July 17, 2019
Pina Colada Cheesecake!
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A coconut, pineapple and rum based piña colada cheesecake with a coconut and biscuit base, and pineapple and coconut on top!
Piña colada cheesecake
Piña. Colada. Cheesecake. Need I say more? Okay… so I was meant to go through this period last year of posting more cocktail based bakes on my blog, and yeah that didn’t happen.
I had all the intentions, but my schedule of posting got the better of me and then I didn’t think winter was the best time to start posting them.So, it’s now the following year, and I am READY to post more. Starting with this INSANE piña colada cheesecake. Oh hey, yeah, that is correct.
From the beginning of this post, I will mention how this is more based on my gin & tonic cheesecake then anything, and it DOES use a setting agent. Out of the 75+ cheesecakes on my blog, this is my second that uses some kind of setting agent.
There are different kinds of setting agents out there, but the best and easiest to get will always be Gelatine. Unfortunately, of course, this makes the cheesecake not vegetarian-friendly, but there are vegetarian versions available such as Agar Agar which is my favourite veggie alternative, or vege-gel which is available in supermarkets but not quite as good (in my personal opinion).
I wanted this piña colada cheesecake to be as piña colada themed as I could possibly get it, so after experimenting, I felt the only way to get the real flavours would be to need a setting agent otherwise the flavours were just too tame!
My version of a Pina Colada cocktail consists of pineapple, coconut and rum. There are various versions of a piña colada about in the world, but through everyone that I have asked, these are the most prominent bits you think of when someone says “piña colada”.
For the biscuit base, I just wanted to go down a classical route of a ‘buttery biscuit base’ but I took inspiration from my Bounty cheesecake and used desiccated coconut in the base along with the butter and biscuits. It gives it a delicious flavour.
For the filling, I also took some inspiration from my Bounty cheesecake and used coconut cream in place of double cream. Coconut cream is NOT coconut milk, so please buy the correct one! I found mine in the Thai section of the supermarket.
I find it important to store the coconut cream in the fridge overnight before using as it made it thicker in a way, and suited the temperature of the other ingredients (the cream cheese mainly) so made it much easier to do!
For the pineapple side, some people may go “but you can’t make pineapple jelly with fresh pineapple juice” and you would be correct. There are some fruits out there such as fresh pineapple that will not ever set like a jelly. However, use tinned pineapple (and juice) and it’ll work. Apparently, this is down to how is processed for being tinned.
The rum is optional, but I love rum so had some available to use… and if it’s going to be a classic piña colada cheesecake then it needs it. Obviously, if you want to make it kid-friendly then leave it out and keep the bottle for the adults. Top up the pineapple juice by 50ml, and using 100ml more coconut cream!
When it came to the gelatine, as I had used leaf gelatine in my gin & tonic cheesecake, I thought I would stick with the same as it worked so well! You can get powdered gelatine, but I tried that with this recipe and it just didn’t work as well in my opinion!
You can feel free to try the cheesecake without a setting agent, but with the pineapple juice, and rum added in, I really much preferred it with the setting agent. I hope you guys love this piña colada cheesecake as much as I did! Enjoy! X
Piña Colada Cheesecake!
- 275 g digestives (or graham crackers)
- 50 g desiccated coconut
- 150 g unsalted butter (melted)
- 5 Dr Oetker gelatine leaves
- 150 ml pineapple juice (from a tin)
- 100 ml white rum
- 75 g caster sugar
- 500 g full fat cream cheese
- 75 g icing sugar
- 250 g coconut cream (chilled)
- Tinned pineapple chunks
- Toasted coconut
For the Biscuit Base!
- Blitz your biscuits in a food processor to a fine crumb, and add in the desiccated coconut and blitz again briefly to combine.
- Alternatively, add your biscuits to a large bowl and bash with the end of a rolling pin to a very fine crumb and stir through the coconut.
- Add in your melted unsalted butter, and mix until combined.
- Press into the bottom of an 8"/20cm deep springform tin and leave to the side for now.
For the Cheesecake Filling!
- Get a bowl with cold water in, and your gelatine leaves to soak for at least five minutes. The water needs to be cold!
- Add your pineapple juice, rum, and caster sugar to a small pan, and heat on a medium heat whilst stirring to dissolve the sugar.
- Once the mixture is hot, check your gelatine leaves are squishy - if ready, squeeze out and excess water and then add into the hot pineapple/rum mixture and whisk until the gelatine is dissolved.
- Leave the mixture to cool for 5-10 minutes whilst stirring occasionally.
- Add your cream cheese and icing sugar to a stand mixer and whisk until smooth.
- Add in the coconut cream and whisk again until smooth!
- Whilst whisking, slowly pour in the liquid making sure its whisking in properly!
- Pour the cheesecake mix onto the biscuit base. Set in the fridge for a minimum of 5-6 hours, or preferably overnight.
For the Decoration!
- Once the cheesecake has set, remove it carefully from the tin. I run a knife around under the biscuit base to detach it from the base of the tin and slide it onto a plate.
- Decorate the top of the cheesecake with the pineapple chunks from the tin, and some extra coconut! Enjoy!
- I used the Del Monte pineapple chunks in juice tin for this!
- You can switch the gelatine for an alternative brand, or a vegetarian version of gelatine. Or you can use powdered gelatine (I much prefer leaf gelatine though!)
- You should use tinned pineapple with juice for this recipe, as fresh pineapple chunks and juice may cause the gelatine to not set at all.
- I used coconut cream to keep the piña colada theme, but you can easily switch to double cream if you would prefer.
- I used Koko Kanu rum as its coconut flavoured and utterly delicious, but any white rum should do the trick!
- The rum is optional, but it won't be the same without it! If you don't want to use it, use 50ml more pineapple juice, and 100ml more coconut cream!
- This cheesecake will last for 3 days once set!
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Hi Jane, could I use Malibu instead of white rum?
Hiya! I don’t see why not – sounds yummy! Enjoy! x
Hi, recipe states 250g coconut cream, but I can only find Blue Dragon uht coconut cream which is 250ml. Is that OK and is it enough?
I made this recently and absolutely loved it! I’ve never made a cheesecake with gelatine before so was a bit nervous about using it but it turned out perfectly. I’ve made quite a few of your cheesecakes and each one has been delicious. My sister commented that this is her new favourite so I will be making it again in a few weeks for her birthday.
Made this for my colleagues at work and it was a hit, was so creamy. And enjoyed a few pina coladas while I was making it 🙂
Hey, yayy I am so glad you all loved it! Haha yaass I love that xx
Ive just got a bottle of the Pina Colada baileys – do you think it’s worth me trying your baileys cheesecake recipe or do you think they recipe will work better?
Hey, I would stick to this one because of the setting agent xx
Is it possible to freeze the cheesecake?
I have coconut flakes but to get it toasted should I scatter some and put it in the oven for a bit to get that toasted look? Or use a lighter maybe?
Hello! Put the coconut flakes into a dry pan on a medium heat and move about until toasted!x
Hi , is the unset mixture supposed to be runny like thick cream? i adjusted the recipe to serve 6 by using your adjustor so i dont think i measured anything out wrong, its currently just after going into the fridge there now to be served up on valentines day
As you use gelatine to set it, it will be fine! This mixture is more liquid than others.
Hi, please can you advise if this recipe would freeze ok without the topping? Thank you
Yes you can! x
Hello!! ☺️ This sounds and looks absolutely amazing. I was thinking can this be made without the alcohol and coconut. More like just a pineapple cheesecake? If so would the measurements be different and the ingredients? I’m eager to make this for Christmas. It would be great if you could get back to me! 😁
The issue you have with doing that is gelatine really doesn’t like pineapple, so if you got rid of the other ingredients and used more pineapple it might not set at all! Unless you just want to decorate with it then it would be fine x
Oh and could I ask how much ml of water you use for 5 gelatine leaves ? Thank youuuu x
There is no particular ml – you just need to cover them and soak them. You don’t pour the water into the mix!
Hi Jane I wondered if you add the pineapple on the day you eat it or the night before ? I’m doing someone this cheesecake and wasn’t sure if I should add the pineapple chunks the night before or the morning or does it go dry and brown if put on and left in the fridge ?
As I used tinned pineapple which has been stored in the juice/syrup and still has some left on it mine didn’t go brown, but you can easily leave it off if you are worried! X
I wanted to give this a try but wanted to make small individual ones using the GU jars
Would I still need the gelatin leaves or will it be ok without?
I would still recommend a setting agent as the mixture is very thin due to the liquid!
Hello Jane, as I could replace the gelatin in sheets by jelly powder (grenetin), where I live do not sell in sheets, it is very scarce, I am from Peru, thank you for responding, Greetings.
As long as it is a setting agent that sets liquid you can use whatever – just follow packet instructions for how much you need!
Can you tell me how the quantities would change if I was making this in a 9inch tin please? Many Thanks!!
About 1/3 more of everything!
Hi, I’m struggling to get hold of Coconut Cream. Is there a substitute I can use, please?
You can use double cream!
How much agar agar would you use instead of leave gelatine?
I would follow the packet instructions as it should advise on that! (It can vary!)
Tasted amazing and really smooth and creamy. Big hit with everyone!
Ahh yay! So glad you enjoyed it!
Made this and your rhubarb crumble cheesecake yesterday, appropriately as it was national cheesecake day!
They were both amazing 😋
I was a bit worried about using gelatine leaves and the cheesecake setting with pineapple, but it was absolutely fine. Flavours quite delicate, and the desiccated coconut in the base gave a nice texture.
Hi! I’m planning to so this one today but I have a question (I know… last minute for a question…):
Do you use the liquid in the coconut cream as well or just that thick part? And do you whisk it to a whipped coconut cream before you add it to the cream cheese or do you add it as is?
The coconut cream I use is all liquid rather than being too thick, so I just whisk it straight in as I’ve said! If yours isn’t, you’ll probably have to smooth it before using!
That looks delicious! What type of cream cheese do you use? A block type cream cheese or a soft type cream cheese like the philadelphia in a tub?