I made a traditional cheesecake on Fourth of July, and ever since have been wanting to make a pumpkin one. I have had my eye on a recipe I tore out of Good Housekeeping, and put it to the test yesterday.
I'm eating some right now with my morning coffee. It's delicious.
The Ingredients. A jar of nutmeg made it into the picture. That's a mistake. You don't need any.
1 cup gingersnap or graham cracker crumbs (I used the GF gingersnaps from Trader Joes)
3 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons white sugar
2 packages (8 oz each) cream cheese, room temperature
1 1/4 cup white sugar
1 can pure pumpkin (15 oz)
3/4 cup sour cream
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
Sour Cream Topping (optional):
1 cup sour cream
3 tablespoons white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
If you are planning on serving pumpkin cheesecake for an event, I'd recommend making it the day before, so it has plenty of time to chill in the refrigerator.
I used a 6.5 oval quart crockpot, and inserted a 1.5 oval casserole dish into it. You are using the crockpot as a bain marie, or water bath.
In a small bowl, combine melted butter with the graham cracker crumbs and white sugar. Press the mixture into your casserole dish. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the softened cream cheese, pure pumpkin, sour cream, and vanilla extract. Add the spices and eggs, also. Mix well with a hand or stand mixer until the cream cheese is fluid and there aren't very many cream cheese spots/lumps. A few is okay.
I've never been one to add some ingredients first, and an egg at a time while mixing. If you are somebody who likes to do that, the Good Housekeeping people will tell you what to do.
Pour the filling on top of the crust.
Put 1/2 to 1 cup of water into the bottom of your crockpot. The inserted dish should push the water up to halfway up the sides of the cheesecake.
Place the cheescake into your crockpot and cook on high for 2 to 4 hours. It took 4 for mine to cook completely. You will know it's done cooking when the top is no longer jiggly and the sides have begun to brown ever so slightly.
Unplug your crockpot, and take off the lid. In a small mixing bowl, whip together the sour cream topping. With a rubber spatula, very carefully spread the sour cream topping on top of the hot cheesecake. Let the cheese cake sit in the cooling crockpot for an hour, before chilling in the refrigerator. I put the lid on the crockpot sideways, but you can also leave it off.
Chill for at least 6 hours. Serve.
This is thick, moist cheesecake. The filling did not get as hard and as set-up as the first cheesecake I did. The first one called for 2 tablespoons of flour, and only 2 eggs.
I was worried that this pumpkin batter wouldn't set, because the first cheesecake I did only took 2 hours on high, and this took a solid 4 hours on high.
In fact, I made a mistake, and brought it to some friends after baking for 2 (and only chilling for 2) for dessert last night. It wasn't cooked. It was cheesecake soup.
When we got home, I plopped it back into the water bath (I hadn't cleaned the kitchen up, and the crockpot was still slightly warm) for the additional 2 hours and set an alarm to check on it.
This cheesecake was finished at 1 am. (that's what you see in the above photo)