Introduction: Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe

It was love at first bite with this spiced pumpkin cheesecake!  I was disappointed by all of the recipes out there that turned out flat, respectable-sized cheesecakes.  So I doubled up on pumpkin and cheese to create this epic, mile-high pumpkin cheesecake that is an absolute crowd pleaser! 

This unusual dessert makes a great addition to any holiday dinner.  But once you try it, you'll be looking for any excuse to make it again!

Step 1: Ingredients

  • 8-12 oz (225-350g) gingersnap cookies (depending on how much crust you like!)
  • 1/4 cup (57g) butter, melted (or slightly more if you're going full-hog on the crust)
  • 24 oz.. (680g) cream cheese, softened
  • 15 oz. (425g) pumpkin puree
  • 2/3 cup (75g) sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 cup (30g) flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • Freshly ground cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg to taste (I use 1/2 teaspoon each!)
  • Optional: fresh ground pepper - I know it sounds weird, but it adds depth to the spice profile!

Step 2: The Crust

Preheat your oven to 350F (180C).

Using a food processor (or a mallet and a baggie - go for it!), turn your gingersnaps into crumbs!

Add butter to crumbs and process until well incorporated.  (If you're using the mallet method, you can use a fork for this part!)

I like to line just the bottom of a 9" springform pan with parchment, but that is optional. 

Pat the crust mixture into your pan, covering just the bottom, or going up the sides as far as you dare!


If you're going full-crust, it's a good idea to par-bake your crust (meaning bake it before filling) for 5-10 minutes. 

Step 3: The Filling


In a mixer or food processor, combine the softened cream cheese, pumpkin puree, sugar, and vanilla extract until well blended.

Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing after each until just incorporated.

Combine flour and spices and slowly add to the liquid mixture.

Pour mixture into crust.

Step 4: Bake


Bake the pumpkin cheesecake for 80-90 minutes, until the center is almost set., and barely jiggles in the middle.

Use a knife to gently loosen the crust from the edge of the pan.

Allow cheesecake to cool before removing the rim of the pan.  Refrigerate for at least 4 hours and up to overnight.

If you are traveling with the cheesecake, leave the pan in tact until ready to eat!

You're gonna love this one, I just know it!

Comments

author
Coulro made it! (author)2010-11-26

I made it for thanksgiving with my friends last Sunday. It went over so well I made two more for me and my girlfriends family Thanksgivings. Thanks for the instructable!

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author
kwhitacre made it! (author)2013-11-06

One comment mentioned baking with a water bath. I see no mention of that in the instructions. Is it baked in a water bath? If not, is there a reason for baking in one?

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starshipminivan made it! (author)2010-11-22

Sounds yummy! I make birthday cheesecakes with gluten free biscotti as the cookie crust. Even the gluten eaters don't know it's GF. For Thanksgiving I would normally bake pumpkin pie filling in a pan without crust (pumpkin custard--kinda) to make it GF. But I think I'll try this with my GF biscotti crust and GF flour in the filling instead. What a great alternative!

author
kwhitacre made it! (author)kwhitacre2013-11-06

I'm so glad you mentioned you solution to GF. I'll do this for Turkey day this year. I love pumpkin, as does the family, and I have a GF daughter, so this should be a hit with everyone. (Not telling them it's GF- just my daughter).

author
jfeuling made it! (author)2012-11-22

I'm waiting for it to come out of the fridge now! I put a brown-sugar walnut topping on it for the last 1/2 hour and added chocolate chips. My husband had his heart set on cheese cake (he's a fiend) and this saved my life. Thank you so much for sharing.

author
cheesecakemaker made it! (author)2011-11-24

After flipping a beautiful dessert upside down on the stove and dog eating half . Realized that the missing four eggs was the root cause. Making the cheesecake again with eggs and looking forward to eating it . It looks so delicious.

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mambrose made it! (author)2010-12-02

i made this and it was a perfect thanksgiving dessert!

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applesaucemodifier made it! (author)2010-11-26

This was delicious, cheese cake and pumpkin were meant for each other. I had some leftover maple cookie dough that I used for the crust that turned out slightly burnt, but still tasted spectacular. Thanks for the recipe!

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mista.v made it! (author)2010-11-26

If I don't have parchment, should I grease the pan?

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scoochmaroo made it! (author)scoochmaroo2010-11-26

It's not really necessary, since there's so much butter in the crust.

author
xeony2k made it! (author)2010-11-24

Looks interesting... have to work Thanksgiving, so I'm going to hold off and make this for my Christmas Eve dinner. Extremely seasonal and looks/sounds delicious!!!

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valhalla076 made it! (author)2010-11-23

I have made many cheesecakes and I know that this more of a "pretty factor" than anything, but how do you cool your cheescake to prevent it from cracking? I have this problem with every cheesecake I make and I have yet to figure out the trick.

author

Turn the oven off before the cake is officially done (about 10 minutes) and let it cool down with the oven for a few hours, some say overnight. It also depends on how well you mixed the filling (just enough and not too much). Cheesecake is a fickle beast, though these pumpkin ones are a little more forgiving.

author
thegreatguu made it! (author)2010-11-23

Baked it today, cut portions in half to try it first! Top was a bit burned because of the whole fan assisted thing but it tastes awesome! Could find gingersnaps cookies up here (france) so i used speculoos instead [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Speculaas ]

author
Tbonesteak1 made it! (author)2010-11-20

Okay im a great cook but not real good at baking im gonna try this though sounds wonderful... I do have a few stupid questions being a man and all.. What is a springform pan ? Is that the only type of Cake pan you can use?? I didnt see what temerature to preheat often too its probably here but i missed it..lol.. Last but not least when you are finished to you flip it out of the pan so the bottoms the top? Remember now i am a man lol.. Ty im definately gonna TRY to make this ..

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scoochmaroo made it! (author)scoochmaroo2010-11-20

A springform pan is a specialty pan for making cheesecake!  It has high sides, and releases from the bottom part of the pan through a latch/buckle/spring type system.  This is what one looks like.  They're not too expensive, and I highly recommend it, but it's definitely not necessary.  You could also use a cake pan or even a pie pan,  but cut the filling in half (or make two!).

When you release the sides of a springform pan, the bottom comes free, and you can serve the cheescake directly on that (as I did in my pictures).  If you use a pie pan or cake pan, I would just serve it out of that, rather than turn it upside down, but hey, that might be good too!

Let me know how it all comes out!

author
Tbonesteak1 made it! (author)2010-11-20

okay smooch i re read i got the temperature i missed that one lol 350 yea

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eaksander made it! (author)2010-11-18

Is there anything that would prevent doing a hybrid gingersnap/graham cracker crumb crust?

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valhalla076 made it! (author)valhalla0762010-11-19

I was at the store the other day (Wal-Mart) and Honey Maid has a Gingerbread variety of Graham Crackers. I picked some up to try out for my Egg Nog Cheese Cake :-)

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scoochmaroo made it! (author)scoochmaroo2010-11-18

Nothing at all! You could also mix in crushed, toasted pecans, yum.

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nijireiki made it! (author)2010-11-18

This sounds awesome. I've adapted other cheesecake recipes before for diabetic/pre-diabetic relatives-- would the texture suffer if I omit the flour in this recipe? I've never made one with flour before, though I did see one recipe that subbed in zero-carb vanilla Isopure for it. Thanks!

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scoochmaroo made it! (author)scoochmaroo2010-11-18

I added the flour to give it structure, since I was adding so much filling! I think it might be a little more jiggly without the flour, but it's only 1/4 cup, so I don't think it would go to badly. I say go for it!

Again, the only other thing to worry about for diabetics is the crust.

author
WeyrLeader made it! (author)2010-11-18

Hi:
I'm diabetic and would like to make this cheesecake. It is also my first time making a cheesecake.

I was wondering can an equivalent amount of artificial sweetener (SweetNLow, Sugar Twin, etc.) be used instead of the sugar?

Thanks in advance
Weyrleader

author
scoochmaroo made it! (author)scoochmaroo2010-11-18

Absolutely! But you would also need to find/make sugar-free gingersnaps for the crust.

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Ceriand made it! (author)Ceriand2010-11-18

Splendra would probably work since the filler they use is chemically similar to regular sugar. I think there's instructions on the package for the substitution amounts.

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CarmenCotelo made it! (author)2010-11-18

I'm a cheesecake virgin and would like to try making this one. Just one question,
How do you make the pretty design on the top? Is it chocolate syrup? And when do you put that on the cake. Before putting it into the freezer?

Maybe it's a silly question, but have never done anything like that before. :D

author
scoochmaroo made it! (author)scoochmaroo2010-11-18

Ha! Those are not silly questions, and I'm glad you like the swirly spiderweb design - it was a total last minute decision since I was serving it at a Halloween party! First, I never put the cake in the freezer. But when I brought it to the party, I saw a bottle of chocolate syrup sitting around, so I grabbed it, made a spiral starting from the middle. Then I dragged a butter knife from the center outwards to make the spokes. Hope that helps!

You're going to love making this cheesecake. It's foolproof and delicious!

author
CarmenCotelo made it! (author)CarmenCotelo2010-11-18

Oops, I meant fridge, sorry. :D

Thanks for the tip. You're a star!

I will definitely try doing the design too. I will let you know how it went. Cheers!

author
tbcross made it! (author)2010-11-17

I'm giving it a go instead of the usual pumpkin thanks!

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tbcross made it! (author)tbcross2010-11-17

This will also be my first time making a cheesecake, so wish me luck!!

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danielpolly made it! (author)2010-11-17

Mmmmm, looks fantastic! Delicious for sure :)

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crapflinger made it! (author)2010-11-16

wonder where you got the recipe, that's basically exactly how i make my pumpkin cheesecake (and any/all cheesecakes that i make....just sub the pumpkin for any other flavored thing....like pureed cherry pie filling...and you've got any kind of cheesecake). i still have no idea why anyone says that they're hard to make, just don't over mix them once the eggs are in and you're on the road to awesome.

of course, i still have issues with mine splitting on the tops, but i think that's because i don't do the water bath method

author
scoochmaroo made it! (author)scoochmaroo2010-11-16

Cool. I've tried the Philly recipe, the Cook's Illustrated Recipe and a couple others I can't remember now. This took the best of what I remembered and then amped up the ratios!

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crapflinger made it! (author)crapflinger2010-11-17

yeah i think the only thing in there that i don't use is the flour. it works out to be a really good recipe for sure

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jtp139 made it! (author)2010-11-16

ooh that is gorgeous...that's it, i'm making it for thanksgiving instead of pumpkin pie

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scoochmaroo made it! (author)scoochmaroo2010-11-16

You won't be sorry!

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canida made it! (author)2010-11-16

The cheesecake was good, but the crust was awesome!

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randofo made it! (author)2010-11-16

This cheesecake was delicious, but I would have to try it again to be 100% sure ;-)

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Bio: Former Living & Food editor here at Instructables, now running Sousvidely.com! Follow me @sousvidely
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