– This easy pumpkin cheesecake recipe takes very little effort to produce big results. –
I’ve been a cheesecake zealot ever since I was a little girl, and I’ve been feeling the need to go on a cheesecake bender for the past month. It’s part of the reason I developed this simple strawberry cheesecake recipe, which is perfect for using up those frozen strawberries hiding in your freezer. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t want to faceplate into that cake when no one was looking. Don’t judge! To crave cheesecake is human, and to deny your humanity is just… a serious bummer.
Julie, the production manager here at Fearless Fresh and The Culinary Life (and the lady responsible for this epic peach and blueberry upside down cake), recently made pumpkin cheesecake for a charity auction, and decided to tease me by texting me photos. No fair! You can’t just send a girl photos of pumpkin cheesecake when you’re 800 miles away. And a gingersnap crust? That’s illegal torture in some countries. (At least, it should be.) The dessert FOMO police are coming for you, Julie. ? ? ? ?
We decided that it would be the perfect recipe to share with you. Seriously, autumn would not be complete without this easy pumpkin cheesecake recipe, which is so simple to throw together. It only takes 30 minutes of work and tastes like you suddenly added a pastry education to your past. (Remember how in The Matrix you could just pop a disk into a computer that’s plugged into your head and learn Jiu Jitsu? Culinary school would have been SO much easier if that technology actually existed. Sigh.)
Here’s a note from Julie:
“This easy pumpkin cheesecake recipe with a gingersnap crust shows up every year on my dessert menu some time during the autumn months. This year I needed to make it a little earlier when one of my favorite charities was doing a ‘dessert dash’ auction at their upcoming event, and they asked me to make a couple of desserts to auction off. So out came this simple cheesecake recipe and my favorite tiramisu. (Watch for that recipe next month!)
“Sadly, they both went to the auction without us, due to the event falling on my husband’s birthday. We had birthday cake instead that night, so guess what I’m making for Thanksgiving dessert? Though it will be a hard choice between cheesecake and a butternut squash pie.
“Hope you enjoy this easy pumpkin cheesecake as much as we do around our house!
- One 16-ounce box gingersnap cookies
- 4 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
- Four 8-ounce packages cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 3 large eggs, at room temperature
- One 15-ounce can pumpkin
- 1 cup whipping cream
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1 cup heavy cream, really cold
- 1/2 cup mascarpone or cream cheese
- 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
- Preheat oven to 350°F (176°C). Lightly butter bottom and sides of a 9” springform pan, or other removable-bottomed cake pan.
- Add cookies to food processor and pulse a few times to break into crumbs. Add sugar and melted butter to crumbs and pulse a few more times to incorporate. Set aside 1/2 cup of the crust crumbles and pour the rest into the spring-form pan. Press the crumbs into the bottom of the pan, and about ¼-inch up the sides. Place pan into oven and bake for 8-10 minutes, or until lightly browned. Remove from oven and cool completely.
- Once the crust has cooled, wrap the bottom and sides of the springform pan: put two sheets of foil on the counter, going opposite directions lengthwise (essentially making a big X with foil). Put two sheets of plastic wrap down on top of that, with each piece of plastic stretching the length of each piece of foil. Set the pan in the middle of your X and roll/fold the foil and plastic up around the pan, pressing tightly so there are no gaps.
- Set a large pot of water to boil on the stovetop. This will be for creating the water bath.
- Combine cream cheese and sugar in a large bowl. Beat with an electric mixer until smooth and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, mixing each until completely combined. Add pumpkin, heavy cream, vanilla extract, and spices, and beat until smooth.
- Pour filling into wrapped springform pan and tap the pan on the counter to release any air bubbles. Place springform pan into large roasting pan and pour boiling water around edges, adding enough water to come halfway up the outside of the springform pan.
- Bake for 90 minutes until cheesecake is slightly puffed, softly set, top is gently golden, and sides are pulling away from pan slightly. Remove from oven and immediately take the springform pan out of roasting pan and set on wire rack to cool. Once cooled, put in refrigerator overnight. Remove from springform pan.
- Take reserved cookie crumbs, spread out on small baking sheet, and bake in a preheated 350°F (176°C) oven for 5-7 minutes just until browned.
- Put heavy cream into chilled mixing bowl. Whip the cream with an electric mixer or the whip attachment on your stand mixer. While the machine is running, add the powdered sugar and mascarpone cheese. Beat until stiff peaks form, making sure to not overbeat. (Stop while the cream is still smooth, before it seizes and turns clumpy.)
- Scoop whipped cream into a pastry bag fitted with a large star tip. Pipe stars around the edge of the cheesecake and then sprinkle with reserved cookie crumbs. Slice and enjoy!
Special Equipment: 9" removable bottomed cake pan.
This content was originally posted on FearlessFresh.com.