Ingredients4 h 35 m servings 347
- Adjust oven rack to middle position, and heat oven to 325 degrees. Brush interior of a 9-inch springform pan with butter. Add crumbs of choice and tilt pan in all directions to evenly coat, or line pan sides with ladyfingers. Tear off two long strips of heavy-duty foil, overlap in a cross pattern, and set the pan in the middle. Bring up sides, crimping around exterior top of the pan and forming a tight seal. Set it in a roasting pan large enough to hold it.
- Beat cream cheese with an electric mixer until smooth. Gradually add sugar and beat on medium speed until fully incorporated. Scrape down bowl sides and beat again until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, scraping down bowl after each addition to ensure a creamy batter. Slowly beat in vanilla, then cream and sour cream. (Meanwhile, bring tea kettle of water to a boil, then turn off heat.)
- Pour batter into prepared pan. Set the roasting pan on oven rack and pour in enough boiling water to come halfway up the side of the springform pan. Bake until cake perimeter is set but center still jiggles, about 40 minutes (some flavor variations will take longer). Turn off heat and leave oven door ajar; let cheesecake sit in oven so the residual heat continues to cook it, about 30 minutes.
- Remove pan from water; set on a wire rack. Let cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate until well-chilled, about 3 hours (can be refrigerated up to 4 days). Run a sharp knife around the edge of the pan, loosen the spring siding and serve.
- Tiramisu Cheesecake
- Follow Master Recipe for Rich and Creamy Cheesecake, brushing 1 3-ounce package (or 24 in a package) soft ladyfingers with a mixture of 6 Tbs. strong coffee and 2 Tbs. rum. Line pan sides with ladyfingers (trimmed to fit). Stir 3 Tbs. espresso powder into the batter. When ready to serve, shave a 4-ounce bar of semi- or bittersweet chocolate with a vegetable peeler onto the cheesecake.
- Snickers Cheesecake with Peanut Topping
- Follow Master Recipe for Rich and Creamy Cheesecake, using ground Famous Chocolate Wafers or graham cracker crumbs for the crust and folding 9 fun-size Snickers bars, each cut into 8 pieces, into the cheesecake batter. When ready to serve, sprinkle cheesecake perimeter with 1/4 cup coarsely chopped, roasted (unsalted) peanuts.
- Chocolate Orange Cheesecake
- Follow Master Recipe for Rich and Creamy Cheesecake, using ground Famous Chocolate Wafers for the crust and stirring 4 tsps. finely grated orange zest and 1/2 cup of orange marmalade into the cheesecake batter. While cheesecake is cooling on the cooling rack, slip a piece of wax paper or foil under the rack to catch drips. Microwave 1/2 cup heavy cream and 4 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl until cream is hot enough to melt chocolate, about 1 minute. Whisk to make a smooth glaze. Pour over warm cheesecake, continue to cool cake, then refrigerate as directed.
- Pumpkin Cheesecake
- Simmer 1 29-ounce can of 100% pure pumpkin along with 2 tsps. ground ginger, 1 tsp. ground cinnamon and 1/4 tsp. each ground nutmeg and allspice in a 10-inch skillet, stirring often, until the puree starts to stick to the pan's bottom, about 8 minutes. Follow Master Recipe for Rich and Creamy Cheesecake using gingersnaps for the crust, dark brown sugar for granulated and adding 1 additional large egg to the batter. Gradually beat the warm pumpkin into the batter. Increase baking time 5 to 10 minutes.
- Reese's Cheesecake
- Follow Master Recipe for Rich and Creamy Cheesecake using ground Famous Chocolate Wafers for the crust and folding in 8 regular-size Reese's peanut butter cups, cut into sixths, into prepared pan of batter. When ready to serve, garnish cooled cake perimeter with 3 quartered peanut butter cups.
- Lemon Cheesecake
- Follow Master Recipe for Rich and Creamy Cheesecake using ladyfingers for the crust and stirring 4 tsps. finely grated lemon zest into the cake batter. Spread 1/2 cup of a good brand of lemon curd (sold in jars near the jams and jellies) evenly over the top of the cooked, cooled cake.
- Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake
- Follow Master Recipe for Rich and Creamy Cheesecake using ground Famous Chocolate Wafers for the crust. Pour a third of the filling into the pan. Slice off 8 cookies' worth of refrigerated chocolate chip cookie dough, then break it into smaller chunks and distribute it evenly over the batter. Top with remaining batter.
- Apple Spice Cheesecake
- Follow Master Recipe for Rich and Creamy Cheesecake, using ladyfingers or graham cracker crumbs for the crust and stirring 2 tsps. ground cinnamon into the cheesecake batter. Top cooled cheesecake with 1 20-ounce can of apple pie filling spiced with 1 tsp. ground cinnamon and 1 Tb. brown sugar. Or, look for Comstock brand apple pie filling: The apples are tender, sweet and already cinnamon-spiced, so you won't need the spice and sugar additions as suggested above.
- Rocky Road Cheesecake
- Follow Master Recipe for Rich and Creamy Cheesecake, using ground Famous Chocolate Wafers and folding 3/4 cup mini marshmallows and 1 cup chopped semisweet or bittersweet chocolate into the batter. Garnish the cooled cake with 1/2 cup toasted walnuts and a 4-ounce bar of semisweet or bittersweet chocolate shaved with a vegetable peeler.
- Black Forest Cheesecake
- Follow recipe for Rich and Creamy Cheesecake, using ground Famous Chocolate Wafers for the crust and dropping 1/2 cup hot fudge sauce, 1/2 Tb. at a time, into prepared pan of batter. Top cooled cheesecake with 1 20-ounce can of cherry pie filling.
- Copyright 2006 USA WEEKEND and columnist Pam Anderson. All rights reserved.
Per Serving: 347 calories; 25.3 23.9 6.9 135 213 Full nutrition
ReviewsRead all reviews 102
I have been making cheesecakes for my husband's mens group for almost a year. I made the Apple Spice Cheesecake for them and have been told this has been the BEST cheesecake I have ever made. ...
The Master Cheesecake recipe was very light and flavorful with a wonderful soft and featherweight texture. I followed the recipe's directions exactly, struggling somewhat with configuring the f...
I must say I am a cheesecake Connoisseur. I have been looking for the perfect cheesecake recipe and after trying this one, I found it. I love the creamy, light texture. I am not a fan of a thi...
STOP LOOKING! You have found the best cheesecake recipe ever! I made a traditional graham cracker crust (2 cups graham cracker crumbs , 1 stick of butter, 2 TBSP sugar) and baked an additional...
I made this according to directions (but with a graham cracker crust), except I didn't use the water bath, but put a pan of boiling water under the cheesecake. It was an absolute hit with everyo...
I make a lot of cheesecake but I usually make it "simple" no sour cream and no cream..but I decided to give this one a shot. It was really good! A lot creamier than those that I usually make! Si...
This cheesecake is great!! The sour cream and heavy cream really do make a difference!! So rich and creamy. I had never baked a cheesecake in a water bath like this before (guess I thought it wa...
My son wanted a "Plain" Cheesecake for his birthday. Found this. Since other people would be at the party and want some "Flavors" I chose this recipe. IT IS AWESOME. I have made it three ti...