust of these mooncakes is gluten-free since it’s made with blanched almond flour and fresh raspberry puree which is what gives the mooncakes a lovely deep red color. Chewy and sweet, not to mention that pretty cheesecake bite hiding inside the mooncakes, these raspberry mooncakes will surely stand out with their vivid color and tangy flavor. They make for the perfect gift, whether it’s mid-autumn festival or no festival.
These aren’t vegan because of the cheesecake filling, but I’ll show you how you can make them vegan by switching out the filling for something else like sweetened bean paste. Keep reading to find out!
Here’s why I love this recipe
- this mooncake recipe is non-traditional, but a much healthier mooncake recipe
- it’s gluten free
- low carb
- the sky’s the limit when it comes to mooncake filling ideas. I use a cheesecake filling, but you can easily use sweetened lotus paste, white bean paste, mung bean, etc, to suit your diet and preferences!
Ingredients Used to Make Raspberry Cheesecake Mooncakes
**I’ve linked some of these ingredients to amazon.com to give you an idea of what they are, but you should also be able to find them in your local grocery store (usually, the natural & organic food section). They are also affiliate links, which means that I earn a commission as an Amazon Associate if you decide to purchase the items. The price will be the same for you, link or no link 🙂
- Almond flour – I used blanched almond flour. But you can also make your own by blending raw or blanched, slivered almonds in the food processor and sifting them through a sieve.
- Coconut flour – Coconut flour does not substitute well, and I can’t recommend swapping coconut flour with other ingredients unless you absolutely had to (2 Tbsp coconut flour = ½ cup almond flour). Unfortunately, you probably won’t get the same texture or mouthfeel as the original recipe.
- Sugar – You can use any granulated sugar of your choice (I used golden monk fruit sweetener here) but for even healthier alternatives, I recommend using coconut, date and maple sugars which are less processed and higher in vitamins and minerals. Keep in mind though that darker sugars do impact the final colors of these mooncakes, and they’ll appear darker. For the lower carb, lower calorie option, you can use a sugar-free substitute such as stevia powder (but you’ll have to convert the amount of stevia according to package directions).
- Olive oil – I used light olive oil for this recipe, but you can use other neutral flavored oils other than olive oil, such as melted coconut oil (I like using refined since it doesn’t have coconut flavor), avocado oil, or even regular canola oil. You can also use plant-based, dairy-free butter or regular butter instead.
- Raspberry puree – blend fresh or thawed (from frozen) raspberries in a small blender to get raspberry puree. Because raspberries are so soft, you can even just mash them with a fork.
For the Filling You’ll Need
- Cream Cheese of Choice – reduced fat, low fat or full fat. In this recipe, I used 8 oz of laughing cow light cream cheese wedges.
- Egg – the egg helps to stabilize the cheesecake filling and contributes to its smooth silky texture.
- Sugar of Choice – I used monk fruit sweetener, but you can also use any granulated sugar of choice
- Raspberries – fresh or frozen
For a Vegan Mooncake Filling, You can Also Use:
- Sweetened White Bean Paste (a.k.a. Shiro An) – fudgy and sweet, white bean paste is a perfect filling for mooncakes. You’re welcome to use other fillings for this recipe. More ideas below in the “variation” section
The main highlight of mooncakes is their beautiful engraved patterns and shapes. Mooncake molds are readily available at different Chinese grocery stores. You can also find it online, especially on amazon. They are of premium quality and quite affordable. I got the 75g and 125g mooncake molds here
More Recipes that Use Berries (HERE)
Step by Step Guide
How to Make Raspberry Mooncakes
STEP 1: Cheesecake Filling
Prepare the mooncake cheesecake filling. *If you want, you can also use a different filling like lotus paste, nuts, sweetened bean paste, or even mashed sweet potato
(1) whisk cream cheese with egg and sugar until smooth. Drop a few raspberries on top –> see the photo on the next step (2) Pour into a 5 x5 inch square pan and bake 350F for 15 minutes, or until the middle has set. (3) Let cool in the freezer until completely frozen, then (4) cut into 1 1/2 inch squares and set aside
for these cheesecake bites, I also dropped a few raspberries on top before baking the cheesecake filling
STEP 3: Prepare the Mooncake Crust
Mix almond flour, coconut flour, sugar, olive oil and raspberry puree together until smooth
Divide dough into 8 equal pieces
flatten each piece of dough into a disk, then wrap the frozen cheesecake square with the almond flour dough.
Just wanted to show you here that it’s all right if the dough is lumpy. You’ll be pressing them with the mooncake mold anyway, so they don’t have to be perfect.
Use a lightly greased*** mold to press the dough into mooncake shapes and set onto a clean parchment paper. I used a 75g mooncake mold, but you can use any mold size you have at home – just be sure to adjust the filling size!
***I used olive oil cooking spray to grease my mooncake mold. If you don’t have olive oil cooking spray you can use other vegetable oil sprays or melted coconut oil.
Bake in a preheated 350F oven for 12-15 minutes until the tops are lightly browned.
For the best texture, store these mooncakes inside an airtight container and chill overnight in the fridge. The mooncakes actually taste better the day after.
Recipe Variations and Optional Add Ins:
There are many types of fillings used in traditional mooncakes. Here are some ideas below:
- Lotus paste – classic! You can buy these in the refrigerated section in a Asian grocery store, or buy them online (like Amazon, here)
- Shiro-an (sweetened white bean paste) – on Amazon, here, or here’s a Shortcut White Bean Paste Recipe I make when I’ve run out of Shiro An
- Koshi-an (sweetened red bean paste) – on Amazon, here
- Mung Bean paste – sweet and delightfully yellow, homemade mung bean paste is a perfect mooncake filling for those who are looking for a healthier bean paste alternative. Here’s my 2-Ingredient mung bean paste recipe here
- Coffee paste : 1/2 cup Shiro-an mixed with 2 tsp coffee extract (click on the link to see my 2 ingredient coffee bean paste recipe here)
You can also play around with different Crust flavors, too.
- Chocolate mooncakes – add 1 Tbsp of cocoa powder to the dry ingredients before mixing; add some mini chocolate chips to the filling before rolling into tablespoon-sized (about 30 gram) balls.
- Lemon Raspberry mooncakes – add 1 tsp of lemon extract and 1 Tbsp of lemon zest to the dough.
How to Make this Healthier
- Storebought lotus pastes and sweet bean pastes are delicious, but rather high in refined sugar and calories. While I still recommend you use the storebought kinds to make these mooncakes as close to the original texture as possible, there are many healthier alternatives for the filling, such as mashed sweet potato (the best ones are Asian sweet potato and Purple Sweet Potato), chickpea cookie dough or chopped nuts (I’ll post the recipe on this later).
- I also love adding nuts, seeds and other ingredients to the filling that add texture, fiber and nutrition. Try adding nuts or dried fruit to the filling before rolling into tablespoon sized balls.
- If you want to increase fiber, mix a Tablespoon of ground flaxseed or coconut flour to the filling.
Are mooncakes vegan?
Because of the cheesecake filling, no, these mooncakes are not vegan. But the mooncake crust is egg and dairy-free, so you can easily convert these mooncakes into a vegan recipe by using a different filling like lotus paste, sweet white bean paste (which you can buy online, here) or mung bean paste.
Are these mooncakes gluten free?
These Mooncakes are made with almond flour, so they are naturally gluten-free. However, traditional mooncake crusts are traditionally made with flour, sugar syrup, oil and water – so they do contain gluten.
More Healthy Mooncake Recipes (HERE):
How to Store Raspberry Cheesecake Mooncakes
- You can store these cakes covered at room temperature for up to 6 hours. For longer storage, you can place them in a plastic freezer bag or airtight container to store in the fridge for up to 4 days, or freeze up to 4 months.
- These mooncakes taste SO MUCH better the day after they are made. I don’t know how to explain it other than that these mooncake crusts have a better flavor and develop a more fudgy, tender texture when they have a chance to rest in the fridge overnight. So for the best flavor and texture, I recommend that you store these mooncakes inside an airtight container and let them cool in the fridge for at least 8 hours before eating.
Raspberry Cheesecake Mooncakes
Cheesecake Filling (Use Different FIlling* if Desired)
- 1 pkg low fat or fat free cream cheese best if room temperature
- 1 large egg
- 2 Tbsp sugar of choice
- 9 raspberries , fresh or thawed from frozen
- Prepare the mooncake cheesecake filling: whisk cream cheese with egg and sugar until smooth.
- Pour into a 5 x5 inch square pan and top with raspberries
- Bake 350F for 15 minutes, or until the middle has set
- Let cool in the freezer until completely frozen
- Cut into 1 1/2 inch squares and set aside
- Mash or puree raspberries in a small blender
- Mix almond flour, coconut flour, sugar, olive oil and 1/3 cup of the raspberry puree together until smooth
- Divide dough into 9 equal pieces
- Flatten each piece of dough into a disk, then wrap the frozen cheesecake square with the mooncake dough.
- Use a ligtly greased*** mold to press the dough into mooncake shapes and set onto a clean parchment paper. I used a 75g mooncake mold, but you can use any mold size you have at home – just be sure to adjust the filling size!
- Bake in a preheated 350F oven for 10-12 minutes until the tops are lightly browned.
- For the best texture, store these mooncakes inside an airtight container and chill overnight in the fridge. The mooncakes actually taste better the day after.