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New York Style Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake
Luscious Pumpkin Cheesecake for pumpkin and cheesecake lovers!
If you love both cheesecake and pumpkin pie, this Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake may be your new favorite dessert!
Sometimes when you have a lot of choices it makes it so much harder to make a decision. We’re not talking major life events here, just little things like what to serve our guests during the holidays.
There are a lot of options especially when it comes to the Thanksgiving table. Of course I’ll serve all the family favorites and NEVER (again) consider changing the cornbread dressing or green bean casserole. I’ve seen what can happen if you don’t follow the rules, to the letter. I still can’t bring myself to talk about it … we’re not going to go there … sniff sniff 🙂
However … since dessert is “cook’s” choice at our house, and I’m the cook, year after year I’m going to serve this wonderful, well spiced, creamy Pumpkin Cheesecake for dessert.
If you’re on the fence about your holiday showstopper dessert and your family won’t disown you for trying something new, I highly recommend giving this delightful recipe a try. While it’s not traditional pumpkin pie, it tastes a lot like pumpkin pie, all dressed up!
For the crust:
- Regular honey graham crackers or store-bought crispy gingersnap cookies
- Granulated sugar or brown sugar
- Ground cinnamon or pumpkin spice
- Unsalted melted butter
For the filling:
- Granulated sugar
- All-purpose flour
- Pumpkin Spice
- Cream cheese softened to room temperature
- Unsweetened canned 100% pumpkin puree, not pie filling
- Large eggs at room temperature for easy blending
- Vanilla extract
- Sour Cream also at room temperature to add flavor and a silky texture to the filling
- Whipped cream for decorating and serving
Overview: How to make Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake
Start by preparing the graham cracker crust:
Crush the graham crackers using a rolling pin or food processor. Add the remaining ingredients and mix until combined. Press the graham cracker crumb mixture into a 9-inch springform pan and bake until set and fragrant.
Set aside to cool while preparing the filling.
Next prepare the cheesecake filling:
Wrap the baking pan (with cooled crust) in a double or triple layer of heavy duty aluminum foil and set inside a large roasting pan.
Beat the cream cheese and pumpkin puree until smooth and creamy. Add the sugar, flour and spices and beat until light and fluffy. Now add the eggs, vanilla and sour cream.
Pour the filling into the prepared pan. Add hot water to the roasting pan until it comes halfway up the sides of the springform pan. Bake until set then turn the oven off and prop the oven door open with a wooden spoon.
Allow the cheesecake to cool for an hour before removing from the hot water bath. Remove from the oven, discard the foil and slide a small thin knife around the inside edges of the pan to loosen the cheesecake.
Cool completely then refrigerate until ready to serve.
The perfect make ahead dessert
Cheesecake can be made the day you plan to serve, but you’ll need to start the process early in the day. Allow 30 minutes for prep, 90 minutes in the oven and at least 3 hours of cooling for a total of 5 to 6 hours.
While most of the time is inactive and includes lots of baking and cooling, you may not want to tie up your oven for that long. I highly recommend making this cheesecake the day before you plan to serve.
Like our 5-star Lemon Cheesecake, this wonderful pumpkin dessert seems to taste even better the next day after the flavors have time to meld.
This cheesecake freezes beautifully!
If you have any leftover cheesecake, feel free to freeze individual slices for later. Simply place the slices on a baking sheet and flash freeze until set.
Wrap each frozen slice in plastic wrap then seal in an airtight container. Unwrap and thaw overnight in the refrigerator then serve. Easy peasy!
Since cheesecake includes eggs, it should only be frozen for 2 to 3 months at the most.
What we love about this Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake recipe
Aside from the incredible pumpkin flavor, amazing texture and plenty of pumpkin spice, this cheesecake holds up well for hours at room temperature.
Our recipe for Pumpkin Cheesecake is very easy to master, and yields terrific results every time. Just follow the detailed directions in the printable recipe.
It’s also easily made up to 24 hours in advance leaving your oven open for baking casseroles and turkey or a holiday ham.
And finally, Pumpkin Cheesecake ticks all the boxes for the perfect fall dessert in terms of color, deliciousness and flavor.
In years past I’ve also topped this cheesecake with Bourbon Maple Whipped Cream. Perfect for your grownup dinner guests!
Thanks for PINNING!
Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake
- 9-inch springform pan
For the crust:
- 2 cups graham cracker crumbs (225g) about 14 sheets
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon or pumpkin spice
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter melted (2 ½ ounces)
For the filling:
- 1 ½ cups granulated sugar (335g)
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoons pumpkin spice
- 32 ounces cream cheese room temperature
- 15 ounce canned pumpkin puree (not pie filling)
- 4 large eggs room temperature
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup sour cream room temperature (8oz or 227g)
- whipped cream for topping optional
To prepare the crust:
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- In a food processor pulse the graham crackers to fine crumbs, about 30-seconds. Add the sugar, salt and cinnamon and pulse 2 or 3 times to combine. Add the warm melted butter in a slow, steady stream while pulsing. Process until the mixture is evenly moistened and resembles wet sand.
- Transfer the crust mixture to a 9-inch springform pan. Using the bottom of a dry measuring cup press the crumb mixture into the bottom and 1-inch up the sides of the pan. Bake until set and fragrant, about 8 to 10 minutes. Remove to a wire rack to cool for at least 30 minutes while preparing the filling.
- Once cooled, wrap the bottom and sides of the pan in a double or triple layer of heavy-duty foil. Set the springform pan in a large roasting pan.
To prepare the filling:
- Reduce the oven temperature to 325°F.
- Whisk together the sugar, flour and pumpkin spice; set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese and pumpkin puree until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl with a spatula. With the mixer running on medium-low slowly add the sugar and spice mixture. Beat until the filling is smooth, scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed.
- With the speed set on medium add the eggs, one at a time, beating just until the yolk disappears before adding the next. Scrape the bowl again and blend on low just until the eggs are incorporated. Don’t over beat the filling.
- Add the vanilla and sour cream and blend on low until incorporated. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl and blend again on low for about 5 seconds, or until well mixed.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Fill the outer roasting pan with enough hot tap water to come halfway up the sides of the springform pan.
- Bake at 325F until the center jiggles slightly, the sides start to puff and the surface appears dry, about 90 to 100 minutes.
- Turn off the oven and prop the oven door open slightly using a pot holder or wooden spoon. Allow the cheesecake to cool in the hot water bath for 1 hour. Transfer the cheesecake to a wire rack and remove the foil. Slide a small thin knife around the inside edges of the pan to loosen the sides of the cheesecake. Leave the cheesecake in the springform pan and cool to room temperature, about 2 hours.
- Once cool, cover lightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight or up to 24 hours.
- To serve, remove the sides of the springform pan and carefully slide the cheesecake onto a serving platter. Pipe or dollop whipped cream around the outer edges of the cheesecake and garnish with additional pumpkin spice, if desired.
- For clean, pretty slices use a large thin knife heated under hot running water. Carefully dry the knife before slicing. Repeat.
- If you don’t have a food processor crush the graham crackers in a zipper bag using a rolling pin.
- Cheesecake can be made 24 in advance of serving. Top with whipped cream just before serving.
- Leftover cheesecake can be frozen for up to 2 months. Place individual slices on a baking sheet and flash freeze until set. Once frozen wrap each slice in plastic wrap then seal in an airtight container. Unwrap and thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
Originally published October 2014, updated October 2021