Two of my favorite desserts collide in this glorious Pecan Pie Cheesecake. Everything we love about pecan pie sits atop the creamiest cheesecake you'll every have the pleasure of making. This homemade cheesecake is guaranteed to turn any occasion into something special.
Best Pecan Pie Cheesecake Recipe
It's no secret that pecans are the favored nut in the South. And, for good reason, they're so darn delicious. Yes, admittedly I'm a bit biased. Combining pecan pie with a creamy delicate cheesecake is a match made in heaven. While cheesecake can be a bit intimidating, I've truly done my best to streamline the process in the recipe for this decadent dessert. Just know, that this cheesecake is a special dessert meant for a special occasion. While there are several steps to make it, the end result is well worth the effort.
Tips for Making Creamy Pecan Cheesecake
- This is one dessert where using the proper pan is a must. You'll need a 9 inch springform pan to make this pecan pie cheesecake.
- It's imperative that you allow time for the cream cheese to fully soften so that, it will blend more evenly with the sugar.
- Also important is, that you allow time for the eggs to come to room temperature before using. Just set them out on the counter along with the cream cheese and you'll be good to go. If possible, allow the sour cream to sit on the counter for 30 minutes or so, too.
- Some recipes use flour to stabilize the filling. For this particular recipe, I prefer using cornstarch which lends a soft and delicate texture to the cheesecake.
- Wrapping the bottom of the pan with foil is optional. Springform pans are famous for leaking so, I usually wrap mine just to be extra careful even though this usually isn't a problem with cheesecake. You may use your best judgement about your pan.
- After baking, the cheesecake needs to chill thoroughly before attempting to cut. At least 12 hours, but, 24 is ideal.
- To cut clean slices, use a sharp knife dipped in warm water, drying thoroughly, and cleaning the blade between each cut.
- When using the freshest of ingredients, this freshly made cheesecake will keep up to one week in an airtight container in the fridge. It must be stored chilled.
Is it Necessary to use a Bain-Marie when Making Cheesecake?
A bain-marie is a fancy name for a hot water bath. It provides a gentle and moist cooking environment for slow cooking custards and cheesecakes and helps prevent cracking. They work wonderfully but, I choose to utilize a pan of hot water on the bottom rack of the oven giving me flexibility in using whatever pan size I need. A classic hot water bath, you would place the springform pan into a deeper pan then fill it halfway with boiling water. It works like a dream if you have a deeper pan that will fit any size pan. Otherwise, pan on the bottom rack works for this recipe. As you can see, my cheesecake didn't crack.
Other Pecan Pie Desserts to Try
Other versions of pecan pie are bountiful, proving just how beloved it is. For brunch, I often serve these pecan pie mini muffins and for the chocolate fans at your dessert table, this chocolate pecan pie is a must-make. Another fun variation are these pecan pie cookies from Land O Lakes.
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Helpful Kitchen Items:
Pecan Pie Cheesecake
- 2 cups finely ground vanilla wafer or graham crackers crumbs
- ½ cup butter melted
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 4 8 oz blocks cream cheese softened
- 1 ⅓ cups granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ¼ cup cornstarch
- 6 large eggs room temperature
- 1 cup sour cream
- ½ cup light or dark brown sugar
- ½ cup dark corn syrup
- ¼ cup cornstarch
- 4 large egg yolks
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup half and half
- 2 tablespoon butter
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups roughly chopped pecans toasted
- Preheat oven to 325°F. Place an 8 x 8 pan on bottom rack and fill halfway with boiling water.
- Spray a 9 inch springform pan with cooking spray. Wrap bottom of pan with aluminum foil, to prevent any leakage. Set aside.
- In a medium-size mixing bowl toss together vanilla wafer crumbs with sugar and butter until fully moistened. Press onto bottom and halfway up sides of pan. Place pan into freezer while you make filing.
- Using an electric mixer, whip together cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until completely smooth. Add cornstarch and vanilla, mixing well.
- Add eggs one at a time mixing well after each addition. Scrape sides and bottom of bowl as needed. Mix in sour cream by hand.
- Pour evenly into crust. Bake on middle rack of oven for 1 hr 10 - 1 hr 20 minutes or until the center is still slightly loose when gently shaken. It won't be completely set. Turn off oven, leave door slightly ajar, and leave cheesecake in oven for 1 hour longer to finish baking.
- Remove to a cooling rack, and allow to cool for 30 minutes then run a knife gently around top edge. Cool completely to room temperature. Leave ring in place, wrap and chill for 1 preferably 24 hours.
- To make the topping: In a small saucepan, whisk together brown sugar, syrup, cornstarch, eggs and salt. Gradually whisk in half and half. Turn heat to medium-high whisking constantly until thickened. Lower heat to a simmer and whisking constantly, cook for one minute.
- Remove from heat, add butter and vanilla. Whisk until fully combined. Mix in pecans. Mix well. Set aside to cool for at least 20 minutes. Spread evenly on chilled cheesecake and return to fridge to set. Chill until serving.
- Store leftovers chilled.