This fool-proof New York style cheesecake recipe is super creamy, rich, and EASY to make! And guess what? No water-bath required! Learn all the secrets to achieve a perfectly smooth cheesecake every time!
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How to make cheesecake
Graham Cracker Crust
- First and foremost, you’ll want to make the buttery golden graham cracker crust by combining the graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, and melted butter in a bowl. Then place it into a 9-inch springform pan that is lined with NON-stick foil and sprayed with nonstick spray. Now you’ll want to set the crust by pressing it down into the pan and baking it in the oven for 10 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Blend the softened cream cheese and sugar on high speed in the bowl of your stand mixer until no lumps appear. You will need to use the paddle attachment or float beater for this part.
- Now, Add the room temperature eggs 1 at a time, beating each egg at low speed, making sure each egg is blended before adding the next. Then add the vanilla extract and sour cream. Be sure not to over mix.
- Pour the cheesecake filling on top of the baked graham cracker crust. Bake the new york style cheesecake at 350 Fahrenheit for 15 minutes. Then drop the oven temperature to 250 degrees Fahrenheit and bake for another 1 hour and 30 minutes. Now, let the cheesecake sit in the turned off oven until it is completely cooled down.
Sour cream top for cheesecake
- Combine the sour cream and sugar and spread a smooth even layer on top of the cooled cheesecake.
Tips to make a perfect cheesecake
How to keep cheesecake from cracking
- DON’T OVER BEAT THE EGGS: We’ve all seen it on a homemade cheesecake, or better yet, tried covering it with a chocolate drizzle which is totally fine, I’m guilty of doing that too. But we all want to know why do cheesecakes crack?? There are a few variables that cause cheesecakes to crack. Overbeating the eggs is one of the biggest reasons why cheesecakes crack. When adding eggs to the cheesecake you want to add 1 egg at a time on low speed. A good way to know when to add the next egg is when you don’t see any more yellow streaks in the batter. I even recommend lightly whisking each egg in a tiny bowl before adding it to the batter. You want to break the yolk so it’s runnier and the mixer doesn’t have to beat too many times to incorporate the egg. You can beat the heck out of the cream cheese and sugar, but over beating the eggs will cause incorporated air pockets to crack the cheesecake during baking.
Why does cheesecake crack?
- LEAVE THE CHEESECAKE IN THE OVEN UNTIL THE OVEN IS COMPLETELY COOLED DOWN: This loops back to cracked and caved cheesecakes. Letting the cheesecake gradually cool down will help you achieve that beautifully smooth flat top.
- HOW TO PREVENT MY CHEESECAKE FROM CAVING: overbeating eggs is also a reason for a caved cheesecake, but another reason is peeking on the cheesecake while it bakes. Never open the oven door when a cheesecake is baking. The sudden changes in temperate will cause it to collapse.
- WHY DO THE EGGS AND CREAM CHEESE NEED TO BE ROOM TEMPERATURE? Using room temperature ingredients is a must. If the cream cheese isn’t softened, no matter how well you beat it, you will end up with clumps in your cheesecake. Also, don’t ever try softening it in the microwave. It will melt part of it and leave a very uneven consistency.
- HOW TO GET A WHITE CHEESECAKE TO STAY WHITE: The key to getting that perfectly white (store bought) cheesecake looks is low oven temperature. This step requires some patience though. I bake my cheesecake at 350 Fahrenheit for 15 minutes. Then drop the oven temperature to 250 degrees Fahrenheit and bake for another 1 hour and 30 minutes. Once it’s done, let the cheesecake sit in the turned off oven until it is fully cooled down.
- ALWAYS USE NONSTICK FOIL AND COOKING SPRAY: This step isn’t crucial but it sure makes life a lot raise when the cheesecake slides right off of the foil.
Can you freeze cheesecake?
Cheesecakes freeze very well! Freeze the baked and cooled new york style cheesecake uncovered for about 2 hours, then wrap it with a layer of cling wrap and a layer of aluminum foil. Place the new york style cheesecake back in the freezer and keep frozen for up to 1 month. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight.
If you love cheesecakes or other cold smooth, and creamy desserts, you might also enjoy these recipes.
- In a bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, and melted butter. Mix until the butter is fully incorporated.
- Line the bottom of 9 inch springform with nonstick foil and spray with nonstick spray. Then fill with the graham cracker crumbs. Press and compact the bottom on the pan with graham cracker crumbs using your hands. You can either press it into one thick layer or you can press some of the crumbs up the sides of the springform.
- To set the crust, bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and let the crust cool. Spray a little more cooking spray to the sides off the springform pan so that the cheesecake will come off easier after its baked. In the bowl of a stand mixer, blend the softened cream cheese and sugar on medium low speed until no clumps appear. You will need to use the paddle attachment for this part.
- Add the eggs 1 at a time, beating each egg at low speed, making sure each egg is blended before adding the next. Then add the vanilla and sour cream. Be sure not to over mix. Over-mixing will cause the incorporated air to crack the cheesecake during baking. Scrape the sides of the mixer during this process to incorporate any cream cheese that has stuck to the side of the bowl.
- Pour the cream cheese filling into the greased spring form pan. Grip the sides of the springform and shake it a little to smooth out the top.
- Bake the cheesecake at 350 Fahrenheit for 15 minutes. Then drop the oven temperature to 250 degrees Fahrenheit and bake for another 1 hour and 30 minutes. Once it’s done, let the cheesecake sit in the turned off oven until it is fully cooled down.
- Beat 1 cup sour cream with 2 tbsp sugar and evenly spread onto cheesecake. Then refrigerate for 4 hours before eating.
- Once the cheesecake is cooled, spread the sweet sour cream mixture on top. Serve chilled.
This new york style cheesecake recipe was originally published on June 15, 2018, it has been updated since.