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Pumpkin Cheesecake

slice of pumpkin cheesecake with whipped cream swirls and chopped nuts being removed from cheesecake pan

This is a pumpkin cheesecake recipe that you’ll use over and over! The pumpkin pie cheesecake batter is 7 ingredients and turns out to be so creamy and pumpkin-y! Plus, you can easily use a graham cracker crust, gingersnap cookie crust, or oreo crust for this fall pumpkin cheesecake.

Pumpkin cheesecake crust options

Here are 3 great options for the crust of pumpkin cheesecakes

  • graham crackers
  • gingersnap cookies
  • oreo cookies

Pick whichever cookie base you want, and use 2 cups cookie crumbs to make the crust.

whole pumpkin cheesecake with whipped cream swirls and chopped nuts on wooden background

How to make the perfect pumpkin cheesecake

Every single cheesecake recipe I have on my site, I include TWO CRITICAL notes. Here are the 2 most important details to follow when making cheesecake..

How do you keep cheesecake from cracking? Put it in a water bath!

1. Don’t be afraid of the water bath!

I know it sounds weird, putting your cheesecake in a water bath, but it’s the secret to creating moist, perfectly baked cheesecake. It’s really not scary.

I used to use the tinfoil method (i.e. wrap the pan with several layers of tin foil) to prevent water from getting into the cheesecake, but it wasn’t the best method.

Now I place the cheesecake pan inside an oven bag. Yes! The same kind of oven bag you cook a turkey in! Be sure to roll the bag down so it doesn’t cover the top of the cheesecake. I included a picture of this and it’s also shown in the video too!

Once you have your cheesecake inside an oven bag, place the cheesecake pan inside a larger pan, like a 9×13 or larger pan, and fill the 9×13 inch pan with water, about 1-2 inches below the top of the cheesecake pan.

how to bake cheesecake in a water bath

2. Don’t rush the cooling process.

Once the cheesecake is done baking, let it sit in the oven for 1 hour or longer with the oven door cracked – be sure to turn the oven off! A slow cooling process will help prevent the cheesecake from cracking. Don’t forget to refrigerate your cheesecake over night before serving.

How long do you bake pumpkin cheesecake?

It takes 8-10 minutes to pre-bake the crust and 55-65 minutes to bake the cheesecake. The cheesecake is done when the center wobbles a little when you jiggle the pan. The edges of the cheesecake should look firmer than the center.

a slice of pumpkin cheesecake with whipped cream swirls and chopped nuts on metal plate

What to top pumpkin cheesecake with

How to make gluten free pumpkin pie cheesecake

Since our recipe doesn’t call for flour in the cheesecake batter, the only substitute you need to make is to replace the crust with gluten free graham crackers/oreos etc. You could also choose to have a crustless cheesecake.

slice of pumpkin cheesecake with whipped cream swirls and chopped nuts being removed from cheesecake pan

Tips for making pumpkin cheesecake without sour cream

  • Allow the cream cheese to come to room temperature before beating it. Room temperature cream cheese is easier to whip.
  • Be sure to use 100% pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie filling.
  • Using a different size springform pan will alter the baking time. I used a 9 inch springform pan.
  • Allow the cheesecake to cool in the oven (with the door cracked) for 1 hour.
whole pumpkin cheesecake with whipped cream swirls and chopped nuts on wooden background

How to Freeze a Whole Cheesecake

1. Cool the cheesecake completely before freezing. You can allow it to cool on the counter or you can place it in the fridge over night to chill before freezing.

2. Use a knife to remove the outer springform ring. Use the knife to gently remove the cheesecake from the bottom of the pan. Place on a round cardboard circle that’s been covered in aluminum foil that’s the same size as the cheesecake.

3. Wrap the entire cheesecake (without any toppings) well in plastic wrap. Then wrap the outside of the cheesecake in aluminum foil for extra protection. Place in the freezer for up to 3 months. To thaw, place the cheesecake in the fridge overnight. Add toppings before serving.

More Pumpkin Desserts

slice of pumpkin cheesecake with whipped cream swirls and chopped nuts being removed from cheesecake pan

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Pumpkin Cheesecake

Pumpkin Cheesecake

Yield: 8 or 9 inch springform pan
Additional Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours

This is a pumpkin cheesecake recipe that you’ll use over and over! The pumpkin pie cheesecake batter is 7 ingredients and turns out to be so creamy and pumpkin-y! Plus, you can easily use a graham cracker crust, gingersnap cookie crust, or oreo crust for this fall pumpkin cheesecake.

Ingredients

Crust

  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs (or gingersnaps, oreos, etc)
  • 6 tbsp melted butter, unsalted
  • 1/4 cup sugar

Cheesecake

  • 3 packages full fat cream cheese, 8 oz each, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 3 eggs

Instructions

Crust

  1. Preheat the oven to 350º F.
  2. Pulse the graham crackers (or other cookies) in a blender or food processor until they are very fine. Measure out 2 cups of crumbs.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the crumbs with the sugar and melted butter, mix well until incorporated.
  4. Add the crumbs to a 8 or 9 inch springform pan, distribute them evenly, using a cup or the bottom of something flat to press the crumbs into the pan. The goal is to pack down the crumbs. If desired, you can have the crumbs go up the sides of the pan a bit.
  5. Place the pan in the oven, pre-bake the crust for 8-10 minutes or until the crust is golden. 
  6. Remove the pan from the oven, and allow it to cool to room temperature before adding the cheesecake mixture. To speed this up, you can put the springform pan in the fridge.
  7. Turn the oven down to 325º F.

Cheesecake

  1. In a large mixing bowl, beat the 3 packages of softened cream cheese until smooth, about 2-3 minutes. Add in the sugar, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, vanilla extract, and pumpkin puree, beat again. Add in the eggs, ONE at a time, beating after each one. Beat the mixture for 1 additional minute. Pour the cheesecake mixture on top of the cooled crust. Make sure the crust and pan have cooled before doing so.
  2. Place the springform pan inside an oven bag (the same kind you’d cook a turkey in). Roll the bag down so it doesn’t cover the top of the cheesecake.
  3. Place the pan inside a 9x13 inch pan or larger. Carefully fill the 9x13 inch pan with water, filling it about 1 inch below the top of the 9x13 inch pan. **Note: You can use a 9 inch springform pan for the cheesecake, but you will need a larger pan for the water bath. One of those oversized disposable aluminum foil pans will fit a 9 inch springform pan. I like to place the aluminum pan on top of a large baking sheet, this makes moving the water bath easier.
  4. Place the cheesecake and water bath inside the oven and bake at 325º F for 55-65 minutes. The cheesecake is done when the center wobbles a little when you jiggle the pan. The edges of the cheesecake should look firmer than the center.
  5. Once the cheesecake looks done, turn the oven off and open the oven door a little. Allow the cheesecake to cool to room temperature inside the oven before removing - this could be 60-90 minutes.
  6. Once cool, remove the cheesecake from the oven. Remove the cheesecake pan from the turkey bag, then cover the top in plastic wrap and place in the fridge for at least 6 hours or overnight.
  7. Before serving, carefully unmold the cheesecake from the springform pan. Allow the pan to do most of the work, some of the cheesecake may stick to the pan, but the cheesecake should naturally separate from the pan. Use a knife to help remove the cheesecake from the pan. 
  8. Add your desired toppings, cut and serve. Store leftovers in the fridge.

Notes

What to top pumpkin cheesecake with

How to Freeze a Whole Cheesecake

  1. Cool the cheesecake completely before freezing. You can allow it to cool on the counter or you can place it in the fridge over night to chill before freezing.
  2. Use a knife to remove the outer springform ring. Use the knife to gently remove the cheesecake from the bottom of the pan. Place on a round cardboard circle that’s been covered in aluminum foil that’s the same size as the cheesecake. 
  3. Wrap the entire cheesecake (without any toppings) well in plastic wrap. Then wrap the outside of the cheesecake in aluminum foil for extra protection. Place in the freezer for up to 3 months. To thaw, place the cheesecake in the fridge overnight. Add toppings before serving. 

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2 comments

  1. This looks wonderful! Do you notice a difference in texture or taste after being in the freezer or is it as good as the day it’s made? Can’t wait to make this very soon!!

    • As long as it’s wrapped properly for the freezer, you shouldn’t be able to tell a difference!

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