20
Mar 05

Easy Mini Cheesecakes {4+ Ways}

Easy Mini Cheesecake Recipe – this simple cheesecake recipe makes 12 perfect mini cheesecakes and can be made so many ways! Lemon, Oreo, S’mores, Fruit, Peanut Butter Cup – any cheesecake you want in no time at all.

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Easy Mini Cheesecake Recipe - this simple cheesecake recipe makes 12 perfect mini cheesecakes and can be made so many ways! Lemon, Oreo, S'mores, Fruit, Peanut Butter Cup - any cheesecake you want in no time at all.

Hello my friends! Today I’m bringing you lots of CHEESECAKE in lots of different flavors, but it starts with just one basic easy cheesecake recipe. But before we get into it, I wanted to ask a favor. I’m going to start doing a “basics” section on the blog. You know, for beginners: baking basics, cooking basics, and even tools and ingredient tips. I’m not sure where to start, so I need your help. If you have any ideas or are wanting to learn anything, please fill out this form. Thank you!

And now, onto cheesecake!

So, I have a confession to make. I’m really trying to lose weight and I’m not doing very well at it. I love carbs and dessert and wine and it’s so hard to change the way I eat. I don’t do fad diets like Atkins or Whole 30 or anything like because they’re unrealistic for me and because of that I’ll fail. As much as I need to lose 25 pounds, I also need to feel like I’m living life not eating cardboard. #thestruggleisreal

This week I’ve gone 4 days without eating extra bread or crackers. Have I had wine? Yes. Have I had dessert? Some, but not too much. It’s about baby steps; one of my go-to snacks is to eat Goldfish, Cheez-Its or pretzels from the bag. I haven’t done that this week; instead I’m reaching for yogurt and raw veggies and salads. It’s a process!

What does this have to do with cheesecake? Well, these are MINI cheesecakes. So by eating one you’re not breaking the bank on your diet, plus it’s easy to give away and/or freeze the rest. Mini food = my favorite things ever.

The BEST thing about this recipe? You just need the one basic cheesecake recipe and you can easily turn it into about a million other recipes. Make them for every season, to every liking, or have a cheesecake bar at your next party.

The basic cheesecake filling recipe starts with cream cheese, sugar, sour cream, and vanilla extract. Then you can doctor it at your pleasure to make so many other flavors, or leave it plain and save the transformations for the garnish.

To change up the flavors of this cheesecake, the easiest way to do it is in the crust. I’ve given a basic graham cracker crust recipe, but I also love using Oreos as the crust, or any cookie. There’s not even any mixing needed with that option, just use the full cookie as the crust.

Want to see some of my favorite cheesecake flavors? Here goes:

Easy Mini Lemon Cheesecakes - this easy cheesecake recipe makes 12 mini lemon cheesecakes with a Golden Oreo crust and lemon curd on top!

Lemon is my absolute favorite, obviously. I could eat lemon curd straight with a spoon. I love pairing lemon cheesecake with a Golden Oreo crust because the flavors compliment each other nicely. You could also use graham cracker or shortbread for the crust.

And, speaking of graham cracker crust, that totally lends itself to a s’more cheesecake…which I highly recommend. Or use a chocolate chip cookie for a Chocolate Chip Cookie Cheesecake!

Feel free to use the plain cheesecake recipe and then just top with lemon curd, but you can also add some fresh lemon zest to the cheesecake batter. It amps up the flavor of the lemon!

Easy Oreo Cheesecakes - this simple cheesecake recipe makes 12 perfect Cookies 'n Cream Cheesecakes with an Oreo Crust!

I think next to lemon, cookies ‘n cream is another favorite flavor. Add Oreos to anything and it makes it better, am I right or what? Mini Oreo Cheesecakes have an Oreo crust and the basic cheesecake filling full of chopped Oreos. I like serving them with chocolate sauce and whipped cream and more Oreos…doesn’t everyone?

I’ve also paired Oreos with pumpkin, in Pumpkin Turtle Cheesecakes. Those are good all year, but especially at the holidays.

Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake - this easy cheesecake recipe makes 12 mini peanut butter cup cheesecakes with an Oreo crust!

And then, there is the beauty of candy IN cheesecake. I’ve done Snickers before but now I’m doing Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups! You can put a whole mini cup in the cheesecake, on top of the Oreo crust, or you can chop up some peanut butter cups to mix with the batter. I can’t wait to try Milky Way or Kit Kat cheesecakes!

See below the recipe for even more mini cheesecake ideas using this SAME formula!

Easy Mini Cheesecake Recipe

Easy Mini Cheesecake Recipe – this simple cheesecake recipe makes 12 perfect mini cheesecakes and can be made so many ways! Lemon, Oreo, S’mores, Fruit, Peanut Butter Cup – any cheesecake you want in no time at all.

Ingredients:

Basic Graham Crust:

  • 1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • *See Note for additional crust ideas*

Basic Cheesecake Filling:

  • 8 ounces Challenge Cream Cheese, room temperature
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup sour cream, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • *See Note for additional filling and topping ideas*

 

 

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 12-cup muffin pan with cupcake liners.
  2. Make the graham cracker crust: Stir together graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and melted butter. Press about 2-2 1/2 tablespoons of the mixture into the bottom of each muffin liner and press to compact.
  3. Beat room temperature cream cheese with a hand mixer until fluffy. Beat in room temperature sour cream. Beat in egg, sugar, and vanilla extract. (Room temperature ingredients are a must to avoid lumps!)
  4. Evenly divide (about 2-2 1/2 tablespoons each) cheesecake among crusts. Bake for 18-20 minutes, until they just begin to brown. Cool completely and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight.
  5. Serve plain or topped with whipped cream and berries. See notes for additional serving suggestions.
  • Crust: instead of a graham cracker crust you can use 12 Oreos (any flavor). Just place them (whole) into each cupcake liner and they will form the crust.
  • Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecakes: use an Oreo cookie for the crust. Chop up 6 regular sized peanut butter cups and sprinkle them into the batter  in step 3. Alternately, use 12 Reese’s Minis and place one on top of each Oreo before dividing filling. Top cooled cheesecakes with chocolate sauce and more peanut butter cups.
  • Oreo Cheesecakes: use an Oreo cookie for the crust. Chop 4 additional Oreos finely and stir into the cheesecake batter before step 4. Continue as directed.
  • Lemon Cheesecakes: use either a graham cracker crust or a Golden Oreo cookie for the crust. Optional: add 1 teaspoon lemon zest to the batter in step 3. Top cooled cheesecakes with lemon curd and fruit.

Snickers Cheesecake

Snickers Cheesecake

S’mores Cheesecake

S'mores Cheesecake

Mini Fruit Tart Cheesecakes

Mini Fruit Tart Cheesecakes

Easy Mini Cheesecake Recipe - this simple cheesecake recipe makes 12 perfect mini cheesecakes and can be made so many ways! Lemon, Oreo, S'mores, Fruit, Peanut Butter Cup - any cheesecake you want in no time at all.

Other fun cheesecake recipes:
Chocolate and Mint Mini Cheesecakes from Lemons for Lulu
Mini Key Lime Cheesecakes by Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts
Mini Margarita Cheesecakes by Reluctant Entertainer