Mini Lemon Cheesecakes With Almond Crust Recipe

mini lemon cheesecakes
Patsy Catsos, MS, RDN, LD
Total Time: 45 min
Prep Time: 20 min
Cook Time: 25 min
Servings: 12 (1 cheesecake each)

Nutrition Highlights (per serving)

212 calories
10g fat
23g carbs
8g protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 12 (1 cheesecake each)
Amount per serving  
Calories 212
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 10g 13%
Saturated Fat 4g 20%
Cholesterol 48mg 16%
Sodium 153mg 7%
Total Carbohydrate 23g 8%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Total Sugars 16g  
Includes 11g Added Sugars 22%
Protein 8g  
Vitamin D 0mcg 0%
Calcium 79mg 6%
Iron 0mg 0%
Potassium 138mg 3%
*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.

These creamy cheesecakes made with cottage cheese taste just like traditional ones made with cream cheese, but they are IBS-friendly. They are very easy to make and are a perfect, portion-controlled dessert.

To get a smooth texture you will need a food processor or blender. Lactose-free yogurt can be difficult to find; plain Greek yogurt is a suitable alternative in this recipe. See the ingredient variations and substitutions described below for the how-to.


  • 1 cup lactose-free yogurt
  • 4 ounces low-FODMAP cookies 
  • ½ cup toasted whole or sliced almonds
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 cups lactose-free cottage cheese
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon zest      
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract        


  1. About three hours before you’re planning to make the muffins, place yogurt in a sieve lined with a triple layer of cheesecloth, a coffee filter, or paper towels, and allow whey to drain off until 1/2 cup of thickened yogurt remains. If you overshoot and wind up with too little yogurt, stir some of the whey back in as needed to make 1/2 cup.

  2. Preheat oven to 325F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper muffin baking liners.

  3. In a blender or food processor, pulse cookies and almonds until crumbs similar to a graham cracker crumb texture form, about 10 pulses. Melt butter on high power in a small microwave-safe bowl, about 30 seconds. Pour the crumbs into the melted butter and mix. Place 2 tablespoons of crumbs in each muffin cup. Press the crumbs down with your fingers on the bottom of the cups and ¼ inch up the sides of liners.

  4. Wash the blender to remove crumbs and dry it out. To the blender, add the cottage cheese, yogurt, and cornstarch and process until smooth, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and add sugar, eggs, lemon zest, lemon juice and vanilla in the blender. Process until smooth, 30 to 60 seconds. Scrape down sides and quickly pulse one more time, 5 to 10 seconds.

  5. Pour batter into muffin cups to just below the top edge of the liner. If you have leftover batter, pour it into a buttered ramekin to make a crustless cheesecake. Bake until set but not browned, 23 to 26 minutes. When they are cool enough to handle, remove the cheesecakes from the muffin tins and chill in the refrigerator until firm, 1 to 2 hours. Top with low-FODMAP fruit or jam.

Variations and Substitutions

Cookies with low-FODMAP ingredients are usually gluten-free. Look for gluten-free shortbread, vanilla wafers, or animal crackers made without high FODMAP sweeteners; the entire recipe will then be gluten-free as well.

If you can't find lactose-free yogurt, substitute 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt for the strained yogurt in this recipe; one portion will still have less than 1 gram of lactose per serving, likely to be tolerated by most individuals with IBS.

For a nut-free variation, omit almonds and increase cookie weight to 6 ounces.

Cooking and Serving Tips

Cheesecakes can be made without a crust. Pour batter into 8 well-greased 4-5 ounce ramekins. Serve in the ramekins, as they can’t be easily removed.

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