It’s time to be thankful and celebrate America’s favorite food holiday. We’re combining America’s favorite cheesecake-based dessert with America’s favorite holiday pie and white chocolate. There are a lot of ingredients to keep track of (well worth the effort), but the good news is it’s super-easy to do. Serve with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkling of toasted, cinnamon pumpkin seeds. Happy Thanksgiving!
Prep time: 30 minutes
Bake time: 1 hour 45 minutes
Cool down time: 1 hour
Chill time: 2 to 3 hours
Refrigerate time: at least 5 hours, preferably overnight
For the crust:
2 cups gingersnap cookie crumbs
1/2 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 egg yolk
Non-stick cooking spray
For the cheesecake filling:
4 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 (15 ounce) cans pure pumpkin puree
1/4 cup Choclatique Snowy White Chocolate, melted
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon American bourbon whiskey
1/4 cup corn starch
1/4 cup sour cream
4 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
For the sour cream topping:
1 pint sour cream, room temperature
2 tablespoon granulated sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
For the crust:
- Move a rack to the center position in oven. Preheat oven to 325°F.
- Spray a 10-inch springform pan with non-stick cooking spray.
- Stir the gingersnap crumbs, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 3 tablespoons flour, and melted butter together in a bowl until mixture resembles sand. Stir 1 egg yolk into crumbs until thoroughly combined until the crust mixture holds its shape when pressed.
- Evenly spread the crumbs into pan and press the crust mixture into a firm crust going about 1 inch or more up the sides of the pan.
- Bake the crust for 10 minutes and cool on a rack.
- Place the pan on a heavy sheet of aluminum foil and bring the foil up the sides of the pan to the rim, crumpling it close to the pan and making a barrier to prevent water from leaking into the cheesecake.
- Place the foil-wrapped springform pan into a large roasting pan.
- Place the cream cheese, 1 cup brown sugar, and granulated sugar into the work bowl of a large stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment (do not use a whisk attachment); mix on low speed until smooth, about 3 minute. Raise speed to high and mix until light and silky, about 3 or 4 more minutes.
- Place the pumpkin puree in a separate large mixing bowl; stir in the melted white chocolate, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice, salt, vanilla extract, and bourbon whiskey until combined.
- Whisk 1/4 cup of cornstarch into pumpkin mixture, followed by the sour cream, eggs and egg yolks.
- Whisk the cream cheese mixture into the pumpkin mixture until the filling is completely smooth and free of lumps.
- Pour the filling into the crust; use a spatula to lightly and rapidly jiggle the filling in the center of the cheesecake to smooth off the top and shake out any bubbles.
- Carefully place the filled springform pan in the roasting pan on the center rack of the oven and fill the roasting pan with enough very hot (almost boiling) water to reach halfway up the side of springform pan.
- Bake the cheesecake until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of the filling reads 160°F; about 1 hour and 45 minutes. Check the temperature after 1-1/2 hours. The filling will still be slightly jiggly in the center.
- Open the oven door for a few seconds to let out most of the hot air. Use a thin knife to separate cheesecake edge from inside of pan to help prevent cracking.
- Pour the sour cream topping over the cheese cake and bake for another 8 minutes.
- Turn off the heat and leave the oven door a jar (about 1 inch) to release additional heat. Let the cheesecake cool down in the warm oven for 1 hour to finish setting.
- Carefully remove the cheesecake from the water bath and let it cool to room temperature on a rack for 2 to 3 hours.
- Cover the cheesecake with aluminum foil and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, at least 5 hours but preferably overnight.
For the Sour Cream topping:
- Whisk together sour cream, granulated sugar, vanilla and almond extracts.
ChefSecret: Most spice companies make a reasonable pumpkin pie spice. You can substitute the cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and allspice with 2 to 2-1/2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice.
Use a folded paper towel to remove any moisture that has formed on top of the cheesecake before releasing and carefully lifting the springform pan from the cheesecake.