Although the mini cheesecake shown in this video will be much more simple than baking a full-size cheesecake, we decided to include some tips we have gathered for making the best cheesecake. Find out how to make a perfect cheesecake and avoid common cheesecake mistakes!
The answer is yes, you can make cheesecake!
If you have never made a cheesecake before, you might think that it seems like a daunting task, but after you make your own cheesecake you will realize that it’s actually quite easy to do – just a little time intensive. It is all too common for cheesecakes to go wrong due to leaking pans, cracked tops, and fallen centers, but you can avoid those problems by following these tips for how to make a perfect cheesecake. You should always pay attention to the details. Use these helpful tips to make the best cheesecake you have ever tasted! Take your time when you are cooking a cheesecake so that you can get comfortable with the process.
Top Tips For Making The Best Cheesecake
1. The cream cheese you use should always be at room temperature.
In order to make your cheesecake smooth and lump-free, you will need to ensure that all of the ingredients mix smoothly together. In order to properly mix cream cheese, it should be at room temperature. Cold cream cheese will not mix well and will result in a lumpy mess. The cream cheese can be easily softened/brought to room temperature by taking it out of the foil wrapping, cutting it into smaller pieces, and heating it for about 15 seconds at a time until it softens.
In addition, as far as cream cheese is concerned, you will get the best cheesecake by using the full fat regular stuff. This means that fat means more creaminess, and you do not have any fillers that are meant to replace fats. For your cheesecake texture to be on point, you don’t want low-fat cream cheese. You want real cream cheese that is of the highest quality.
2. Add a little flour or cornstarch to the mixture.
In my opinion, adding a little flour to a cheesecake makes a world of difference. This starch prevents the egg proteins from over-coagulating, which gives you a creamier texture and prevents any cracking that might occur. Cornstarch can also be used as an alternative if you are looking for a gluten free solution. The amount of cornstarch required will be half that of flour.
3. Toss in some sour cream.
There are other tricks to make sure your cheesecake bakes properly, but this one, for instance, does provide a tangy flavor and a creamy texture that helps to give your cheesecake a perfect finish. I think if you have to substitute it, Greek yogurt would be a fine substitute, but the flavor is definitely going to differ.
4. Make sure that you do not overmix the batter or mix it on a very high speed.
A batter gets more air if it is mixed at a high speed as well as if it is overmixed. It is possible to cause cracks in a cheesecake in a few different ways if there is too much air in it. It is possible for large air bubbles to rise to the surface and cause cracks or little craters on the surface. The second reason is that adding air to something makes it rise, and too much rise in a cheesecake is not good. If the cheesecake rises too much or too quickly, it can end up falling and cracking.
There is also a connection between this and number one about room temperature cream cheese. You will need to mix things a bit more if your cream cheese isn’t soft enough to get rid of lumps. So again, make sure your cream cheese is soft enough to get rid of lumps. Additionally, during the process of adding eggs to batter, more air tends to be introduced, so make sure you use a lower speed when you are mixing.
5. Make sure you use a water bath, and that your springform pan is leak-free.
A “water bath” when it is in reference to baking a cheesecake is simply placed into a pan of hot water the cheesecake that is to be baked, so that the cheesecake pan is halfway submerged in the pan of water during the baking process.
Generally, this is a step that most people would rather avoid at all costs, but trust me – the few minutes it takes are totally worth the effort. There are many benefits associated with it. Firstly, the water bath helps to prevent the cheesecake from drying out and cracking by creating steam. Secondly, the water bath prevents the sides of the cheesecake from baking faster than the middle of the cheesecake. Thus, the cheesecake will be baked evenly, preventing cracks in the cheesecake.
Without the use of a water bath, you may end up with a cheesecake that is either too thin in the middle, browns too much around the edges, or cracks. Those are some of the worst things to happen to a perfect cheesecake. Do yourself a favor and take that extra step; you won’t regret it!
A soggy crust is such a disappointment after baking an entire cheesecake and going through all the hassle of doing so. In spite of how important a springform pan is for making a great cheesecake, they are also the most unreliable pan you could ever imagine. One of the many springform pans I have used, I have only ever found one that did not leak (the other four of the exact same pan did leak, this was just a lucky find!).
To line your cheesecake water bath with a slow cooker liner! Since these little baggies are made to stand up to the heat and liquid of your slow cooker, why not use them in your water bath too? In my opinion, it is the best ever baggie and doesn’t leak at all.
6. Make sure that you use a springform pan.
Now that I’ve just told you how unreliable springform pans are, I’d like to tell you why you still need to get one. It is important that you use a pan that has removable sides so that you can get that perfect looking cheesecake. This is just the way things are. As long as you’re a cheesecake lover, you’ll be able to use it a lot, making it a worthwhile investment.
7. Make sure that you do not open the oven.
You will lose all the good, hot, steamy air out of the oven if you open it up while you are baking. This may cause the cheesecake to fall in the middle or to bake unevenly due to the change in temperature.
8. Be careful not to overbake the cheesecake.
As well as the other factors already mentioned, overbaking a cheesecake can lead to cracks, similar to how a custard pie cracks when it is overcooked. It will be clear that the cheesecake has baked long enough when both the outer edge and the inner few inches of the cake are well set but still jiggly.
9. The cheesecake should be allowed to cool gradually.
I recommend the gradual cooling process for the cheesecake once it has baked enough and is still jiggly, but has reached the stage of being set. Typically, I will let a cheesecake sit in the oven for about an additional 30 minutes with the door closed. My next step is to crack the door of the oven about half way and slowly let it cool out. With this technique, the cheesecake is able to cool slowly, while also finishing baking, which again reduces the chance of cracks forming. You can run a knife around the edges of the cheesecake just before placing it in the fridge to make sure it won’t stick to the sides, or even jiggle it a little to loosen it from the sides.