How do you make a sophisticated dessert in only a few steps with only a few ingredients? How do you create a creamy, crunchy indulgence like this delicious sopapilla cheesecake? Read on.
Sopapilla. What does it mean? How do you make it? And most importantly, how good does it taste???
The word comes from the Spanish sopaipa, which means “bread soaked in oil.” Yes, sopapilla sounds much fancier. It’s a very popular dish in New Mexico (yes, there’s a NEW Mexico now) and complements all your Mexican-inspired dishes really well.
For this recipe, we’re forgoing the usual route of frying the dough and are instead using crescent roll dough that you will then put in the oven. It’s much easier and tidier and, er… healthier? (More on that below.)
Why You Will Love This Recipe
- This recipe is super easy to follow and takes only 10 minutes to prepare. After that, you pass it on to the oven, which does the rest of the work.
- It’s all about those textures — the deliciously creamy center and the crunchy, cakey base and top — coming together to make your mouth do somersaults. (Yes, this can be done.)
- The cinnamon flavor rounds out the cheesecake flavors and adds depth to the profile.
Is this Sopapilla Cheesecake healthy?
Well, in a word, no. The sugar is the main culprit here. As I suggest below, though, you CAN replace the 3/4 cup with maple syrup. The flavor will change but not in any drastic way (you may even prefer the taste of the syrup). Using low-fat cream cheese helps, but it — along with the butter — contains saturated fats that you will want to watch out for. Lastly, the dough contains processed carbs, which should be limited in your diet.
HOWEVER, this is a dessert. It’s supposed to be a tasty reward for finishing your healthy supper (or whatever important thing you do that day). Assuming you’re not eating this sopapilla cheesecake INSTEAD of your healthy dinner, one indulgence is not going to make or break your diet. Enjoy it, just don’t indulge all of the time.
Apart from the cream cheese, all of these ingredients should be in the baking section of your grocery store.
- 2 cans crescent roll dough
- 2 (8 oz) sticks of low-fat cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 cup white sugar, divided
- 1 tsp vanilla essence
- ¼ cup butter, melted
- 1 tsp cinnamon
Grease a 9″x13″ baking dish and heat your oven to 350°F. Lay one of the crescent roll sheets out in the baking dish. (If you are using a smaller dish then just cut the sheet to the right size.)
Use an electric hand mixer to blend the cream cheese, ¾ cup of the sugar, and vanilla essence together until nice and smooth.
Spoon it onto the sheet and spread out to cover the whole dish evenly.
Roll out the other roll of crescent dough and place gently on top of the cream cheese mix. Pour the melted butter over the dough.
Mix the remaining sugar and cinnamon together and sprinkle on top.
Pop into the heated oven and bake for 25-30 minutes until it is bubbly and the top is beautifully browned. Allow to cool.
- Add a little fruit (e.g., strawberries or crushed-and-drained pineapple) to the cream cheese center.
- If you prefer (or can’t get a hold of crescent roll dough), use puff pastry instead.
- You could use a ¼ cup maple syrup to sweeten the cream cheese instead of the ¾ cup sugar.
Healthy Chicken Quesadillas: You NEED to serve the sopapilla cheesecake with a (New) Mexican dish like these chicken quesadillas. And note these are HEALTHY quesadillas, so having something sweet afterwards isn’t so bad, right?
Butternut Squash Chili: Another savory meal that pairs well with the sweet sopapilla cheesecake. It, too, is a healthy option for a main entree.
Mexican Keto Ground Beef Casserole: A comforting Mexican-inspired dish. It’s low in carbs and is just as creamy as the sopapilla (well, ALMOST as creamy)!
It is best to allow your cream cheese to soften at room temperature for 30 minutes before using it. It will be too hard straight out of the fridge.
Yes, you can. Just let it cool for a few minutes first so that the cheese sets.
Absolutely, you can make homemade dough if you like. Traditional sopapilla dough is made from flour, water, salt, and baking powder. Sugar is usually added for flavoring.
How to Store Sopapilla Cheesecake
Whether you’ve eaten some of the cheesecake but can’t finish it, or have made it days in advance of serving it, here is what you need to do to keep it fresh.
First, let it cool completely. Then you can either store it in an airtight container (make sure it’s big enough so that the lid doesn’t squish the cheesecake) or cover it with plastic wrap or aluminum. It can be stored in the fridge for up to five days. To freeze it, wrap the cheesecake in plastic or aluminum and then store it in an airtight container. It should keep in the freezer for up to three months. Let it thaw overnight in the fridge when it comes time to eat the treat.
You can then warm it up a bit in the microwave or oven or serve it cold, directly from the fridge. Enjoy!
- 2 cans crescent rolls
- 2 sticks low-fat cream cheese (8 oz each), room temperature
- 1 cup white sugar divided
- 1 tsp vanilla essence
- ¼ cup butter melted
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- Grease a 9"x13" baking dish and heat your oven to 350°F.
- Lay one of the crescent roll sheets out in the baking dish. (If you are using a smaller dish then just cut the sheet to the right size.)
- Use an electric hand mixer to blend the cream cheese, ¾ cup sugar, and vanilla essence together until nice and smooth. Spoon it onto the sheet and spread out to cover the whole dish evenly.
- Roll out the other roll of crescent dough and place it gently on top of the cream cheese mix. Pour the melted butter over the dough. Mix the remaining sugar and cinnamon together and sprinkle on top.
- Pop into the heated oven and bake for 25-30 minutes until it is bubbly and the top is beautifully browned. Allow to cool.
Tips & Notes:
- If you’re having difficulty blending the cream cheese, let it soften at room temperature for 30 minutes before using it. It will be too hard straight out of the fridge.
- You can serve this warm or cold. If you would like to serve it warm, I recommend letting it cool a little first in order to let the cream cheese set.
Recipes written and produced on Food Faith Fitness are for informational purposes only.
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