An easy, creamy Pumpkin Cheesecake that’s made completely from scratch, and there is no water bath required! Recipe includes a step-by-step video!
The Perfect Cheesecake For Fall
As promised, another pumpkin recipe for you. My pumpkin cheesecake is actually an older recipe on the blog, but it’s definitely worth a re-share.
For those of you who love my super easy classic cheesecake recipe, I think you’ll love how similarly easy this one is (no water bath!) as well as the festive fall twist.
It’s made on my homemade graham cracker crust and topped off with a homemade cinnamon whipped cream. It would be a great Thanksgiving dessert that’s guaranteed to impress (and in my opinion is WAY better than pumpkin pie).
Let’s get started.
How to Make a Crack-Free Pumpkin Cheesecake (Without a Water Bath!)
I shared most of these tips when I posted my chocolate cheesecake, but they’re still every bit as valid here (or with just about any cheesecake!).
- Use room temperature ingredients! I like to set out my eggs, cream cheese, and sour cream at least an hour before I begin making my cheesecake. Because they’re all at the same temperature, they will combine more evenly, which reduces the risk of cracks.
- Don’t over-beat your eggs! Stir the batter on low-speed just until each egg has been incorporated. Lightly beat the eggs before adding them to help them mix in more easily. It’s important that the eggs are fully incorporated into the batter, just don’t overdo it, as this can actually ruin the texture (think mealy and somewhat dry rather than smooth and creamy!) and can cause your pumpkin cheesecake to crack.
- Don’t open the oven! It’s so tempting to want to peek in on your cheesecake, but every time you open the oven door you drastically reduce the temperature of your oven. This slows the baking process and can cause any cheesecake to crack and to sink.
- Always cool at room temperature before moving to the fridge. Rapid cooling is a surefire way to end up with a big crack in the center (even if it was smooth when it first came out of the oven!). Let your cheesecake cool slowly, I let mine cool on top of the oven where it’s still warm, or you can leave it in your (turned off) oven with the door open and let it come to room temperature before refrigerating.
Tip: Ingredient specifics matter! Make sure that you are using pure pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling) and full-fat, brick-style cream cheese (not the spreadable kind).
Just dollop some homemade whipped cream over the cracks and you’re good to go. Just remember that any cracks won’t affect the taste of your cheesecake!
Make sure to review my tips above for a crack-free pumpkin cheesecake next time!
I don’t recommend it for this recipe, as most store-bought crusts come in small pie tins that wouldn’t be large enough to hold the amount of batter that this recipe makes.
My homemade graham cracker crust recipe is linked in the instructions below, it takes just a few ingredients and a few minutes of your time to make and will fit into the 9″ springform pan required.
Store it in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. It may also be frozen (wrap it tightly first) for several months. I don’t always cover my cheesecake, but to keep it from absorbing other odors in the fridge it is a good idea to do so.
I get asked this a lot so thought I’d address it here. I leave mine in the springform pan until I’m ready to serve, then I remove the ring and serve, then I replace the ring when I need to store it again.
If you’d like to remove your pumpkin cheesecake onto a pretty platter, use a spatula to gently pry the bottom up from the bottom of the pan and very gently slide it onto a serving platter.
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Let’s bake together! Make sure to check out the how-to VIDEO in the recipe card!
- 1 9″ graham cracker crust (prepared according to recipe in 9" or 10" springform pan, not pre-baked). Click the link for recipe.
- 24 oz cream cheese softened to room temperature, be sure to use brick-style and not spreadable cream cheese
- 3/4 cup brown sugar packed (150g)
- 1/2 cup sugar (100g)
- 1/3 cup sour cream (80g)
- 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup pumpkin puree¹ (244g)
- 2 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
- 3 large eggs lightly beaten, room temperature preferred
Cinnamon Whipped Cream
- 3/4 cup heavy cream (175ml)
- 1/4 cup powdered sugar (30g)
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 350F (175C)².
- Prepare graham cracker crust in a 9″ springform but do not bake. Place in refrigerator to chill while you prepare your cheesecake filling.
- In a stand mixer (or in a large bowl with a hand-mixer), beat together softened cream cheese and sugars, scraping down the sides with a spatula occasionally to ensure ingredients are mixed well. (beat on medium-speed about 1-2 minutes, scraping down side occasionally).
- Add sour cream and stir well, pausing once to scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.
- Add vanilla extract, pumpkin puree, and pumpkin spice and stir until well-combined.
- Add eggs, one at a time, beating until just mixed after each addition (and scraping down the sides after each addition).
- Spread cheesecake batter evenly over prepared crust.
- Transfer to oven and bake on 350F for 40 minutes or until center of cheesecake is set and bounces back to the touch.
- Allow pumpkin cheesecake to cool to room temperature and then transfer to refrigerator and chill for 6 hours or overnight.
- Before serving, prepare your cinnamon whipped cream.
Cinnamon Whipped Cream³
- For the cinnamon whipped cream topping, combine heavy cream, powdered sugar, vanilla extract, and ground cinnamon in a clean medium-sized bowl.
- Use an electric mixer to stir on low-speed. Gradually increase speed to high and beat until stiff peaks form.
- Pipe or dollop whipped cream over chilled cheesecake. Slice, serve, and enjoy!
Treat yourself to a FREE E-BOOK!
This recipe originally published 10/13/2017, while the recipe remains the same, the post has been updated and improved and a video has been added!