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  • Writer's pictureKelly

No-Bake Date-Sweetened Matcha Cookies N Cream Cake (Vegan, GF, Paleo Option, Fruit-Sweetened)

Updated: Apr 14, 2023

I challenged myself to take the knowledge and skills I gained from my raw vegan pastry course (in which I mainly used maple syrup and coconut sugar to sweeten raw cakes), and create new recipes sweetened with whole dates only (we never learned how to make strictly date-sweetened raw cakes in the course). And I succeeded!! Dates are the only sweetener here in this Matcha Cookies N Cream Cake, and the texture and flavor are mind-blowingly good (you wouldn't think it's sweetened with whole fruit). This cake is not only date-sweetened but also no-bake, vegan, and has a paleo option. The date-sweetened filling has a wonderful texture to it and is firm yet still retains a satisfactory creaminess and smoothness. As if that weren't enough, there are healthy "Oreos" galore in the crust and folded into the filling of this cake. Matcha and cookies n cream are a match made in (vegan) heaven, and this cake is proof.



Can you even believe that filling is date-sweetened?! Look at how creamy the piped filling is on top of the cake in the photo above. This is next-level "caking" if you ask me (FYI: "caking" is the term I've coined for making raw cakes. Instead of baking, it's "caking").


But I should warn you: this is a noisy cake. Very noisy. Even if you have a Vitamix. What I mean by "noisy cake" is that the process of blending the filling for this cake (even in a quality, high-speed blender like a Vitamix) produces a lot of noise. So I highly recommend making this cake in a soundproof box specifically for blenders, or blending when nobodies in the house. The other cakes I make are no where near as loud as this one, and the reason this one is so loud is because it's strictly date-sweetened, and dates are thick and hard to blend into a smooth consistency, especially when there's not a lot of liquid involved in the recipe (but much more liquid and the cake would be icy & lose its stability). But it's worth it for such a healthy and delicious cake with an AMAZING presentation and mouthfeel. PLUS it's only sweetened with dates (even the healthy "Oreos"). But so you know, I'm working on making raw cakes sweetened w/ only date sugar (which is made of whole dried and ground dates, which definitely qualifies as "whole-fruit-sweetened"), and these cakes won't make nearly as much noise as the whole-date-sweetened ones. So if noise is an issue, hang tight for some recipes with date sugar.




There's a cross section of the cake with those beautiful slabs of healthy "Oreos" inside. In fact, for this recipe specifically I created what I'm calling "Healthy Protein Oreos" because I made healthy chocolate and vanilla creme sandwich cookies that are extra high in protein, courtesy of plant-based sugar-free chocolate protein powder and almond butter in the chocolate cookie part of the "Oreos" and softened coconut butter in the vegan buttercream filling part of the "Oreos." Translation: this cake = health. And you don't even notice the chocolate protein powder in there, these "Protein Oreos" are scrumptious! Re-translation: this cake = health and yum.


The crust is made just with these Healthy Protein "Oreos" and melted coconut oil. This cake doesn't quite qualify as raw because the "Oreos" are baked. And this cake has a paleo option w/ my OG Healthy Oreos (to make these Oreos paleo: use coconut oil in place of the vegan butter in the chocolate cookies and go with Filling Option #2 or #3 in that recipe if you're feeling really healthy, both of which are paleo). The Protein "Oreos" option for this Matcha Cookies N Cream Cake are not quite paleo only because there is oat flour in the cookie part of these "Oreos" and vegan butter in the buttercream filling for these "Oreos". But using the modifications with my OG Healthy Oreos, you can easily make this paleo.




This cake, as previously mentioned, is also 100% vegan, GF, and naturally colored in addition to being no-bake and date-sweetened, with a paleo option. I am currently working on Raw Paleo Healthy "Oreos" that can be used in this cake to keep it 100% raw, but in the meantime this cake will remain no-bake.


This cake has a lot of texture, thanks to the dates. It's a very pleasant mouthfeel; it's very firm and almost cheesecake-like in texture but with more stability yet has that smooth creaminess to it. It's hard to describe the texture of a date-sweetened raw cake. But it's the kind of thing you have to try to find out. And once you do try it, OH BABY are you gonna love it!


There are notes of cinnamon, almond, and white chocolate, as well as vanilla in this Matcha Cookies N Cream Cake, but of course the matcha and "Oreos" are front and center in the flavor profile.




Some Tips for This Cake:


I HIGHLY recommend using a heavy-duty high-speed blender like a Vitamix to blend the filling. You're also gonna want a tamper (and potentially a soundproof blender box). And maybe sound protection, such as noise-canceling headphones (depending on your noise tolerance level). And I recommend making this cake when nobody else is in the house, and especially not at night or in the early morning (or, at least not when people are sleeping). Also, make the "Oreos" ahead of time, so you can get right to "caking" and just incorporate the pre-prepped "Oreos" when you're ready. Additionally, defrost the cake in the fridge for at least 4 hours to get a clean cut (DON'T defrost at room temp, unless you want messy, uneven slices of cake when you cut into it. Defrosting in the fridge also makes your job a lot easier and gets the cake to the perfect consistency for eating).


Freeze the completed Healthy Protein "Oreos" or my OG Healthy Oreos for 20 minutes before making the crust, NO LONGER. Any longer, and when you combine the frozen "Oreos" and the melted coconut oil in the food processor, the coconut oil will immediately freeze and solidify on top of the frozen "Oreos" (frozen coconut oil + "Oreos" = a crumbled crust that doesn't hold its shape. You want your coconut oil in a liquid state so you have a moist, cohesive ball of dough for the crust, more or less). So freeze your "Oreos" for 15 to 20 minutes, no more.


Use your favorite homemade extra creamy ("thick") unsweetened almond milk or homemade plant milk of choice for the filling in this recipe. Also, soak the dates overnight in cold water to retain the maximum amount of nutrients. Ditto with the raw cashews.




Changes, Coming Soon..


I'm thinking The Dimpled Date needs a facelift soon, as least by springtime. It's my form of "spring-cleaning." I'll have some cool new features, graphics, designs, and layouts on the new-and-improved Dimpled Date website, but for now we can soak up our last moments with this version of The Dimpled Date before saying farewell.


Liked this recipe? Leave a comment and give it a <3


Also share in the comments any new flavors of raw cakes that you want me to make strictly date-sweetened, and you might just name the next Dimpled Date hit!


In the meantime,


Enjoy!

-K.



No-Bake Date-Sweetened Matcha Cookies N Cream Cake (No-Bake, Vegan, Gluten-Free, Paleo Option, Fruit-Sweetened)


Soaking Time: 8 hours or overnight (for cold water soak)

Prep Time: 1 hour (including the prep time for the Healthy Protein "Oreos")

Cook Time: 10 minutes (for the Healthy Protein "Oreos")

Chill Time: 8 hours or overnight (pref.)

Total Time: 17 hours 10 minutes (this sounds daunting, but it's mainly soaking and chilling time)

Servings: one 6" round cake


Ingredients (for the Healthy Protein "Oreos")*:


For the chocolate protein cookies:

-3 cups gluten-free oat flour

-1 cup 2 Tbsp date sugar (date sugar NOT date palm sugar)

-1 1/2 scoops vegan/GF/sugar-free chocolate protein powder (such as Vega's Protein & Greens in chocolate flavor. This one has added veggies and is sweetened with only a little stevia // technically this is optional, but I highly recommend for the protein boost)

-1 cup cacao powder

-3 Tbsp arrowroot flour (can sub tapioca flour)

-1 Tbsp baking powder

-1/2 cup 1 Tbsp creamy unsweetened almond butter (can sub creamy unsweetened cashew butter, creamy unsweetened sunflower butter, OR creamy nut/seed butter of choice)

-1 cup virgin cold-pressed unrefined coconut oil, unmelted

-3/4 tsp vanilla extract

-1 1/2 tsp sea salt

-3 flax eggs

-3 Tbsp unsweetened almond milk (or unsweetened plant milk of choice)


For the protein buttercream filling:

-1 cup vegan butter, softened (like Miyoko's or Earth Balance)

-1/4 cup coconut butter, softened

-1/2 cup date sugar

-1 Tbsp vanilla extract

-3 Tbsp unsweetened plant milk of choice


Ingredients (for the "Oreo" crust for the cake):


-1 1/2 cups my Healthy Protein Oreos (above) OR 1 1/2 cups my OG Healthy Oreos (for paleo, use these ones w/ the modifications mentioned in the post above) (frozen for 20 minutes prior to making crust)

-2 to 3 Tbsp coconut oil, melted (until you have a dough-like consistency that holds its shape when squeezed)


Ingredients (for the matcha cookies n cream filling):


-300 grams raw unsalted unsweetened cashews, soaked overnight in cold water (pref.) or technically 1 hour in hot water

-350 grams Medjool dates, soaked in cold water overnight (pref.), or 2 hours in hot water

-175 ml unsweetened almond milk (homemade or extra creamy store-bought // can sub unsweetened homemade/extra creamy store-bought plant milk of choice)

-120 ml strong brewed matcha green tea (nothing added, just matcha & hot water), cooled to room temp

-2 tsp pure matcha green tea powder

-1 tsp vanilla extract

-2 tsp almond extract

-1/8 tsp Ceylon cinnamon (can sub cassia cinnamon)

-pinch sea salt

-120 ml virgin cold-pressed unrefined coconut oil, melted first, then measured

-10 grams cacao butter, measured first, then melted

-2 cups Healthy Protein "Oreos," above, OR 2 cups my OG Healthy "Oreos," chopped and folded into filling


For decorating:

-leftover matcha filling cream, piped on top

-leftover "Oreo" crumbs


Directions:


1. Make sure you've made all the preparations for the cake, such as soaking the raw cashews and dates in cold water overnight, making homemade almond milk, etc. Prepare a 6" round cake ring by placing it on a cake board or a medium/large flat cutting board lined with parchment/wax paper, and cutting a piece of acetate strip the length of the circumference of the cake ring and slipping that inside the cake ring so it nestles up against the walls of the ring. A little overlap of acetate strip is fine. The acetate strip is completely optional but it gives your cake those really crisp, clean edges. Also *technically* a 6" round springform pan would work, but the edges of the cake will be uneven, not sharp, and likely cracked or sloppy. But if presentation isn't an issue, go with a springform if that's all you have.


2. Make the Healthy Protein "Oreos": prep all ingredients that need prepping, such as making the flax eggs. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Pulse all chocolate protein cookie ingredients together in a food processor until a uniform dough forms. Chill only if the dough is very warm and soft. Roll out the dough between two pieces of wax/parchment paper to 1/8" thick. Cut out 2" diameter circles with something that has that diameter (the rim of a champagne glass, for instance). Place the cut out cookie dough circles on a lined baking sheet. Re-roll and keep cutting the dough as needed. Bake at 350 F for 10 minutes. Allow to cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes, before transferring to a cooling rack to cool fully. While the cookies are cooling, make the protein buttercream filling: using a hand-mixer, beat the vegan butter for 3 minutes, until creamy. Add the softened coconut butter, then beat on high for 1-2 minutes, until light and fluffy. Sift in the date sugar and add the vanilla and plant milk. Beat on a low speed setting for 30 seconds, until just incorporated. If needed, allow it to firm up in the fridge for no longer than 20-30 min. Assemble the Protein "Oreos": Use one cookie as the base and pipe/spread a little of the buttercream filling on top of it. Close off the top with another chocolate cookie and gently smush together to spread the filling. Clean up the edges as need be. Repeat with the rest of the "Oreos." Use in the recipe right away (so freeze them for 20 minutes max now before you start on the crust) or store in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to use. As an alternative, make a double batch of my OG "Oreos," as per the directions in that recipe (to make the OG "Oreos" paleo, make the ingredient adjustments as delineated in the post, above).


3. Make the "Oreo" crust: make sure you've had the Protein "Oreos" (or my OG Oreos) chilling in the freezer for a max of 20 minutes. Break up the frozen "Oreos" with your hands into chunks and place in a food processor. Pulse a couple of times to break up the "Oreos." Add the melted coconut oil and pulse/blend until a cohesive dough forms that holds its shape when squeezed in the palm of your hand.


4. Spread the crust into the bottom of the prepared 6" round cake ring, pressing into a uniform even layer, using your hand or a flat-bottomed object like the base of the glass or measuring cup. You really want a nice even crust. Also make sure not to make the acetate strip settle wonky. Don't chill the crust, simply set it aside for now.


5. Make the matcha cookies n cream filling: add all ingredients except the melted coconut oil, melted cacao butter, and "Oreos" (so, add the soaked & drained cashews, soaked & drained dates, almond milk, brewed liquid matcha, matcha powder, vanilla, almond extract, Ceylon cinnamon, and sea salt) to a high-speed blender (like a Vitamix) and start on low speed. It will likely get stuck right away. Simply "open" the blade by creating an airspace underneath the blades to allow it to "breathe" (in other words, using a spatula push the filling that's under the Vitamix blades out from under the blade. You should hear a release of air, that almost sounds like a breath or a puff of air).


6. Then start again with the blending. Slowly increase the speed, as the blender allows. When it begins to get stuck frequently, bring out the tamper (AKA the blender push stick that forces ingredients down towards the blades. If you don't have a tamper that's gonna make your life a whole lot harder).


7. FYI: this is the loud part. Use hearing protection if need be (I'm only kind of joking). On medium-low speed, blend the ingredients shoving them down towards the center of the blades using your tamper. If it seems the ingredients are about to get stuck, keep forcing them down to the blades to sustain the blending. Once the mixture gets smoother, increase the speed. Your goal is to get to the highest speed possible, using the tamper until you have a smooth and uniform consistency (this should take no more than 20 seconds on high speed). It may sound like your Vitamix is about to break, but it's really just the Vitamix working really hard (Vitamix blenders are known to make a worryingly loud noise when they're working hard to blend ingredients, this is completely normal. And it's especially loud in this recipe because dates).


8. We're almost done, I promise! On a low speed, pour in the melted coconut oil and melted cacao butter into the other ingredients in the blender through the tamper hole in the Vitamix/blender lid. Turn to high speed and blend for 10 seconds, then turn off. The noise is over!!


9. Pour most of the matcha filling into a large bowl, but save a little (like 80-90 grams) and pour into a piping bag fitted with a coupler. Secure the piping bag and leave in the fridge overnight. It will become a frosting-like consistency by morning, perfect for piping. To the matcha filling in the bowl, add the chopped "Oreos" and gently fold them into the filling.


10. Pour the matcha cookies n cream filling overtop of the Oreo crust. Smooth the top, and tap the pan several times to remove air bubbles. If you have leftover filling, lucky you! (Pour it into a small dish and chill in the fridge overnight. The next morning, you'll have a matcha cookies n cream mousse/pudding of sorts).


11. Transfer the cake to the freezer to chill overnight or 8 hours.


12. The next morning, check to see if the matcha cream in the piping bag is pipeable by attempting to pipe a few shapes. If not, defrost the cream at room temp if need be, until pipeable, up to 1 1/2 hours. Once the matcha cream is nearly defrosted, unmold the cake. Lift it off of the cake board/cutting board and dislodge the cake from the cake ring (either by pushing up from the bottom of the crust or using a protein powder container or another comparable object with a round lid, placing the cake on top of the lid and holding onto the outside of the cake ring, pushing the ring down to release the ring from the cake. Or you might get lucky and the ring slips right off). Peel off the parchment/wax paper from the bottom of the crust and place the cake onto your serving plate/cake board. Lastly peel off the acetate strip and discard the acetate strip.


12. Finally, using your desired piping tip(s) pipe some matcha cream "flower buds," swirls, or whatever shapes are your pleasure on top of the matcha cookies n cream cake. You can choose to pipe a ring of matcha cream "flower buds" around the outer rim of the top of your cake (see how I did this in my photos for inspo.). Or you can cover the entire top of the cake with piped matcha cream. Or you don't even need to pipe the matcha cream on top of the cake. A white chocolate drizzle down the sides and/or fruits on top would do just as well. Get your creative on and have fun! Lastly, sprinkle some leftover "Oreo" crumbs overtop of the piped matcha cream on top of the cake if desired.


13. Defrost the cake in the fridge for at least 4 hours, until soft enough to make a clean cut into. Once defrosted, cut into slices and serve. Serve with a vegan matcha dalgona latte, refined sugar free matcha lemonade, or a matcha cocktail. Enjoy!! Store leftovers in the fridge for up to 4 to 5 days, or in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 1 month. If defrosting from the freezer, defrost in the fridge first, or defrost at room temp for 15 to 30 minutes if a clean cut isn't necessary.


NOTES:

*You will have leftovers of the "Oreos," simply use the rest in your favorite cookies n cream recipes or enjoy straight up.


*Please note: all the different ingredients in all the components of this recipe make it rather hard to calculate the nutrition facts. I hope to update this post soon when I have the time to calculate the nutrition.


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