An adorable twist on a classic dessert! Mini cheesecakes are delicious, little, single serving cheesecakes made using a muffin tin. This recipe features an extra thick cookie layer and a creamy and rich cheese filling.
* This post was updated with new images and a larger quantity of ingredients for more cheese filling! 🙂
This recipe goes out to anyone who loves Cheesecake factory cheesecake as much as I do! Or anyone who's wanted to make cheesecake at home! Or really anyone who just loves cheesecake ... period.
Making mini cheesecake is an especially great recipe if you're just getting into cheesecake making! They don't tend to be as fussy and prone to cracking as larger cheesecakes. Plus they're A-DOR-ABLE!
And the best part is you don't need any special mini cheesecake pan to make these. All you need is a muffin/cupcake tin and you're all set! This is one that's similar to the tin I use, but any standard sized, 12 count muffin/cupcake tin will work.
No wait, the best part is the fact that mini cheesecakes bake, cool, and set MUCH MORE QUICKLY than larger cheesecakes. SOO we get to enjoy them much much sooner!!
... I'm not seeing any downsides.
Mini cheesecake ingredients:
This cheesecake recipe is adapted from our cheesecake bars, but scaled down to make 12 mini cheesecakes. The ingredients are the exact same. You will need:
• graham cracker crumbs: I just buy full sheet cookies and process them in my food processor. You can also just buy the pre-ground crumbs. Tea biscuits make a good substitute if you don't have/can't find graham crackers (there's no difference at all!)
• butter: to bind the cheesecake crust
• sugar: a hint for the cheesecake crust and more for the cheesecake filling
• cream cheese: a must!
• sour cream or plain yogurt: either will work just fine. When using plain yogurt, I like to add ½ a teaspoon vinegar or lemon juice to mimic the acidity of sour cream
• flour and an egg: both help bind the cheesecake filling
• salt: to balance out the sweetness
• vanilla: for flavor!
How to make mini cheesecakes:
1. Make the cheesecake crust. Portion out the crust into the muffin/cupcake tin, and press down to pack in. Partially bake the crust, and set aside to cool slightly.
* Note: the crust will essentially look the exact same as when it went into the oven. It shouldn't be significantly browned. This step is mainly to help avoid a soggy cheesecake crust!
2. Make the cheesecake filling: Beat together cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Mix in the sour cream/yogurt, flour, salt, and vanilla. Add the egg and whisk it in until just combined!
3. Bake: Transfer the cream cheese filling into the muffin cups and bake!
4. Cool. Let cool to room temperature, then chill in the fridge for at least 2 hours before serving.
The cheesecakes will be puffed and slightly golden along the edges after baking. As they cool, they will sink a bit so don't be alarmed!
If your house is colder, it's best to cool the cheesecakes in your oven (off with the door open). Sudden bursts of cool air can cause the cheesecakes to crack.
Cheesecake making tips:
I went over a few tips in our cheesecake bars recipe for avoiding cracks on cheesecake. You can skip a few of them because mini cheesecakes don't crack as easily, but the important tips are:
1. Use room temperature ingredients: Sudden changes in temperature cause cracks on cheesecake. Starting with room temperature ingredients mean the batter won't be shocked when it goes into the hot oven. They're also a million times easier to incorporate to avoid lumps in the batter!
2. Don't over mix the batter! Cheesecake is meant to be dense! Too much air incorporated can cause cracks. This is mainly something to lookout for when incorporating the egg. The other ingredients don't cause too much air to form, so you don't need to pay too close attention to how much you mix until the egg is added.
3. Use a lower temperature oven: 325°F is perfect to gradually bring the cheesecakes up to temperature!
The other tips from the cheesecake bars recipe aren't necessary when working with mini cheesecakes because they are way more forgiving!
How to store mini cheesecakes:
Keep your mini cheesecakes wrapped and stored in your fridge until ready to serve. They'll keep for up to 1 week.
If you liked these mini cheesecakes, check out these other recipes!
Mini Cheesecakes Recipe
For the mini cheesecake crust:
- 1 & ½ cups graham cracker crumbs * see notes for substitutions
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
For the mini cheesecake filling:
- 2 (8 ounce) blocks of cream cheese, softened to room temperature
- ⅔ cups granulated sugar
- ¼ cup sour cream or plain yogurt ** see notes
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 1 & ½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- Preheat your oven to 325°F. Line a 12 count muffin tin with paper cups, and set aside.
- Make the mini cheesecake crust: In a medium bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and melted butter. Portion out the crust evenly into the muffin tin (about 1 tablespoon per cup). Using a small cup, firmly press down the crust in each muffin cup to compress and flatten. Bake in the center of the preheated 325°F oven for 6 to 7 minutes (or until fragrant). Set aside to cool slightly.
- Make the cheesecake filling: In a large bowl, beat together the cream cheese and sugar until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is smooth. Add the sour cream/yogurt, flour, salt, and vanilla extract, and whisk to combine. Add the eggs in, one at a time, whisking well after each addition. Take care not to over mix!
- Portion out the cheesecake filling evenly into the muffin cups. Bake the mini cheesecakes in the center of the preheated 325°F oven again, this time for 15 to 20 minutes. The cheesecakes are done baking once the top is puffed and no longer shiny. If you shake the pan, the cheesecake should still jiggle slightly in the center.
- Cool the cheesecake entirely to room temperature. Cover and chill for at least 2 hours in the fridge before serving. Serve plain or top with whipped cream, fresh fruits, melted chocolate, caramel sauce, jam, or whatever else you like!