You can make this easy recipe for Mini Cheesecakes in HALF the time a full-sized cheesecake takes! They’re creamy, super smooth, and perfectly portioned–great for parties! Recipe includes a how-to video.
Full-Sized Flavor in a Bite-Sized Treat
While most of us love a classic, full-sized cheesecake recipe, making one does have some drawbacks. They take a long time to bake (over an hour), sometimes require require a messy water bath (although mine does not!) and take a long time to cool (at least 6 hours!). You have to worry about cracks AND your springform pan leaking, and while I’d never say that it isn’t worth the effort, sometimes you just want something easier…like these mini cheesecakes.
Mini cheesecakes are the much simpler, muffin tin version of a regular cheesecake. They’re quick and easy, creamy, sweet and subtly tangy, and just all around delicious–just like the full-sized version! BUT they take less than half the time to make! 😲 Plus, they’re already portioned out into individual servings, so no one is on slicing duty. Win-win.
Why You’ll Love Mini Cheesecakes:
- So quick compared to a regular cheesecake: less than 20 minutes to bake and only a few hours to cool.
- Can be made on today’s graham cracker crust, or you can change things up and use a half batch of my Oreo crust instead.
- Can handle a few mini chocolate chips or broken Oreo pieces (for an Oreo cheesecake or chocolate cheesecake flair) in the batter, if you need a chocolate kick.
- Easily doubles to make 24 mini cheesecakes!
What You Need
Just a few simple ingredients come together to make these nice and easy mini cheesecakes. Here are the important ones:
- Cream cheese. As with my other cheesecake recipes, I don’t recommend using tub-style or low-fat cream cheese. Stick with the block-style, full-fat kind for best results!
- Sour cream. To me, you simply can’t make cheesecake without sour cream. It is an essential flavor element that adds a perfect richness. Full-fat Greek yogurt could also work in a pinch.
- Butter. Unlike most of my other recipes, I recommend using salted butter for today’s cheesecake crust. If you only have unsalted, that will work too; just remember to add ⅛ teaspoon of salt!
SAM’S TIP: While they’re great plain, these cheesecakes also taste wonderful topped with homemade whipped cream and fresh fruit, chocolate ganache (with a sprinkle of flaky sea salt for good measure!), hot fudge sauce, blueberry sauce (or just about any fruit sauce), or homemade caramel sauce.
Remember, this is just an overview of the ingredients I used and why. For the full recipe please scroll down to the bottom of the post!
How to Make Mini Cheesecakes
- Combine graham cracker crumbs and sugar, then add the melted butter and stir until combined.
- Press crust into 12 lined cupcake tins and set aside.
- Stir the cream cheese until smooth, then add sugar and stir again.
- Add the sour cream, vanilla, and salt and mix until well combined, then add the eggs one at a time.
- Divide the batter among your cupcake liners and bake for 17-20 minutes.
- Let the cheesecakes cool to room temperature, then remove them from the pan and chill in the fridge for 2-3 hours before serving.
SAM’S TIP: Do NOT over-bake! Overbaking is the easiest way to ruin any cheesecake; if it spends too much time in the oven, the texture will be dry, mealy and even crumbly–not smooth and creamy! Watch your cheesecakes carefully, make sure your oven temperature is accurate (I keep two inexpensive oven thermometers in my oven at all times), and check your cheesecakes a few minutes before they’re supposed to be done.
Frequently Asked Questions
Just like a regular-sized cheesecake, the mini version also needs to cool slowly. Don’t bring them out of the oven and throw them right in the fridge; instead, let them cool in a warm place (preferably on top of your oven) until they reach room temperature, then chill them.
They’re done when the centers bounce back to the touch and the edges may be a light golden brown. I usually check mine at 17 minutes; remember, do NOT overbake or they could become mealy and dry!
They’ll keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week. If you’d like to freeze them, follow the instructions for cooling and chilling first, and then wrap in plastic and freeze in an airtight container for several months.
I’d love to hear how you top or decorate yours; let me know in the comments below!
Let’s bake together! I’ll be walking you through all the steps in my written recipe and video below! If you try this recipe, be sure to tag me on Instagram, and you can also find me on YouTube and Facebook
Graham cracker crust:
- ¾ cup graham cracker crumbs (85g)
- 1 ½ Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 4 Tablespoons salted butter melted
- 16 oz softened cream cheese (455g)
- ½ cup sugar (100g)
- ½ cup sour cream (80g)
- ¾ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs lightly beaten, room temperature preferred
- Preheat oven to 325F (160C) and line a 12-count muffin tin with paper liners. Set aside.
- In a medium-sized bowl stir together graham cracker crumbs and 1 ½ Tablespoons sugar. Add melted butter and stir again until ingredients are moistened and completely combined.
- Portion about 2-3 teaspoons of the crust mixture into each liner in your prepared muffin tin. Use a spoon or the (clean) bottom of a ¼ cup measuring cup to tamp down crumbs so they are evenly packed into the bottom of each liner. Set aside while you prepare your mini cheesecake filling.
- Place cream cheese in the bowl of a stand mixer (or in a large bowl and use an electric mixer) and stir on low speed until smooth and creamy (don’t whip the cream cheese or excessively beat it, you don’t want to incorporate too much air into the batter).
- Add sugar and stir again until well-combined.
- Add sour cream, vanilla extract, and salt. Stir until ingredients are well-combined, pausing occasionally to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl so there are no lumps.
- Gradually add eggs, one at a time, until just incorporated. Keep the mixer on low-speed and do not over-beat. Once again scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl and stir on low-speed once more to ensure ingredients are completely combined.
- Evenly divide batter into muffin tin liners (I like to use an ice cream scoop with a lever release to do this, just makes it easy!).
- Transfer to 325F (160C) oven and bake for 17-20 minutes or until edges are just beginning to turn a very light golden brown and centers are set. Do not over-bake or the texture will be dry and mealy.
- Allow cheesecakes to cool completely to room temperature and then gently remove each mini cheesecake from muffin tin. Transfer to refrigerator and chill completely (about 2-3 hours) before serving.
- If desired, top with whipped cream, strawberry sauce, blueberry sauce, or chocolate ganache!
DoublingThis recipe can be doubled without issue or alteration.
StoringMini cheesecakes can be kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week. These mini cheesecakes also freeze well and can be kept frozen (in an airtight container) for several months.
Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered an estimate only. Actual nutritional content will vary based upon brands used, measuring methods, cooking method, portion sizes, and more.