College Kitchen: No-bake desserts

When the oven isn’t your friend.

A variety of no-bake cheese cakes slices, topped with berries, cocoa and chocolate shavings.

Liam James Doyle

A variety of no-bake cheese cakes slices, topped with berries, cocoa and chocolate shavings.

by Yena Lee

Ovens are finicky. They are often times temperamental and difficult to work with. This week, we’re ditching ’em and making some no-bake desserts.

No-bake desserts are great for cooks of all skill levels. Most recipes require minimal ingredients and kitchen tools, so they’re great for college students.

The following recipes satisfy different cravings.

Filled with nutritious ingredients like flaxseeds — a great source of micronutrients — no-bake protein balls are a healthy snack.

Although not nearly as healthy as no-bake protein balls, no-bake cheesecake is decadent, fluffy and creamy. It’ll become your go-to dessert recipe.


No-bake protein balls

No-bake protein balls are a great snack and an even better breakfast. They’re adaptable, too — you can easily cater them to your tastes.

Try making them with sunflower seed butter and coconut flakes or with almond butter and dried cherries.


1 cup old-fashioned oats

3/4 cup creamy peanut butter (other nut butters work too)

1/2 cup ground flaxseeds

2 tablespoons honey (or agave nectar)

1/4 cup chocolate chips, coconut flakes or dried fruit (optional)


1. Make sure the peanut butter is room temperature so it mixes easily.

2. Mix all the ingredients together.

3. Refrigerate for 15 minutes until mixture is firm.

4. Roll and separate the mixture into 1-inch balls.

5. Refrigerate in an airtight container for four to five days.



No-bake cheesecake

Although no-bake cheesecake’s texture is different from regular cheesecake, it retains the dessert’s velvety creaminess.

The fluffy concoction will make you want to eat seconds and thirds.


For the graham cracker crust:

1 1/2 cups crushed graham crackers

6 tablespoons melted butter

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)


For the cheesecake filling:

8 oz. softened cream cheese

1/2 cup sugar

1 cup sour cream

1 cup whipped cream

2 teaspoons vanilla extract (optional)



1. Mix all the ingredients for the graham crust and spoon the mixture into a pie pan.

2. Using a flat surface, flatten the graham cracker crust mixture into the form of the pan.

3. Put the pie pan in the fridge for at least an hour.

4. Before making the filling, make sure the cream cheese is out of the fridge for at least 15 minutes.      

5. Cream the sugar and cream cheese together.

6. Add in the vanilla extract (optional), sour cream and whipped cream.

7. You can use a tub of Cool Whip instead of whipping up heavy whipping cream. (And if you do use Cool Whip, decrease the amount of sugar to 1/4 cup.)

8. Pour the mixture into the set crust, and let it set for about five hours.


Tip: Just like a regular cheesecake, the garnish options are endless; simply top it off with berry compote, or just add some fresh berries with a honey drizzle.