Incredibly creamy and perfectly spiced, this gingery Pumpkin Cheesecake is a great addition to the holiday dessert table. With just 25 minutes of hands-on time, it’s easy to make and can be made ahead.
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Pumpkin Cheesecake can be made with homemade pumpkin puree, canned pumpkin or winter squash! Maple syrup and fresh ginger in the velvety filling give this dessert delicious warmth and bright spice.
This needs time to set in the fridge, so making a day or two ahead is ideal, and that means you can check dessert off the list of to-dos, which is kind of a bonus, especially around holiday meal prep!
The crust is created with gingersnap cookies and gets pre-baked for a crisp texture. The filling comes together fast. We rinse out the food processor (cutting down on the dishwashing!) and use it to blend the cheesecake filling. Room-temperature cream cheese is a vitally important key to an ultra-smooth filling! We use a slow bake method avoiding the complicated need for a water bath.
Table of Contents
Ingredients in pumpkin cheesecake
- gingersnap cookies – instead of traditional gram crackers we substitute gingersnap cookies to give the cheesecake a delicious burst of ginger in the crust.
- dairy: cream cheese, butter, sour cream
- pumpkin puree – either homemade pumpkin puree or store-bought canned pumpkin
- maple syrup
- spices: grated ginger, pumpkin pie spice
See the recipe card below for a full list of ingredients and measurements.
How to make pumpkin cheesecake
STEP ONE – Preheat oven to 350F. Place cookies in a food processor with the metal blade, and process to fine crumbs.
STEP TWO – Add melted butter and mix in until crumbs are saturated and stick together when pressed.
STEP THREE – Scoop into a 9-inch spring form pan and press into the bottom. A small glass or jar works well here.
Bake the crust for 10 minutes, remove it from the oven and turn the oven up to 450F.
STEP FOUR – Clean out the food processor (or use a hand mixer or stand mixer). Add cream cheese (soft and at room temperature), pumpkin, sugar, maple syrup, sour cream, ginger, pumpkin pie spice, vanilla and salt. Mix until completely smooth.
STEP SIX – Add eggs and pulse until just incorporated. Avoid over-mixing.
STEP SEVEN – Pour filling into cooled crust. Bake at 450F for 15 minutes. Turn the oven down to 250F and prop the oven door open a crack (like with a wooden spoon) for 10 minutes then close the oven door and bake for 40 minutes.
Check internal temperature, should be 145F when done. It will be puffed up and slightly jiggly in the center.
Let cool for 15 minutes, then knife around the edges. Leave on the counter for 1 hour. Refrigerate at least 6 hours, preferably overnight.
Top with fresh whipped cream if desired.
- Let all your ingredients come to room temperature before mixing. Ideally, they should be at least 70 degrees F.
- Bake first at high temperature and then lower the oven temperate.
- Use an instant-read thermometer to test for perfect doneness.
- Chill the finished cheesecake for 12 hours.
There are many ideas and personal versions of perfect. But for a creamy, luscious texture, slow bake (ditch the water bath), test the internal temperate of the
Depending on the texture you are going for, testing with an instant-read thermometer will give accuracy. 145 degrees F will give a creamy, silky texture. The cheesecake will be puffed up and just slightly jiggly in the center.
Yes, cheesecakes are so resilient and nice to keep on hand! Thaw overnight in the fridge or on the counter for 4-5 hours.
To soften cream cheese quickly, cut it into 1-inch chunks and either microwave for 20-30 seconds, or set on a plate for an hour at room temperature. If your kitchen temperature is on the cool side, you can set the plate over a bowl of hot water, just make sure to keep an eye on it and turn the cubes so they don’t melt away.
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Incredibly creamy and perfectly spiced, this easy pumpkin cheesecake is a great addition to the holiday dessert table. No water bath needed, and ideal to make ahead of time!
- 250 grams gingersnap cookies (40 1.5 inch cookies)
- 4 tablespoon butter, melted
- 9 or 10 inch springform pan
- 32 ounces (3 packages) cream cheese, room temperature (see notes)
- 1 1/2 cups (13 ounces) pumpkin puree (fresh or canned or substitute butternut squash)
- 1 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 2/3 cup sour cream
- 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated
- 4 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice (see notes)
- 4 teaspoons vanilla
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 4 eggs, at room temperature, lightly beaten
For the Crust
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Place cookies in a food processor with the metal blade, process to fine crumbs. Add melted butter and mix in until crumbs are saturated and stick together when pressed. Scoop into a spring form pan, press crumbs into the bottom, a small glass or jar works well for this.
- Bake 10 minutes, remove and turn oven up to 450F.
For the Cheesecake Filling
- Clean out the food processor if a large capacity (or use a hand mixer or stand mixer). Add cream cheese (softened at room temperature (see notes), pumpkin, sugar, maple syrup, sour cream, ginger, pumpkin pie spice, vanilla and salt. Mix until completely smooth.
- Add eggs and pulse until just incorporated. Avoid over mixing.
- Pour filling into cooled crust. Bake at 450F for 20 minutes. Turn oven down to 250F and prop oven door open a crack (like with a wooden spoon) for 10 minutes. Close the oven door and bake for 50-60 minutes.
- Check internal temperature, it should be 145 when done (leave it longer if you prefer it more on the dry side). It will be puffed up and slightly jiggly in the center. Let cool on the counter for 15 minutes, then run a knife around the edges. Leave on the counter for 1 hour. Refrigerate covered for at least 6 hours, and preferably overnight.
Just before serving, spread about 1 & 1/2 cups fresh whipped cream over the top. Combine 1 teaspoon maple syrup and 1/4 teaspoon molasses, drizzle over the whipped cream and swirl in with knife. Grate a light sprinkling of fresh nutmeg over the top.
- Pumpkin Pie Spice: 1 tablespoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon nutmeg, 1 teaspoon ground ginger, ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
- To soften cream cheese quickly; cut into 1-inch chunks and either microwave at 15-second intervals, or set on a plate for about an hour at room temperature. If your kitchen temperature is on the cool side, you can set the plate over a bowl of hot water, just make sure to keep an eye and turn the cubes so they don’t melt away.
- Serving Size: 1 large piece
- Calories: 223
- Sugar: 29.4 g
- Sodium: 133.1 mg
- Fat: 5.7 g
- Saturated Fat: 2.6 g
- Carbohydrates: 40.3 g
- Fiber: 1.6 g
- Protein: 3.1 g
- Cholesterol: 56.3 mg
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