How To Make Strawberry Cheesecake

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Learning how to make strawberry cheesecake with a crumb crust is a rite of passage for any young lady. It’s not just part of culinary school, but it is a right of passage. A right of passage that I learned — and now you can too!

Making cheesecake is simple, but making it well is not. Making a good cheesecake can be tricky to say the least. The crust, the filling and the topping all have to come together perfectly for your masterpiece to be complete.

Strawberry Cheesecake

This strawberry cheesecake recipe is amazing! My creamy and light classic cheesecake recipe is finished off with a delightful strawberry topping. The cheesecake is nestled in a simple graham cracker base that adds a touch of texture to each bite. Who needs the Cheesecake Factory?

side view of slice of strawberry cheesecake on white plate
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Recipe Details

  • Taste – Rich, vanilla flavored cheesecake with the sweetness of strawberries.
  • Texture – Silky smooth and creamy with a crunch from the graham cracker crust.
  • Ease – Cheesecakes are quick to assemble but can be temperamental when baking.
  • Time – From start to finish, including chilling time, it is about 4 hours 15 minutes.

My Favorite Strawberry Cheesecake

It’s no secret that I love a silky smooth cheesecake. I’ve made several of them over the last few years. One of my secrets is the hot water bath. It keeps the cheesecake top from cracking.

My most popular cheesecake recipe on this site is a luscious Nutella cheesecake and followed by that is my favorite triple chocolate cheesecake. You guys seem to love cheesecakes as much as I do.

Cheesecake is a decadent, delicious and well-loved desserts. It’s impressive and delicious. Don’t be nervous about trying to make this! It’s really not difficult and it is well worth any effort.

Today, with summer around the corner, we’re celebrating my supremely creamy cheesecake which I’ve topped it off with a homemade fresh strawberry topping. This has been my go-to cheesecake recipe for many years now. It’s absolutely delicious.

There’s really nothing fancy with today’s recipe. It’s simple, light, and fresh. Not that I’m suggesting you do this, but you might even be able to enjoy more than one slice without feeling bogged down and heavy.

Depending on where you live, strawberries are coming into season in a matter of days or weeks. Truly, there is no better way to highlight this bright red, juicy summer fruit than to make a strawberry topping for cheesecake.

If it’s too hot to make a baked cheesecake, give this no bake strawberry cheesecake a try! It’s just as delightful.

cheesecake topped with strawberry sauce on white plate

How do you make a cheesecake base?

The crust for this strawberry cheesecake is made with graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and melted butter. Mix all this together in a large bowl until the mixture resembles wet sand.

Press the crumb mixture into the bottom and halfway up the sides of a springform cake pan. Bake it in a 350°F oven for 10 minutes then let it cool completely.


Main ingredients for strawberry cheesecake

  • Cream cheese – Choose a high-quality, full-fat cream cheese for the best results.
  • Sugar – Regular granulated sugar works best for baked cheesecakes.
  • Sour Cream – The secret ingredient to light and creamy cheesecakes.
  • Strawberries – Pick ripe strawberries to use for the sauce. They’ll taste much better if they are in season!

How to Make Strawberry Cheesecake

Step 1: Make the Graham Cracker Crust Base

Combine cream cracker crumbs, sugar, and melted butter. Press the crumb mixture in the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Preheat the oven to 350°F and bake for 10 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Graham crackers in food processor.

Step 2: Make the Creamy Cheesecake Filling

Beat the cream cheese with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy. Beat in the sugar, sour cream, salt, and vanilla extract until well combined. Gently stir in lightly beaten eggs.

Pour the filling over the prepared crust and set it inside a water bath. A water bath is just a pan of water placed in the oven in which you put the cake pan during baking. It ensures the cheesecake bakes at an even temperature and keeps the top of the cheesecake from cracking.

Bake in a 300°F oven for 1 hour then turn the oven off and let the cheesecake sit in the oven for another hour with the door closed.

Remove the cheesecake from the oven and set it on a wire rack to cool completely then refrigerate for 4 at least 4 hours or overnight.

cheesecake filling being poured in graham cracker crust

Step 3: Make the Strawberry Topping

Puree fresh strawberries with cornstarch using a blender or a food processor. Add the puree and sugar to a medium saucepan and cook over medium heat until thickened. This may take anywhere between 10 to 20 minutes.

Once thickened, stir in the chopped strawberries and set aside to cool. Top the cheesecake with the strawberry sauce just before serving. You can cover the entire cheesecake with the strawberry topping or you can drizzle it over each piece if you are serving pieces individually.

Strawberry cheesecake in 4 easy steps

  • Preparation and cooking time
    • Prep:30 mins
    • Plus 1 hr and overnight chilling
  • Easy
  • Serves 12 – 14

Follow our step-by-step recipe for this easy no-cook cheesecake – a delicious summer dessert for all occasions

NutrientUnit
kcal393
fat31g
saturates19g
carbs23g
sugars15g
fibre2g
protein4g
salt0.7g

Ingredients

  • 250g digestive biscuits
  • 100g butter, melted
  • 1 vanilla pod
  • 600g full fat soft cheese
  • 100g icing sugar
  • 284ml pot of double cream

For the topping

  • 400g punnet of strawberries, halved
  • 25g icing sugar

Method

  • STEP 1To make the base, butter and line a 23cm loose-bottomed tin with baking parchment. Put the digestive biscuits in a plastic food bag and crush to crumbs using a rolling pin. Transfer the crumbs to a bowl, then pour over the melted butter. Mix thoroughly until the crumbs are completely coated. Tip them into the prepared tin and press firmly down into the base to create an even layer. Chill in the fridge for 1 hr to set firmly.For more detail on how to make a biscuit base, take a look at our how to make a biscuit base video.
  • STEP 2Slice the vanilla pod in half lengthways, leaving the tip intact, so that the two halves are still joined. Holding onto the tip of the pod, scrape out the seeds using the back of a kitchen knife.
  • STEP 3Pour the double cream into a bowl and whisk with an electric mixer until it’s just starting to thicken to soft peaks. Place the soft cheese, icing sugar and the vanilla seeds in a separate bowl, then beat for 2 mins with an electric mixer until smooth and starting to thicken, it will get thin and then start to thicken again. Tip in the double cream and fold it into the soft cheese mix. You’re looking for it to be thickened enough to hold its shape when you tip a spoon of it upside down. If it’s not thick enough, continue to whisk. Spoon onto the biscuit base, starting from the edges and working inwards, making sure that there are no air bubbles. Smooth the top of the cheesecake down with the back of a dessert spoon or spatula. Leave to set in the fridge overnight.
  • STEP 4Bring the cheesecake to room temperature about 30 mins before serving. To remove it from the tin, place the base on top of a can, then gradually pull the sides of the tin down. Slip the cake onto a serving plate, removing the lining paper and base. Purée half the strawberries in a blender or food processor with the icing sugar and 1 tsp water, then sieve. Pile the remaining strawberries onto the cake, and pour the purée over the top.

Strawberry Cheesecake

This Strawberry Cheesecake is a stunner! Based on my classic Baked Cheesecake which I describe as a magically rich-yet-light, finished with a gorgeous strawberry topping that tastes as amazing as it looks.

You’ll love how the sauce slowly drips down the cheesecake with every bite, and how the filling is creamy and rich, but it’s a bit fluffy rather than heavy and dense. And because I love the biscuit base so much, I’ve made it go aalll the way up the sides….

Close up of slice of Strawberry Cheesecake with Strawberry Sauce dripping down the side

Strawberry Cheesecake

This has been my go-to cheesecake recipe for many years now. It’s the cheesecake that rendered a group of girls silent when we were on a weekend away. And that’s saying something with my friends!

I’ve shared this cheesecake recipe in all its naked glory. Because it really is the sort of cake that’s rich enough and so good (and that BISCUIT BASE!!) that you don’t need to trick it up with anything – just serve a plain slice and it will be devoured.

But it’s that time of the year for excesses. Where we take a cake that’s already perfect as it is, and take it over the top with a glossy Strawberry Topping for Cheesecake….

PS You’re going to go a little bit bonkers when that Strawberry Sauce is on the stove. The smell is outrageous!

Close up of Strawberry Topping Sauce for Strawberry Cheesecake

I did say that this Strawberry Cheesecake is pretty straightforward, but I never said it’s a quick and easy recipe! It takes time but it’s not complicated. I’m going to walk you through each part, there are process photos and a recipe tutorial video too.

Here are the 3 main components:

  1. Cheesecake biscuit base and walls: blitz and press. No baking required;
  2. Cheesecake filling – plonk and mix. The easiest part!
  3. 4 ingredient strawberry sauce – couldn’t be easier (hardest part is trying not to “taste test” too much)
Close up of Strawberry Cheesecake with a bite take out of it

The Cheesecake Biscuit base

Oh that buttery base!!! I love it so much, I make an entire wall of it for this Strawberry Cheesecake. Actually, the practical reason for the biscuit wall is to hold the Strawberry Topping in. But even without topping, I always make my cheesecakes with biscuit walls!

It’s as simple as blitzing (or bashing) biscuits into crumbs then stirring in melted butter. The biscuit base can be made with pretty much any type of plain biscuit – or even plain flavoured biscuits (like gingersnaps!). Arnott’s Marie Crackers or Nice biscuits (Australia), digestives (UK), and in the States, Graham Crackers are ideal.

PRO TIP: Inverted base & paper overhang

To make it easier to remove finished cake: Flip the base of the springform pan. Grease then top with a square sheet of paper. Secure sides of pan so excess paper is sticking out. Then you can easily move the cheesecake as follows:

  • use the paper overhang to grip, and slide the cake off the base onto the cake stand;
  • finished cake will slide safely off the inverted base (because it has no lip); then
  • once the cake on the paper is on the cake stand, slide the paper out from under the cake. Voila!
How to make cheesecake biscuit base

Cheesecake Filling

The easiest part! The ingredients in the cheesecake filling are simply cream cheese (Philadelphia all the way!), sugar, lemon zest (this really gives it a special touch), vanilla, a tiny amount of flour (for stability – keeps it fluffy) and eggs. It’s a plonk-and-mix deal.

This cheesecake has sour cream in it which lightens it up a bit. While rich, it has a slightly aerated texture which is quite different from a New York cheesecake which is much denser and calls for twice as much cream cheese as this Strawberry Cheesecake recipe!

PRO TIP: Don’t overbeat, it can cause craters

Only mix until each ingredient is incorporated and the batter is smooth. No need to beat to aerate the batter.

If the filling is beaten too much and becomes very aerated, then the cheesecake might rise during the bake then sink a bit in the middle as it cools. Not a big deal though because it flaws get hidden under the Strawberry Sauce!

How to make Cheesecake Filling

No need for water bath

Some recipes say to bake cheesecake in a water bath, swearing that this a) makes the cake more moist; and b) is the secret to avoiding cracks.

Out of curiosity (because some people are so adamant!) I made this exact cheesecake with and without a water batch just to compare. Logistical issues aside (because no springform pan is 100% leakproof, it requires double layers of heavy duty foil and even then, I was still wary).

Both cheesecakes looked exactly the same – no cracks, and tasted exactly the same. Except one was a heck of a lot more of a hassle to get in the oven.

So it’s confirmed. NO WATER BATH! 

PS Santa, may I please have new matching oven mitts for Christmas?

Comparison of cheesecake with and without water bath
Cheesecake on the left was made using a waterbath. The cheesecake on the right was made without a waterbath. Neither had cracks, they looked and tasted the same. Conclusion: Don’t bother fussing with water baths!

Strawberry Topping for Cheesecake

5 simple ingredients – strawberries, sugar, cornflour/cornstarch, lemon juice (or water) and vanilla. Plonk in saucepan, simmer for 10 minutes, stand over stove and inhale the incredible smells. Stir through halved strawberries (nice to soften them a bit), cool then spread on cheesecake.

Don’t fret about getting the strawberry sauce consistency 100% right straight off the stove. Cook the sauce until it’s the thickness you want for your cheesecake (ie slow ooze – watch the video!), then it will thicken more as it cools. THEN use the teeniest touch of water to loosen it up to the desired consistency – as in, 1/2 teaspoon at a time. That’s the safest way to get the sauce consistency perfect. 

Strawberry topping sauce for Strawberry Cheesecake

That Strawberry Topping for the cheesecake…. it is unbelievable. Not only does it make the cheesecake look stunning, it tastes incredible. The addition of a sauce to an already amazing cheesecake really does take it over the top.

As regular readers know, I specialise in “brown foods”. Think – stews, roasts, curries.

So when I make things as beautiful and colourful as this Strawberry Cheesecake, the immature child within can’t help getting overly excited and sending these photos to everyone in the RecipeTin family and more friends than she cares to admit.

And their reactions made my head swell. 

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