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Fig and Vermouth no-bake cheesecake

(Easy dessert recipe, just 20 mins prep time and no baking or cooking!)

Written By: Byron | June 21, 2023
a fig and vermouth cheesecake sits beside two small glasses of vermouth on a black marble counter

Fig and Vermouth no-bake cheesecake combines authentic Spanish flavors with a super easy, no-cook cheesecake recipe. A delicious crunchy base, rich creamy cheesecake filling that’s infused with vanilla and Spanish Vermouth, and topped with lots of sliced fresh figs

If you are familiar with New York Cheesecakes, you will love this recipe. It uses cream cheese and the same no-bake cooking process and adds some subtle, but very satisfying flavors from Spanish cuisine: figs and Vermouth! Takes around 20 minutes of prep and then at least 1 hour to set in the fridge.

 Dessert Recipe | Easy Recipe | Cheesecake Recipe | Vermouth | Dinner party | Prep time 20 Mins

ingredients used to make a fig and vermouth cheesecake sit on a counter.

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How to make no-bake cheesecake with figs and vermouth

Ingredients

For the Biscuit Base

  • Splash of Extra virgin olive oil (around 2 tablespoons)
  • 7 oz. (200 g) of Graham cracker biscuits (or digestive biscuits work great too)
  • Pinch of salt
  • Pinch of nutmeg

For the Cheesecake Filling

  • 17 oz. (500 g) of cream cheese (Philadelphia cream cheese or similar)
  • 1.7 oz. (50 ml) of double cream
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
  • 3 oz. (75 g) of confectioners/icing sugar
  • 2-3.4 fl oz (60-100ml) of Vermouth 

Cheesecake topping

  • Around 8 ripe figs (1.5-2 inches/4-5cm in diameter)

Equipment needed

Method

Step 1 – Prepare the Base

  • Add the biscuits to a food processor and buzz for around 30 seconds.
  • Add the nutmeg, salt, and around half the olive oil. Buzz for 30 seconds and slowly add more oil to achieve the desired consistency. You should see small granules in the food processor. 
  • Press your base down onto the tart pan and make sure it’s evenly spread. Use a flat-bottomed glass or jar for this. 
  • Refrigerate until required in the next step.

Step 2 – Make Cheesecake Filling

  • In a large mixing bowl, add the cream cheese and confectioners (icing) sugar and mix by hand until smooth. It should take around a minute. (Note: Do not use a food processor for this step).
  • Add the Vermouth, vanilla essence, and double cream, and continue to mix until you see all ingredients combined. It should take around 2-3 minutes.
  • Grab your prepared cheesecake base from the fridge and spoon in the cheesecake filling. No need to smooth the topping perfectly as we will be adding the figs on top. 

Step 3 – Decorate the cheesecake with fresh figs

  • Slice the figs lengthways so you have 1/8th inch slices (around 5mm). 
  • Arrange the sliced figs on the top of the cheesecake. 
  • Pop the decorated cheesecake back in the fridge and refrigerate for at least one hour before serving (6 hours or overnight is ideal).

 Watch step-by-step recipe video

If you’re looking for this recipe’s video and many other great recipe ideas, why not check out our Spanish Radish YouTube Channel? We’ve got everything from quick and easy tapas recipes, delicious main meals, and incredible Spanish dessert options too.

Easy Spanish Desserts

Confession: I am not a dessert chef. And while I rate my kitchen skills reasonably well, I still get a little nervous when tasked with making desserts. The conundrum is, of course, I love sweet things, and cheesecake is right up there with my all-time favorites! 

Perhaps this is why I love making these no-cook, no-bake cheesecake recipes, and you’ll see a whole bunch on our blog. They’re super easy to make, you can add virtually any flavors or toppings you like to suit the season, and more importantly, they taste incredible and feed my cheesecake craving for one more week! 

The best news, once you’ve made this recipe, you’re all set to try all these other no-bake cheesecake recipes. Check these out below: 

Vermouth and figs

Yep, a not-so-unlikely combination that works wonders in sweet dishes, especially in desserts. Both ingredients are used extensively in Spanish cuisine, although it is surprisingly quite rare that they are used together. Or perhaps, until now…

A no bake cheeseccake topped with slices of fresh figs.

Baked and no-bake cheesecake – What’s the difference?

No-bake cheesecakes tend to be softer and more fluffy in texture. They’re utterly smooth and very decadent. Both types of cheesecake will be very creamy, and both often use cream cheese, but baked cheesecakes have eggs, whereas your no-bake variety doesn’t. 

For a no-bake cheesecake to set, it’ll need to refrigerate for at least one hour before serving, but longer is better. Once served at room temp, it’ll only hold out for an hour or so before it starts to melt and become very gooey — less time if it’s a warm day. 

Baked cheesecakes are denser and have a slightly firmer texture which is achieved by baking the ingredients, with or without a water bath. Baked cheesecakes also tend to be served without a topping.

Whichever cheesecake type you prefer, no-bake cheesecakes are hands down far easier to make and taste incredible.

Here’s our baked cheesecake recipe with honey and orange.

What is Vermouth?

Spanish Vermouth is a fortified white wine with herbs, spices, and other botanicals added. It is left to age in barrels and has a light pink or reddish hue in color. Typically, Vermouth is sweet and has hints of cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves. It’s the perfect ingredient to use in desserts as it has a distinctive flavor. 

In Spain, Vermouth is a popular tipple and you’ll see it enjoyed neat with lots of ice and a generous wedge of orange or lemon. In other Mediterranean countries, Vermouth is served mixed into cocktails. 

How long does Vermouth last?

We only use a shot or two of Vermouth for this recipe so you’ll have plenty leftover in the bottle. Once your bottle of Vermouth is opened, you’ll need to store it in the fridge. When refrigerated, Vermouth lasts around a month. As Vermouth is a fortified wine, it will eventually turn to vinegar if left in the heat (even at room temperature). 

Alcohol-free Vermouth (from Spain)

Typically when you cook with alcohol, the cooking process dissolves the alcohol content and just leaves the flavors of the liquor used. However, as this is a no-bake, no-cook recipe, using normal Vermouth will leave this recipe with a very very mild alcohol content (don’t worry, Grandma will be able to drive home after having a sneaky second slice!). 

If you prefer to use non-alcoholic Vermouth, there are some great options available. VERSIN Vermouth is Alcohol-Free and is imported from Spain and still has the same Vermouth flavor we need for this recipe.

sliced figs are set oout on a chopping board.

Fig season

Fresh figs are available from May to November in the Northern Hemisphere, and from November to May in the Southern Hemisphere, although you’ll find dried figs and farmed figs any time of year. 

 Figs grow wild in many parts of Spain and can be picked as early as the beginning of May in the region of Andalusia in Southern Spain. Here in the Valencia Region, we have a steady supply of wild figs available from mid-June until late August. 

Essential equipment: Tart pan with removable base

For ease and convenience, we find using a tart pan with a removable base the best for our cheesecake-making adventures. Also known as ‘quiche pans’ these types of molds have a removable bottom and a crinkled edge that gives pies, tarts, and cheesecakes a distinctive edge style. 

 Tart pans are available in a wide range of sizes, ranging from 6 inches (15cm) in diameter all the way up to 12-14 inches (30-35cm). Most tart pans will have an edge depth of around 1-2 inches (2.5-5 cm).

Serving and storing leftovers

As this cheesecake recipe sets during refrigeration, you’ll want to serve it immediately after taking it out of the fridge. If you leave your cheesecake at room temp for more than 1 hour, you’ll end up with a wilting, gooey mess — if it’s a hot day, don’t even wait that long! 

 To serve, remove from the fridge and slice with a warm sharp knife. It’s great served alongside a small glass of chilled Vermouth, or coffee. 

 This dessert recipe is very rich and sweet on its own, so you don’t need to add anything, but a little honey drizzled over the figs on top works a treat. 

 In the unlikely occurrence that you have any leftovers, store your cheesecake in a sealable cake container in the fridge. When refrigerated, it will last up to 3 days. It is not recommended to freeze and thaw this cheesecake recipe.

Nutrition Facts

Servings: 8

Amount per serving

 

Calories

440

% Daily Value*

Total Fat 20g

26%

Saturated Fat 6.9g

35%

Cholesterol 32mg

11%

Sodium 541mg

24%

Total Carbohydrate 56.4g

21%

Dietary Fiber 3.1g

11%

Total Sugars 23.4g

 

Protein 9.6g

 

Vitamin D 0mcg

0%

Calcium 243mg

19%

Iron 28mg

155%

Potassium 193mg

4%

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calorie a day is used for general nutrition advice.

 

FAQs

How long does this cheesecake recipe take to make?

    • Prep time: 20 minutes
    • Cook time: 0
    • Setting time: 1 hour (minimum, overnight is best)
    • Total time: 1 hour, 20 minutes.

    Best pan to use when making a no-bake cheesecake

    Use a tart pan (also called a quiche pan) with a removable bottom and sides. The pan should be around 10 inches (25cm) in diameter and have 1-2 inch (2.5-5cm) sides. 

    How long does a no-bake cheesecake need to be refrigerated to set?

    A no-bake cheesecake will set in around one hour but the longer you leave it, the more it will hold. At the 1-hour mark, it will be firm enough to slice, but you’ll want to serve it immediately after removing it from the fridge. For best results, we recommend leaving it in the fridge overnight. 

    Can you use olive oil for a biscuit base for cheesecake?

    Yep, you sure can. Olive oil makes a healthy substitute for butter and will set fine once refrigerated. It’ll be a little crumbly, but the health benefits of not using butter are a much better trade-off. 

    How can I make a firm biscuit base with olive oil instead of butter?

    For a 9-10 inch (20cm) tart pan, sub out the butter for 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Mix well and make sure you press the crushed biscuit base into the pan. The more compacted the base, the better.

    a fig and vermouth cheesecake sits on a black marble counter.

    Fig and Vermouth no-bake cheesecake (easy dessert recipe)

    Byron
    Fig and Vermouth no-bake cheesecake combines authentic Spanish flavors with a super easy, no-cook cheesecake recipe. A delicious crunchy base, rich creamy cheesecake filling that’s infused with vanilla and Spanish Vermouth, and topped with lots of sliced fresh figs.
    5 from 2 votes
    Prep Time 20 minutes
    Cook Time 0 minutes
    Refrigeration time 1 hour
    Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
    Course afternoon tea, cake, Dessert, Snack, treat
    Cuisine Authentic Spanish recipe, Mediterranean
    Servings 8 slices
    Calories 440 kcal

    Equipment

    • Fridge
    • A 10-inch tart pan with a removable bottom (e.g: Beasea Tart Pan 10 Inch with Removable Bottom * )
    • A large mixing bowl
    • A large spoon or spatula
    • food processor
    • Flat-bottomed glass or jar

    Ingredients

    For the Biscuit Base

    • Splash of Extra virgin olive oil around 2 tablespoons
    • 7 oz. 200 g of Graham cracker biscuits (or digestive biscuits work great too)
    • Pinch of salt
    • Pinch of nutmeg

    For the Cheesecake Filling

    • 17 oz. 500 g of cream cheese (Philadelphia cream cheese or similar)
    • 1.7 oz. 50 ml of double cream
    • 1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
    • 3 oz. 75 g of confectioners/icing sugar
    • 2-3.4 fl oz 60-100ml of Vermouth

    Cheesecake topping

    • Around 8 ripe figs 1.5-2 inches/4-5cm in diameter

    Instructions
     

    Step 1 - Prepare the Base

    • Add the biscuits to a food processor and buzz for around 30 seconds.
      7 oz. 200 g of Graham cracker biscuits (or digestive biscuits work great too)
      Butter is added to the biscuits in a food processor
    • Add the nutmeg, salt, and around half the olive oil. Buzz for 30 seconds and slowly add more oil until you achieve the desired consistency. You should see small granules in the food processor.
      Pinch of salt, Pinch of nutmeg, Splash of Extra virgin olive oil
      Butter is added to the biscuits in a food processor
    • Press your base down onto the tart pan and make sure it’s evenly spread. Use a flat-bottomed glass or jar for this.
      A cheesecake base in a pan.
    • Refrigerate until required in the next step.
      a smooth cheesecake base ready to be refrigerated.

    Step 2 - Make Cheesecake Filling

    • In a large mixing bowl, add the cream cheese and confectioners (icing) sugar and mix by hand until smooth. It should take around a minute. (Note: Do not use a food processor for this step).
      17 oz. 500 g of cream cheese (Philadelphia cream cheese or similar), 3 oz. 75 g of confectioners/icing sugar
      Cream cheese, confectioers sugar, and double cream are mixed by hand in a large white bowl.
    • Add the Vermouth, vanilla essence, and double cream, and continue to mix until you see all ingredients combined. It should take around 2-3 minutes.
      1.7 oz. 50 ml of double cream, 1 teaspoon of vanilla essence, 2-3.4 fl oz
      Some vermouth is added to a cheesecake mixture in a large white bowl.
    • Grab your prepared cheesecake base from the fridge and spoon in the cheesecake filling. No need to smooth the topping perfectly as we will be adding the figs on top.
      A cheesecake mixture is added to a base in a tart pan.

    Step 3 - Decorate the cheesecake with fresh figs

    • Slice the figs lengthways so you have 1/8th inch slices (around 5mm).
      Around 8 ripe figs
      A fig is sliced on a chopping board.
    • Arrange the sliced figs on the top of the cheesecake.
      Slices of fresh fig are arranged on top of a cheesecake.
    • Pop the decorated cheesecake back in the fridge and refrigerate for at least one hour before serving (6 hours or overnight is ideal).
      a fig and vermouth cheesecake sits on a black marble counter.

    Video

    Nutrition

    Serving: 80gCalories: 440kcalCarbohydrates: 56.4gProtein: 9.6gFat: 20gSaturated Fat: 6.9gCholesterol: 32mgSodium: 541mgPotassium: 193mgFiber: 3.1gSugar: 23.4gCalcium: 243mgIron: 28mg
    Keyword Baked cheesecake, Dessert recipe, easy recipe, Fig and vermouth cheesecake, mediterranean, no bake cheesecake