This pumpkin cheesecake features a delicious pumpkin spice swirl, rich and creamy cheesecake filling, a deliciously spiced and crunchy gingersnap cookie crust, and is topped with fresh whipped cream and salted caramel sauce. To get started with this pumpkin cheesecake, you’ll make the crust. It’s a classic graham cracker crust – with a twist.
There are some brown sugar and cinnamon added to the crust, which gives it some extra flavour and really compliments the cheesecake. The pumpkin cheesecake filling is thick and creamy and easy to put together. It starts with your usual suspects – cream cheese, sugar, a little flour and some sour cream. Add to that the pumpkin puree, spices and eggs and you’re filling is ready to go.
The important thing to remember when putting the filling together is that you want to mix things on a low speed. It helps to not incorporate too much air into the batter, which can rise to the top of the cheesecake during baking and cause cracks.
This cheesecake is baked in a water bath, which really is the best way to go when baking a cheesecake. It lends a more moist cheesecake that doesn’t brown around the edges, sink in the middle or have cracks. It’s a few extra steps that are definitely worth it.
Once the cheesecake is baked and cooled, it’s topped with cream cheese whipped cream that pairs perfectly. The final cheesecake is so good that it just melts in your mouth.
Gingersnap Cookie Crust;
- 1 and 1/2 cups (150g) gingersnap cookie crumbs
- 1/4 teaspoon each: ground ginger and ground cinnamon
- 1/4 cup (4 Tablespoons; 60g) unsalted butter, melted
- 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
- Four 8-ounce blocks (904g) full-fat cream cheese, softened to room temperature
- 1 and 1/2 cups (300g) granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup (80g) full-fat sour cream, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 3 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice*
- topping suggestions: salted caramel and whipped cream
- Adjust the oven rack to the lower-middle position and preheat oven to 350°F (177°C).
- Make the crust: Using a food processor, pulse the gingersnap cookies into crumbs.
- Pour into a medium bowl and stir in ginger, cinnamon, sugar, and melted butter until combined.
- The mixture will be sandy. Press firmly into the bottom and slightly up the sides of a 9-inch or 10-inch springform pan.
- No need to grease the pan first. use the bottom of a measuring cup to pack the crust down tightly.
- Pre-bake for 10 minutes the remove from the oven and place the hot pan on a large piece of aluminium foil.
- The foil will wrap around the pan for the water bath in step 4. Allow crust to slightly cool as you prepare the filling.
Make the filling;
- Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese and granulated sugar together on medium-high speed in a large bowl until the mixture is smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes.
- Add the sour cream and vanilla extract, then beat until fully combined.
- On medium speed, add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition until just blended.
- After the final egg is incorporated into the batter, stop mixing.
- To help prevent the cheesecake from deflating and cracking as it cools, avoid over-mixing the batter as best you can.
- Scoop out 2 cups of batter and place in a medium mixing bowl.
- Stir in the pumpkin, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice until combined.
- Begin adding spoonfuls of each batter, the plain and the pumpkin, on top of the crust.
- Alternate until all the batter is used and the pan is filled. Using a toothpick or knife, swirl the batters together by dragging the toothpick top to bottom, then left to right.
- Prepare the simple water bath by boiling a pot of water. You need 1 inch of water in your roasting pan for the water bath, so make sure you boil enough.
- As the water is heating up, wrap the aluminium foil around the springform pan.
- Place the pan inside of a large roasting pan. Carefully pour the hot water inside the pan and place in the oven.
- Bake cheesecake for 55-70 minutes or until the centre is almost set.
- When it’s done, the centre of the cheesecake will slightly wobble if you gently shake the pan.
- Turn the oven off and open the oven door slightly. Let the cheesecake sit in the oven for 1 hour as it cools down.
- Remove cheesecake from the oven and allow to cool completely at room temperature, then refrigerate the cheesecake for at least 4 hours or overnight.
- Use a knife to loosen the chilled cheesecake from the rim of the springform pan, then remove the rim.
- Add toppings, if desired. Using a clean sharp knife, cut into slices for serving.
- For neat slices, wipe the knife clean and dip into warm water between each slice.
- Cover and store leftover cheesecake in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.