A creamy Pumpkin Cheesecake with a gingersnap crust is the ultimate autumn dessert! Top it with whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon.
This pumpkin cheesecake is like a combination of a classic cheesecake and a pumpkin pie. It’s so creamy and delicious that everyone will love it!
Gingersnap Crust Ingredients
The ingredients for the gingersnap crust are simple. It’s a combination of cookies, graham crackers, sugar, and butter.
- Cookies: I love how well ginger goes with pumpkin so we added gingersnap cookie crumbs to the crust. The cookies make the crust even more delicious.
- Crackers: Graham cracker crumbs are the classic choice for a cheesecake crust and we used them along with the cookie crumbs because they are the perfect texture. You can buy graham cracker crumbs in the baking aisle at the grocery store or crush graham crackers to make the crumbs.
- Sugar: The granulated sugar melts and carmelizes helping bond the crust together. You can use brown sugar too if you prefer.
- Butter: Melted butter makes all of the crust ingredients stick together.
Pumpkin Cheesecake Ingredients
The ingredients in this pumpkin cheesecake are similar to a traditional one with the addition of pumpkin puree and spices. Scroll down for the complete recipe with ingredient measurements.
- Cream Cheese: You’ll need four full-fat eight-ounce blocks of cream cheese that have been allowed to soften to room temperature.
- Eggs: The eggs also need to be at room temperature. Having the ingredients at room temperature will give you the smoothest, creamiest cheesecake!
- Sugar: We used all granulated sugar for the sweetener but you could use a combiantion of granulated and brown sugar. Keep in mind that the brown sugar will change the color of the cheesecake somewhat.
- Pumpkin: This recipe uses canned pumpkin. Look for the can that says 100% pumpkin puree, NOT the canned pumpkin pie filling which includes other ingredients.
- Sour Cream: A little full-fat sour cream adds to the creaminess of the pumpkin cheesecake.
- Vanilla: Use pure vanilla extract for the best results. The vanilla extract brings flavor to the dessert.
- Flour: We added a some all purpose flour to provide some structure to the cheesecake. It is mixed with the spices and helps them disperse evenly.
- Spices: The spices are similar to a pumpkin pie. We added ground cinnamon, ground ginger, ground nutmeg, and ground cloves.
- Toppings: We decorated the cheesecake with homemade whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon.
How To Make Pumpkin Cheesecake
Making a pumpkin cheesecake isn’t difficult but it does take time and patience. Make sure the ingredients are at the right temperature, don’t overmix the batter, bake it in a water bath, allow it to cool properly, and chill it in the refrigerator overnight. If you simply follow the steps, you will have outstanding results! Scroll down for the printable recipe card and complete instructions.
Preparing the Cheesecake
- Crust: We found that baking the crust first, resulted in the best crust. So, after mixing the crust ingredients together, press them onto the bottom and a little up the sides of a springform pan. Bake the crust and then allow it to cool completely.
- Pumpkin Puree: Since canned pumpkin has a lot of liquid in it, you’lll need to drain some of it for the best results. The easiest way to do so is to spread the pumpkin puree out on several layers of paper towels. The paper towels will absorb the excess liquid and then the pumpkin will easily roll off the paper towels.
- Flour and Spices: The flour and the spices get mixed together in a separate bowl. This disperses the spices throughout the flour and helps prevent them from clumping together in the batter.
- Cheesecake: The cream cheese is beaten at a higher speed on the mixer. The same is true once the granualted sugar is added. But then the mixer should stay at a low speed when adding the remaining ingredients. Overbeating the cheesecake will form air bubbles and cracks will form. Also, be sure to scrape the bowl OFTEN for the smoothest cheesecake.
Baking and Cooling Cheesecake
- Water Bath: After testing several methods, we found that the traditional water bath method of baking a cheesecake gave the best results. Once the crust has cooled, wrap the bottom and sides of springform pan with several layers of heavy duty foil (at least three). This will prevent the water from seaping into the pan. After filling the pan with the cheesecake batter, place it in a roasting pan and set it in the oven. Then, carefully pour 6-8 cups of boiling water into the roasting pan.
- Bake: The pumpkin cheesecake needs to bake for one hour and 30 minutes.
- Cooling: After the cheesecake has baked for the full time, it needs to cool slowly for one hour in the oven. Turn the oven off and crack the oven door. This step is crucial for preventing a crack in the top. Then, remove the cheesecake from the oven, remove the foil, and allow it to cool completely at room temperature. Finally, chill the pumpkin cheesecake overnight in the refrigerator.
Pumpkin Cheesecake Frequently Asked Questions
There are several things that can cause a crack in the top of a pumpkin cheesecake. One cause is overmixing or beating the batter forming air bubbles. Another is baking the cheesecake at too high of a temperature, baking it for too long, or baking it without a water bath. The cheesecake can also crack if it isn’t cooled slowly.
It depends on the recipe. Some cheesecake recipes include eggs and need to be baked. Others only include cream cheese, whipped cream, and sugar and do not need to be baked. They are different desserts and both are delicious!
Yes, you can freeze the whole pumpkin cheesecake or individual slices. Place it in the freezer for 30 minutes to harden. Then, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and then foil. Store it in an airtight container in the freezer. Remove the foil and thaw the cheesecake in the refrigerator.
Want more pumpkin recipes? Try these next:
This Pumpkin Cake recipe is so easy to make with a cake mix, pumpkin puree, and pumpkin pie spice! Top with cream cheese frosting for the ultimate treat.
A homemade Pumpkin Pie is a must at every holiday dinner from Thanksgiving to Christmas! Top with whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon.
This Pumpkin Bars recipe is the ultimate autumn dessert for sharing. It is easy to make and tastes even BETTER than pumpkin pie!
Get cozy this fall with homemade Pumpkin Scones topped with white chocolate and steaming mugs of coffee or tea to drink.