Inspired by Cheesecake Factory, this New York-style cheesecake is rich, dense yet creamy, and not overly sweet. Together with the sweet with a touch of the salty base, this is the cheesecake that you want to make to impress! And it's baked without the water bath method!
Baking a cheesecake, more a big whole cheesecake like this is quite intimidating. Well, I'm here to tell you, it's not at all. It looks and sounds more difficult than it actually is.
This cheesecake is actually easy to make with just a handful of ingredients. Many of our readers who haven't even made cheesecakes before decided to try this recipe and it came out so successfully that they were so surprised! Now you know why this recipe is one of our readers' favourites, right? *wink!*
I'm going to share with you all my tips and tricks so you can make this amazing beauty with no problems.
Ingredients & Substitutions
Biscuit crumbs - I love to use digestive biscuits as they are sweet but slightly salty. Perfect balance for the whole cheesecake. They're easy to find in Europe and despite the name, they're not horrible, at all! Trust me.
Cream cheese - Plain and full fat. Here in Europe, cream cheese comes in a tub instead of a brick. It doesn't matter the way it comes, as long as it's plain and full fat.
Sour cream - Full fat. It's going to make the cheesecake's texture light and creamy.
All-purpose flour - It helps to get that dense yet creamy texture for this New York-style cheesecake. It also prevents the cheesecake from cracking.
See my recipe card below for a complete list of the ingredients with measurements.
SUBSTITUTION: Use graham crackers or any sweet biscuits (a touch of saltiness would be a bonus!).
SUBSTITUTION: Full-fat Greek yogurt works great also.
SUBSTITUTION: Any dry sweetener works great. You can even use brown sugar, or coconut sugar but just know that the cheesecake's color will be slightly darker. Don't use liquid sweetener as it will affect the cheesecake to set properly.
Chef's Tip: Don't use whipped cream cheese or the one for spreading.
Why This No Water Bath Method Works
Everybody says you need to use the water bath method when you bake a cheesecake or else it's going to puff up and crack. Well, guess what? That is totally wrong!
I've been making cheesecakes for years and never once have I used a water bath for my baked cheesecakes. I've made this big whole cinnamon roll cheesecake, pecan cheesecake bars, and our top hit mini cheesecakes (just to name a few) and regardless of their shape and sizes, none of them was made using the water bath.
I'm going to share with you my secrets on how to make baked cheesecakes without the water bath.
- Less mixing - Mix the ingredients the least possible at every stage in the recipe. Mixing too much will incorporate air into the mixture and will make the cheesecake puff up while baking. And then as it cools down it's going to shrink and that different textures will cause the cheesecake to crack.
- Low temperature - The most crucial part in not using the water bath for baked cheesecakes. We want to cook the cheesecake very slowly (mimicking the water bath cooking environment without the hassles). Not only the cheesecake will not crack but it will also have the smoothest texture.
How To Make Easy Cheesecake
- Blend biscuits into a fine mixture, add butter and mix. Pour into a 7-inch (18 cm) springform pan, and press to the base and the wall. Freeze for 30 minutes.
- Using a handheld whisk on the lowest speed, whisk cream cheese until creamy.
- Add in sour cream, vanilla extract, sugar, all-purpose flour, and lemon juice. Mix well.
- In another bowl, lightly beat the eggs.
- Pour the eggs into the cream cheese mixture and fold everything together using a spatula.
- Bake in a preheated oven at 285ºF (140ºC), without the fan, on, on lower ⅔ rack, for 1 hour 45 minutes or until the edges have set and the center wiggles a bit when you lightly shake the pan. Cool completely at room temperature and chill for 8 hours. Decorate as you wish, slice, and serve!
Recipe Expert Tips
- Make sure to use the ingredients at the temperature specified in this recipe. This is to make sure they mix easily with each other without having to mix too much. Mixing the ingredients too much will cause the cheesecake to crack.
- Make sure to use the correct oven temperature. We want to bake the cheesecake at a very low temperature to avoid it from cracking. I always use a portable oven thermometer to avoid any problems. It's cheap by the way!
- Chill the cheesecake for 8 hours to give it time to develop flavour with great texture. You won't regret it.
How To Serve & Store
Serve - Every great cheesecake needs time to develop that amazing flavour and texture. As much as you'd want to slice it once it cooled down, well don't. Chill it in the fridge for 8 hours, it's going to be worth it. Serve chilled. Don't leave the cheesecake outside of the fridge for too long (especially if you're in hot weather).
Store - In the fridge. It lasts up to 5 days. Freeze in portions (easier to grab the amount you need!) in an air-tight container. Frozen cheesecake lasts up to 2 months, although the texture could change slightly, especially the base. My family doesn't mind, so I freeze mine all the time. Thaw in the fridge.
I don't recommend having it outside the fridge for more than 20-30 minutes. It also depends on the temperature of your place (or where you're going to have the party). If it's cold or you're in winter, then it could be longer. If it's hot or you're in summer, then just take it out right before serving.
It's because of these 2 reasons; the ingredients were over-mixed and the oven temperature was too high. Do refer to my tips above to easily solve this.
If you didn't change any of the ingredients and follow all the instructions in the recipe, then the oven temperature was too high. Ovens are not made the same and their temperatures are mostly not accurate. That's why I use my portable oven temperature to get the correct temperature every time I'm using my oven.
You can, yes. But why put so much effort just to rush it at the last step? Trust me, restrain yourself, it's going to be worth the wait.
It's okay. Try reducing your oven temperature by 70ºF (20ºC).
After 8 hours of chilling in the fridge, remove the springform part. Insert a small knife underneath the cheesecake crust and gently move it all around to help loosen the cheesecake from the pan. Using the same knife, lift the cheesecake a bit and insert a flat spatula underneath. Do the same in the opposite direction. Holding both spatulas, swiftly and confidently transfer the cheesecake to a serving plate. I've made a quick video showing how I remove the cheesecake from the pan. Hope it helps!
Explore Related Holiday Desserts
If you tried this Easy Cheescake or any other recipe on my website, please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how you go in the comments below!
Watch The Recipe Video
- 3 cup digestive crumbs
- ½ cup unsalted butter , melted
- 16 oz full fat cream cheese , room temperature
- 1 ¼ cup sour cream , room temperature
- ¾ cup sugar
- 3 tablespoon all purpose flour
- 1 ½ tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 large eggs , room temperature
- some berries of choice
- some powdered sugar
- Place digestive biscuits into a food processor and blend until you have a fine texture. Pour into a bowl together with butter and mix well.
- Blend biscuits into a fine texture, and add into a bowl with butter. Mix well. Pour into a 7-inch (18 cm) springform pan, and press to the base and the wall. Freezer for 30 minutes.
The Cheese Filling
- Mix cream cheese in a bowl, using a handheld whisk at the lowest speed, for a few seconds just until creamy. Add in sour cream, sugar, vanilla extract, flour, and lemon juice and mix. Set aside.
- Lightly beat the eggs in another bowl. Pour into cream cheese mixture, and gently fold everything together using a spatula. Pour the mixture into the springform pan and spread evenly with an offset spatula.
- Bake in a preheated oven at 285ºF (140ºC), without the fan on, on the lowest ⅔ rack for 1 hour 45 minutes or until you see the surrounding of the cheesecake has set but the center still wiggles a bit when you gently shake the pan.
- Remove from the oven, cool completely and chill in the fridge for min 8 hours.
How To Remove Cheesecake From The Pan
- This is how I do it with all my cheesecakes. Take out cheesecake from the fridge. Remove the springform. Insert a small knife underneath the cheesecake crust and gently move it all around to help loosen the cheesecake from the pan. Using the same knife, lift the cheesecake a bit and insert a flat spatula underneath. Do the same in the opposite direction.
- Holding both spatulas, swiftly and confidently transfer the cheesecake to a serving plate.
- Use a portable oven thermometer for a more precise temperature reading (I use it too). This avoids the oven from being too hot, which will cause cracks on the cheesecake.
- Do not over-mix at any stage in this recipe to avoid having cracks on the cheesecake.
- Like any other cheesecake out there, this is better served chilled. I would recommend you plate it right before serving and keep the balance immediately back in the fridge.
Can I use medium cream cheese
Hi, can I use a 9 inch pan with the same amount of batter don't want it to be too high.
Lan Le says
I'm planning to make a cheesecake for my son's birthday with your recipe, but I only have 11in springform pan and not the 9in pan as yours. Would you please tell me the ingredient measurement proportion and the baking time? Thank you.
Hi! I used 7 inch pan for this recipe. For 11 inch pan, multiply all ingredients by 1.8. Hope it helps and have fun!
Lan Le says
Sorry, I accidently wrote 9 instead of 7 inch pan. Since it's almost double the ingredients for the 11 inch pan, can I bake with the same temperature (285°F) and double the baking time (around 3.5 hours)? Thank you.
No worries! Yes, bake it with the same temperature but don't double the baking time. Bake just until the surrounding is set but the center still wiggles when you lightly shake the pan (as I wrote in the instructions above). Hope it helps!
Perfect ! Exactly as pictured . Thanks for posting this easy fool proof recipe.
I did however place the dish in the water tray as I have a temperamental gas oven .
It turned out perfectly and looked like the photo! I used almond extract instead of vanilla and still added the lemon juice included in the recipe.
I used a mixture of crushed sugar cookies and shortbread with butter for the crust. Fresh blackberries on top😋
Do you have a recipe with coffee? my daughters loves coffee cheesecake. Thanks
Hi Yasenia! Yes, I have several. You could try this no bake coffee cheesecake or this delicious tiramisu for two. Thanks!
Really good lesson for teaching how to do the best cheese cake
Thank you! Glad you find it useful 🙂
Cassandra Evans-Adams says
I have made this many, many times but substitute the sour cream with Greek yogurt. Aaaaaamazingly delicious and low in Weight Watchers points!
Yeay 🙌! Thanks for your feedback Cassandra!
Amazing recipe, when ever I make it my family send me their orders. Currently got 2 in the oven baking and another 2 to make after my granddaughter requested one via Facebook and the family jumped on and requested more. So they will also have one for the weekend lol. First did these through lockdown when a friend sent me the link to this recipe. It's flipping amazing thank you 💕
Love it. I have made 1 2/3 batch and made 2 thick -6 inches and 1 -9 inch but thinner cheese cake. Not too sweet. I was worried when I saw your batter in the video is more soft and fluffy but mine rather runny. The outcome was not bad but I think maybe your is softer and creamier. Thanks for the recipe.
Am I able to make the cheesecake in a 9x13 inch pan, and if yes do I double the recipe for a tall cheesecake or leave it as is without doubling it because the crust will only be at the bottom.
Thank you so much for this recipe! It's perfect. I subbed sour cream for plain yogurt (curd in India) and it was deliciously light, not too dense. Finally found a fool proof cheesecake recipe 🙂
Hello! How deep does the pan have to be. Mine is only two inches deep. It looks like it might not be deep enough. And when you fill in the filling, how far from the top should it go? I know the crust goes all the way up the brim. And just to be sure, you don't have to put foil in to prevent it from leaking? Thank you!
RACHEL BURROW says
DO YOU KNOW AN ESTIMATE ON THE CARB COUNT FOR AN ENTIRE CHEESECAKE?
Hi Rachel! For now no since I haven't calculated the nutrition facts for it yet. Sorry though!
My oven starts on 160 degrees, how much time do i keep it in the oven since the recipe is 140 degrees for 1 hour and 45 minutes
How long is this cheesecake good for in the fridge?
I'd say it's best consumed within 3-4 days. Hope it helps.
Hi I’ve made this cheese cake two weeks ago and turned out amazing and now my friend is having her birthday and has put in an order for 40 people, can you recommend what size tin and do I follow the recipe but multiply by 3 times all ingredients? And what about the temperature in oven and time ?
Thank you much appreciated
I was wondering if I should cook it shorter if I use a 6 oz premade crust.
Hi! The cooking time is for the cheese filling, so I'd recommend you to follow the mentioned time in the recipe or see the physical doneness of it, I described it also in the recipe. Hope it helps.
Catherine Grieshammer says
Fantastic! So happy I tried this - it's wonderful.
How tall is the pan you were using? The one I have is approx. 6cm but your looks taller. I would use a cake ring but I don't want to run out of crumble or filling.
The one I used for this recipe is also 6 cm tall, everything looks bigger on camera 🙂 Hope this helps.
Collen Nisbett says
What if I have a 9inch pan, what would be the measurements?
Multiply all ingredients by 1.4. Hope it helps.
Hi,I really loved your mini cheesecake recipe.With this whole cheesecake recipe, if I wanted to make a Bailey's cheesecake what ingredients should I alter?
Hi Asha! I already have a Baileys cheesecake recipe, not the same like this but it's equally delicious. Hope you give it a try.
Hello, sour cream is not available in saudi arabia which i am living right now, What do you recommend as substitute. Thank you.
Hi! You can use full fat Greek yogurt instead. Hope it helps.
I have made this recipe many times!!! I love it♥️ My family and friends love it too! It is super easy to make and so delicious!!! Thank you so much for your recipe with us🙂🙂🙂
I'm happy to know you and your loved ones liked it! Thanks for leaving a comment Krystle!
hola bia Good evening !
i am interested in baking this cheesecake recipe tomorrow, I have a question please, is it necessary to line the sides of the baking pan with cookie crumbs as well or is it only possible for the bottom?
Thanks in advance
Hi Ami! I always make it with the crumbs on the side but I think somebody mentioned that they just made the base and it turned out great. In that case, you might want to look at my other cheesecake recipes for the base ingredients amount. Hope it helps!
Hi I love your recipe I’ve made this 5 times and it’s so delicious and not overly sweet! However I’m having trouble with the outer crust being loose and crumbly. The inside part of the crust touching the filling is perfectly moistened with butter. It’s the outside part of the crust that I’m having trouble with! Is there a reason why this could be happening?
Natalie Williams says
Do you bake in water bath
Hi! If I'm making this is in a 9 inch pan can I still not do the bain-marie method? Also will the baking time and temperature change? Thanks!
Still no bain-marie method needed. The temperature stays the same but the baking time might vary. Hope it helps.
Hi, can I half the recipe. If yes, how many eggs should I use? Thank you.
If you want it in a smaller size, I recommend that you check my easy mini cheesecakes
Mitch Serran says
Hi may I ask if this recipe didn't taste like eggy since the eggs were the last ingredient you put and just fold it with the cream cheese mixture? I tried to make a burnt cheesecake and it smells and had a strong eggy taste. Thank you
Hi, nope it doesn't taste eggy at all.
Gayatri Dikshit says
Hi mam I have tried your recepie and it's always great. I am in a dilemma, I am going back to India and the place where I will live doesn't have access to buying cream cheese.
Can you please do a video on how to make cream cheese that can be used to make this cheese cake.
will this cooking technique work with a shorter 9inch pan?
Although I haven't tried but I think it would work. You'd have a shorter cheesecake though.
Jennifer S Archuleta says
I made this last year and I’m looking forward for this year 2020. It’s easy and it’s very delicious. Thank you!!
Awesome! It's a keeper, right? Thanks Jennifer!
Susan Kuan says
Hi Bea, can I do without the side crust? Just for the base crust can I just do with 150g digestive biscuit with 60g of unsalted butter?
Yes, you can. 🙂
Winnie kong says
I am Malaysian living in Germany.My husband's german. I made this cake and it was really delicious.Thank you for sharing the recipe.
I learned a lot from your tips. Thank you very much.
Hi Winnie! Nice to see another fellow Malaysian here! Happy that you liked the cheesecake, thank you!
Hey I wanna try this recipe but I got no lemon with me. Is it okay if I use lime instead?
Yes, it's fine 🙂
Hi Bea..do I need to grease my baking pan with butter before I put the biscuits base? I noticed you did not mentioned about greasing the pan. Please advise. Thank you.
Hi Lorinner, no there's no need to grease it.
Hola, tengo una pregunta acerca de la crema ácida, es crema para batir marca Lyncott? O es otro tipo de crema?
Hola Andrea, la crema ácida o nata agria es la que en inglés se conoce como "sour cream", es la que ponen encima de los nachos. No es crema para batir. Lo de la marca no lo sé porque aquí en España no he visto esa marca que mencionas. Pero en Estados Unidos he visto que está la marca Daisy.
kay Trammell says
What are positive crumbs
Maybe you meant digestive biscuits? You can read my post about them here 🙂