This rich pumpkin cheesecake is super creamy and baked with an entire can of pumpkin puree, warm spices, and a brown butter graham cracker crust.
Brown Butter Graham Cracker Crust
- 2 cups (280g) graham cracker crumbs (regular or gluten free)
- 1/3 cup (70g) light brown sugar, packed
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- Pinch of salt
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, browned
- (4) 8oz bricks full fat Philadelphia cream cheese, room temp
- 1 cup (200g) light brown sugar, packed
- 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
- 1 tbsp vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract)
- 2 tbsp cornstarch
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp allspice
- 1/4 cup (60g) full fat sour cream
- 4 large eggs, room temp
- (1) 15oz can pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
- 2 cups (480ml) heavy whipping cream
- 2 tbsp powdered sugar
Brown Butter Graham Cracker Crust
- Arrange the two racks inside the oven so that one is at the very bottom and one is in the middle. Preheat the oven to 350F and coat the inside of a 9″ springform pan with nonstick spray.
- Cover the bottom and sides of the pan with parchment paper and set aside.
- Place the 1/2 cup of unsalted butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Melt and heat until browned. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
- Combine the graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a bowl. When the brown butter has cooled (it can be warm but not hot), pour into the bowl and stir to coat.
- Pour the crumbs into the springform pan and use the bottom of a measuring cup to press it into the bottom and sides of the pan.
- Bake for 10 minutes on the middle rack, then allow to cool while you make the pumpkin cheesecake batter.
- In a bowl using a hand or stand mixer with the paddle attachment, add the cream cheese and sugar and mix on low speed until smooth and combined. Scrape down the bowl and mix again on low speed to catch any bits at the bottom.
- Next, fill a medium-sized pot with about 4 cups of water and place it over high heat. It should reach a boil by the time the batter is done. Also place a large roast pan on the bottom rack of the oven.
- Back to the cheesecake – add the vanilla, cornstarch, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice and mix on low speed until combined.
- Scrape down the bowl and mix in the sour cream, again on low speed.
- Mix in the eggs, one at a time, on low speed. Scrape down the bowl after the first two eggs, and again after the last two eggs.
- Last, mix in the entire can of pumpkin puree on low speed. When it appears to be fully mixed in, remove the bowl from the mixer and mix the batter by hand. Scrape down the sides and bottom to ensure all of the ingredients are fully incorporated.
- Pour the batter into the crust and spread it smooth. It should completely cover the crust.
- Now with the boiling water, open the oven door and pull out the bottom rack just enough for you to access the roast pan. Carefully pour the water into the roast pan and push the rack pack in. Quickly place the cheesecake on the middle rack, directly above the roast pan, and close the oven door. This will trap the steam and create a humid baking environment for the cheesecake – preventing it from drying out and cracking.
- Bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes. It should look very puffed on the outside with a jiggly center.
- When it’s done, turn the oven off and crack open the oven door. Let the cheesecake remain inside the oven for 1 hour.
- After the hour, let it cool at room temperature for 30 minutes. Then transfer to the refrigerator and let it chill uncovered for at least 4 hours, but preferably overnight.
- Once chilled, remove the cheesecake from the pan and peel back the paper.
- When you’re ready to serve the cheesecake, make the whipped cream.
- Place the heavy whipping cream and powdered sugar in a large mixing bowl. Using a hand or stand mixer with the whisk attachment, whisk on high speed until the cream forms soft peaks.
- Scoop the soft whipped cream on top of the chilled cheesecake. Then slice and serve!
STORAGE – If you plan to store the cheesecake for longer than the initial overnight (2 days max), cover it after it has had its overnight chill to prevent it from drying out. If you plan to add the whipped cream on top, only add this the day of serving. Do not store the cheesecake in the refrigerator with the whipped cream, as the whipped cream could wilt. Otherwise, store the leftovers in an air tight container in the refrigerator and it will keep for about a week.
- Prep Time: 40 minutes
- Cook Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
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