Red Pepper Cheesecake

This red pepper cheesecake, made with three types of cheese, roasted red peppers, and tartly sweet apricot jam, topping makes an unexpected and elegant holiday appetizer or cheese course.

A round of red pepper cheesecake, topped with apricot jam and surrounded by crackers.

This red pepper cheesecake creates a stunning savory appetizer or cheese course that’s an ideal and impressive something to set out for guests for any occasion.–Renee Schettler Rossi

Red Bell Pepper Cheesecake

  • Quick Glance
  • Quick Glance
  • 25 M
  • 5 H, 25 M
  • 4 to 6 servings
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Special Equipment: 4 1/2-inch (11-cm) round springform pan* (see Note below)

Ingredients

  • For the red pepper cheesecake
  • For the homemade pita chips

Directions

Make the red pepper cheesecake

Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Wrap the outside of a 4 1/2-inch round springform pan* (see Note below) with 2 layers of heavy-duty aluminum foil.

In a food processor, pulse the ricotta, cream cheese, and goat cheese to combine. Add the sugar, egg, and a pinch of salt and pulse a few more times until well mixed, thick, and creamy.

Fold in the red pepper strips with a rubber spatula. Scrape the cheese mixture into the springform pan.

Place the springform pan in a roasting pan and pour enough hot water into the roasting pan to come halfway up the sides of the springform pan. Bake until the cheesecake is golden at the edges and the center of the cake moves slightly when the pan is gently shaken, about 45 minutes. (Don’t worry. The cake will become firm when it is cold.)

Transfer the cake to a wire rack to cool for 1 hour. Then refrigerate until the cheesecake is chilled through, at least 3 hours and up to 2 days.

Make the homemade pita chips

Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Cut each pita into 8 triangles (like a pie). Place the triangles on rimmed baking sheets. Drizzle the triangles with the oil and sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Bake until crisp and golden, 12 to 15 minutes.

Serve the cheesecake

In a small bowl stir together the jam and the hot water and stir until the jam is liquidy. Remove the sides of the springform pan from the cheesecake and place it on a serving plate. Drizzle the jam mixture over the top of the cheesecake. Serve the pita chips alongside. Originally published June 16, 2008.

Print RecipeBuy the Giada's Kitchen: New Italian Favorites cookbook

Want it? Click it.

    *What You Need To Know About The Special Pan For This Cheesecake

    • This recipe calls for a rather wee 4 1/2-inch springform pan, which is a tad, well, not so common. As you can read in the recipe tester comments below, this savory cheesecake is definitely worth the small investment, though. Because this pan is not too big. Not too small. Just the right size.

    Recipe Testers' Reviews

    This is an easy, delicious, unusual, and beautiful appetizer to serve. The apricot jam topping adds just the perfect amount of sweetness. It’s so good you might have to make 2 cheesecakes or double the recipe as my dinner party of 4 ate the whole thing in a manner of minutes.

    Homemade pita chips are the ideal accompaniment.

    I had great success with this savory cheesecake recipe! I actually made it twice, once for a party and once for my coworkers, and it got raves both times. It’s very easy, and I think it’s worthwhile to get the pan that it called for because it really adds to the presentation. Easy and delicious.

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    Comments

    1. If you do the math, a 6-inch round pan has just about twice the surface area as a 4.5-inch round pan. (To be more precise, you’d need a pan 6.36 inches in diameter, to get twice the surface area.) Many of us who own Instant Pots and have used them for making cheesecakes already have 6-inch springform pans. Thus, I’m going to suggest that doubling the recipe and using a 6-inch springform might work reasonably well. Furthermore, since this savory cheesecake gets baked in a water bath, it might also be amenable to an expedited baking in a pressure cooker.

      I’ll let you know if I try it.

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