These Mini Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake Desserts are such a fun and unique Fall treat. How cute would these look on your Thanksgiving dessert table next to the pies!? Such a fun single-serving-sized treat for kids. Recipe includes a how-to video!
The Cutest Way to Eat Dessert
My last pumpkin dessert of the year (and what a perfect one, just in time for Thanksgiving)!
I don’t know about you but I’m honestly breathing a sigh of relief. My kitchen has been overwhelmed with pumpkin cheesecake, pumpkin cookies, and pumpkin cupcakes, and while Zach has been over the moon you guys know I’m not actually much of a pumpkin person myself.
But for those of you who do enjoy the flavor, these mini pumpkin pie cheesecakes are the perfect pumpkin-infused treats, simple to make, and no baking required (I bet your oven has plenty of plans this week already!). The base starts with my homemade, no-bake cheesecake filling that’s infused with pumpkin and Fall spices for a cheesecake/pumpkin pie hybrid. They’re simple to make (the kids can help!) and so, so good.
What You Need
Here’s what you need:
- Gingersnaps & butter. We’ll grind these up to make the “crust” for our desserts. I include notes in the recipe in case you’d like a graham cracker crust instead!
- Heavy Whipping cream. You can use heavy cream, whipping cream, or even double cream. We’ll whip this with powdered sugar and vanilla extract to make our own whipped cream. This will both serve some purpose as the stabilizer for the cheesecake layer and that swirl of whipped cream on top!
- Cream cheese. As with almost all of my cheesecake recipes, I recommend using brick-style cream cheese and not the spreadable kind, which contains additives and is less likely to firm up properly. You may have a bit more wiggle room with this recipe as opposed to my baked ones, but having not tried it myself I can’t say for sure how it would turn out.
- Pumpkin puree. I recommend using pumpkin puree and not pumpkin pie filling, which contains additives and spices that you don’t need here.
- Sugar. Brown sugar and powdered sugar add sweetness, and the molasses from the brown sugar adds a subtle (Fall-inspired) depth of flavor.
- Pumpkin Pie Spice. I happened to have a jar in my cabinet, but if you don’t have any you can easily make your own homemade pumpkin spice.
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 Pumpkin Pie Cheesecakes
The steps listed below correspond with the numbered photos above.
- Begin by making your crust. Pulse gingersnaps in a food processor until you have fine crumbs, then stir in a bit of melted butter until the mixture resembles coarse sandy crumbs.
- Divide the crumbs into 30 disposable shot glasses. Use a measuring spoon to tamp down on the crumbs so you have a firm bottom layer.
- Prepare your whipped cream by beating cream, sugar, and vanilla to stiff billowy peaks! We are making my favorite homemade whipped cream but I include notes to substitute Cool Whip (don’t do it!).
- Stir together pumpkin, cream cheese, and spices and then carefully fold the whipped cream into the mixture.
- Pipe filling into each shot glass, filling almost to the brim.
- Top off with a swirl of whipped cream.
Tip: Crush an extra cookie or two and reserve the crumbs for sprinkling over the desserts before serving!
This is just an overview of the instructions, the full printable recipe can be found below (along with a video).
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes you can, in fact I originally published the recipe this way.
To do this, skip all of the ingredients in the “Whipped Cream” section of the recipe and you will instead need 24 oz of thawed Cool Whip.
Fold half into the pumpkin mixture and reserve the other half to pipe on top.
Yes! Mix together 3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs and 3 Tablespoons of melted butter (salted or unsalted) with a teaspoon of sugar and use that instead (no need to bake!).
Prepare up to 5 days in advance. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator (see below for freezing instructions).
Yes! They freeze quite well. Store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to several months. You can serve from frozen or you can thaw overnight in the refrigerator to bring them back to a softer consistency (which I prefer).
More Recipes You Might Like
Let’s bake together! Make sure to check out the how-to VIDEO in the recipe card!
Mini Pumpkin Pie Cheesecakes (No-Bake!)
- You will need 30 disposable 2 oz shot glasses click the link in the "equipment" section below to buy the ones I use
- 15 Gingersnap cookies
- 2 Tablespoons butter melted (salted or unsalted is fine)
- 3 cups heavy whipping cream (709ml)
- 1 cup powdered sugar (125g)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- In food processor, pulse cookies until mostly crumbled. Add butter and pulse until completely blended (fine crumbs).
- Using a small spoon, gently pack about 1 1/2 teaspoons of the crumbled cookiemixture into the bottom of each shot glass (30 shot glasses total). Reserve any extra crumbs to sprinkle on top.
- Combine heavy cream, 1 cup powdered sugar, and 2 teaspoons vanilla extract in a large bowl. Use an electric mixer to beat until mixture is thick and billowy and stiff peaks have formed (I demonstrate this in my video above).
- Divide whipped cream in half (approximate is fine), you will need half for the filling and half for the topping. Set both aside for now.
Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake Layer
- Using an electric mixer or stand mixer, beat together cream cheese, pumpkin puree, and brown sugar until mixture is smooth and well-combined.
- Gradually stir in powdered sugar until combined.
- Add in pumpkin spice and vanilla extract and stir well.
- Take one half of your reserved whipped cream and carefully fold it into the pumpkin mixture until smooth. You could do this with an electric mixer on low speed but I usually do this part by hand.
- Pipe³ filling into prepared shot glasses, filling nearly to the brim.
- Pipe or dollop your remaining half of whipped cream evenly overtop the dessert shooters. If you reserved any cookie crumbs, sprinkle these over the whipped cream for decoration if desired. While these desserts may be served immediately, the filling will be quite soft and I recommend chilling in the refrigerator in an airtight container for at least 4 hours before serving.
¹CrustYou may substitute a graham cracker crust instead. Stir together 3/4 cup (85g) graham cracker crumbs and 3 Tablespoons butter, and use that instead.
²Whipped creamTo substitute storebought whipped topping (often Cool Whip) you will need 24 oz (680g) thawed whipped topping. Half will go into the pumpkin mixture and half will be piped on top. Omit all of the “Whipped Cream” ingredients/steps for in the recipe.
³PipingI like to use a large piping bag with a large open tip, but a large ziploc bag with a corner snipped off will work just as well. To pipe the whipped cream on top I like to use a Wilton 2D tip but you could just dollop the whipped cream on top with a spoon instead!
StoringStore in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or you may freeze for several months.
Treat yourself to a FREE E-BOOK!
This recipe was originally published October 9th 2015. I’ve since updated to include more information, to use homemade whipped cream rather than Cool Whip, and to share a how-to video.