Gingerbread Cheesecake

This gingerbread cheesecake tastes like classic Christmas spices—cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and clove—in each and every bite. A simple yet stunning holiday dessert.

A whole gingerbread cheesecake on a white platter with a slice missing from it.

Just wait until your guests get a glimpse of this gingerbread cheesecake at the Christmas table. They won’t be disappointed. And neither will you. The cheesecake is thrice as nice as most thanks to the familiar notes of sugar and spice and everything nice playing a role not just in the filling but in the cookie crust and the stylish cookie toppers.–Renee Schettler Rossi

Why This Gingerbread Cheesecake Recipe Is Simpler To Make Than It Appears

This gingerbread cheesecake isn’t complicated to make. It simply takes a little planning ahead. The ease with which the recipe comes together has a lot to due with those cute little gingerbread man cookies garnish being made from the same gingerbread dough as the cookie crust for the cheesecake. And since the recipe makes ample cookie dough, you’ll have sufficient to roll out and bake a few extra gingerbread man cookies and send them home with guests. Oh, and if you really must cut corners due to time constraints, you could omit the cookies. They’re pretty darn adorable. And addictive.

Gingerbread Cheesecake

  • Quick Glance
  • (3)
  • 50 M
  • 3 H
  • Serves 10 to 12
4.7/5 - 3 reviews
Print RecipeBuy the Martha Stewart's Cakes cookbook

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Special Equipment: 9-inch springform pan

Ingredients

  • For the gingerbread cookie crust
  • For the gingerbread cheesecake filling

Directions

Make the gingerbread cookie crust

Preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C).

Generously flour a large piece of parchment paper. Place 1/2 of the gingerbread cookie dough on the floured paper and roll it out to a 13-by-10-inch rectangle about 1/4 inch thick. Dust off any excess flour.

Slide the parchment and dough onto a baking sheet and bake until it’s firm and golden brown, about 14 minutes. Transfer the parchment and cookie to a wire rack and let it cool completely.

On another generously floured piece of parchment, roll out the remaining gingerbread cookie dough about 1/4 inch thick. Using a cookie cutter, bake the remaining gingerbread cookie dough as directed in the Gingerbread Cookies recipe.

Break the cooled rectangular cookie into several large chunks and pulse them in a food processor until finely ground. Measure 2 cups gingerbread crumbs and dump them in a bowl. Reserve the remaining crumbs for another use (like nibbling them or sprinkling them over ice cream).

Add the butter and sugar to the crumbs in the bowl and mix until combined. Press the mixture evenly over the bottom and 1/3 of the way up the sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Wrap the outside of the pan with a double layer of aluminum foil. Bake until the gingerbread cookie crust is set, about 10 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack to cool completely.

Make the gingerbread cheesecake filling

Reduce the oven temperature to 325°F (163°C). Bring a small pot of water to a boil.

In the bowl of a stand mixer or with a handheld mixer on medium speed, beat the cream cheese until fluffy and smooth, about 3 minutes. Beat in the sugar and vanilla, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Reduce the speed to low. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in the molasses, salt, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and zest.

Scrape the filling onto the cooled gingerbread crust. Place the springform pan in a large, shallow roasting pan. Pull out the center oven rack and set the roasting pan on the rack. Carefully pour enough boiling water into the roasting pan to reach halfway up the side of the springform pan and then push the rack back into the oven.

Bake the cheesecake until the filling is an even, gorgeous pale shade of brown and appears set but is still slightly wobbly in the center, 60 to 70 minutes. (We had the best results when we took the cheesecake out at 65 minutes.) Transfer the springform pan to a wire rack and let the cheesecake cool completely.

When the cheesecake has cooled to room temperature, slide it in the refrigerator, uncovered, and come back for it 8 hours later.

Before serving, run a knife or an offset spatula around the edge of the gingerbread cheesecake to loosen it from the sides of the pan. Carefully remove the pan and, if desired, arrange the gingerbread cookies around the center of the cheesecake. Originally published November 14, 2014.

Print RecipeBuy the Martha Stewart's Cakes cookbook

Want it? Click it.

Recipe Testers' Reviews

This is a brilliant gingerbread cheesecake recipe and one which I will certainly use during the holidays. This may very well be the finest cheesecake that I have ever made.

First let me say, the cookies make a WONDERFUL crust. I would also like to add that I added an extra tablespoon butter to the crust, which made it PERFECT. I decided not to use the lemon zest and found that it was not missed. I also highly suggest baking the cheesecake for the entire 65 minutes. My oven runs a little hot, yet 60 minutes was still not quite enough. I also recommend chilling the baked cheesecake for 24 hours. Honestly, the texture only improved with a bit of time. I sprinkled some of the unused cookie dust on the top of each slice as I served it.

This would be a great option in place of pumpkin pie. I LOVE THIS CAKE! This cake will EASILY feed 10 hungry dinner guests.

If you love gingerbread, you have to make this gingerbread cheesecake recipe. The cookie dough is pretty standard and makes a tender cookie on its own.

It was really hard waiting overnight to taste this! The final product was smooth and not overly rich. Although I could have easily eaten the entire thing by myself, I gave half away to a friend and stored what was left, tightly wrapped, in the freezer. I cut myself a slice last night, and even after a week, the flavor and textures are still great. I might actually like it just as much frozen as I do at room temperature.

I included the lemon zest in the cheesecake filling, and I liked the little zip it added. I did think there was a tad too much nutmeg, and next time would cut back a little. The double layer of foil seemed to keep water out pretty well. My cheesecake baked for about 65 minutes, with the top turning a very pale brown and the edges slightly darker.

I will definitely make this again and highly recommended it to gingerbread lovers!

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Comments

    1. Thanks, M.J. Cheesecakes are often cooked at 325F in order to achieve that perfect texture. If it took an exceptionally long time to bake, you may want to check that your oven is running at the correct temperature.

  1. This one is a winner! It’s fun to make, it looks gorgeous, it tastes amazing with all the spice and texture nuances, and it makes for wonderful kitchen aromatherapy! It’s definitely worth using the different recipes with honey and molasses for colour and flavour variations. Cheers to gingerbread in all its forms of glory!

  2. FINALLY!!!!!!!!!!! This is the fourth time I have made this cheesecake and it has cracked every time. This year I took out a little extra “insurance” and added 1 tbsp cornstarch to the batter, along with 8 ounces of sour cream. I also cooled after baking for one hour in the oven with the door open and so far NO CRACKS!! Truly a Christmas miracle.

    I do have to say that even though the past attempts have cracked, they all tasted delicious and no one really cared except for me.

    A round gingerbread cheesecake with a crumb crust sitting on a white and red plate

    1. Hallelujah, Julie! So happy to hear the cake didn’t crack. Now, if I could only lose 100 pounds by the 25th it will TRULY be a Christmas miracle! Any pictures of this beauty, BTW?

  3. Is that photo from the book or is it yours? I ask because I love those plates and would love to know where to get them. The cheesecake is nice, too. LOL!

    1. Aren’t they gorgeous?! The photo is from the book, ruthie (and used with permission from the publisher). And having worked at Martha Stewart Living, I suspect the plates were taken from the props warehouse there, which is, in and of itself, a most glorious place to wander if you’re into tableware and dinnerware.

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