Pumpkin Cheesecake

Okay guys – I may be in need of an intervention. I’m out of control with pumpkin right now. In fact, I was just browsing through the recipes in my drafted posts, and every. single. one. has pumpkin in it. What I’m trying to say is that if you loathe this particular holiday ingredient, ya may want to just stay away from MBA for the next week or so. Sorry.

So insane pumpkin obsession aside, you guys know that I also have a thing for cheesecake. So it was only natural to combine two of my absolute favorite things to create one incredible Thanksgiving dessert.

The first time I tested this recipe, I used gingersnap cookies for the crust. However, I didn’t actually taste the gingersnap cookies that I purchased before whirling them up in my blender. Well, they tasted quite unfortunate. Sort of like a how I imagine dirt would taste if you sprinkled some spices on it. Sick!

Moral of the story? Stay far away from Kroger brand gingersnap cookies – unless of course, spicy dirt sounds appealing.

After trashing the first crust, I went the more traditional route and used graham cracker crumbs, but I added a little somethin’ somethin’ to the mix – homemade pumpkin pie spice. And honestly, the flavor was just perfect!

Whether your looking for the perfect dessert for Thanksgiving dinner, or you’re just freakishly obsessed with pumpkin, this fantastic Pumpkin Cheesecake is sure to please. Simple dollops of whipped cream finish this baby off so that you can look impressive – even if you’re hiding in the kitchen necking the Reddi-Whip dispenser like it’s your J-O-B. It can’t just be me. Right?

If cheesecakes scare you a bit, no worries. Check out my video tutorial on How to Make the Perfect Cheesecake! It’s old school – enjoy!

Snickers Cheesecake How-To from My Baking Addiction on Vimeo.


Pumpkin Cheesecake

Yield: 12 servings

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour plus chill time


For the Crust

2 cups graham cracker crumbs
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon homemade pumpkin pie spice

For the Cheesecake

4 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
3 large eggs
1 can (15 oz.) pure pumpkin puree
1/3 cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon homemade pumpkin pie spice


1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan with foil and spray lightly with nonstick cooking spray.

2. In a medium bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, butter, granulated sugar and pumpkin pie spice. Press onto bottom and 1 inch up side of prepared pan. Bake for 7 to 8 minutes. Cool on wire rack for about 10 minutes.

3. Begin to boil a large pot of water for the water bath.

4. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl with an electric mixer, combine cream cheese, granulated sugar and brown sugar until fluffy; about 3 minutes. Add in eggs, pumpkin and heavy cream, mix until fully incorporated; scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Finally, add in vanilla and pumpkin pie spice and mix until well combined.

5. Pour batter into prepared crust. Place pan into a larger pan and pour boiling water into the larger pan until halfway up the side of the cheesecake pan. (See video above for more tips)

6. Bake 60 minutes, the edges will appear to be set, but the center will still have some jiggle to it. At this point, close the oven door, turn the heat off, and let rest in the cooling oven for one hour. After one hour has passed, carefully remove the cheesecake from the water bath and place on a cooling rack to cool completely. Once the cake is completely cooled, place it into the refrigerator for at least 6 hours.


- If you don't want to mess with the whole waterbath situation, no worries. You can bake the cheesecake without it. If you end up with a crack, just cover it with whipped cream!
- A tightly covered cheesecake can be stored in the refrigerator for up to five days. The cheesecake can be stored for approximately 2 months in the freezer. To defrost, allow cake to defrost in the refrigerator overnight.


140 Responses to “Pumpkin Cheesecake”

  1. Margaret — November 14, 2012 at 8:25 pm

    Pumpkin AND cheesecake!! I knew I liked you!!!!


  2. Shelly (cookies and cups) — November 14, 2012 at 8:29 pm

    I totally hate spiced dirt.. So I will definitely try the graham cracker crust :)
    And I have a total thing for cheesecake and am also learning to live pumpkin in my old age..
    This sounds amazing!


  3. Emily @ Jelly Toast — November 14, 2012 at 8:30 pm

    This looks delish! I have had pumpkin on the brain lately, too and just made some mini pumpkin cheesecakes. I will definitely be trying this recipe!. A girl can’t get enough cheesecake, if you ask me.


  4. Rachel (Two Healthy Plates) — November 14, 2012 at 8:46 pm

    Once the intervention is finished at your house can you send them my way?! K, thanks!
    And now I will stay far far away from Kroger gingersnaps – hah!

    This cheesecake looks divine! =)


  5. Carin — November 14, 2012 at 8:58 pm

    Jamie, I use crushed chocolate wafer cookies or chocolate grahams for the crust of my pumpkin cheesecake. I love the combo of chocolate and pumpkin! Your cheesecake looks awesome!


  6. luv what you do — November 14, 2012 at 10:20 pm

    Your cake is beautiful! I don’t even like cheesecake but want to face dive right into it or at the very least lick the frosting. I’m sorry to hear that the gingersnap crust didn’t work out. Good tip regarding Kroger. I like to buy generic when I can. Thanks for the recipe!


  7. ThisBakerGirlBlogs — November 15, 2012 at 3:37 am

    Would love a slice or two of this! :)


  8. Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar — November 15, 2012 at 8:00 am

    Oh boy…this looks so yummy!!


  9. Amber | Bluebonnets & Brownies — November 15, 2012 at 9:23 am

    You are not the only one to fill your whole with whipped cream directly from the squirty bottle. I just wanted to make sure you knew you’re not alone in this. And pumpkin cheesecake is actually my FAVORITE cheesecake of all the cheesecakes. Thankfully, we do not have Kroger, so no spiced dirt cookie crusts for me.


  10. Cookbook Queen — November 15, 2012 at 9:24 am

    This is just gorgeous!! I love cheesecake and I love pumpkin so this is perfect :)


  11. Heather — November 15, 2012 at 11:06 am

    You are killing me here! I live in Europe and we don’t have grahm crackers. I know, gasp! Right? So, I’m hoping you have a recipe for grahm crackers…tried and true. This cheesecake looks soooooo good! Either way, thanks for the food porn.


    • Jamie — November 17, 2012 at 6:49 pm

      You can use digestive biscuits as a replacement for graham crackers – I hope this helps.

  12. Donna — November 15, 2012 at 11:34 am

    OMG….Pretty positive everyone gazing/LURCHING at these images is busy deleting all of their “Thanksgiving Dessert Ideas” recipes..No lie….I know I am..

    My husband will simply die when he tastes this if I follow your GENEROUSLY given tutorial to the tee…

    +3 regarding the “Ready-Whip” kitchen revelation…and I thought IT WAS ONLY ME…

    Question…Could a good quality speculoos Belgian..or Biscoff-type biscuit be used instead of graham cracker crumbs?..I love them..but in France, they are difficult to find and EXPENSIVE when you do…

    MasterChef = Pumpkin Cheesecake + YOUR involvement…Merci bien!!!


    • Jamie — November 17, 2012 at 6:46 pm

      I think Biscoff cookies would be amazing as a crust! Let me know how it goes!

  13. Gisele — November 15, 2012 at 11:41 am

    O-M-G. I want it. Now.



  14. Laurel — November 15, 2012 at 11:49 am

    I use cinnamon graham crackers and add finely chopped pecans for the crust.

    You can also put a pan of water on the rack below the cheesecake to keep it from cracking, but I prefer the water bath. One more tip: put the springform pan in a turkey bag to keep the water from seeping into the crust. It’s better than foil because it doesn’t get holes in it.


  15. Laurel — November 15, 2012 at 11:56 am

    ONE MORE THING…….ALL INGREDIENTS MUST BE ROOM TEMPERATURE. If not, you will get lumps that you can’t get rid of, even if you force the batter through a sieve (ask me how I know!)


  16. Yaela — November 15, 2012 at 12:40 pm

    Hi Jamie,

    Yep, this is a winner. I want to make it. Looks perfect.
    Maybe it’s just me but did I miss what size pie pan or springfoam pan you used?



    • Yaela — November 16, 2012 at 1:23 pm

      Hi Jamie,

      Duh…yes I can read. It’s in step 1.

      Thanks. Happy Thanksgiving :)

  17. Loretta | A Finn In The Kitchen — November 15, 2012 at 1:25 pm

    Don’t worry, all the pumpkin won’t scare me off! That’s how I was feeling the other day too! Great idea on putting the spice in the crust. I bet it adds so much!


  18. Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious — November 15, 2012 at 1:51 pm

    I’m completely out of control with pumpkin too so this cheesecake is just screaming my name! I may just have to make it for Thanksgiving!


  19. heather bell — November 15, 2012 at 2:33 pm

    all i have to say is “yes please!” bellesbazaar-heather.blogspot.com


  20. Becca - Cookie Jar Treats — November 15, 2012 at 3:24 pm

    I haven’t had cheesecake cake in months! These cheesecake looks and sounds delicious. Sorry about your gingersnap cookies though :/ That’s got to be a bummer.


  21. Kathie — November 15, 2012 at 4:19 pm

    Don’t feel bad I own an entire cookbook that is just pumpkin recipes


  22. Debbie — November 15, 2012 at 5:52 pm

    Who has cheesecake leftover?! Thanks for sharing this, definately on my to do list for the weekend hubby is gone. I’m not sharing one bite =)


  23. Lynna — November 15, 2012 at 8:13 pm

    GORGEOUS Cheesecake! :)


  24. Carlas Confections — November 15, 2012 at 9:14 pm

    I love cheesecake so much! I have only made it a couple times and it cracked both times, but it sure did taste good! I am thinking of doing a cheesecake cake, and I might just be using this recipe. So pretty!! :)


  25. Meredith — November 15, 2012 at 9:52 pm

    I would like to note though, for anyone who wants to make this, check your pumpkin cans, because they aren’t all pumpkin really.


    But for recipes like this, I ususally take a small pumpkin for baking pies with, cut it in half and bake the halves. You get the puree but its 100% pumpkin.


  26. Brigette — November 16, 2012 at 2:25 am

    I have been looking for a good pumpkin cheesecake recipe, thank you! I’ve been going pumpkin crazy on my blog too, check it out if you get a chance last week was pumpkin eclairs.


  27. Rachel @ Baked by Rachel — November 16, 2012 at 9:14 am

    Spicy dirt sounds perfect ;) No really… this cheesecake is stunning! I’m still ready for more pumpkin so bring it on!


  28. sally @ sallys baking addiction — November 16, 2012 at 9:39 am

    my sister makes pumpkin cheesecake for thanksgiving each year! this year we are having it on gingersnap crust. i’m sending her this recipe – Jamie, you never fail with the classic, down right amazing recipes. :)


  29. Elena @ Etiquette Moms — November 16, 2012 at 12:01 pm

    What a great recipe! Easier than some of the other flavored cheesecake recipes I’ve found. Thanks for posting.


  30. Yeah I think I can pass on spicy dirt…this cheesecake on the other hand is a different story!


  31. Girlnapurpledres — November 17, 2012 at 6:37 am

    This sounds devilishly good!


  32. Lisa Cornely — November 17, 2012 at 4:44 pm

    I am so excited that I found your post. I made a pumpkin cheesecake four years ago for Thanksgiving dessert, and did not save the recipe. I loved it, and have been searching the internet for a recipe to use. This one looks and sounds just perfect.

    Your cheesecake is beautiful too. Thanks so much for posting this.


  33. Caralyn @ glutenfreehappytummy — November 17, 2012 at 8:05 pm

    looks so delicious! i loooove pumpkin!


  34. leslie — November 18, 2012 at 8:45 pm

    Cheesecake the old school way is the only way to make it!!!!!


  35. lindsay — November 19, 2012 at 2:28 am

    That looks amazing! Would I need to change anything if I wanted to make them in a cupcake pan? And also, how many do you think this recipe will yield?


    • MBA — November 19, 2012 at 9:25 pm

      The recipe can absolutely be used in a cupcake pan. The amount of time that the crust needs to be pre-baked would shorten slightly; however, approimately 5 minutes. The recipe will yield around 36 cupcake size cheesecakes. I hope this helps and have a great day!

    • Jennifer — September 9, 2013 at 8:02 pm

      What would you say is the estimated baking time of these cheesecake cupcakes? Would you put the cupcake pan in a water bath as well? Thanks!! Can’t wait to try this recipe :)

    • Jamie — September 13, 2013 at 5:34 pm

      Hi Jennifer,
      I’m not really sure on the baking time to change to cupcakes – I’d start with 20 minutes and see how you go? I probably personally wouldn’t use a water bath for them, but I guess it couldn’t hurt. Let me know if you do it, I’d love to know how they turn out!
      – Jamie

  36. Kelli- K Customables — November 20, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    Yum! Can’t wait to try this on Thursday!


  37. christina — November 21, 2012 at 10:22 am

    I’m going try this recipe today, I have question how to take the springform pan of the bottom of the cheesecake without leaving my crust on the pan. this happen to me too many times. so I really appreciate any suggestions anybody may have. Thank you :)


    • MBA — December 19, 2012 at 10:08 pm

      I line the bottom of the pan with foil and this works well. Good luck and have a great day!

  38. Sara — November 21, 2012 at 4:09 pm

    My good lord in heaven this looks delicious. I will make this for my family in the near future. The thanksgiving dessert spot is already taken, but we will need something sweet after eating leftovers too! :)

    Thanks for sharing!

    Check out my blog?


  39. Lisa — November 21, 2012 at 5:04 pm

    Do I bake @ 350 got one hour? Did I miss this sorry


    • MBA — November 21, 2012 at 9:53 pm

      That’s correct… Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 1 hour. Good luck and I hope this helps! Have a great day!

  40. Kathy@Playinwithmyfood — November 21, 2012 at 6:02 pm

    I just made this and it looks perfect! Followed your instructions and there’s no cracks in sight. Will unmold it tomorrow and have it for Thanksgiving.


  41. Julie — November 22, 2012 at 7:00 pm

    I made this a few days ago. It was my first cheesecake ever and it came out perfect!! I too followed the directions and the cheesecake came out absolutely perfect!! There were no cracks at all and it looked straight out of a professional bakery. I did not have any ginger for the pumpkin pie spice mixture, but I used the other four ingredients and the taste was still great. This is a great recipe which I will continue to use!


    • MBA — November 24, 2012 at 7:42 pm

      I am so glad you enjoyed the recipe. Thanks so much for stopping by and providing your feedback – have a great day!

  42. Kim — November 23, 2012 at 8:39 am

    Made this for Thanksgiving and it was a HUGE hit! I couldn’t do a water bath (didn’t have a pan that would fit the 9″ spring form) so there were some cracks around the edges. Took your tip and piped some whipped cream over them and no one was the wiser!
    Since I’m graham cracker crust challenged, it ended up being quite unevenly spread. I ended up really liking the places where the crust was thicker, so I think if I make it again I’ll just put it all on the bottom instead of going up the sides.
    Just wanted to say thanks for helping me be a Thanksgiving super star!!!! It’s really a wonderful recipe :-)


    • MBA — November 24, 2012 at 7:31 pm

      I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe. Thanks for stopping by and providing your feedback – have a great day!

  43. Liz N. — November 24, 2012 at 7:57 pm

    I made this for Thanksgiving, using a gluten free gingerbread cookie crust and it was amazing! The cheesecake was so light, flavorful and not too sweet. It is a new favorite and will be something I make every year. Delish!


    • MBA — November 24, 2012 at 8:01 pm

      I am so glad you enjoyed the recipe! Thanks for stopping by and providing your feedback – have a great day!

  44. Lisa Cornely — November 25, 2012 at 9:45 pm

    I wanted to give an update after making this for Thanksgiving. I did not have a large enough enough pan to put in a water bath so I put a pan with water beneath the cake in the oven. I got slight cracking around the outside, but it looked fine after it cooled. I served with homemade whipped cream on the side. It was delicious. Everyone loved it. It was rich, creamy and had a perfect texture. Thanks for a wonderful recipe.


    • MBA — November 28, 2012 at 6:51 pm

      I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe. Thanks for stopping by and providing your feedback – have a great day!

  45. deborah@delicioushappens.com — November 28, 2012 at 11:51 pm

    Gorgeous cheesecake!! You have really great recipes & beautiful photos!!


  46. Jeanette — December 12, 2012 at 7:51 pm

    Loved it! This is the first ever cheesecake that I made. Surprisingly not hard at all and it came out to be very delicious and moist. No cracks either :-) I will be making this again for sure.


  47. Linda — December 22, 2012 at 1:08 pm

    I decided this would be the perfect dessert for Christmas Eve dinner. I think I know what I did to cause such a huge disaster and wanted to mention it to others. When blending/whipping the ingredients, there comes a time when it’s too much. I knew there was a problem when I had a huge mound of pumpkin cheesecake piled VERY high into my beautiful crust, but I thought, well, the air will bake out and it will be normal. Nope!! Frothed all over the sides and into the 12″ x 17″ Pyrex pan of hot water. What a mess!! Maybe I over did that whipping part, ya think?!?!? Folks, just blend well. Don’t over do. More is not better here. :)


    • Yaela — January 3, 2013 at 11:31 am

      Hi Linda,
      I just put the pumpkin cheesecake in the oven and was hoping to see ANYONE with the same experience as what I have just noticed…nice to meet you! Yes, mine is quite high also – well above the (what I thought was) 1 inch crust…a little scary…who knows what I’ll see when I open the oven later on. Boo. Maybe I should take some out before it sets…been in there for just a couple minutes…man.

  48. Kailene — March 25, 2013 at 2:39 pm

    Hi! I hope you can help me with a question! I had someone ask me to bake them a cheesecake for Easter and I agreed, BUT – I don’t want to give away the bottom of my springform pan. Not sure I’d get it back. :0/ If I made the cheesecake as instructed in your recipe, lining the bottom of the pan with foil, could it be easily removed from the pan bottom after it cools?
    Sorry if this is an off the wall question! Lol TIA, :0)


    • MBA — April 11, 2013 at 4:12 pm

      I apologize for not getting back to you before Easter. I hope everything worked out, but to answer your question, yes, the cheesecake can easily be removed from the bottom of the pan once it has completely cooled. Thanks for stopping by and have a great day!


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