Skinny Cheesecake (TWO WAYS) and New Weight Watchers Fresh Meals

For this month’s Secret Recipe Club, I decided to keep it skinny, since I also happen to be reviewing a few new Weight Watchers Fresh Meals in this post.  When I saw this Skinny Cheesecake with Sour Cream at Cook Book of Trial and Error, the blog I was assigned for March, I knew I had to try it.  Look at how creamy and decadent it looks!  Would you believe it has almost 5 times less calories than a full fat cheesecake?

Trust me, you’d never know it.  It’s lighter in texture, but tastes just as creamy and sumptuous as a full-fat cheesecake! AND, if you like, you can sub cottage cheese for the cream cheese for a ricotta like cheesecake! I was pleasantly surprised and totally impressed at how luscious and fattening both versions of this cheesecake tasted! I made mini ricotta cheesecakes with this recipe, to raves!

Skinny Cheesecake made with Cottage or Yogurt Cheese. Super creamy and delicious - you'd never know it was only 245 calories a slice!
That said, I was a bit devious when it came to a few questions I had about her skinny cheesecake, and since it’s supposed to be a ‘secret’ when you have someone’s blog, I left an innocuous comment asking those questions.  When she quickly responded with the answers (less butter and crumbs in lieu of powder), she asked me to let her know how it turns out.  I told her I would definitely let her know.  Now, I’m letting her know; it turned out amazing and everyone who tried it cannot believe it’s a skinny cheesecake! 2950 calories for the whole cake..245 calories per slice!

Then again, I didn’t post as Guest or Anonymous, so I’m sure she put two and two together and figured it outAlso, I tried to emulate the cinnamon zigzag in her skinny cheesecake photo, freehand, but it didn’t quite work out, so excuse the strip that looks like dirt. 

By the way, the sour cream on top is minuscule on each slice of this skinny cheesecake, but you can omit it if you’d like to make it an even skinnier skinny cheesecake!

That said, please be sure to visit her blog since she’s got some really fantastic recipes!

On another skinny note..

Remember last September when I reviewed Weight Watchers Fresh Meals and Deli Salads?  Well, Catherine Bowen Brophy of Greencore/Weight Watchers sent me 5 new fresh meals to try and tell you about.  Like I mentioned in the previous review, I like Weight Watchers because it’s a sensible way to diet and the food is delicious and filling.  The meals I received, in order from favorite to least favorite, are;

Photos above courtesy Weight Watchers

Beef Steak Tips with Potatoes and Vegetables – This was my favorite of the 5.  I wanted to lick the carton clean when I was finished.  20 minutes later I realized I was full and satisfied.  This is what I love about Weight Watchers.

Southwestern Style Turkey Chili – I loved the heartiness and flavor of this chili, but it needed a bit more spice.  But, again, it filled me up, so that’s a gold star.

Teryaki Chicken – The sauce was really good, and it tasted pretty close to what you might get at a good Japanese restaurant.  However, it needed salt and teryaki should never, ever need salt.

Chicken Curry – Again, like with the chili, I felt it needed more kick, but I love really hot and spicy food, so maybe it’s just me.  Nice flavor and the sauce was silky.

Wild Alaskan Salmon – This was the least of my favorites.  The salmon was bland, dry and the texture not pleasing at all, but what do you expect from pre-frozen packaged fish? That’s a tough one to pull off. I wanted to dredge each side in Cajun seasoning and give it a quick sear, THEN, smother it with some kind of sauce, but that kind of defeats the purpose, doesn’t it? They need to rework this one.

You can always add extra spice to kick up the heat, so I’m giving these 5 new Fresh Meals a 7.5 out of 10, the main caveat being the salmon.  You won’t get 5-star caliber food here, but you will get tasty food that fills you up, without deprivation . My favorite diet plan out there, by far.

Now to the skinny cheesecake photo gallery.  I used to have a story in this post, and now I don’t, but I didn’t feel like filling the spaces with useless text like I’ve done in other posts that used to have this story.  Plus, photos speak louder than words in most cases.

Skinny Cheesecake made with Cottage or Yogurt Cheese. Super creamy and delicious - you'd never know it was only 245 calories a slice!Skinny Cheesecake made with Cottage or Yogurt Cheese. Super creamy and delicious - you'd never know it was only 245 calories a slice!Skinny Cheesecake made with Cottage or Yogurt Cheese. Super creamy and delicious - you'd never know it was only 245 calories a slice!Skinny Cheesecake made with Cottage or Yogurt Cheese. Super creamy and delicious - you'd never know it was only 245 calories a slice!Skinny Cheesecake made with Cottage or Yogurt Cheese. Super creamy and delicious - you'd never know it was only 245 calories a slice!

Before I get to this skinny cheesecake recipe, I’d like to thank my friend, Mandy, from What the Fruitcake?!, for converting the measurements in this recipe from metrics to US for me.  Also, to see all the delicious dishes my fellow SRC’ers made from their assigned blogs, click on the blue frog below.

Skinny Cheesecake

Skinnier Cheesecake - TWO WAYS
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Yield: 10 to 12 servings
 
[i]Recipe adapted from Cooking with Trial and Error, via her friend's Mom, with my revisios
ingredients:
Crust
  • I cup (5 ounces) animal or graham cracker crumbs
  • 3 to 5 tablespoons melted butter (t could get too greasy with 5, so start with 3, which worked for me)
Cheesecake Filling
  • 1 16 ounce container plain Greek yogurt
  • 8 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese, room temperature *
  • 2 eggs
  • ⅔ cup sugar
  • pinch of kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Topping (optional)
  • 1⅓ cups sour cream
  • ⅓ cup sugar
directions:
  1. The night before you're going to make this cheesecake, line a strainer over a bowl with cheesecloth or a paper towel, and dump the whole carton of greek yogurt into it. Let it strain overnight. By morning, you should have a thick, creamy yogurt cheese.
Make the crust
  1. Place the animal or graham crackers crumbs in a bowl and stir in the butter, a little at a time, until it holds together.. I only needed 3 tablespoons of melted butter.
  2. Press the crumbs into a greased 9-inch cake or springform pan – just the bottom. Use the bottom of a glass to really pack it in. Place in the freezer while you make the filling. You can also use a 5”x7” square Pyrex pan, if you want to make cheese cake squares. I used an 8-inch springform pan, which doubled the baking time (see notes)**. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
Make the cheesecake filling
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer or food processor, combine the yogurt cheese, cream cheese, eggs , sugar, salt, lemon zest and vanilla extract. Mix until smooth.
Assemble and Bake the Cheesecake **
  1. Remove the graham cracker crust from the freezer, and pour the filling on top of it.
  2. Place in the preheated oven and bake for about 40 minutes, or until the center is still a bit jiggly.
  3. Combine the sour cream with the sugar. After the cheesecake has baked for 40 minutes at 325 degrees F, remove it from the oven and spread the sour cream on top evenly - be gentle, as it will be slightly jiggly in the middle. Place the cheesecake back in the oven for 5 to 10 minutes at most, until topping has set.
  4. Let the cheesecake cool to room temperature, then chill in the fridge for at least 2 hours before serving. I topped my mini cheesecakes (I cut them out of a second cheesecake I made with a round biscuit cutter) with a melange of cut up fruits and honey.
notes:
You can substitute the 8 oz cream cheese with 8 oz small curd cottage cheese, for a more ricotta like skinny cheesecake! The directions and baking time remain the same.
** I used a 7½ to 8-inch round springform pan. The baking time was 10 minutes longer at 325 degrees F, then an additional 5 minutes for the sour cream topping.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 slice - 245 calories
 

Skinny Cheesecake made with Cottage or Yogurt Cheese. Super creamy and delicious - you'd never know it was only 245 calories a slice!

I was not compensated monetarily for my Weight Watchers Fresh Meals review, only sent the meals free of charge.  All opinions expressed are my own.

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