Pumpkin cheesecake with gingersnap pecan crust is a riff on that uber-traditional pumpkin pie. But, if you’re an iconoclast who craves something different, or if you just really like cheesecake, this will change your autumn dessert game plan for good.
This cheesecake has been a huge success at the bakery since its introduction. It’s a lovely dessert for an autumn dinner party. I love to make cheesecakes when I’m entertaining because they can be made one to two days in advance, long before guests even arrive.–Allysa Torey
Pumpkin Cheesecake with Gingersnap Crust FAQs
How do I toast pecans?
To toast pecans, place them on a baking sheet in a 350°F (180°C) oven for 15 minutes, or until lightly browned and fragrant.
How do I make mini cheesecakes?
If you want to make mini cheesecakes yourself (as shown above), you’ll need a special pan. We’d suggest this one, a mini springform cupcake pan. Just be sure that you adjust your cook time and bake until the edges are set and the centers only slightly jiggle, 18 to 20 minutes.
Pumpkin Cheesecake with Gingersnap Pecan Crust
For the crust
- 1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter melted
- 1 1/2 cups gingersnap cookie crumbs
- 1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans
For the filling
- 3/4 pound cream cheese softened
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
- 5 large eggs at room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin purée
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
For the sweet vanilla whipped cream
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For the garnish
- Toasted pecan halves
Make the crust
Make the filling
- In a large bowl, on the low speed of an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese until very smooth. Gradually add the sugars. Add the eggs, one at a time. Add the pumpkin purée and mix until just blended. To ensure that the batter has no lumps and that no ingredients are stuck to the bottom of the bowl, stop the mixer several times and scrape down the side of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Stir in the heavy cream and cinnamon.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and set the pan on a baking sheet. Bake until the edges are set and the center moves only slightly when the pan is shaken, about 1 hour.
- At the end of the baking time, turn off the heat and, using a wooden spoon to keep the oven door slightly ajar, cool the cake in the oven for 1 hour before removing it. Cover and refrigerate for at least 12 hours or overnight.
Make the vanilla whipped cream
- Place all the ingredients in a medium-size bowl and whip with an eggbeater or a whisk until soft peaks form. Serve immediately or cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 4 hours.
Serving the cheesecake
- Remove the cake from the refrigerator 15-30 minutes before cutting and serving. Garnish with the sweetened whipped cream and toasted pecan halves.
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
This pumpkin cheesecake has all those nice autumn flavors, perfect to take to a fall get-together. The blend of gingersnap and pumpkin is always a winner, and the texture was much lighter than other cheesecakes, sort of a fluffy pumpkin pie feel.
Yummy, Yummy in my tummy—the pumpkin cheesecake was very tasty. The crust was unusual but complemented the cake very well. The toasted pecans on the sweetened whipped cream was a good idea to add a crunchy texture to the dessert.
Originally published November 2, 2004