That’s right, this baked cherry cheesecake is actually very easy to make. The hardest part is waiting for it to cool, I promise. The whole thing is made from scratch and is topped with this homemade cherry sauce.
With such a short season, it’s worth making the most of beautiful plump cherries when they’re in season. This cheesecake is the perfect way.
This cherry cheesecake recipe has the approval of loads of testers including my sister in law (one of the biggest cheesecake fans I know) actually saying it’s the best she’s ever had and my mum (not a baked cheesecake fan) says this one is amazing.
So without further ado easy baked cherry cheesecake recipe coming at you.
Tools you’ll need
You need very few tools for this which I love. A bowl for mixing and a dish for water in the base of the oven, everyone will have. Plus,
- An 8 inch round springform tin: The springform sides makes it easy to remove the cheesecake once it has cooled. You can use a regular cake tin but you’ll have to tip it out possibly damaging the top. In saying that, this one is covered with cherries, so any blemishes on top will be hidden.
- A handheld beater works perfectly with this. No need for a stand mixer.
- A food processor makes quick work of the crumb base but you can also use a rolling pin to gently bash a bag of cookies to crumbs.
Ingredients in fresh cherry cheesecake
A simple list of basic ingredients in this one. Cream cheese (1), sugar (3), cookies (4) and eggs (10) are all cheesecake regulars.
- Cinnamon and ginger (5): Add flavour to the base
- Butter (9): Is the binder for the cookie base.
- Salt (6) and vanilla (8): are both used for flavour and balance.
- Lemon juice & zest (11): Lemon adds tang and the acidity helps balance the intense creaminess .
- Sour cream (7): Adds creaminess and tang.
- Cherry sauce (2): Making your own from scratch is easy with this recipe and I recommend it. It tastes amazing and you can control what’s in it.
How to bake a cheesecake
Baked cheesecakes have a reputation of being difficult but I don’t find that at all. As with all my baked cheesecake recipes, I’ve simplified this one as much as possible so that you can make this at home with the same perfect results.
Easy to throw together and NO water bath required!
No water bath required! They can be awkward and too much fussing around. A dish of water in the bottom of the oven will create the steam required to keep this cheesecake moist so that it doesn’t dry out and crack.
- Make the base: This is a simple case of blitzing cookies to crumbs, then mixing through spices and melted butter (photo 1). Tip them into a prepared tin and use a glass to press them down flat (photo 2).
- Make the filling: Beat together cream cheese and sugar, followed by eggs one at a time until smooth and incorporated (photo 3). Now add the remaining ingredients and beat those through too (photo 4).
- Assemble the cheesecake: Pour the cheesecake mix over the cookie base (photo 5) and smooth out the top (photo 6) and bake.
Top tips and tricks
- Use full fat in both the cream cheese and sour cream. It not only gives the best flavour, but lower fat versions will have trouble setting as well.
- Use good quality cream cheese – I like Philadelphia but just don’t buy the cheapest one you can find. It’s the dominant flavour in a cheesecake so you want it to taste right as well as set right.
- Line the tin with baking paper after first greasing the sides fo the tin. This will help you easily release it once cooled.
- The dish of water in the bottom of the oven creates steam, keeping the cheesecake moist. This stops it from drying out and cracking.
- You’ll know the cheesecake is ready when the outside ring looks firm while 3-4 inches of the centre is still quite wobbly – a little less set than a jelly wobble.
- To ensure the cheesecake doesn’t crack, allow it cool slowly by turning off the oven and letting it sit for ½ an hour with the door closed then another ½ an hour with the door open. Let it cool completely before placing it in the fridge.
Why did my cheesecake crack?
This is where baked cheesecakes can get a bad rep – cracks! Here’s how to stop a cheesecake from cracking.
- Don’t overmix the cheesecake mixture – incorporating too much air will cause the cheesecake to rise too much and then drop causing cracks.
- Don’t overbake – it’s tempting when you see that wobbly centre to keep baking but don’t. It needs to have that wobble as it’s internal temperature and the cooling process will continue to cook the cheesecake as it cools.
- Cool it slowly – just like in my tips above, it’s important to cool it slowly. A drastic change in temperature will cause it to sink and possibly crack. Cool it for half and hour with the oven door closed then another ½ an hour with it wedged open.
Can I bake cheesecake ahead of time?
You can make baked cheesecake ahead of time. This makes it perfect if you’re making it for a birthday cake or if you’re entertaining.
Once cooled, cover the cheesecake with plastic wrap and place it in the fridge until required. Don’t add toppings until the last minute.
The cheesecake will keep well for 4-5 days in the fridge, however once it’s topped the cherry syrup will begin to soak into it.
This is unequivocally, the best baked cheesecake ever. Ok, yes, you have to bake it, but the texture and flavour are so worth it.
More recipes you’ll love
- Baked Chocolate Cheesecake Recipe with Blackberry Compote
- Puff Pastry Cherry Strudel
- No Bake Strawberry Cheesecake
- No Bake Lemon Meringue Cheesecake
- Dulce De Leche White Chocolate Cheesecake
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Easy Baked Cherry Cheesecake
- 150 g digestive biscuits (like granita or graham crackers) (5.3oz)
- 85 g unsalted butter, melted (3oz / ¾ stick)
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- 750 g cream cheese, softened (26.5oz)
- 150 g white granulated sugar (¾ cup / 5.3oz)
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs
- 1 egg yolk
- 200 ml light sour cream (6.8 fl oz / 1 cup less 2 tablespoons)
- Juice and zest of ½ lemon
- Pinch of salt
- 2 cups fresh cherry sauce (notes 1)
- Preheat the oven to 160C / 320F / 140C fan forced. Grease and line an 8 inch round spring form tin with baking paper.
- Blend the biscuits to crumbs (if you don’t have a blender, put the biscuits in a bag and crush them with a rolling pin)
- Add the melted butter, cinnamon & ginger and mix well.
- Press firmly into the bottom of the prepared tin using the bottom of a glass. Bake for 10 minutes while making the filling.
- Add the sugar and vanilla and beat well, again scrape down the sides as necessary.
- Add the eggs and extra yolk, one at a time beating until each is well incorporated.
- Add the sour cream, salt, lemon juice and zest and beat until combined.
- Pour the filling over the top of the biscuit base and smooth the top.
- Place a dish or cake tin filled with warm water on the bottom shelf of the oven. Then place the cheesecake onto a separate baking tin (to catch any butter that might leak out in cooking) and place in the middle shelf of the oven. Bake for 55-65 minutes.
- Turn the oven off and let the cheesecake cool in the oven for half an hour with the door closed, then open the door and let it cool for a further 1/2 an hour before removing it. Let it cool to room temperature, then transfer to the fridge.
- Once cool, top with cherry sauce and serve.
- Use this fresh cherry sauce recipe for the topping
- All ovens vary, start checking the cheesecake from the 50 minute mark. It should have a wobble in the centre but the edges should look firm.
- For best results, you should always weigh ingredients like flour and sugar. Kitchen scales are relatively cheap but if you can’t weigh the ingredients, use the spoon and level method (don’t scoop).
- Keep in mind the 3-4 hours worth of cooling time.
- Don’t top until serving time
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