Mini Cheesecakes

Or, maybe I should call these Individual cheesecakes. But either way, they are the perfect portion so you don’t accidentally eat too much. We all do it. Then you feel sick and wish you hadn’t. So here is the solution. Cheesecake made in cupcake tins. Super easy, great for a party or gathering, and just as delicious (and super cute!). Go start your ovens…

What you will need:

14 standard muffin cups with cupcake liners ( I know, weird number but the recipe I followed said it makes 12 but I got 14, so just in case, have 14 ready 😉 )

For the crust:

1 cup graham cracker crumbs
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon granulated sugar

For the cheesecake filling:

2- 8 ounce packages cream cheese
2/3 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs at room temp
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 cup sour cream at room temp

To make the crust:

In a bowl, stir all ingredients together until crumbs are moistened. Put about a tablespoon of graham cracker crumbs into each muffin cup. Press down with your fingers.

Cover with plastic wrap and put in the fridge while you make the filling.

Preheat oven to 300 degrees fahrenheit. In a large bowl (or bowl of your electric mixer), beat cream cheese until soft and creamy. Add the sugar and beat until smooth. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla, lemon zest and sour cream and beat until incorporated.

Remove crusts from the refrigerator. Evenly divide the filling into each cups, filling almost to the top. Bake for 18-22 minutes until edges are firm but the middle still wobbles a little. Let cool on a wire rack. Once cooled, refrigerate 3-4 hours (or even overnight) before serving.

Once chilled, carefully remove the paper liner from the cheesecakes. Serve with drizzled chocolate and/or fruit. Enjoy!

Cheesecake Brownie Swirl Recipe

I made these for good friends of mine who just had a baby boy. We are visiting them today and of course I’m going to bring a baked treat. These brownies are so dense and fudgy and the cream cheese layer makes them creamy and delicious! This is also a simple recipe anyone can follow. There are just multiple steps. So come on, let’s go bake…

What you will need:

9 inch square pan lined with aluminum foil

For the brownie layer:

1/2 cup unsalted butter cut into pieces
4 ounces unsweetened chocolate coarsely chopped
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt

For the cheesecake layer:

8 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg

Preheat oven to 325 degrees fahrenheit. Have ready an 9 inch square pan lined with foil. Put the butter and chocolate in a medium, heatproof bowl and place bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. (I apologize for the dark picture, but you get the idea.) Tip: I love stainless steel bowls! They are a lot lighter than glass and cool down quickly. Melt the chocolate and butter and remove from heat. Whisk in sugar and vanilla. Add the eggs, one at a time, stirring well after each addition. Stir in the flour and salt and stir vigorously until everything is incorporated and the batter is smooth. Remove 1/2 cup of the batter and set it aside. Spread the remainder of the batter evenly into the pan. Next, in a large bowl (or bowl of your electric mixer), beat cream cheese until smooth. Add the sugar, vanilla and egg and beat until smooth and creamy.  Spread the cream cheese batter evenly over the brownie layer. Then, spoon small dollops of the brownie batter that you set aside on top of the cream cheese layer. Run a knife or wooden skewer back and forth through the 2 layers until you have a marble effect. Bake in preheated oven for about 35 minutes. Remove from oven and place on wire rack to cool completely. Then cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours or even overnight. Once chilled, remove the brownies from the pan by lifting the sides of the foil and transfer to a cutting board. With a sharp knife, cut into equal squares. Tip: Have a cup of hot water to dip the knife to make cutting easier. Also have a cloth nearby to wipe the knife clean after each cut. Cover any leftovers and store in the refrigerator. Enjoy cold or at room temperature!