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How to Make Homemade No-Bake Cheesecake

I love trying out new dessert recipes and sharing my findings. Turns out many fancy sweets aren't nearly as hard to make as I once thought!

Check out the no-bake strawberry cheesecake recipe below!

Check out the no-bake strawberry cheesecake recipe below!

No-Bake Cheesecake Is a Simple, Refreshing Treat

No-bake cheesecake makes a great dessert. It doesn't require cooking, but you will need plenty of time to chill the cheesecake so that it sets. I like to refrigerate my no-bake cheesecakes overnight, but if you don't want to make them far in advance, allow for 3 to 4 hours of chill time before serving.

I have started with a basic vanilla no-bake cheesecake recipe which is the basis for each of the other varieties. All you need to do is follow the same steps you would to make the vanilla cheesecake, but add in additional ingredients. These recipes make a 6-inch round cheesecake, which is ideal for 4 to 6 people. If you want to make a bigger cheesecake, simply scale up the recipe.

Ingredients

  • 125 grams digestive biscuits - graham crackers
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter, unsalted
  • 1/2 cup cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup caster sugar / superfine sugar
  • 1/2 cup double / heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 to 2 leaves gelatine, (vegetarian alternative is ok)

Instructions

  1. For the base: break up the digestive biscuits or graham crackers until they have a breadcrumb consistency. The easiest way to do this is to use a food processor with a steel blade attachment to create crumbs from the digestive biscuits (or graham crackers).
  2. Now melt enough butter to give yourself 2 to 3 tablespoons. Add 2 tablespoons of melted butter to the processed digestive biscuits or graham crackers and pulse until the butter is evenly distributed and the 'breadcrumbs' start to come together. If they are not coming together well or if you feel the mix is too dry, add the third tablespoon of butter.
  3. When you are happy with the breadcrumb mix, press it into the bottom of a lightly greased 6-inch round cake pan. Use the bottom of a measuring cup to even out the crust and to ensure it is packed in firmly. Now pop it into the refrigerator for 15 minutes.
  4. You are going to use gelatine to set the filling of this cheesecake, so prepare this first. Soak 1 to 2 gelatine leaves in cold water. If you like a firm set cheesecake, use 2. If you would like the filling to be lighter and creamier, use 1, but you will need to allow longer for it to set up. The gelatine leaves will need to soak for around 5 minutes until they bloom. In the meantime, gently heat 1/4 cup of heavy cream in a small pan. Do not allow it to boil. When the gelatine is ready, remove it from the water and squeeze out the excess water. Now add it to the heated cream and stir gently until it dissolves. Set aside to cool.
  5. Place 1/2 cup of cream cheese into a mixing bowl along with the remaining 1/4 cup of heavy cream, sugar and vanilla. Mix until everything is combined well.
  6. Now add the cream that you dissolved the gelatine in and mix well. It doesn't need to be completely cool but be sure to thoroughly incorporate all the ingredients.
  7. Pour the filling onto the digestive biscuit/graham cracker base and place it in the refrigerator to set.
  8. When ready to serve, cut it into slices. You can serve it plain or add some fresh fruit or a nice fruity sauce.

Cheesecake: Step-by-Step

Create crumbs of digestive biscuits/graham crackers easily by using a food processor.

Create crumbs of digestive biscuits/graham crackers easily by using a food processor.

When you have added the butter to your biscuit crumbs, press it into your cake pan to create a firm crust.

When you have added the butter to your biscuit crumbs, press it into your cake pan to create a firm crust.

When the gelatine blooms, it will be soft and pliable. You need to squeeze out all the excess water before adding it to your liquid to dissolve.

When the gelatine blooms, it will be soft and pliable. You need to squeeze out all the excess water before adding it to your liquid to dissolve.

Make sure you combine all the ingredients thoroughly. You want a nice, smooth texture to your cheesecake so be particularly sure the sugar is well incorporated.

Make sure you combine all the ingredients thoroughly. You want a nice, smooth texture to your cheesecake so be particularly sure the sugar is well incorporated.

Pour the filling onto the base and put in the refrigerator to set, preferably overnight.

Pour the filling onto the base and put in the refrigerator to set, preferably overnight.

Simple Variations

Strawberry No-Bake Cheesecake Recipe

Make a simple strawberry sauce by placing 150 grams of fresh, finely chopped strawberries in a saucepan with 1/4 cup of sugar and 1/4 cup of water. Heat until the sugar dissolves and the mixture thickens. Set aside the sauce to cool—don't worry if there are lumps of fruit in the sauce.

Follow steps 1-6 above and then add in the cooled strawberry sauce. Combine thoroughly and pour onto the base in the cake pan. Refrigerate until ready to serve. This cheesecake is great when decorated with fresh quartered strawberries.

Raspberry and Honey No-Bake Cheesecake Recipe

Follow steps 1-6 as shown in the recipe for vanilla cheesecake. Add in 100 grams of fresh raspberries and 4 tablespoons of honey (adjust the amount of honey if you wish). Mix well, pour onto biscuit/graham cracker base and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Chocolate Chip No-Bake Cheesecake Recipe

Another simple variation on the vanilla cheesecake is choc-chip. All you need to do is follow steps 1-6 and then add in 100 grams of chocolate chips or 100 grams of grated chocolate if you prefer a smoother texture. Stir into the mix to distribute evenly, pour onto the biscuit/graham cracker base and refrigerate. This one goes well with a chocolate sauce.

Strawberry cheesecake

Strawberry cheesecake

Raspberry and honey cheesecake

Raspberry and honey cheesecake

Chocolate chip cheesecake

Chocolate chip cheesecake

Butterscotch Cheesecake

This is another simple variation which uses 1/2 cup of butterscotch sauce to flavor the basic vanilla cheesecake mix. You can buy a ready-made sauce, but a homemade version is very simple and tastes so much nicer.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup golden syrup/light corn syrup
  • 3/4 cup double/heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice

Instructions

  1. Place the brown sugar, butter and golden syrup into a pan and bring gently to the boil. When the mixture is bubbling nicely and has thickened slightly, remove from the heat and add in the heavy cream, vanilla and lemon juice—take care as the hot mixture may splutter when you add in the cold ingredients. Allow it to cool.
  2. Follow steps 1-6 of the vanilla cheesecake recipe and then add in 1/2 cup of the butterscotch sauce. Mix well, pour onto the crust and refrigerate until ready to serve.
  3. Any leftover butterscotch sauce can be drizzled onto the plate before serving to create a decorative pattern or you can drizzle it over the top of the cheesecake prior to serving.
The mix should be bubbling nicely.  You are looking for large, thick bubbles and for all the sugar to have dissolved.

The mix should be bubbling nicely. You are looking for large, thick bubbles and for all the sugar to have dissolved.

Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla, lemon juice and heavy cream to create a smooth texture.

Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla, lemon juice and heavy cream to create a smooth texture.

What do you think of these cheesecake recipes?